•  92
    Truth and Dependence
    Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 4 955-980. 2017.
    Truths depend upon what there is. So say many. A significant subset of that group say more; they say that the best way—perhaps the only way—to make sense of the claim that truth depends upon what there is, is to adopt a form of truth-maker theory. Truth-maker theorists claim that truths require ground; what’s true must depend upon what there is. Typically, truth-maker theory isn’t seen as a theory about the nature of truth. Rather, it’s seen as a theory about what truths must do. Truths must dep…Read more
  •  3
  •  55
    The Rotten Core of Presentism
    Synthese 1-23. forthcoming.
    Recently, some have attempted to reformulate debates in first-order metaphysics, particularly in the metaphysics of time and modality, for reasons due to Williamson. In this paper, we focus on the ways in which the likes of Cameron, Correia and Rosenkranz, Deasy, Ingram, Tallant, Viebahn, inter alia, have initiated and responded to attempts to capture the core of presentism using a formal, logical machinery. We argue that such attempts are doomed to fail because there is no theoretical core to p…Read more
  •  224
    Nefarious Presentism
    Philosophical Quarterly 65 (260): 355-371. 2015.
    Presentists, who believe that only present objects exist, face a problem concerning truths about the past. Presentists should (but cannot) locate truth-makers for truths about the past. What can presentists say in response? We identify two rival factions ‘upstanding’ and ‘nefarious’ presentists. Upstanding presentists aim to meet the challenge, positing presently existing truth-makers for truths about the past; nefarious presentists aim to shirk their responsibilities, using the language of trut…Read more
  •  244
    Purely Theoretical Explanations
    Philosophia 49 (1): 133-154. 2020.
    This paper introduces a new kind of explanation that we describe as ‘purely theoretical’. We first present an example, E, of what we take to be a case of purely theoretical explanation. We then show that the explanation we have in mind does not fit neatly into any of the existing categories of explanation. We take this to give us prima facie motivation for thinking that purely theoretical explanation is a distinctive kind of explanation. We then argue that it can earn its keep via application to…Read more
  •  8
    If the sentence 'my cat is on the mat' is true how does it get to be true? Sentences are made true by what exists. But what about claims such as 'There were dinosaurs?' and '2+2=4'. How do they get to be true? Metaphysics: An Introduction uses the idea of truth and the quest for truth-makers to unravel philosophical problems in contemporary metaphysics. From the nature of properties and time to causation and objects, truth becomes a guiding theme to understanding metaphysical concepts and debat…Read more
  •  7
    Metaphysics: An Introduction
    Continuum. 2011.
    This is the definitive companion to the study of metaphysics. It provides students with an accessible, comprehensive and philosophically rigorous introduction to all the key concepts, issues and debates. Ideal for use on undergraduate courses, the structure and content of this textbook closely reflect the way metaphysics is studied. Thematically structured, the text introduces all the various philosophical problems addressed by metaphysics through the idea of truth-making, a useful lens through…Read more
  •  49
    How do we explain the truth of true propositions? Truthmaker theory is the branch of metaphysics that explores the relationships between what is true and what exists. It plays an important role in contemporary debates about the nature of metaphysics and metaphysical enquiry. In this book Jonathan Tallant argues, controversially, that we should reject truthmaker theory. In its place he argues for an 'explanationist' approach. Drawing on a deflationary theory of truth he shows that it allows us to…Read more
  •  119
    Philosophical enquiry stands to benefit from the inclusion of methods from the digital humanities to study language use. Empirical studies using the methods of the digital humanities have the potential to contribute to both conceptual analysis and intuition-based enquiry, two important approaches in contemporary philosophy. Empirical studies using the methods of the digital humanities can also provide valuable metaphilosophical insights into the nature of philosophical methods themselves. The us…Read more
  •  56
    Presentism and the Spans of Time
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 101 (1): 200-214. 2020.
