Anti-Exceptionalism about Logic

Australasian Journal of Logic 16 (7):298 (2019)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Abstract
Anti-exceptionalism about logic is the doctrine that logic does not require its own epistemology, for its methods are continuous with those of science. Although most recently urged by Williamson, the idea goes back at least to Lakatos, who wanted to adapt Popper's falsicationism and extend it not only to mathematics but to logic as well. But one needs to be careful here to distinguish the empirical from the a posteriori. Lakatos coined the term 'quasi-empirical' `for the counterinstances to putative mathematical and logical theses. Mathematics and logic may both be a posteriori, but it does not follow that they are empirical. Indeed, as Williamson has demonstrated, what counts as empirical knowledge, and the role of experience in acquiring knowledge, are both unclear. Moreover, knowledge, even of necessary truths, is fallible. Nonetheless, logical consequence holds in virtue of the meaning of the logical terms, just as consequence in general holds in virtue of the meanings of the concepts involved; and so logic is both analytic and necessary. In this respect, it is exceptional. But its methodologyand its epistemology are the same as those of mathematics and science in being fallibilist, and counterexamples to seemingly analytic truths are as likely as those in any scientic endeavour. What is needed is a new account of the evidential basis of knowledge, one which is, perhaps surprisingly, found in Aristotle.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
REAAAL-3
Upload history
Archival date: 2018-05-21
View other versions
Added to PP index
2018-05-21

Total views
684 ( #6,658 of 56,900 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
83 ( #7,892 of 56,900 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks on external links on PhilPapers.