The introduction to this unit identified four distinct approaches to our understanding of truth:
- Correspondence theory
- Coherence theory
- Pragmatic theory
- Cognitive relativism
Think of a statement about ordinary life whose truth conditions seem to fit best naturally with one of these approaches in particular. Explain your example, and then think about what it would be like to assess the truth of this statement from one of the other approaches: What does the contrast tell us about how we understand the world around us?
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It might be best to try approaching this question in terms of what one theory would need to see in order to define something as "true." For example, the Correspondence Theory might say, "If this matches with what we see in the external world, then it is true." However, a Pragmatic Theorist would need to see if something works effectively in order for it to be true, not just that something ...
The theories of the truth are discussed.