Varieties of Grounding Skepticism

David Mark Kovacs*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Skepticism about grounding is the view that ground-theoretic concepts shouldn't be used in metaphysical theorizing. Possible reasons for adopting this attitude are numerous: perhaps grounding is unintelligible; or perhaps it's never instantiated; or perhaps it's just too heterogeneous to be theoretically useful. Unfortunately, as currently pursued the debate between grounding enthusiasts and skeptics is insufficiently structured. This paper's purpose is to impose a measure of conceptual rigor on the debate by offering an opinionated taxonomy of views with a reasonable claim to being "skeptical." I argue that carving up logical space into pro- and anti-grounding views isn't especially helpful; rather, we should recognize various degrees of ground-theoretic involvement depending on how inflationary our understanding of the theoretical term 'ground' is.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)301-316
Number of pages16
JournalThe Monist
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2023


FundersFunder number
Israel Science Foundation2035/19


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