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  1. Conceivability, Haecceities, and Essence.Hasen Khudairi - manuscript
    This essay aims to redress the contention that epistemic possibility cannot be a guide to the principles of modal metaphysics. I argue that the interaction between the two-dimensional intensional framework and the mereological parthood relation enables epistemic possibilities to target the haecceitistic properties of individuals. I specify, then, a two-dimensional intensional formula encoding the relation between the epistemic possibility of haecceity comprehension and its metaphysical possibility. I examine the Julius Caesar problem as a test case. I then generalize the approach (...)
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  • Numbers and Everything.Gonçalo Santos - 2013 - Philosophia Mathematica 21 (3):297-308.
    I begin by drawing a parallel between the intuitionistic understanding of quantification over all natural numbers and the generality relativist understanding of quantification over absolutely everything. I then argue that adoption of an intuitionistic reading of relativism not only provides an immediate reply to the absolutist's charge of incoherence but it also throws a new light on the debates surrounding absolute generality.
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  • Can We Do Without Pragmatic Encroachment.Brian Weatherson - 2005 - Philosophical Perspectives 19 (1):417–443.
    I consider the problem of how to derive what an agent believes from their credence function and utility function. I argue the best solution of this problem is pragmatic, i.e. it is sensitive to the kinds of choices actually facing the agent. I further argue that this explains why our notion of justified belief appears to be pragmatic, as is argued e.g. by Fantl and McGrath. The notion of epistemic justification is not really a pragmatic notion, but it is being (...)
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  • Primitive Humour.Philip Letts & J. Routledge, Andrew - manuscript
    This article examines the question ‘what is humour?’ In section 1, we set out default realist presuppositions about the question. In section 2, we characterize a broadly Moorean approach to answering the question. In section 3, we introduce popular response-dependence assumptions about humour and express puzzlement about their popularity. In section 4, we present extant answers to our question: superiority theory; relief theory; play theory; laughter-dispositional theory; and incongruity theory. We find each wanting, subjecting incongruity theory, in particular, to sustained (...)
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  • Wondering About the Future.Stephan Torre - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies.
    Will it rain tomorrow? Will there be a sea battle tomorrow? Will my death be painful? Wondering about the future plays a central role in our cognitive lives. It is integral to our inquiries, our planning, our hopes, and our fears. The aim of this paper is to consider various accounts of future contingents and the implications that they have for wondering about the future. I argue that reflecting on the nature of wondering about the future supports an Ockhamist account (...)
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  • Epistemic Modality and Absolute Decidability.Hasen Khudairi - manuscript
    This paper aims to contribute to the analysis of the nature of mathematical modality, and to the applications of the latter to unrestricted quantification and absolute decidability. Rather than countenancing the interpretational type of mathematical modality as a primitive, I argue that the interpretational type of mathematical modality is a species of epistemic modality. I argue, then, that the framework of two-dimensional semantics ought to be applied to the mathematical setting. The framework permits of a formally precise account of the (...)
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  • In Defense of Countabilism.David Builes & Jessica M. Wilson - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies.
    Inspired by Cantor's Theorem (CT), orthodoxy takes infinities to come in different sizes. The orthodox view has had enormous influence in mathematics, philosophy, and science. We will defend the contrary view---Countablism---according to which, necessarily, every infinite collection (set or plurality) is countable. We first argue that the potentialist or modal strategy for treating Russell's Paradox, first proposed by Parsons (2000) and developed by Linnebo (2010, 2013) and Linnebo and Shapiro (2019), should also be applied to CT, in a way that (...)
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  • Toward an Inclusive Populism? On the Role of Race and Difference in Laclau’s Politics.B. L. McKean & Benjamin McKean - 2016 - Political Theory 44 (6):797-820.
    Does the recent success of Podemos and Syriza herald a new era of inclusive, egalitarian left populism? Because leaders of both parties are former students of Ernesto Laclau and cite his account of populism as guiding their political practice, this essay considers whether his theory supports hope for a new kind of populism. For Laclau, the essence of populism is an “empty signifier” that provides a means by which anyone can identify with the people as a whole. However, the concept (...)
