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  1. added 2017-03-13
    Vagueness and Zombies: Why ‘Phenomenally Conscious’ has No Borderline Cases.Jonathan A. Simon - 2017 - Philosophical Studies 174 (8):2105-2123.
    I argue that there can be no such thing as a borderline case of the predicate ‘phenomenally conscious’: for any given creature at any given time, it cannot be vague whether that creature is phenomenally conscious at that time. I first defend the Positive Characterization Thesis, which says that for any borderline case of any predicate there is a positive characterization of that case that can show any sufficiently competent speaker what makes it a borderline case. I then appeal to (...)
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  2. added 2016-10-20
    Vagueness and Modality.Jon Erling Litland & Juhani Yli-Vakkuri - 2016 - Philosophical Perspectives 30 (1):1-39.
    How does vagueness interact with metaphysical modality and with restrictions of it, such as nomological modality? In particular, how do definiteness, necessity (understood as restricted in some way or not), and actuality interact? This paper proposes a model-theoretic framework for investigating the logic and semantics of that interaction. The framework is put forward in an ecumenical spirit: it is intended to be applicable to all theories of vagueness that express vagueness using a definiteness (or: determinacy) operator. We will show how (...)
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  3. added 2016-10-08
    Neutralism and the Observational Sorites Paradox.Patrick Greenough - forthcoming - In Ali Abasnezhad & Otavio Bueno (eds.), Synthese Special Edition. Springer.
    Neutralism is the broad view that philosophical progress can take place when (and sometimes only when) a thoroughly neutral, non-specific theory, treatment, or methodology is adopted. The broad goal here is to articulate a distinct, specific kind of sorites paradox (The Observational Sorites Paradox) and show that it can be effectively treated via Neutralism.
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  4. added 2016-09-28
    Imprecise Probability and Higher Order Vagueness.Susanna Rinard - 2017 - Res Philosophica 94 (2):257-273.
    There is a trade-off between specificity and accuracy in existing models of belief. Descriptions of agents in the tripartite model, which recognizes only three doxastic attitudes—belief, disbelief, and suspension of judgment—are typically accurate, but not sufficiently specific. The orthodox Bayesian model, which requires real-valued credences, is perfectly specific, but often inaccurate: we often lack precise credences. I argue, first, that a popular attempt to fix the Bayesian model by using sets of functions is also inaccurate, since it requires us to (...)
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  5. added 2015-09-01
    Vagueza.Ricardo Santos - 2015 - Compêndio Em Linha de Problemas de Filosofia Analítica.
    Most words in natural language are vague, that is to say, they lack sharp boundaries and, hence, they have (actual or potential) borderline cases, where the word in question neither definitely applies nor definitely fails to apply. Vagueness gives rise to paradoxes, the best known of which is the sorites (concerned with how many grains of sand are needed to make a heap). Besides offering a solution to such paradoxes, a theory of vagueness should systematically describe how the truth conditions (...)
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  6. added 2014-11-21
    Introduction: Philosophical Issues in Geography.Achille C. Varzi - 2001 - Topoi 20 (2):119-130.
    An outline of the wealth of philosophical material that hides behind the flat world of geographic maps, with special reference to (i) the centrality of the boundary concept, (ii) the problem of vagueness, and (iii) the metaphysical question (if such there be) of the identity and persistence conditions of geographic entities. Serves as an introduction to the special issue of "Topoi" (20:2, 2001) on the Philosophy of Geography.
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  7. added 2014-10-10
    Vaghezza e ontologia.Achille C. Varzi - 2008 - In Maurizio Ferraris (ed.), Storia dell’ontologia. Bompiani. pp. 672–698.
    On the opposition between de re and de dicto conceptions of vagueness, with special reference to their bearing on the tasks of ontology.
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  8. added 2014-10-10
    I confini del Cervino.Achille C. Varzi - 2001 - In Vincenzo Fano, Gino Tarozzi & Massimo Stanzione (eds.), Prospettive della logica e della filosofia della scienza. Atti del convegno triennale della Società Italiana di Logica e Filosofia delle Scienze. Rubbettino Editore. pp. 431–445.
    Some philosophers have argued that the vagueness exhibited by names and descriptions such as ‘Mount Everest’, ‘Downtown Manhattan’, or ‘that cloud in the sky’ is ultimately ontological: they are vague because they refer to vague objects, objects with fuzzy boundaries. I take the opposite stand and argue for the view that all vagueness is semantic. There is no such thing as a vague mountain. Rather, there are many things where we conceive the mountain to be, each with its precise boundary, (...)
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  9. added 2014-10-10
    Unsharpenable Vagueness.John D. Collins & Achille C. Varzi - 2000 - Philosophical Topics 28 (1):1-10.
    A plausible thought about vagueness is that it involves semantic incompleteness. To say that a predicate is vague is to say (at the very least) that its extension is incompletely specified. Where there is incomplete specification of extension there is indeterminacy, an indeterminacy between various ways in which the specification of the predicate might be completed or sharpened. In this paper we show that this idea is bound to founder by presenting an argument to the effect that there are vague (...)
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  10. added 2014-10-10
    Vagueness, Indiscernibility, and Pragmatics: Comments on Burns.Achille C. Varzi - 1994 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 33 (S1):49-49.
