Accounts of Truth and Falsehood in Ancient Philosophy

March 13, 2024 - March 14, 2024
Carl Friedrich von Weizsaecker Center, University of Tuebingen

Doblerstrasse 33

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University of Geneva
University of Oxford
Universitat de Barcelona
Ludwig Maximilians Universität, München


University Tübingen

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The ancient philosophers give various accounts of the nature of truth and falsehood. Such accounts are often developed in response to specific views or arguments which in one way or another threaten to undermine the distinction between truth and falsehood. A notable example is Plato’s account of falsehood in the Sophist, which is designed to solve a puzzle that challenges the very existence of false statements and beliefs. The aim of the conference will be to understand the ancient accounts of truth and falsehood in their philosophical context and to assess their philosophical significance. 

Key questions will be: what are truth and falsehood? Which kinds of items are true or false? Are there different types of truth and falsehood? Can truths be relative or subjective? Would there be falsehoods if there were no minds? What is the philosophical significance of ancient ‘falsehood puzzles’ and other arguments which challenge the distinction between truth and falsehood? How successful are the ancient attempts at solving such puzzles? What is at stake in solving them? Is an adequate understanding of the nature of truth and falsehood relevant to epistemology or ethics? 

Keynote speakers will be Klaus Corcilius (Tübingen), Paolo Crivelli (Geneva), Marion Durand (Oxford), Tamer Nawar (Barcelona), and Christof Rapp (Munich).

Guidelines for the submission of abstracts

Abstracts (of 300-500 words) should be written in English and anonymized to allow for blind review. They should be submitted to Guus Eelink at [email protected] by September 30th 2023. The selected applicants will receive a notification together with further information about the conference by October 16th 2023. Inquiries can also be emailed to [email protected]

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