The Journal of Philosophy

Volume 111, Issue 12, December 2014

Justin Tiehen
Pages 649-666

A Priori Scrutability and That’s All

At the heart of David Chalmers’s book Constructing the World is his defense of A Priori Scrutability, the thesis that there is a compact class of truths such that for any truth p, a Laplacean intellect could know a priori that if the truths in the class hold, then p. In this paper I develop an objection to Chalmers’s defense of A Priori Scrutability that focuses on his reliance on a so-called that’s-all truth. After reviewing preliminaries in section 1, my objection, which draws heavily on Theodore Sider’s discussion of border-sensitive properties, is developed in sections 2 and 3. Section 2 argues against Chalmers’s analysis of the distinction between positive and negative truths, while section 3 argues that the that’s-all sentence formulated by Chalmers is a falsehood rather than a truth. Section 4 offers a concluding discussion of my argument.