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  • The Significance Argument for the Irreducibility of Consciousness.Adam Pautz - 2017 - Philosophical Perspectives 31 (1):349-407.
    The Significance Argument (SA) for the irreducibility of consciousness is based on a series of new puzzle-cases that I call multiple candidate cases. In these cases, there is a multiplicity of physical-functional properties or relations that are candidates to be identified with the sensible qualities and our consciousness of them, where those candidates are not significantly different. I will argue that these cases show that reductive materialists cannot accommodate the various ways in which consciousness is significant and must allow massive (...)
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  • Seeing It for Oneself: Perceptual Knowledge, Understanding, and Intellectual Autonomy.Duncan Pritchard - 2016 - Episteme 13 (1):29-42.
    The idea of is explored. It is claimed that there is something epistemically important about acquiring one's knowledge first-hand via active perception rather than second-hand via testimony. Moreover, it is claimed that this kind of active perceptual seeing it for oneself is importantly related to the kind of understanding that is acquired when one possesses a correct and appropriately detailed explanation of how cause and effect are related. In both cases we have a kind of seeing it for oneself which (...)
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  • Counter Countermathematical Explanations.Atoosa Kasirzadeh - forthcoming - Erkenntnis.
    Recently, there have been several attempts to generalize the counterfactual theory of causal explanations to mathematical explanations. The central idea of these attempts is to use conditionals whose antecedents express a mathematical impossibility. Such countermathematical conditionals are plugged into the explanatory scheme of the counterfactual theory and -- so is the hope -- capture mathematical explanations. Here, I dash the hope that countermathematical explanations simply parallel counterfactual explanations. In particular, I show that explanations based on countermathematicals are susceptible to three (...)
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  • A Causal Safety Criterion for Knowledge.Jonathan Vandenburgh - manuscript
    Safety purports to explain why cases of accidentally true belief are not knowledge, addressing Gettier cases and cases of belief based on statistical evidence. However, numerous examples suggest that safety fails as a condition on knowledge: a belief can be safe even when one's evidence is clearly insufficient for knowledge and knowledge is compatible with the nearby possibility of error, a situation ruled out by the safety condition. In this paper, I argue for a new modal condition designed to capture (...)
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  • Actuality and the a Priori.Fabio Lampert - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (3):809-830.
    We consider a natural-language sentence that cannot be formally represented in a first-order language for epistemic two-dimensional semantics. We also prove this claim in the “Appendix” section. It turns out, however, that the most natural ways to repair the expressive inadequacy of the first-order language render moot the original philosophical motivation of formalizing a priori knowability as necessity along the diagonal.
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  • How Belief-Credence Dualism Explains Away Pragmatic Encroachment.Elizabeth Jackson - 2019 - Philosophical Quarterly 69 (276):511-533.
    Belief-credence dualism is the view that we have both beliefs and credences and neither attitude is reducible to the other. Pragmatic encroachment is the view that practical stakes can affect the epistemic rationality of states like knowledge or justified belief. In this paper, I argue that dualism offers a unique explanation of pragmatic encroachment cases. First, I explain pragmatic encroachment and what motivates it. Then, I explain dualism and outline a particular argument for dualism. Finally, I show how dualism can (...)
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  • Non-Transitive Self-Knowledge: Luminosity Via Modal Μ-Automata.Hasen Khudairi - manuscript
    This essay provides a novel account of iterated epistemic states. The essay argues that states of epistemic determinacy might be secured by countenancing self-knowledge on the model of fixed points in monadic second-order modal logic, i.e. the modal $\mu$-calculus. Despite the epistemic indeterminacy witnessed by the invalidation of modal axiom 4 in the sorites paradox -- i.e. the KK principle: $\square$$\phi$ $\rightarrow$ $\square$$\square$$\phi$ -- an epistemic interpretation of a $\mu$-automaton permits the iterations of the transition functions to entrain a principled (...)
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  • Know-How as Competence. A Rylean Responsibilist Account.David Lowenstein - 2017 - Frankfurt am Main: Vittorio Klostermann.
