more from Stephen Yablo

Single Idea 19491

[catalogued under 7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 7. Fictionalism]

Full Idea

It is an open question whether the clouds that we call 'angry' are literally F, for any F other than 'such that it would be natural and proper to regard them as angry if one were going to attribute emotions to clouds'.

Gist of Idea

'The clouds are angry' can only mean '...if one were attributing emotions to clouds'


Stephen Yablo (Does Ontology Rest on a Mistake? [1998], XII)

Book Reference

Yablo,Stephen: 'Things: Philosophical Papers vol. 2' [OUP 2010], p.135

A Reaction

His point is that it is TRUE, in those circumstances, that the clouds are angry. Thus fictions are a valid and useful part of ordinary sensible course, giving real information. I like it.