Contingent Existence and Modal Definedness

February 26, 2015

A seminar for the ANU School of Philosophy. I will discuss Tim Williamson’s arguments for the non-contingency of existence (see his Modal Logic as Metaphysics, 2013) and explain how and why they might be reasonably resisted. Along the way, I’ll try to explain the impact of proof theory for theories of meaning and for metaphysics.

  • Handout for the pre-seminar talk for graduate students, on Meaning Rules and Defining Concepts.
  • Handout for the seminar presentation.
  • Slides for the seminar presentation.


I’m Greg Restall, and this is my personal website. I am the Shelby Cullom Davis Professor of Philosophy at the University of St Andrews, and the Director of the Arché Philosophical Research Centre for Logic, Language, Metaphysics and Epistemology I like thinking about – and helping other people think about – logic and philosophy and the many different ways they can inform each other.


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