Moderate realism  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Moderate realism is a position in the debate on the metaphysics of universals that holds that there is no realm in which universals exist (in opposition to Platonic realism), nor do they really exist within the individuals as universals, but rather universals really exist within the particulars as individualised, and multiplied. This position is also called immanent realism.

It is opposed to both realism, such as the theory of Platonic forms, and nominalism. Nominalists deny the existence of universals altogether, even as individualised and multiplied within the individuals.

Aristotle espoused a form of moderate realism as did William of Champeaux and Thomas Aquinas.

A more recent and influential version of immanent realism has been advanced by Willard Van Orman Quine, in works such as "Posits and Reality" (1955), and D. M. Armstrong, in works such as his Universals: An Opinionated Introduction (1989, p. 8).

See also

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