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  1. Real Conditionals. [REVIEW]Brian Weatherson - 2002 - Philosophical Review 111 (4):609-611.
    Over the last two decades, William Lycan’s work on the semantics of conditionals has been distinguished by his careful attention to the connection between syntax and semantics, and more generally by his impeccable methodology. Lycan takes compositionality seriously, so he requires that the meaning of compound expressions like ‘even if’ be a combination of the constituent expressions, here ‘even’ and ‘if’. After reading his work, it’s hard to take seriously work that does not share this methodology.
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  • Alternatives and Truthmakers in Conditional Semantics.Paolo Santorio - 2018 - Journal of Philosophy 115 (10):513-549.
    Natural language conditionals seem to be subject to three logical requirements: they invalidate Antecedent Strengthening, they validate so-called Simplification of Disjunctive Antecedents, and they allow for the replacement of logically equivalent clauses in antecedent position. Unfortunately, these requirements are jointly inconsistent. Conservative solutions to the puzzle drop Simplification, treating it as a pragmatic inference. I show that pragmatic accounts of Simplification fail, and develop a truthmaker semantics for conditionals that captures all the relevant data. Differently from existing truthmaker semantics, my (...)
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  • Ifs and Oughts.Niko Kolodny & John MacFarlane - 2010 - Journal of Philosophy 107 (3):115-143.
    We consider a paradox involving indicative conditionals (‘ifs’) and deontic modals (‘oughts’). After considering and rejecting several standard options for resolv- ing the paradox—including rejecting various premises, positing an ambiguity or hidden contextual sensitivity, and positing a non-obvious logical form—we offer a semantics for deontic modals and indicative conditionals that resolves the paradox by making modus ponens invalid. We argue that this is a result to be welcomed on independent grounds, and we show that rejecting the general validity of modus (...)
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  • Counterfactuals with Disjunctive Antecedents.Barry Loewer - 1976 - Journal of Philosophy 73 (16):531-537.
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  • Counterfactuals and the Similarity of Worlds.Donald Nute - 1975 - Journal of Philosophy 72 (21):773-778.
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  • The Problem of Counterfactual Conditionals.Nelson Goodman - 1947 - Journal of Philosophy 44 (5):113-128.
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  • Modality and Explanatory Reasoning.Boris Kment - 2014 - Oxford University Press.
    Boris Kment takes a new approach to the study of modality that emphasises the origin of modal notions in everyday thought. He argues that the concepts of necessity and possibility originate in counterfactual reasoning, which allows us to investigate explanatory connections. Contrary to accepted views, explanation is more fundamental than modality.
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  • Über Sinn und Bedeutung.Gottlob Frege - 1892 - Zeitschrift für Philosophie Und Philosophische Kritik 100 (1):25-50.
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  • A Philosophical Guide to Conditionals.Jonathan Bennett - 2003 - Oxford University Press.
    Conditional sentences are among the most intriguing and puzzling features of language, and analysis of their meaning and function has important implications for, and uses in, many areas of philosophy. Jonathan Bennett, one of the world's leading experts, distils many years' work and teaching into this Philosophical Guide to Conditionals, the fullest and most authoritative treatment of the subject. An ideal introduction for undergraduates with a philosophical grounding, it also offers a rich source of illumination and stimulation for graduate students (...)
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  • On Counterpossibles.Jens Christian Bjerring - 2013 - Philosophical Studies (2):1-27.
    The traditional Lewis–Stalnaker semantics treats all counterfactuals with an impossible antecedent as trivially or vacuously true. Many have regarded this as a serious defect of the semantics. For intuitively, it seems, counterfactuals with impossible antecedents—counterpossibles—can be non-trivially true and non-trivially false. Whereas the counterpossible "If Hobbes had squared the circle, then the mathematical community at the time would have been surprised" seems true, "If Hobbes had squared the circle, then sick children in the mountains of Afghanistan at the time would (...)
