Conceptual Fragmentation and the Rise of Eliminativism

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Taylor, J. H.; Vickers, Peter
preprint description
Pluralist and eliminativist positions in philosophy – and other disciplines – have proliferated in recent decades. This paper emphasises the sheer scale of this movement: we start by summarising twenty debates which have been affected, thus illustrating how often debates have been transformed by the introduction of pluralist and/or eliminativist thinking. We then provide an explanation of why this shift of philosophical terrain has occurred, an explanation which in turn predicts that its reach will extend to other debates currently unaffected, and for good reasons. We go on to detail the landscape of various different pluralist and eliminativist positions one may favour. We ultimately argue for pluralism at the meta-level: whether one should implement (some stripe of) pluralism or eliminativism depends on the context of discussion and the details of the debate at hand. We use this analysis to dissolve debates between ‘pluralists’ and ‘eliminativists’ in various domains.