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Studies in Logical Theory

Oxford: Blackwell (1968)

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  1. Antirealism and the Conditional Fallacy: The Semantic Approach.Patrick Girard & Luca Moretti - 2014 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 43 (4):761-783.
    The expression conditional fallacy identifies a family of arguments deemed to entail odd and false consequences for notions defined in terms of counterfactuals. The antirealist notion of truth is typically defined in terms of what a rational enquirer or a community of rational enquirers would believe if they were suitably informed. This notion is deemed to entail, via the conditional fallacy, odd and false propositions, for example that there necessarily exists a rational enquirer. If these consequences do indeed follow from (...)
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  • Local Satisfaction Guaranteed: A Presupposition Theory and its Problems. [REVIEW]Bart Geurts - 1996 - Linguistics and Philosophy 19 (3):259 - 294.
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  • Harm: Omission, Preemption, Freedom.Nathan Hanna - 2016 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 93 (2):251-73.
    The Counterfactual Comparative Account of Harm says that an event is overall harmful for someone if and only if it makes her worse off than she otherwise would have been. I defend this account from two common objections.
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  • The Predictive Role of Counterfactuals.Alfredo Di Tillio, Itzhak Gilboa & Larry Samuelson - 2013 - Theory and Decision 74 (2):167-182.
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  • Preference Based on Reasons.Daniel Osherson & Scott Weinstein - 2012 - Review of Symbolic Logic 5 (1):122-147.
    We describe a logic of preference in which modal connectives reflect reasons to desire that a sentence be true. Various conditions on models are introduced and analyzed.
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  • Utilitarianisms: Simple and General.J. Howard Sobel - 1970 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 13 (1-4):394 – 449.
    If we overlook no consequences when we assess the act, and no relevant features when we generalize, can it matter whether we ask 'What would happen if everyone did the same?' instead of 'What would happen if this act were performed?'? David Lyons has argued that it cannot. Two examples are here articulated to show that it can. The first turns on the way consequences are identified and assessed and in particular on the treatment accorded 'threshold consequences'. The second example (...)
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  • A Dilemma About Necessity.Peter W. Hanks - 2008 - Erkenntnis 68 (1):129 - 148.
    The problem of the source of necessity is the problem of explaining what makes necessary truths necessarily true. Simon Blackburn has presented a dilemma intended to show that any reductive, realist account of the source of necessity is bound to fail. Although Blackburn's dilemma faces serious problems, reflection on the form of explanations of necessities reveals that a revised dilemma succeeds in defeating any reductive account of the source of necessity. The lesson is that necessity is metaphysically primitive and irreducible.
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  • Naive Causality: A Mental Model Theory of Causal Meaning and Reasoning.Eugenia Goldvarg & P. N. Johnson-Laird - 2001 - Cognitive Science 25 (4):565-610.
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  • Finkish Dispositions.David Lewis - 1997 - Philosophical Quarterly 47 (187):143-158.
    Many years ago, C.B. Martin drew our attention to the possibility of ‘finkish’ dispositions: dispositions which, if put to the test would not be manifested, but rather would disappear. Thus if x if finkishly disposed to give response r to stimulus s, it is not so that if x were subjected to stimulus r, x would give response z; so finkish dispositions afford a counter‐example to the simplest conditional analysis of dispositions. Martin went on to suggest that finkish dispositions required (...)
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  • Disposition Impossible.C. S. Jenkins & Daniel Nolan - 2012 - Noûs 46 (4):732-753.
    Are there dispositions which not only do not manifest, but which could not manifest? We argue that there are dispositions to Ф in circumstances C where C is impossible, and some where Ф is impossible. Furthermore, postulating these dispositions does useful theoretical work. This paper describes a number of cases of dispositions had by objects even though those dispositions are not possibly manifest, and argues for the importance of these dispositions.
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  • Local and Global Metrics for the Semantics of Counterfactual Conditionals.Karl Schlechta & David Makinson - 1994 - Journal of Applied Non-Classical Logics 4 (2):129-140.
    No aConsiders the question of how far the different ‘closeness’ relations, indexed by worlds, in a given model for counterfactual conditionals may be derived from a common source. Counterbalancing some well-known negative observations, we show that there is also a strong positive answer.
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  • A Probabilistic Semantics for Counterfactuals. Part B.Hannes Leitgeb - 2012 - Review of Symbolic Logic 5 (1):85-121.