    What does it mean to know how to do something? This book develops a comprehensive account of know-how, a crucial epistemic goal for all who care about getting things right, not only with respect to the facts, but also with respect to practice. It proposes a novel interpretation of the seminal work of Gilbert Ryle, according to which know-how is a competence, a complex ability to do well in an activity in virtue of guidance by an understanding of what it (...)
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  • Joint Know-How.Jonathan Birch - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (12):3329–3352.
    When two agents engage in a joint action, such as rowing together, they exercise joint know-how. But what is the relationship between the joint know-how of the two agents and the know-how each agent possesses individually? I construct an “active mutual enablement” account of this relationship, according to which joint know-how arises when each agent knows how to predict, monitor, and make failure-averting adjustments in response to the behaviour of the other agent, while actively enabling the other to make such (...)
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  • From Values to Probabilities.Wlodek Rabinowicz - 2017 - Synthese 194 (10):3901-3929.
    According to the fitting-attitude analysis of value, to be valuable is to be a fitting object of a pro-attitude. In earlier publications, setting off from this format of analysis, I proposed a modelling of value relations which makes room for incommensurability in value. In this paper, I first recapitulate the value modelling and then move on to suggest adopting a structurally similar analysis of probability. Indeed, many probability theorists from Poisson onwards did adopt an analysis of this kind. This move (...)
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  • The Theoretical Significance of the A Priori/A Posteriori Distinction.Joshua Schechter - forthcoming - In Dylan Dodd & Elia Zardini (eds.), Beyond Sense? New Essays on the Significance, Grounds, and Extent of the A Priori. Oxford University Press.
    In recent years, several philosophers have argued that the a priori/a posteriori distinction is a legitimate distinction but does not carve at the epistemological joints and is theoretically unimportant. In this paper, I do two main things. First, I respond to the most prominent recent challenge to the significance of the a priori/a posteriori distinction – the central argument in Williamson (2013). Second, I discuss the question of what the theoretical significance of the a priori/a posteriori distinction is. -/- I (...)
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  • Embracing Incoherence.Claire Field - forthcoming - In Nick Hughes (ed.), Epistemic Dilemmas. Oxford University Press. pp. 1-29.
    Incoherence is usually regarded as a bad thing. Incoherence suggests irrationality, confusion, paradox. Incoherentism disagrees: incoherence is not always a bad thing, sometimes we ought to be incoherent. If correct, Incoherentism has important and controversial implications. It implies that rationality does not always require coherence. Dilemmism and Incoherentism both embrace conflict in epistemology. After identifying some important differences between these two ways of embracing conflict, I offer some reasons to prefer Incoherentism over Dilemmism. Namely, that Incoherentism allows us to deliberate (...)
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  • Potentiality: Actualism Minus Naturalism Equals Platonism.Giacomo Giannini & Matthew Tugby - 2020 - Philosophical Inquiries 1 (8):117-40.
    Vetter (2015) develops a localised theory of modality, based on potentialities of actual objects. Two factors play a key role in its appeal: its commitment to Hardcore Actualism, and to Naturalism. Vetter’s commitment to Naturalism is in part manifested in her adoption of Aristotelian universals. In this paper, we argue that a puzzle concerning the identity of unmanifested potentialities cannot be solved with an Aristotelian conception of properties. After introducing the puzzle, we examine Vetter’s attempt at amending the Aristotelian conception (...)
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  • Modal Quantification Without Worlds.Billy Dunaway - 2013 - In Karen Bennett & Dean W. Zimmerman (eds.), Oxford Studies in Metaphysics, Volume 8. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 151-186.
    This paper is about avoiding commitment to an ontology of possible worlds with two primitives: a hyperintensional connective like ‘in virtue of’, and primitive quantification into predicate position. I argue that these tools (which some believe can be independently motivated) render dispensable the ontology of possible worlds needed by traditional anaylses of modality. They also shed new light on the notion of truth-at-a-world.
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  • Fragile Knowledge.Simon Goldstein - forthcoming - Mind:1-25.
    This paper explores the principle that knowledge is fragile, in that whenever S knows that S doesn't know that S knows that p, S thereby fails to know p. Fragility is motivated by the infelicity of dubious assertions, utterances which assert p while acknowledging higher order ignorance of p. Fragility is interestingly weaker than KK, the principle that if S knows p, then S knows that S knows p. Existing theories of knowledge which deny KK by accepting a Margin for (...)
