The Philosophical Insignificance of Gödel's Slingshot

Mind 106 (421):121-142 (1997)
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Abstract

This paper is a critical examination of Stephen Neale's *The Philosophical Significance of Godel's slingshot*. I am sceptical of the philosophical significance of Godel’s Slingshot (and of Slingshot arguments in general). In particular, I do not believe that Godel’s Slingshot has any interesting and important philosophical consequences for theories of facts or for referential treatments of definite descriptions. More generally, I do not believe that any Slingshot arguments have interesting and important philosophical consequences for theories of facts or for referential treatments of definite descriptions. Friends of facts and referential treatments of definite descriptions can, and should, proceed with the construction of their theories, blithely ignoring the many Slingshots which now litter the landscape. (Of course, there may be other considerations which should give such theorists pause -- but those are other considerations.)

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Graham Oppy
Monash University

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