    This is part B of a paper in which we defend a semantics for counterfactuals which is probabilistic in the sense that the truth condition for counterfactuals refers to a probability measure. Because of its probabilistic nature, it allows a counterfactual to be true even in the presence of relevant -worlds, as long such exceptions are not too widely spread. The semantics is made precise and studied in different versions which are related to each other by representation theorems. Despite its (...)
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  • The Equivalence of Bayes and Causal Rationality in Games.Oliver Board - 2006 - Theory and Decision 61 (1):1-19.
    In a seminal paper, Aumann (1987, Econometrica 55, 1–18) showed how the choices of rational players could be analyzed in a unified state space framework. His innovation was to include the choices of the players in the description of the states, thus abolishing Savage’s (1954, The Foundations of Statistics. Wiley, New York) distinction between acts and consequences. But this simplification comes at a price: Aumann’s notion of Bayes rationality does not allow players to evaluate what would happen were they to (...)
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  • Counterfactual Scorekeeping.Anthony S. Gillies - 2007 - Linguistics and Philosophy 30 (3):329 - 360.
    Counterfactuals are typically thought--given the force of Sobel sequences--to be variably strict conditionals. I go the other way. Sobel sequences and (what I call) Hegel sequences push us to a strict conditional analysis of counterfactuals: counterfactuals amount to some necessity modal scoped over a plain material conditional, just which modal being a function of context. To make this worth saying I need to say just how counterfactuals and context interact. No easy feat, but I have something to say on the (...)
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  • A Causal Theory of Counterfactuals.Eric Hiddleston - 2005 - Noûs 39 (4):632–657.
    I develop an account of counterfactual conditionals using “causal models”, and argue that this account is preferable to the currently standard account in terms of “similarity of possible worlds” due to David Lewis and Robert Stalnaker. I diagnose the attraction of counterfactual theories of causation, and argue that it is illusory.
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  • A Ranking‐Theoretic Approach to Conditionals.Wolfgang Spohn - 2013 - Cognitive Science 37 (6):1074-1106.
    Conditionals somehow express conditional beliefs. However, conditional belief is a bi-propositional attitude that is generally not truth-evaluable, in contrast to unconditional belief. Therefore, this article opts for an expressivistic semantics for conditionals, grounds this semantics in the arguably most adequate account of conditional belief, that is, ranking theory, and dismisses probability theory for that purpose, because probabilities cannot represent belief. Various expressive options are then explained in terms of ranking theory, with the intention to set out a general interpretive scheme (...)
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  • Lowe's Argument Against the Psychoneural Token Identity Thesis.Katarzyna Paprzycka - 2014 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 95 (3):372-396.
    E. J. Lowe argues that the mental event token cannot be identical to the complex neural event token for they have different counterfactual properties. If the mental event had not occurred, the behavior would not have ensued, while if the neural event had not occurred, the behavior would have ensued albeit slightly differently. Lowe's argument for the neural counterfactual relies on standard possible world semantics, whose evaluation of such counterfactuals is problematic. His argument for the mental counterfactual relies on a (...)
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  • Perceptual Knowledge and Relevant Alternatives.J. Adam Carter & Duncan Pritchard - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (4):969-990.
    A very natural view about perceptual knowledge is articulated, one on which perceptual knowledge is closely related to perceptual discrimination, and which fits well with a relevant alternatives account of knowledge. It is shown that this kind of proposal faces a problem, and various options for resolving this difficulty are explored. In light of this discussion, a two-tiered relevant alternatives account of perceptual knowledge is offered which avoids the closure problem. It is further shown how this proposal can: accommodate our (...)
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  • Impossible Worlds.Daniel P. Nolan - 2013 - Philosophy Compass 8 (4):360-372.
    Philosophers have found postulating possible worlds to be very useful in a number of areas, including philosophy of language and mind, logic, and metaphysics. Impossible worlds are a natural extension to this use of possible worlds, and can help resolve a number of difficulties thrown up by possible‐worlds frameworks.
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  • A Puzzle About Stalnaker’s Hypothesis.Igor Douven & Richard Dietz - 2011 - Topoi 30 (1):31-37.
    According to Stalnaker’s Hypothesis, the probability of an indicative conditional, $\Pr(\varphi \rightarrow \psi),$ equals the probability of the consequent conditional on its antecedent, $\Pr(\psi | \varphi)$ . While the hypothesis is generally taken to have been conclusively refuted by Lewis’ and others’ triviality arguments, its descriptive adequacy has been confirmed in many experimental studies. In this paper, we consider some possible ways of resolving the apparent tension between the analytical and the empirical results relating to Stalnaker’s Hypothesis and we argue (...)