    In ‘Something to Do with Vagueness ...’, Linda Burns defends an analogy between the informational and the borderline-case variety of vagueness. She argues that the latter is in fact less extraordinary and less disastrous than people in the tradition of Michael Dummett and Crispin Wright have told us. However, her account involves presuppositions that cannot be taken for granted. Here is to take a closer look at some of these presuppositions and argue hat they may—when left unguarded—undermine much of Burns’ (...)
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  11. added 2014-10-09
    Event Location and Vagueness.Andrea Borghini & Achille C. Varzi - 2006 - Philosophical Studies 128 (2):313-336.
    Most event-referring expressions are vague; it is utterly difficult, if not impossible, to specify the exact spatiotemporal location of an event from the words that we use to refer to it. We argue that in spite of certain prima facie obstacles, such vagueness can be given a purely semantic (broadly supervaluational) account.
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  12. added 2014-04-02
    Vague Objects with Sharp Boundaries.Jiri Benovsky - 2014 - Ratio 27 (1):29-39.
    In this article I shall consider two seemingly contradictory claims: first, the claim that everybody who thinks that there are ordinary objects has to accept that they are vague, and second, the claim that everybody has to accept the existence of sharp boundaries to ordinary objects. The purpose of this article is of course not to defend a contradiction. Indeed, there is no contradiction because the two claims do not concern the same ‘everybody’. The first claim, that all ordinary objects (...)
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  13. added 2014-03-17
    Temporal Externalism, Constitutive Norms, and Theories of Vagueness.Henry Jackman - 2006 - In Tomas Marvan (ed.), What Determines Content? The Internalism/Externalism Dispute. Cambridge Scholars Press.
    Another paper exploring the relation between Temporal externalism and Epistemicism about Vagueness, but with slightly more emphasis on the role of constitutive norms relating to our concept of truth.
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  14. added 2014-03-04
    Higher-Order Vagueness and Borderline Nestings: A Persistent Confusion.Susanne Bobzien - 2013 - Analytic Philosophy 54 (1):1-43.
    ABSTRACT: This paper argues that the so-called paradoxes of higher-order vagueness are the result of a confusion between higher-order vagueness and the distribution of the objects of a Sorites series into extensionally non-overlapping non-empty classes.
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  15. added 2013-12-15
    Resolution Spaces: A Topological Approach to Similarity.Konstantinos Georgatos - 2000 - In DEXA 2000. IEEE Computer Society. pp. 553-557.
    A central concept for information retrieval is that of similarity. Although an information retrieval system is expected to return a set of documents most relevant to the query word(s), it is often described as returning a set of documents most similar to the query. The authors argue that in order to reason with similarity we need to model the concept of discriminating power. They offer a simple topological notion called resolution space that provides a rich mathematical framework for reasoning with (...)
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  16. added 2013-05-20
    Vagueness Without Indefiniteness.Gerald Hull - manuscript
    Contemporary discussions do not always clearly distinguish two different forms of vagueness. Sometimes focus is on the imprecision of predicates, and sometimes the indefiniteness of statements. The two are intimately related, of course. A predicate is imprecise if there are instances to which it neither definitely applies nor definitely does not apply, instances of which it is neither definitely true nor definitely false. However, indefinite statements will occur in everyday discourse only if speakers in fact apply imprecise predicates to such (...)
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  17. added 2012-07-04
    Vagueness Intuitions and the Mobility of Cognitive Sortals.Bert Baumgaertner - 2012 - Minds and Machines 22 (3):213-234.
    One feature of vague predicates is that, as far as appearances go, they lack sharp application boundaries. I argue that we would not be able to locate boundaries even if vague predicates had sharp boundaries. I do so by developing an idealized cognitive model of a categorization faculty which has mobile and dynamic sortals (`classes', `concepts' or `categories') and formally prove that the degree of precision with which boundaries of such sortals can be located is inversely constrained by their flexibility. (...)
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  18. added 2011-02-06
    Contradictions at the Borders.David Ripley - 2011 - In Rick Nouwen, Robert van Rooij, Uli Sauerland & Hans-Christian Schmitz (eds.), Vagueness in Communication. Springer. pp. 169--188.
    The purpose of this essay is to shed some light on a certain type of sentence, which I call a borderline contradiction. A borderline contradiction is a sentence of the form F a ∧ ¬F a, for some vague predicate F and some borderline case a of F , or a sentence equivalent to such a sentence. For example, if Jackie is a borderline case of ‘rich’, then ‘Jackie is rich and Jackie isn’t rich’ is a borderline contradiction. Many theories (...)
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  19. added 2011-02-06
    Vagueness as Indeterminacy.Brian Weatherson - 2010 - In Richard Dietz & Sebastiano Moruzzi (eds.), Cuts and Clouds: Vaguenesss, its Nature and its Logic. Oxford University Press.
    Vagueness as Indeterminacy. I defend the traditional view that a vague term is one with an indeterminate denotation from a bevy of recent challenges.
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  20. added 2011-02-06
    Vagueness.Achille C. Varzi - 2003 - In Lynn Nadel (ed.), Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science, Vol. 4. Nature Publishing Group. pp. 459–464.
    This is an encyclopedia entry on vagueness, focusing mainly on the opposition between re re and de dicta (linguistic or cognitive) accounts.
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