Now there will be trouble

In Patrick Blackburn, Peter Ohrstrom & Per Hasle (eds.), Logic and Philosophy of Time: Further Themes from Prior. Aalborg: Aalborg Universitetsforlag (2019)
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The paper considers sentences in which “now” occurs in initial position and shows that the meaning they convey differs from the meaning of sentences that are otherwise identical except for “now” occurring in final position. We argue that the occurrence of “now” in initial position triggers a particular kind of modal reading for the sentence to which the adverb is prefixed. A general notion of modal forcing is proposed to provide a uniform account of this kind of reading. Armed with this account, we offer a solution to two tense-modal puzzles, which have to do with fatalism and the possibility of a changing past.

Author Profiles

Giuseppe Spolaore
University of Padua
Fabio Del Prete
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique


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