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  • Dispositions and Habituals.Michael Fara - 2005 - Noûs 39 (1):43–82.
    Objects have dispositions. As Nelson Goodman put it, “a thing is full of threats and promises”. But sometimes those threats go unfulfilled, and the promises unkept. Sometimes the dispositions of objects fail to manifest themselves, even when their conditions of manifestation obtain. Pieces of wood, disposed to burn when heated, do not burn when heated in a vacuum chamber. And pastries, disposed to go bad when left lying around too long, won’t do so if coated with lacquer and put on (...)
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  • Limits of Hybrid Modal Realism.Maciej Sendłak - 2015 - Axiomathes 25 (4):515-531.
    The aim of this paper is to point out the limitations of Hybrid Modal Realism as a general theory of modalities, i.e. one that gives an analysis of possibilities as well as impossibilities. To do so we will firstly sketch the goals that theories of impossible worlds should achieve. Secondly we will briefly present the two most popular accounts of impossibilities—Extended Modal Realism and Extended Ersatzism. We will focus on the aspects of both theories which became the motivation for a (...)
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  • Quantitative Properties.M. Eddon - 2013 - Philosophy Compass 8 (7):633-645.
    Two grams mass, three coulombs charge, five inches long – these are examples of quantitative properties. Quantitative properties have certain structural features that other sorts of properties lack. What are the metaphysical underpinnings of quantitative structure? This paper considers several accounts of quantity and assesses the merits of each.
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  • Stalnaker on Inquiry. [REVIEW]Michael Pendlebury - 1987 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 16 (3):229-272.
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  • Dretske on Knowledge Closure.Steven Luper - 2006 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 84 (3):379 – 394.
    In early essays and in more recent work, Fred Dretske argues against the closure of perception, perceptual knowledge, and knowledge itself. In this essay I review his case and suggest that, in a useful sense, perception is closed, and that, while perceptual knowledge is not closed under entailment, perceptually based knowledge is closed, and so is knowledge itself. On my approach, which emphasizes the safe indication account of knowledge, we can both perceive, and know, that sceptical scenarios (such as being (...)
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  • Prima Facie and Seeming Duties.Michael Morreau - 1996 - Studia Logica 57 (1):47 - 71.
    Sir David Ross introduced prima facie duties, or acts with a tendency to be duties proper. He also spoke of general prima facie principles, wwhich attribute to acts having some feature the tendency to be a duty proper. Like Utilitarians from Mill to Hare, he saw a role for such principles in the epistemology of duty: in the process by means of which, in any given situation, a moral code can help us to find out what we ought to do.After (...)
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  • Modal Property Comprehension.Ulrich Meyer - 2013 - Synthese 190 (4):693-707.
    To define new property terms, we combine already familiar ones by means of certain logical operations. Given suitable constraints, these operations may presumably include the resources of first-order logic: truth-functional sentence connectives and quantification over objects. What is far less clear is whether we can also use modal operators for this purpose. This paper clarifies what is involved in this question, and argues in favor of modal property definitions.
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  • Moral Realism and Program Explanation: A Very Short Symposium 1: Reply to Nelson.Alexander Miller - 2009 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 87 (2):337-341.
    In chapter 8 of Miller 2003, I argued against the idea that Jackson and Pettit's notion of program explanation might help Sturgeon's non-reductive naturalist version of moral realism respond to the explanatory challenge posed by Harman. In a recent paper in the AJP[Nelson 2006, Mark Nelson has attempted to defend the idea that program explanation might prove useful to Sturgeon in replying to Harman. In this note, I suggest that Nelson's argument fails.
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  • The Progressive.Fred Landman - 1992 - Natural Language Semantics 1 (1):1-32.
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  • Safety and the True–True Problem.Jon Cogburn & Jeffrey W. Roland - 2013 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 94 (2):246-267.
    Standard accounts of semantics for counterfactuals confront the true–true problem: when the antecedent and consequent of a counterfactual are both actually true, the counterfactual is automatically true. This problem presents a challenge to safety-based accounts of knowledge. In this paper, drawing on work by Angelika Kratzer, Alan Penczek, and Duncan Pritchard, we propose a revised understanding of semantics for counterfactuals utilizing machinery from generalized quantifier theory which enables safety theorists to meet the challenge of the true–true problem.
