Relevant Arithmetic and Mathematical Pluralism


  • Zach Weber University of Otago



In The Consistency of Arithmetic and elsewhere, Meyer claims to “repeal” Goedel’s second incompleteness theorem. In this paper, I review his argument, and then consider two ways of understanding it: from the perspective of mathematical pluralism and monism, respectively. Is relevant arithmetic just another legitimate practice among many, or is it a rival of its classical counterpart—a corrective to Goedel, setting us back on the path to the (One) True Arithmetic? To help answer, I sketch a few worked examples from relevant mathematics, to see what a non-classical (re)formulation of mathematics might look like in practice. I conclude that, while it is unlikely that relevant arithmetic describes past and present mathematical practice, and so might be most acceptable as a pluralist enterprise, it may yet prescribe a more monistic future venture.


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Author Biography

Zach Weber, University of Otago

Lecturer, Department of Philosophy