On the Borders of Vagueness and the Vagueness of Borders

Vassar College Journal of Philosophy 5:30-44 (2018)
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This article argues that resolutions to the sorites paradox offered by epistemic and supervaluation theories fail to adequately account for vagueness. After explaining the paradox, I examine the epistemic theory defended by Timothy Williamson and discuss objections to his semantic argument for vague terms having precise boundaries. I then consider Rosanna Keefe's supervaluationist approach and explain why it fails to accommodate the problem of higher-order vagueness. I conclude by discussing how fuzzy logic may hold the key to resolving the sorites paradox without positing indefensible borders to the correct application of vague terms.

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Rory W Collins
University of Canterbury


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