Vérités sans essence. Réflexions post-théoriques


Truths without Essence: Post-Theoretical Reflections

Classical theories of truth are monistic, since they fundamentally search for the essence (or true nature) of truth. The correspondence theory of truth is the most representative in this regard. There are several difficulties with the essentialist theories of truth, which led to the emergence of several alternatives. The purpose of this article is to critically evaluate three of them: the pragmatic theory of truth (the James-Rorty version), the deflationary theory and the pluralistic approach. I argue for overcoming monism and for accepting pluralism in our understanding of truth. At the same time, I argue – from a wittgensteinian point of view – for abandoning the attempt to build a general philosophical theory of truth. I plead for limiting the philosopher’s role to the clarification of the specific ways in which the concept of truth is used in various forms of life and areas of scientific investigation. Multiple uses of the concept of truth in different thematic areas cannot be synthesized, properly speaking, through a particular philosophical theory.

Keywords: truth, metaphysics, essence, pragmatism, deflationism, minimalism, pluralism

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