Critical Remarks about Modal Realism of David Lewis
David Lewis believes that possible worlds are spatiotemporal entities, maximal and causally isolated. They exist in the very same sense as 'our' world does. The article critically discusses his 'extreme modal realism', propounded mainly in his book 'On the Plurality of Worlds'. Having outlined the main features of this doctrine, the authoress raises several objections to it. 'Modal realism' is neither modal nor realistic. First, contrary to what Lewis declares, his theory does not analyze modality in terms of more basis entities in a theoretically defensible way. Secondly, it contains incredible existential claims whose ludicrousness is not justified by the presumed theoretical benefits it offers (in particular, by its 'economy'). Finally, it assumes that 'anything can co-exist with anything else'. This postulation, however, is controversial: it is implausible and it deprives the theory of possible worlds of its foremost motivation. Moreover it is at variance with ontological rationality. In sum, the doctrine in question, though designed with care and courage, sounds unconvincing.
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