The Lost Pillar of Deontic Modality (Part of the Dissertation Portfolio Modality, Names and Descriptions)

Dissertation, New York University (2007)
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This paper concerns a thorny problem posed by conditional requirements: we expect some modal conditionals of the form ‘if p, then it must be that p’ to be false, yet they all come out true given two basic assumptions needed to account for ordinary conditional requirement like ‘If the light turns red, then cars must stop’. The first assumption is a semantic expectation linking conditional requirements with absolute ones, the second is the possible-worlds-based definition of modal sentences. Keeping the former means giving up the latter, a result with profound implications for Kratzer’s formal semantics, modifications thereof, as well as deontic logics.
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