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  • Institutions and Scientific Progress.C. Mantzavinos - 2020 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences (3).
    Scientific progress has many facets and can be conceptualized in different ways, for example in terms of problem-solving, of truthlikeness or of growth of knowledge. The main claim of the paper is that the most important prerequisite of scientific progress is the institutionalization of competition and criticism. An institutional framework appropriately channeling competition and criticism is the crucial factor determining the direction and rate of scientific progress, independently on how one might wish to conceptualize scientific progress itself. The main intention (...)
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  • Experimental Philosophy Without Intuitions: An Illustration of Why It Fails.Herman Cappelen - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies.
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  • Two Notions of Metaphysical Modality.Antonella Mallozzi - 2018 - Synthese (Suppl 6):1-22.
    The paper explores the project of an ambitious modal epistemology that attempts to combine the a priori methods of Chalmers’ 2D semantics with Kripke’s modal metaphysics. I argue that such a project is not viable. The ambitious modal epistemology involves an inconsistent triad composed of (1) Modal Monism, (2) Two-Dimensionalism, and what I call (3) “Metaphysical Kripkeanism”. I present the three theses and show how only two of those can be true at a time. There is a fundamental incompatibility between (...)
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  • The Broadest Necessity.Andrew Bacon - 2018 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 47 (5):733-783.
    In this paper the logic of broad necessity is explored. Definitions of what it means for one modality to be broader than another are formulated, and it is proven, in the context of higher-order logic, that there is a broadest necessity, settling one of the central questions of this investigation. It is shown, moreover, that it is possible to give a reductive analysis of this necessity in extensional language. This relates more generally to a conjecture that it is not possible (...)
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  • Defeaters in Current Epistemology: Introduction to the Special Issue.Luca Moretti & Tommaso Piazza - 2018 - Synthese 195 (7):2845-2854.
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  • Knowledge, Practical Interests, and Rising Tides.Stephen R. Grimm - 2015 - In John Greco & David Henderson (eds.), Epistemic Evaluation: Purposeful Epistemology. Oxford University Press.
    Defenders of pragmatic encroachment in epistemology (or what I call practicalism) need to address two main problems. First, the view seems to imply, absurdly, that knowledge can come and go quite easily—in particular, that it might come and go along with our variable practical interests. We can call this the stability problem. Second, there seems to be no fully satisfying way of explaining whose practical interests matter. We can call this the “whose stakes?” problem. I argue that both problems can (...)
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  • When is It Mental?Stuart Glennan - 2015 - Humana Mente 8 (29).
    Most philosophical debate over mental causation has been concerned with reconciling commonsense intuitions that there are causal interactions between the mental and the physical with philosophical theories of the nature of the mental that seem to suggest otherwise. My concern is with a different and more practical problem. We often confront some cognitive, affective, or bodily phenomenon, and wonder about its source – its etiology or its underlying causal basis. For instance, you might wonder whether your queasiness due to something (...)
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  • Can Mereological Sums Serve as the Semantic Values of Plurals?David Nicolas - 2007
    Abstract: Friends of plural logic—like Oliver & Smiley (2001), Rayo (2002), Yi (2005), and McKay (2006)—have argued that a semantics of plurals based on mereological sums would be too weak, and they have adduced several examples in favor of their claim. However, they have not considered various possible counter-arguments. So how convincing are their own arguments? We show that several of them are easily answered, while some others are more problematic. Overall, the case against mereological singularism—the idea that mereological sums (...)
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  • Science and the Special Composition Question.Andrew Brenner - 2018 - Synthese 195 (2):657-678.
    Mereological nihilism is the thesis that composition never occurs. Some philosophers have thought that science gives us compelling evidence against nihilism. In this article I respond to this concern. An initial challenge for nihilism stems from the fact that composition is such a ubiquitous feature of scientific theories. In response I motivate a restricted form of scientific anti-realism with respect to those components of scientific theories which make reference to composition. A second scientifically based worry for nihilism is that certain (...)