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  • Counterpossibles (Not Only) for Dispositionalists.Barbara Vetter - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (10):2681-2700.
    Dispositionalists try to provide an account of modality—possibility, necessity, and the counterfactual conditional—in terms of dispositions. But there may be a tension between dispositionalist accounts of possibility on the one hand, and of counterfactuals on the other. Dispositionalists about possibility must hold that there are no impossible dispositions, i.e., dispositions with metaphysically impossible stimulus and/or manifestation conditions; dispositionalist accounts of counterfactuals, if they allow for non-vacuous counterpossibles, require that there are such impossible dispositions. I argue, first, that there are in (...)
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  • Williamson on Counterpossibles.Berto Francesco, David Ripley, Graham Priest & Rohan French - 2018 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 47 (4):693-713.
    A counterpossible conditional is a counterfactual with an impossible antecedent. Common sense delivers the view that some such conditionals are true, and some are false. In recent publications, Timothy Williamson has defended the view that all are true. In this paper we defend the common sense view against Williamson’s objections.
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  • Counteridenticals.Alexander W. Kocurek - 2018 - The Philosophical Review 127 (3):323-369.
    A counteridentical is a counterfactual with an identity statement in the antecedent. While counteridenticals generally seem non-trivial, most semantic theories for counterfactuals, when combined with the necessity of identity and distinctness, attribute vacuous truth conditions to such counterfactuals. In light of this, one could try to save the orthodox theories either by appealing to pragmatics or by denying that the antecedents of alleged counteridenticals really contain identity claims. Or one could reject the orthodox theory of counterfactuals in favor of a (...)
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  • A Difficulty for the Possible Worlds Analysis of Counterfactuals.Kit Fine - 2012 - Synthese 189 (1):29-57.
    I present a puzzle concerning counterfactual reasoning and argue that it should be solved by giving up the principle of substitution for logical equivalents.
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  • Counterfactual Scorekeeping.Anthony S. Gillies - 2007 - Linguistics and Philosophy 30 (3):329 - 360.
    Counterfactuals are typically thought--given the force of Sobel sequences--to be variably strict conditionals. I go the other way. Sobel sequences and (what I call) Hegel sequences push us to a strict conditional analysis of counterfactuals: counterfactuals amount to some necessity modal scoped over a plain material conditional, just which modal being a function of context. To make this worth saying I need to say just how counterfactuals and context interact. No easy feat, but I have something to say on the (...)
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  • Updating as Communication.Sarah Moss - 2012 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 85 (2):225-248.
    Traditional procedures for rational updating fail when it comes to self-locating opinions, such as your credences about where you are and what time it is. This paper develops an updating procedure for rational agents with self-locating beliefs. In short, I argue that rational updating can be factored into two steps. The first step uses information you recall from your previous self to form a hypothetical credence distribution, and the second step changes this hypothetical distribution to reflect information you have genuinely (...)
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  • Making Counterfactual Assumptions.Frank Veltman - 2005 - Journal of Semantics 22 (2):159-180.
    This paper provides an update semantics for counterfactual conditionals. It does so by giving a dynamic twist to the ‘Premise Semantics’ for counterfactuals developed in Veltman (1976) and Kratzer (1981). It also offers an alternative solution to the problems with naive Premise Semantics discussed by Angelika Kratzer in ‘Lumps of Thought’ (Kratzer, 1989). Such an alternative is called for given the triviality results presented in Kanazawa et al. (2005, this issue).
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  • Counterfactuals.David K. Lewis - 1973 - Blackwell.
    Counterfactuals is David Lewis' forceful presentation of and sustained argument for a particular view about propositions which express contrary to fact conditionals, including his famous defense of realism about possible worlds and his theory of laws of nature.
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  • An Investigation of the Lumps of Thought.Angelika Kratzer - 1989 - Linguistics and Philosophy 12 (5):607 - 653.
