This Paper Might Change your Mind

Noûs (forthcoming)
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Rational decision change can happen without information change. This is a problem for standard views of decision theory, on which linguistic intervention in rational decision-making is captured in terms of information change. But the standard view gives us no way to model interventions involving expressions that only have an attentional effects on conversational contexts. How are expressions with non-informational content - like epistemic modals - used to intervene in rational decision making? We show how to model rational decision change without information change: replace a standard conception of value (on which the value of a set of worlds reduces to values of individual worlds in the set) with one on which the value of a set of worlds is determined by a selection function that picks out a generic member world. We discuss some upshots of this view for theorizing in philosophy and formal semantics.
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