    Presentists, who believe that only present entities exist, face a problem of how to analyse tensed plural quantification. The idea, in broad outline, is that presentists can't employ the usual method for analysing tensed singular quantification, using primitive ‘slice’ tense operators, to analyse plurals. One option is to introduce a new theoretical primitive: a ‘span’‐operator. But there are reasons to worry about this option. For one, we might agree with Lewis that span‐operators are ill‐behav…Read more
  •  33
    Hazardous Conditions Persist
    Erkenntnis 1-24. forthcoming.
    Some theories in the philosophy of time combine a commitment to the existence of non-present regions of spacetime with the view that there is a perspective-independent present time. We call such theories 4D A-theories. There is a well-known objection to 4D A-theories, as follows: 4D A-theories entail that the vast majority of subjects across time believe falsely that they are present. But if the vast majority of subjects across time believe falsely that they are present, we do not know that we a…Read more
  •  14
    The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 2018.
    Presentism is the view that only present things exist (Hinchliff 1996: 123; Crisp 2004: 15; Markosian 2004: 47–48). So understood, presentism is an ontological doctrine; it’s a view about what exists (what there is), absolutely and unrestrictedly. The view is the subject of extensive discussion in the literature, with much of it focused on the problems that presentism allegedly faces. Thus, much of the literature that frames the development of presentism has grown up either in formulating object…Read more
  •  12
    Might Teaching be Judgement Dependent?
    Philosophia 48 (2): 777-787. 2020.
    Our thesis in this paper is that consideration of Wright’s account of what it is to be judgement-dependent leads us to the conclusion that teaching is judgement dependent. We begin with a consideration of Wright’s account of what it is to be judgement-dependent. We then make the case that teaching satisfies the conditions on what it is to be judgement-dependent. Our intention is not to delve into the independent plausibility of such a view. Our focus is simply on showing the connection between W…Read more
  •  20
    Trust in education
    Educational Philosophy and Theory 52 (7): 780-790. 2019.
    The philosophy of trust is a relatively small subfield. Nonetheless, it contains within it many important insights. Our contention in this paper is that careful study of this subfield can b...
  •  167
    Grounding at a distance
    Philosophical Studies 177 (11): 3373-3390. 2020.
    What distinguishes causation from grounding? One suggestion is that causation, but not grounding, occurs over time. Recently, however, counterexamples to this simple temporal criterion have been offered. In this paper, we situate the temporal criterion within a broader framework that focuses on two aspects: locational overlapping in space and time and the presence of intermediaries in space and time. We consider, and reject, the idea that the difference between grounding and causation is that gr…Read more
  •  47
    A Defence of Lucretian Presentism
    Australasian Journal of Philosophy 98 (4): 675-690. 2020.
    In this paper, we defend Lucretian Presentism. Although the view faces many objections and has proven unpopular with presentists, we rehabilitate Lucretianism and argue that none o...
  •  244
    Quantitative Parsimony: Probably for the Better
    British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 68 (3). 2017.
    ABSTRACT Our aim in this article is to offer a new justification for preferring theories that are more quantitatively parsimonious than their rivals. We discuss cases where it seems clear that those involved opted for more quantitatively parsimonious theories. We extend previous work on quantitative parsimony by offering an independent probabilistic justification for preferring the more quantitatively parsimonious theories in particular episodes of theory choice. Our strategy allows us to avoid …Read more
  •  298
    Temporal Fictionalism for a Timeless World
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 102 (2): 281-301. 2019.
    Current debate in the metaphysics of time ordinarily assumes that we should be realists about time. Recently, however, a number of physicists and philosophers of physics have proposed that time will play no role in a completed theory of quantum gravity. This paper defends fictionalism about temporal thought, on the supposition that our world is timeless. We argue that, in the face of timeless physical theories, realism about temporal thought is unsustainable: some kind of anti-realism must be ad…Read more
  •  27
    Trust: from the Philosophical to the Commercial
    Philosophy of Management 19 (1): 3-19. 2020.
