Argumenta – Journal of Analytic Philosophy

On the Epistemology of Metaphysics


Guest editors

Lorenzo Azzano (University of Santiago de Compostela)

Massimiliano Carrara (University of Padua)

Vittorio Morato (University of Padua)


Invited contributors

Amanda Bryant (Centre of Philosophy, University of Lisbon)

Daniel Dohrn (University of Milan)

Daniele Sgaravatti (University of Bologna)

Tuomas Tahko (University of Bristol)

Ylwa Sjölin Wirling (University of Gothenburg)


Deadline for submission: June 21st, 2022

Notification of acceptance: October 21st, 2022



The growing interest in metaphysics in the last decades has not always been accompanied by an equal, structured and systematic interest in its epistemology.

Scattered, often episodical, epistemological considerations are present in a number of metaphysical debates, but in general, the level of sophistication and development of such considerations is not comparable to that of metaphysics tout court, nor to that of epistemological debates in general. This generates a piecemeal approach to the epistemology of metaphysics taken as a whole, which makes it difficult to recognize and pursue it as a discipline in its own right.

On the one hand, there are areas of metaphysics where the importance of epistemological issues has been explicitly recognised and addressed. For example, the rich debate in the epistemology of modality—strictly interconnected with the debate on the relation between conceivability and possibility—is mainly a debate about the epistemology of metaphysical modality. Another example is the recent debate on the role of intuitions in metaphysics and, more generally, on the methodology of metaphysics.

On the other hand, there are areas of metaphysics where epistemological issues still lack an adequate analysis. As the current trend in metaphysics is that of de-modalizing many useful metaphysical notions, we cannot expect results in the epistemology of modality to be easily translatable into other debates. For example, the epistemology of grounding, admittedly the center-stage notion in contemporary metaphysics, still is in an underdeveloped form; and the same goes for other notions in the more-than-modal family, e.g. essence.

The goal of this potential special issue is twofold: on the one hand, to stimulate a more sophisticated debate in hitherto unexplored areas of the epistemology of metaphysics; on the other, to foster a transition from a piecemeal to a more systematic approach to the epistemology of metaphysics itself.


Some topics related to the first goal might be:

the epistemology of grounding;

the epistemology of non-modal accounts of essence;

the epistemology of more-than-modal (i.e., hyper-intensional) metaphysics.


Whereas some topics related to the second goal might be:

systematic approaches to the epistemology of metaphysics;

application of the main trends and debates of epistemology to metaphysics;

the relations between methodology of metaphysics and its epistemology;

the notion of metaphysical justification;

the epistemology of abductivism in metaphysics.


Instructions: Articles must be written in English and should not exceed 8000 words.  For the presentation of their articles, authors are requested to take into account the instructions available under Information for Authors. Submissions must be suitable for blind review. Each submission should also include a brief abstract of no more than 250 words and four keywords for indexing purposes. Notification of intent to submit, including both a title and a brief summary of the content, will be greatly appreciated, as it will assist with the coordination and planning of the special issue.