Edward N. Zalta

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Edward N. Zalta
Edward N. Zalta. 7199285.jpg
Born 1952 (age 64–65)
Alma mater University of Massachusetts Amherst
Era 20th-century philosophy
Region Western philosophy
School Analytic philosophy
Thesis Abstract Objects (1980)
Doctoral advisor Terence Parsons
Main interests
Philosophy of language
Intensional logic
Philosophy of logic
Philosophy of mathematics
Philosophy of mind/intentionality
Notable ideas
Abstract object theory

Edward N. Zalta[a] (born 1952) is a senior research scholar at the Center for the Study of Language and Information. He received his PhD in philosophy from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 1980.[3] Zalta has taught courses at Stanford University, Rice University, the University of Salzburg, and the University of Auckland. Zalta is also the Principal Editor of the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.[4]


Edward N. Zalta. "The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy: Issues Faced by Academic Reference Works That May Be of Interest to Wikipedians", Wikimania 2015, Mexico City

Zalta's most notable philosophical position is descended from the position of Alexius Meinong and Ernst Mally,[5] who suggested that there are many non-existent objects. On Zalta's account, some objects (the ordinary concrete ones around us, like tables and chairs) "exemplify" properties, while others (abstract objects like numbers, and what others would call "non-existent objects", like the round square, and the mountain made entirely of gold) merely "encode" them.[6] While the objects that exemplify properties are discovered through traditional empirical means, a simple set of axioms allows us to know about objects that encode properties.[7] For every set of properties, there is exactly one object that encodes exactly that set of properties and no others.[8] This allows for a formalized ontology.


  1. ^ Pronounced /ˈzɔːltə/.



  1. ^ Logicism and Neologicism (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)
  2. ^ Anderson & Zalta 2004.
  3. ^ Zalta 1983, p. xii.
  4. ^ "Editorial Information". Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Retrieved 10 April 2012. 
  5. ^ Zalta 1983, p. xi.
  6. ^ Zalta 1983, p. 33.
  7. ^ Zalta 1983, p. 36.
  8. ^ Zalta 1983, p. 35.

Works cited[edit]

Anderson, David J.; Zalta, Edward N. (2004). "Frege, Boolos, and Logical Objects". Journal of Philosophical Logic. 33 (1): 1–26. 
Zalta, Edward N. (1983). Abstract Objects: An Introduction to Axiomatic Metaphysics. Synthese Library. 160. Dordrecht, Netherlands: D. Reidel Publishing Company. ISBN 978-90-277-1474-9. 

External links[edit]