Can Fictionalists Have Faith?

Finlay Malcolm

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    10 Citations (Scopus)
    38 Downloads (Pure)


    According to non-doxastic theories of propositional faith, belief that p is not necessary for faith that p. Rather, propositional faith merely requires a 'positive cognitive attitude'. This broad condition, however, can be satisfied by several pragmatic approaches to a domain, including fictionalism. This article shows precisely how fictionalists can have faith given non-doxastic theory, and explains why this is problematic. It then explores one means of separating the two theories, in virtue of the fact that the truth of the propositions in a discourse is of little consequence for fictionalists, whereas their truth matters deeply for the faithful. Although promising, this approach incurs several theoretical costs, hence providing a compelling reason to favour a purely doxastic account of faith.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)215-232
    Number of pages18
    JournalReligious Studies
    Issue number2
    Early online date13 Mar 2017
    Publication statusPublished - 30 Jun 2018


    Dive into the research topics of 'Can Fictionalists Have Faith?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this