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  • Logic and Semantics for Imperatives.Nate Charlow - 2014 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 43 (4):617-664.
    In this paper I will develop a view about the semantics of imperatives, which I term Modal Noncognitivism, on which imperatives might be said to have truth conditions (dispositionally, anyway), but on which it does not make sense to see them as expressing propositions (hence does not make sense to ascribe to them truth or falsity). This view stands against “Cognitivist” accounts of the semantics of imperatives, on which imperatives are claimed to express propositions, which are then enlisted in explanations (...)
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  • Quotational Theories of Propositional Attitudes.M. J. Cresswell - 1980 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 9 (1):17 - 40.
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  • Ontological Commitment.Agustín Rayo - 2007 - Philosophy Compass 2 (3):428–444.
    I propose a way of thinking aboout content, and a related way of thinking about ontological commitment. (This is part of a series of four closely related papers. The other three are ‘On Specifying Truth-Conditions’, ‘An Actualist’s Guide to Quantifying In’ and ‘An Account of Possibility’.).
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  • Functionalism and Propositions.John Martin Fischer - 1985 - Philosophical Studies 48 (November):295-311.
    Some have argued, following Stalnaker, that a plausible functionalist account of belief requires coarse-grained propositions. I have explored a class of functionalist accounts, and my argument has been that, in this class, there is no account which meetsall of the following conditions: it is plausible, noncircular, and allows for the validity of the argument to coarse-grained propositions. In producing this argument, I believe that I have shown that it might be open to a functionalist to adopt fine-grained propositions; thus, one (...)
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  • It's Immaterial (a Reply to Sinnott-Armstrong).William G. Lycan - 1999 - Philosophical Papers 28 (2):133-136.
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  • Can Determinable Properties Earn Their Keep?Robert Schroer - 2011 - Synthese 183 (2):229-247.
    Sydney Shoemaker's "Subset Account" offers a new take on determinable properties and the realization relation as well as a defense of non-reductive physicalism from the problem of mental causation. At the heart of this account are the claims that (1) mental properties are determinable properties and (2) the causal powers that individuate a determinable property are a proper subset of the causal powers that individuate the determinates of that property. The second claim, however, has led to the accusation that the (...)
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  • Anti-Luck Epistemology and the Gettier Problem.Duncan Pritchard - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (1):93-111.
    A certain construal of the Gettier problem is offered, according to which this problem concerns the task of identifying the anti-luck condition on knowledge. A methodology for approaching this construal of the Gettier problem—anti-luck epistemology—is set out, and the utility of such a methodology is demonstrated. It is argued that a range of superficially distinct cases which are meant to pose problems for anti-luck epistemology are in fact related in significant ways. It is claimed that with these cases properly understood, (...)
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  • The Strongest Possible Lewisian Triviality Result.Branden Fitelson - 2015 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 4 (2):69-74.
    The strongest possible Lewisian triviality result for the indicative conditional is proven.
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  • Three Elements of Causation: Biconditionality, Asymmetry, and Experimental Manipulability.Ralph D. Ellis - 2001 - Philosophia 28 (1-4):103-125.
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  • Precis of the Rational Imagination: How People Create Alternatives to Reality.Ruth Mj Byrne - 2007 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 30 (5):439-452.
    The human imagination remains one of the last uncharted terrains of the mind. People often imagine how events might have turned out something had been different. The of reality, those aspects more readily changed, indicate that counterfactual thoughts are guided by the same principles as rational thoughts. In the past, rationality and imagination have been viewed as opposites. But research has shown that rational thought is more imaginative than cognitive scientists had supposed. In The Rational Imagination, I argue that imaginative (...)
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  • Conditional Logic and the Significance of Tooleys Example.Charles B. Cross - 2006 - Analysis 66 (4):325–335.
    In "Backward causation and the Stalnaker-Lewis approach to counterfactuals," Analysis 62 (2002): 191–97, Michael Tooley argues that if a certain kind of backward causation is possible, then a Stalnaker-Lewis style comparative world similarity account of the truth conditions of counterfactuals cannot be sound. Tooley’s target is one particular type of semantics, but, as I show, the significance of Tooley’s example goes well beyond its consequences for any one semantics for the conditional.
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  • How to Evaluate Counterfactuals in the Quantum World.Tomasz Bigaj - 2013 - Synthese 190 (4):619-637.
