Barbara Vetter


Metaphysical modality, bottom up


Metaphysical modality is one of the main items in the philosopher’s toolbox. Yet there is so much disagreement about it that we may well wonder whether we’re talking about a common phenomenon, or merely disputing words. In this talk, I suggest that there is a sense in which philosophers have talked past each other in discussing metaphysical modality, some adopting a „bottom-up“ and some a „top-down“ approach. Focussing on the bottom-up approach, I go on to argue that we can get a grip on metaphysical modality despite our fundamental disagreements, by treating „metaphysical modality“ as a term whose meaning is determined by paradigm cases, akin to a natural kind term.


June 21st / 8:45 / Aula magna (ON LINE)