Facts and the Function of Truth

Facts and the Function of Truth

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This book examines the distinction between fact-stating and non-fact-stating uses of language. This distinction is important in many areas of modern philosophy and is central to "non-factualism"; the view that despite appearances, certain areas of discourse are not factual. These applications typically assume that the notion of statement of fact can be analysed in one of three ways: semantically, metapysically and psychologically. Huw Price argues that none of these approaches provides a non-trivial distinction, capable of excluding the possibility that all utterances are statements of fact. The argument suggests that the search for an analysis is misconceived. "Facts and the Function of Truth" develops an alternative approach, which seeks to explain the development of the fact-stating form of discourse in terms of its function in human life. It outlines such an account, based on the hypothesis that the main function of the normative notions of truth and falsity is to encourage us to argue, with long-run behavioural advantages.
As well as throwing light on statement of fact, this original approach offers a new perspective on notions such as truth and the representational character of language and mind.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 192 pages
  • 152 x 229mm | 538g
  • Blackwell Publishers
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0631150781
  • 9780631150787

Table of contents

Chapter 1 Introduction ; Part I: A Sceptic's Guide to the Matter of Fact ; Chapter 2 The Place of Truth ; Chapter 3 The Insignificance of Mood ; Chapter 4 A Retreat to the Head ; Chapter 5 Seamless Psychology ; Part II: Truth and its Limits: An Explanatory View ; Chapter 6 The Function of Truth ; Chapter 7 The Power of Negative Thinking ; Chapter 8 The Limits of Intolerance ; Chapter 9 End of Inquiry
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