Orders of Being: Higher-Order Quantification in Language, Logic, and Metaphysics

Ort: Universität Hamburg
Beginn: 11.12.2021 10:00
Ende: 11.12.2021 19:00

Event Description

To be – W.V.O. Quine famously told us – is to be the value of a variable. Importantly, there are two strands to the Quinean paradigm. First, it connects ontology to quantification. Second, it takes a stance on the type of quantification at issue. For Quine was convinced that the only legitimate type of quantification is first-order quantification, i.e. quantification into the syntactic position of singular terms.


In recent years, we have seen a shift away from this Quinean paradigm: there is a growing consensus that higher-order quantifiers, in particular quantifiers binding variables in the syntactic position of predicates and sentences, are a perfectly legitimate and useful instrument in the logico-philosophical toolbox, while being neither reducible to nor fully explicable in first-order terms.


This paradigm-shift is of great importance for many fundamental questions in metaphysics, concerning e.g. the reality and nature of properties, propositions and numbers as well as our notions of existence, being and ontological commitment. The aim of this workshop is to bring together philosophers from different theoretical backgrounds to present their latest research on these and related topics.



Health and safety regulations permitting, this event will be conducted in-person (subject to a 3G policy). Attendance is free, but prior registration is necessary. If you are interested in attending, please send an email to: lukas.skiba@uni-hamburg.de

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