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  • Interventionist Counterfactuals.Rachael Briggs - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 160 (1):139-166.
    A number of recent authors (Galles and Pearl, Found Sci 3 (1):151–182, 1998; Hiddleston, Noûs 39 (4):232–257, 2005; Halpern, J Artif Intell Res 12:317–337, 2000) advocate a causal modeling semantics for counterfactuals. But the precise logical significance of the causal modeling semantics remains murky. Particularly important, yet particularly under-explored, is its relationship to the similarity-based semantics for counterfactuals developed by Lewis (Counterfactuals. Harvard University Press, 1973b). The causal modeling semantics is both an account of the truth conditions of counterfactuals, and (...)
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  • Omission Impossible.Sara Bernstein - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (10):2575-2589.
    This paper gives a framework for understanding causal counterpossibles, counterfactuals imbued with causal content whose antecedents appeal to metaphysically impossible worlds. Such statements are generated by omissive causal claims that appeal to metaphysically impossible events, such as “If the mathematician had not failed to prove that 2+2=5, the math textbooks would not have remained intact.” After providing an account of impossible omissions, the paper argues for three claims: (i) impossible omissions play a causal role in the actual world, (ii) causal (...)
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  • A Uniform Theory of Conditionals.William B. Starr - 2014 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 43 (6):1019-1064.
    A uniform theory of conditionals is one which compositionally captures the behavior of both indicative and subjunctive conditionals without positing ambiguities. This paper raises new problems for the closest thing to a uniform analysis in the literature (Stalnaker, Philosophia, 5, 269–286 (1975)) and develops a new theory which solves them. I also show that this new analysis provides an improved treatment of three phenomena (the import-export equivalence, reverse Sobel-sequences and disjunctive antecedents). While these results concern central issues in the study (...)
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  • I-Counterfactuals.Dorothy Edgington - 2008 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 108 (1pt1):1-21.
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  • The Philosophy of Philosophy.Timothy Williamson - 2007 - Wiley-Blackwell.
    The second volume in the _Blackwell Brown Lectures in Philosophy_, this volume offers an original and provocative take on the nature and methodology of philosophy. Based on public lectures at Brown University, given by the pre-eminent philosopher, Timothy Williamson Rejects the ideology of the 'linguistic turn', the most distinctive trend of 20th century philosophy Explains the method of philosophy as a development from non-philosophical ways of thinking Suggests new ways of understanding what contemporary and past philosophers are doing.
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  • Williamsonian Modal Epistemology, Possibility-Based.Barbara Vetter - 2016 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 46 (4-5):766-795.
    Williamsonian modal epistemology is characterized by two commitments: realism about modality, and anti-exceptionalism about our modal knowledge. Williamson’s own counterfactual-based modal epistemology is the best known implementation of WME, but not the only option that is available. I sketch and defend an alternative implementation which takes our knowledge of metaphysical modality to arise, not from knowledge of counterfactuals, but from our knowledge of ordinary possibility statements of the form ‘x can F’. I defend this view against a criticism indicated in (...)
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  • A Theory of Conditionals.Robert Stalnaker - 1968 - In Nicholas Rescher (ed.), Studies in Logical Theory (American Philosophical Quarterly Monographs 2). Oxford: Blackwell. pp. 98-112.
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  • Impossible Worlds: A Modest Approach.Daniel Nolan - 1997 - Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 38 (4):535-572.
    Reasoning about situations we take to be impossible is useful for a variety of theoretical purposes. Furthermore, using a device of impossible worlds when reasoning about the impossible is useful in the same sorts of ways that the device of possible worlds is useful when reasoning about the possible. This paper discusses some of the uses of impossible worlds and argues that commitment to them can and should be had without great metaphysical or logical cost. The paper then provides an (...)
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  • A Philosophical Guide to Conditionals.W. G. Lycan - 2005 - Mind 114 (453):116-119.
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  • Ifs.Jonathan Dancy - 1983 - Philosophical Quarterly 33 (130):96-98.
