The Taming of the True poses a broad challenge to the realist views of meaning and truth that have been prominent in recent philosophy. Neil Tennant starts with a careful critical survey of the realism debate, guiding the reader through its complexities; he then presents a sustained defence of the anti-realist view that every truth is knowable in principle, and that grasp of meaning must be able to be made manifest. Sceptical arguments for the indeterminacy
or non-factuality of meaning are countered; and the much-maligned notion of analyticity is reinvestigated and rehabilitated. Tennant goes on to show that an effective logical system can be based on his anti-realist view; the logical system that he advocates is justified as a body of analytic truths and
Having laid the foundations for global semantic anti-realism, Tennant moves to the world of empirical understanding, and gives an account of the cognitive credentials of natural scientific discourse. He shows that the same canon of constructive and relevant inference suffices both for intuitionistic mathematics and for empirical science.
This is an ambitious and contentious book which aims to reform not only theory of meaning, but our deductive practices across a broad range of discourses.
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Number of pages: 484
Weight: 733 g
Dimensions: 234 x 156 x 25 mm
Neil Tennant "tames the True" by showing that nothing worth wanting as true in mathematics or natural science ranges beyond the limits of human knowledge. Any thing worthy of the name true in mathematics or natural science is in principle knowable ... Chapters 2 and 3 of Tennant's book make a significant contribution with their careful analyses of philosophical terms such as `realism', `anti-realism', and `irrealism' ... Those who work in these areas need to study
all of Tennant's book for it moves the arguments and issues significantly forward. The book offers a comprehensive philosophy of mathematics and natural science * Zentralblatt f"ur Mathematik *
addresses a number of important issues in contemporary philosophy, and the reader has much to gain from a careful study of the development. Few stones are left unturned. * Stewart Shapiro, Mathematical Reviews *
a new major and systematic monograph on the realism debate, written by a very skillful and sophisticated defender of anti-realism ... very lucidly written, and the main arguments are well signposted, presented, and summarized ... a very advanced work. * Tadeusz Szubka, Albert E. Gunn and Staff *