The concepts of identity, existence, predication, necessity, and truth are at the centre of philosophy and have rightly received sustained attention. Yet Colin McGinn believes that orthodox views of these topics are misguided in important ways. Philosophers and logicians have often distorted the nature of these concepts in an attempt to define them according to preconceived ideas. Logical Properties aims to respect the ordinary ways we talk and think when we
employ these concepts, while at the same time showing that they are far more interesting and peculiar than some have supposed. There are real properties corresponding to these concepts - logical properties - that challenge naturalistic metaphysical views. These are not pseudo-properties or mere pieces of
syntax. Logical Properties is written with the minimum of formal apparatus and deals with logico-linguistic issues as well as ontological ones. The focus is on trying to get to the essence of what the concept concerned stands for, and not merely finding some established notation for providing formal paraphrases.
Colin McGinn is Professor of Philosophy at Rutgers University, New York.