What the Future 'Might' Brings

Mind (forthcoming)
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Abstract
This paper is about a puzzle about the interaction of epistemic modals and future tense. In cases of predictable forgetfulness, speakers cannot describe their future states of mind with epistemic modals under future tense, but promising theories of epistemic modals do not predict this. In section 1, I outline the puzzle. In section 2, I argue it undermines a very general approach to epistemic modals that draws a tight connection between epistemic modality and evidence. In section 3, I defend the assumption that tense can indeed scope over epistemic modals. In section 4, I outline a new way of determining the domain of quantification of epistemic modals: epistemic modals quantify over the worlds compatible with the information accumulated within a certain interval. Information loss can change which interval is relevant for determining the domain. In section 5, I defend the view from some objections. In section 6, I explore the connections between my view of epistemic modality and circumstantial modality.
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Archival date: 2019-02-28
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References found in this work BETA
Demonstratives: An Essay on the Semantics, Logic, Metaphysics and Epistemology of Demonstratives and Other Indexicals.David Kaplan - 1989 - In Joseph Almog, John Perry & Howard Wettstein (eds.), Themes From Kaplan. Oxford University Press. pp. 481-563.

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Bounded Modality.Mandelkern, Matthew

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2019-02-28

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