Quine on Ontological Commitment in Light of Predicate-Functor Logic

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Quine is renowned for offering a criterion of ontological commitment in terms of the values of bound variables. Simultaneously, however, Quine had a long-standing interest in formal systems that dispense with variables and quantifiers that permit variables to be explained away. The chapter seeks to resolve this often-neglected tension in a way that is sensitive to Quine’s allegiance to first-order logic, but is somewhat relaxed about the connection between semantics (/truth) and ontology.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationQuine, Structure, and Ontology
EditorsFrederique Janssen-Lauret
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages26
ISBN (Electronic)9780198864288
ISBN (Print)9780198864288
Publication statusPublished - 19 Nov 2020


  • First-order logic
  • Ontological commitment
  • Ontological nihilism
  • Predicate-functor logic
  • Translation

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