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  • Knowledge is the Norm of Assertion.Matthew A. Benton - forthcoming - In Ernest Sosa, Matthias Steup, John Turri & Blake Roeber (eds.), Contemporary Debates in Epistemology, 3rd edition. Wiley-Blackwell.
    Assertion is governed by an epistemic norm requiring knowledge. This idea has been hotly debated in recent years, garnering attention in epistemology, philosophy of language, and linguistics. This chapter presents and extends the main arguments in favor of the knowledge norm, from faulty conjunctions, several conversational patterns, judgments of permission, excuse, and blame, and from showing how. With a reply from Peter J. Graham. (Draft. Comments welcome.).
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  • The Paradox of Idealization.Salvatore Florio & Julien Murzi - 2009 - Analysis 69 (3):461-469.
    A well-known proof by Alonzo Church, first published in 1963 by Frederic Fitch, purports to show that all truths are knowable only if all truths are known. This is the Paradox of Knowability. If we take it, quite plausibly, that we are not omniscient, the proof appears to undermine metaphysical doctrines committed to the knowability of truth, such as semantic anti-realism. Since its rediscovery by Hart and McGinn (1976), many solutions to the paradox have been offered. In this article, we (...)
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  • Genealogy and Knowledge-First Epistemology: A Mismatch?Matthieu Queloz - 2019 - Philosophical Quarterly 69 (274):100-120.
    This paper examines three reasons to think that Craig's genealogy of the concept of knowledge is incompatible with knowledge-first epistemology and finds that far from being incompatible with it, the genealogy lends succour to it. This reconciliation turns on two ideas. First, the genealogy is not history, but a dynamic model of needs. Secondly, by recognizing the continuity of Craig's genealogy with Williams's genealogy of truthfulness, we can see that while both genealogies start out from specific needs explaining what drives (...)
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  • The Logic of Empirical Theories Revisited.Johan van Benthem - 2012 - Synthese 186 (3):775-792.
    Logic and philosophy of science share a long history, though contacts have gone through ups and downs. This paper is a brief survey of some major themes in logical studies of empirical theories, including links to computer science and current studies of rational agency. The survey has no new results: we just try to make some things into common knowledge.
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  • The Concept of Disease—Vague, Complex, or Just Indefinable?Bjørn Hofmann - 2010 - Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 13 (1):3-10.
    The long ongoing and partly heated debate on the concept of disease has not led to any consensus on the status of this apparently essential concept for modern health care. The arguments range from claims that the disease concept is vague, slippery, elusive, or complex, and to statements that the concept is indefinable and unnecessary. The unsettled status of the concept of disease is challenging not only to health care where diagnosing, treating, and curing disease are core aims, but also (...)
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  • Updating as Communication.Sarah Moss - 2012 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 85 (2):225-248.
    Traditional procedures for rational updating fail when it comes to self-locating opinions, such as your credences about where you are and what time it is. This paper develops an updating procedure for rational agents with self-locating beliefs. In short, I argue that rational updating can be factored into two steps. The first step uses information you recall from your previous self to form a hypothetical credence distribution, and the second step changes this hypothetical distribution to reflect information you have genuinely (...)
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  • Supervenience, Dependence, Disjunction.Lloyd Humberstone - forthcoming - Logic and Logical Philosophy:1.
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  • Running Risks Morally.Brian Weatherson - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 167 (1):141-163.
    I defend normative externalism from the objection that it cannot account for the wrongfulness of moral recklessness. The defence is fairly simple—there is no wrong of moral recklessness. There is an intuitive argument by analogy that there should be a wrong of moral recklessness, and the bulk of the paper consists of a response to this analogy. A central part of my response is that if people were motivated to avoid moral recklessness, they would have to have an unpleasant sort (...)
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  • 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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  • Assertion, Knowledge, and Action.Ishani Maitra & Brian Weatherson - 2010 - Philosophical Studies 149 (1):99-118.
    We argue against the knowledge rule of assertion, and in favour of integrating the account of assertion more tightly with our best theories of evidence and action. We think that the knowledge rule has an incredible consequence when it comes to practical deliberation, that it can be right for a person to do something that she can't properly assert she can do. We develop some vignettes that show how this is possible, and how odd this consequence is. We then argue (...)
