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Philosophy Research Archives

Volume 11, 1985

Theodore W. Schick, Jr.
Pages 319-334

In Defense of the Correspondence Theory

The correspondence theory of truth has often been attacked on the grounds that the notion of correspondence is too vague to do any serious philosophical work. More recently it has been attacked on the grounds that the sort of correspondence required by the theory does not exist. I argue, on the contrary, that there are no compelling reasons for believing that the requisite sort of correspondence does not exist and that the notion of correspondence can be made clear enough to yield an adequate theory of truth. After critically examining Tarkski’s theory of truth, I show how a correspondence theory which applies to the statements of any language can be constructed. Then Davidson’s claim that all true statements correspond to the same thing and Putnam’s claim that there is no fact of the matter concerning what the terms of a language correspond to are shown to be untenable.

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