    In the article I discuss possible amendments and corrections to Lewis’s semantics for counterfactuals that are necessary in order to account for the indeterministic and non-local character of the quantum world. I argue that Lewis’s criteria of similarity between possible worlds produce incorrect valuations for alternate-outcome counterfactuals in the EPR case. Later I discuss an alternative semantics which rejects the notion of miraculous events and relies entirely on the comparison of the agreement with respect to individual facts. However, a controversy (...)
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  • The Probabilities of Conditionals Revisited.Igor Douven & Sara Verbrugge - 2013 - Cognitive Science 37 (4):711-730.
    According to what is now commonly referred to as “the Equation” in the literature on indicative conditionals, the probability of any indicative conditional equals the probability of its consequent of the conditional given the antecedent of the conditional. Philosophers widely agree in their assessment that the triviality arguments of Lewis and others have conclusively shown the Equation to be tenable only at the expense of the view that indicative conditionals express propositions. This study challenges the correctness of that assessment by (...)
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  • A New Theory of Subjunctive Conditionals.Pavel Tichý - 1978 - Synthese 37 (3):433 - 457.
    The article offers a rigorous truth condition for subjunctively conditional statements. The theory is framed in the system of transparent intensional logic and takes connections (especially the cause-Effect relation) as basic. Counterexamples are given to rival theories based on the notion of world similarity.
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  • Basic Conditional Logic.Brian F. Chellas - 1975 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 4 (2):133 - 153.
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  • A Problem for Rationalist Responses to Skepticism.Sinan Dogramaci - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 168 (2):355-369.
    Rationalism, my target, says that in order to have perceptual knowledge, such as that your hand is making a fist, you must “antecedently” (or “independently”) know that skeptical scenarios don’t obtain, such as the skeptical scenario that you are in the Matrix. I motivate the specific form of Rationalism shared by, among others, White (Philos Stud 131:525–557, 2006) and Wright (Proc Aristot Soc Suppl Vol 78:167–212, 2004), which credits us with warrant to believe (or “accept”, in Wright’s terms) that our (...)
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  • Impossible Worlds.Mark Jago - 2013 - Noûs 47 (3):713-728.
    Impossible worlds are representations of impossible things and impossible happenings. They earn their keep in a semantic or metaphysical theory if they do the right theoretical work for us. As it happens, a worlds-based account provides the best philosophical story about semantic content, knowledge and belief states, cognitive significance and cognitive information, and informative deductive reasoning. A worlds-based story may also provide the best semantics for counterfactuals. But to function well, all these accounts need use of impossible and as well (...)
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  • Monotonicity in Opaque Verbs.Thomas Ede Zimmermann - 2006 - Linguistics and Philosophy 29 (6):715 - 761.
    The paper is about the interpretation of opaque verbs like “seek”, “owe”, and “resemble” which allow for unspecific readings of their (indefinite) objects. It is shown that the following two observations create a problem for semantic analysis: (a) The opaque position is upward monotone: “John seeks a unicorn” implies “John seeks an animal”, given that “unicorn” is more specific than “animal”. (b) Indefinite objects of opaque verbs allow for higher-order, or “underspecific”, readings: “Jones is looking for something Smith is looking (...)
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  • What We Know and What to Do.Nate Charlow - 2013 - Synthese 190 (12):2291-2323.
    This paper discusses an important puzzle about the semantics of indicative conditionals and deontic necessity modals (should, ought, etc.): the Miner Puzzle (Parfit, ms; Kolodny and MacFarlane, J Philos 107:115–143, 2010). Rejecting modus ponens for the indicative conditional, as others have proposed, seems to solve a version of the puzzle, but is actually orthogonal to the puzzle itself. In fact, I prove that the puzzle arises for a variety of sophisticated analyses of the truth-conditions of indicative conditionals. A comprehensive solution (...)
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  • Restorative Rigging and the Safe Indication Account.S. Luper - 2006 - Synthese 153 (1):161-170.
    Typical Gettieresque scenarios involve a subject, S, using a method, M, of believing something, p, where, normally, M is a reliable indicator of the truth of p, yet, in S’s circumstances, M is not reliable: M is deleteriously rigged. A different sort of scenario involves rigging that restores the reliability of a method M that is deleteriously rigged: M is restoratively rigged. Some theorists criticize the safe indication account of knowledge defended by Luper, Sosa, and Williamson on the grounds that (...)
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