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  • Analogies, Moral Intuitions, and the Expertise Defence.Regina A. Rini - 2014 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 5 (2):169-181.
    The evidential value of moral intuitions has been challenged by psychological work showing that the intuitions of ordinary people are affected by distorting factors. One reply to this challenge, the expertise defence, claims that training in philosophical thinking confers enhanced reliability on the intuitions of professional philosophers. This defence is often expressed through analogy: since we do not allow doubts about folk judgments in domains like mathematics or physics to undermine the plausibility of judgments by experts in these domains, we (...)
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  • The Puzzle of the Unmarked Clock and the New Rational Reflection Principle.Adam Elga - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 164 (1):127-139.
    The “puzzle of the unmarked clock” derives from a conflict between the following: (1) a plausible principle of epistemic modesty, and (2) “Rational Reflection”, a principle saying how one’s beliefs about what it is rational to believe constrain the rest of one’s beliefs. An independently motivated improvement to Rational Reflection preserves its spirit while resolving the conflict.
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  • Succeeding Competently: Towards an Anti-Luck Condition for Achievement.Hasko von Kriegstein - 2019 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 49 (3):394-418.
    ABSTRACTAchievements are among the things that make a life good. Assessing the plausibility of this intuitive claim requires an account of the nature of achievements. One necessary condition for achievement appears to be that the achieving agent acted competently, i.e. was not just lucky. I begin by critically assessing existing accounts of anti-luck conditions for achievements in both the ethics and epistemology literature. My own proposal is that a goal is reached competently, only if the actions of the would-be-achiever make (...)
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  • Two-Dimensional Adventures.Lloyd Humberstone - 2004 - Philosophical Studies 118 (1-2):17--65.
    This paper recalls some applications of two-dimensional modal logic from the 1980s, including work on the logic of Actually and on a somewhat idealized version of the indicative/subjunctive distinction, as well as on absolute and relative necessity. There is some discussion of reactions this material has aroused in commentators since. We also survey related work by Leslie Tharp from roughly the same period.
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  • Minimalism, the Generalization Problem and the Liar.Bradley Armour-Garb - 2004 - Synthese 139 (3):491 - 512.
    In defense of the minimalist conception of truth, Paul Horwich(2001) has recently argued that our acceptance of the instances of the schema,`the proposition that p is true if and only if p', suffices to explain our acceptanceof truth generalizations, that is, of general claims formulated using the truth predicate.In this paper, I consider the strategy Horwich develops for explaining our acceptance of truth generalizations. As I show, while perhaps workable on its own, the strategy is in conflictwith his response to (...)
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  • Qualia and Vagueness.Anthony Everett - 1996 - Synthese 106 (2):205-226.
    In this paper I present two arguments against the thesis that we experience qualia. I argue that if we experienced qualia then these qualia would have to be essentially vague entities. And I then offer two arguments, one a reworking of Gareth Evans' argument against the possibility of vague objects, the other a reworking of the Sorites argument, to show that no such essentially vague entities can exist. I consider various objections but argue that ultimately they all fail. In particular (...)
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  • Credible Futures.Andrea Iacona & Samuele Iaquinto - 2021 - Synthese.
    This paper articulates in formal terms a crucial distinction concerning future contingents, the distinction between what is true about the future and what is reasonable to believe about the future. Its key idea is that the branching structures that have been used so far to model truth can be employed to define an epistemic property, credibility, which we take to be closely related to knowledge and assertibility, and which is ultimately reducible to probability. As a result, two kinds of claims (...)
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  • Semantic Dispositionalism Without Exceptions.Arvid Båve - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (6):1751-1771.
    Semantic dispositionalism is roughly the view that meaning a certain thing by a word, or possessing a certain concept, consists in being disposed to do something, e.g., infer a certain way. Its main problem is that it seems to have so many and disparate exceptions. People can fail to infer as required due to lack of logical acumen, intoxication, confusion, deviant theories, neural malfunctioning, and so on. I present a theory stating possession conditions of concepts that are counterfactuals, rather than (...)
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