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Truth, Time and History: A Philosophical Enquiry : Bloomsbury Academic: London, September 2017.

Truth, Time and History investigates the reality of the past by connecting arguments across areas which are conventionally discussed in isolation from each other.

Breaking the impasse within the narrower analytic debate between Dummett's semantic anti-realists and the truth value link realists as to whether the past exists independently of our methods of verification, the book argues, through an examination of the puzzles concerning identity over time, that only the present exists. Drawing on Lewis's analogy between times and possible worlds, and work by Collingwood and Oakeshott, and the continental philosopher, Barthes, the author advances a wholly novel proposal, as to how aspects of ersatz presentism may be combined with historical coherentism to uphold the legitimacy of discourse about the past.

In highlighting the role of historians in the creation and construction of temporality, Truth, Time and History offers a convincing philosophical argument for the inherence of an unreal past in the real present.

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(Click here for a preview)


Part I: Truth

1. The realist/anti-realist wars
2. Projection, analogy and meaning

Part II: Time

3. Tense theory
4. Caught in a Timeless Leibnizian Net
5. Presentism and modality

Part III: History

6. Collingwood and Oakeshott: is history possible?
7. A realist present and a coherentist past




Review: “Sophie Botros offers engaging, highly original and always insightful reflections on the three concepts in her title: truth, time and history. This is analytical metaphysics at its best.”
Peter Lamarque, Professor of Philosophy University of York, UK.



Hume, Reason and Morality: A Legacy of Contradiction : Routledge: London, February 2006.

Covering an important theme in Humean studies, this book focuses on Hume's hugely influential attempt in book three of his Treatise of Human Nature to derive the conclusion that morality is a matter of feeling, not reason, from its link with action. It claims that this argument contains a fundamental contradiction that has gone unnoticed in modern debate. It combines historical-scholarly work and contemporary analysis that seeks to expose this contradiction and therefore provide a contribution to current scholarship in this area.

Beginning by pointing out that a contradiction concerning whether reason can influence action, or is wholly powerless, occurs in the intermediary premiss, it moves on to draw out the consequences for recent meta-ethics of the failure to acknowledge this contradiction. Finally, highlighting the root of the argument's power in an article of naturalistic dogma, the book suggests how it may be possible to restore to our moral concepts their traditional and integral link with both truth and motivation.

The ideal readership would include moral philosophers interested in meta-ethics and practical reason, and Humean scholars.

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Part 1: Hume's Practicality Argument

Introduction (click to read)
1. A Contradiction, not an Ambiguity
2. Validity and the ‘Moderate' Version
3. Metaphysics and the ‘Extreme' Version
4. Sentimentalists, Secondary Qualities and Sensations
5. The Inconsolable Sceptic

Part 2: The Practicality Argument Today

6. Morality's Dynamism
7. Desires, Beliefs and ‘Direction of Fit'
8. A Riddle and a Buried Assumption
9. The Case of Owen Wingrave



Apart from the reviews already mentioned on the Home Page, a review by H.O.Mounce can be found in Philosophy, October 2006. Also see in this connection Botros, Sophie "On a supposed contradiction in Hume", Philosophy Vol.82,October 2007. Neil Sinclair also reviews the book in Mind Vol.116, July 2007. My response is here.





Dr Botros can be contacted at

This page last updated: 5th October 2017.