Meinong’s thought has been rediscovered in recent times by analytic philosophy: his object theory has significant consequences in formal ontology, and especially his account of impossible objects has proved itself to be decisive in a wide range of fields, from logic up to ontology of fiction. Rejecting the traditional ‘prejudice in favour of the real’, Meinong investigates what there is not: a peculiar non-existing object is precisely the fictional object, which exemplifies a number of properties (like Sherlock Holmes, who lives in Baker Street and is an outstanding detective) without existing in the same way as flesh-and-blood detectives do. Fictional objects are in some sense incomplete objects, whose core of constituent properties is not completely determined. Now, what does it imply to hold that a fictional object may also occur in true statements? We shall deal with the objections raised by Russell and Quine against Meinong’s view, pointing out limits and advantages of both perspectives.
If the inline PDF is not rendering correctly, you can download the PDF file here.
Berto, F., 2010, L’esistenza non è logica, Roma-Bari, Laterza.
Chisholm, R., 1967, “Meinong, Alexius”. In: P. Edwards (ed.), Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Macmillan, New York, 261–262.
Crane, T., 2012, “What is the Problem of Non-existence? Philosophica: Philosophical Quarterly of Israel, 40: 417–434.
Everett, A., 2013, The Nonexistent, Oxford University Press, Oxford.
Jacquette, D., 1996, “Alexius Meinong”. In: L. Albertazzi and M. Libardi (eds.), The School of Franz Brentano, Dordrecht, Kluwer, 131–159.
Meinong, A., 1899, Über die Gegenstände höherer Ordnung und deren Verhältnis zur inneren Wahrnehmung (Reed. in 1968–78, Gesamtausgabe [GA] II, 377–471).
Meinong, A., 1904, Über die Gegenstandstheorie (Reed. in GA II, 481–530) (Engl. Trans. The Theory of Object. In: R. M. Chisholm, Realism and the Background of Phenomenology, Illinois, The Free Press, 1960).
Meinong, A., 1907, Über die Stellung der Gegenstandstheorie im System der Wissenschaften (Reed. in GA V, 197–365).
Meinong, A., 1910, Über Annahmen (Reed. in GA IV) (Engl. Trans. On Assumptions by J. Heanue, Berkeley/Los Angeles/London, University of California Press, 1983).
Meinong, A., 1915, Über Möglichkeit und Wahrscheinlichkeit (Reed. in GA VI).
Quine, W.V.O., 1948, “On What There Is”, Review of Metaphysics 2, 21–38 (Reed. in From a Logical Point of View, Harvard, Harvard University Press, 1953, 1–19.
Raspa, V., 2005, “Forme del più e del meno”, Rivista di Estetica, 1/3 (30), 185–219.