    This is a paper about trust, with a specific focus on the ways in which trust is investigated in the business literature and the commercial sector. The lens through which the topic is approached is distinctively philosophical. We use philosophical tools to demonstrate the paucity of some of the accounts of trust that are given in the business and management literature, as well as the empirically informed literature that has flowed from them. We close with a discussion of some work on trust drawn…Read more
  •  52
    You Can Trust the Ladder, But You Shouldn't
    Theoria 85 (2): 102-118. 2019.
  •  48
    In this paper we offer a response to one argument in favour of Priority Monism, what Jonathan Schaffer calls the nomic argument for monism. We proceed in three stages. We begin by introducing Jonathan Schaffer’s Priority Monism and the nomic argument for that view. We then consider a response to the nomic argument that we presented in an earlier paper. We show that this argument suffers from a flaw. We then go on to offer a different response to the nomic argument. The core idea is that the curr…Read more
  •  19
    Commitment in Cases of Trust and Distrust
    Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 6 (4): 261-267. 2017.
    There is a well-developed literature on trust. Distrust, on the other hand, has gathered far less attention in the philosophical literature. A recent exception to that trend in the philosophical literature is Hawley who develops a unified account of both trust and distrust. My aim in this paper is to present arguments against her account of trust and distrust, though then to also suggest a patch.
  •  56
    An error in temporal error theory
    Journal of the American Philosophical Association 4 (1): 14-32. 2018.
    Within the philosophy of time there has been a growing interest in positions that deny the reality of time. Those positions, whether motivated by arguments from physics or metaphysics, have a shared conclusion: time is not real. What has not been made wholly clear, however, is exactly what it entails to deny the reality of time. Time is unreal, sure. But what does that mean? There has been only one sustained attempt to spell out exactly what it would mean to endorse a temporal error theory; a th…Read more
  •  15
    Truth and Dependence
    Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 4. 2017.
  •  62
    Causation in a timeless world?
    Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 62 (3): 309-325. 2019.
    This paper is an attempt to answer the question, ‘could there be causation in a timeless world?’ My conclusion: tentatively, yes. The paper and argument have three parts. Part one introduces salient issues and spells out the importance of this line of investigation. Section two of the paper reviews recent arguments due to Baron and Miller, who argue in favour of the possibility of causation in a timeless world, and looks to reject their arguments developed there. Section three is a response to a…Read more
  •  94
    Presentism Remains
    Erkenntnis 84 (2): 409-435. 2019.
    Here I examine some recent attempts to provide a new way of thinking about the philosophy of time that question the central role of ‘presentness’ within the definition of presentism. The central concern raised by these critics turns on the intelligibility and theoretical usefulness of the term ‘is present’. My overarching aim is to at least challenge such concerns. I begin with arguments due to Deasy. Deasy develops a view that he calls ‘transientism’ and that he takes to be a well-motivated ver…Read more
  •  86
    Commitment in cases of trust and distrust
    Thought: Fordham University Quarterly (4): 261-267. 2017.
    There is a well-developed literature on trust. Distrust, on the other hand, has gathered far less attention in the philosophical literature. A recent exception to that trend in the philosophical literature is Hawley who develops a unified account of both trust and distrust. My aim in this paper is to present arguments against her account of trust and distrust, though then to also suggest a patch.
  •  26
    Dynamic theories of time typically commit to the claim that “time passes”. In this paper I develop a version of the ‘no alternate possibilities’ argument in order to show that time does not pass, but that this is no threat to dynamic theories of time.
  •  139
    Do Not Revise Ockham's Razor Without Necessity
    with Sam Baron
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research (3): 596-619. 2018.
    Ockham's razor asks that we not multiply entities beyond necessity. The razor is a powerful methodological tool, enabling us to articulate reasons for preferring one theory to another. There are those, however, who would modify the razor. Schaffer, for one, tells us that, ‘I think the proper rendering of Ockham's razor should be ‘Do not multiply fundamental entities without necessity’’. Our aim, here, is to challenge such re-workings of Ockham's razor.
  •  59
    Truth and Truthbearers
    Analysis 77 (4): 839-848. 2017.