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  • Remarks on Counterpossibles.Berit Brogaard & Joe Salerno - 2013 - Synthese 190 (4):639-660.
    Since the publication of David Lewis’ Counterfactuals, the standard line on subjunctive conditionals with impossible antecedents (or counterpossibles) has been that they are vacuously true. That is, a conditional of the form ‘If p were the case, q would be the case’ is trivially true whenever the antecedent, p, is impossible. The primary justification is that Lewis’ semantics best approximates the English subjunctive conditional, and that a vacuous treatment of counterpossibles is a consequence of that very elegant theory. Another justification (...)
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  • Conceivability, Rigidity and Counterpossibles.Jesper Kallestrup - 2008 - Synthese 171 (3):377 - 386.
    Wright (In Gendler and Hawthorne (Eds.), Conceivability and possibility, 2002) rejects some dominant responses to Kripke’s modal argument against the mind-body identity theory, and instead he proposes a new response that draws on a certain understanding of counterpossibles. This paper offers some defensive remarks on behalf of Lewis’ objection to that argument, and it argues that Wright’s proposal fails to fully accommodate the conceivability intuitions, and that it is dialectically ineffective.
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  • Counterfactuals with Disjunctive Antecedents.Thomas Mckay & Peter Van Inwagen - 1977 - Philosophical Studies 31 (5):353 - 356.
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  • An Objection to Possible-World Semantics for Counterfactual Logics.Brian Ellis, Frank Jackson & Robert Pargetter - 1977 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 6 (1):355 - 357.
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  • An Axiomatic Characterization of Causal Counterfactuals.David Galles & Judea Pearl - 1998 - Foundations of Science 3 (1):151-182.
    This paper studies the causal interpretation of counterfactual sentences using a modifiable structural equation model. It is shown that two properties of counterfactuals, namely, composition and effectiveness, are sound and complete relative to this interpretation, when recursive (i.e., feedback-less) models are considered. Composition and effectiveness also hold in Lewis's closest-world semantics, which implies that for recursive models the causal interpretation imposes no restrictions beyond those embodied in Lewis's framework. A third property, called reversibility, holds in nonrecursive causal models but not (...)
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  • Possible-World Semantics for Counterfactual Logics: A Rejoinder.David K. Lewis - 1977 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 6 (1):359-363.
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  • Partition and Revision: The Semantics of Counterfactuals.Angelika Kratzer - 1981 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 10 (2):201 - 216.
    The last section made it clear that an analysis which at first seems to fail is viable after all. It is viable if we let it depend on a partition function to be provided by the context of conversation. This analysis leaves certain traits of the partition function open. I have tried to show that this should be so. Specifying these traits as Pollock does leads to wrong predictions. And leaving them open endows counterfactuals with just the right amount of (...)
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  • Simplification and Substitution of Counterfactual Antecedents.Donald Nute - 1978 - Philosophia 7 (2):317-325.
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  • Counterfactuals and Substitution of Equivalent Antecedents.Ken Warmbrōd - 1981 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 10 (2):267 - 289.
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  • Über Sinn Und Bedeutung.G. Frege - 1892 - Philosophical Review 1:574.
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  • A Philosophical Guide to Conditionals.Jonathan Bennett - 2003 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 66 (2):379-380.
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  • Real Conditionals.William G. Lycan - 2001 - Oxford University Press UK.
    Philosophers and logicians have long debated how best to understand conditional or hypothetical sentences. William G. Lycan has a distinctive approach to this debate, attending not just to the semantics of such sentences, but equally to their syntax. He shows how insights from linguistic theory help to illuminate problems about the meaning and function of conditionals. For instance, philosophers and logicians have had problems analysing the locutions 'only if', 'unless', and 'even if'. Lycan sets out a general semantic theory of (...)
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  • The Problem of Counterfactual Conditionals.J. C. C. McKinsey & Nelson Goodman - 1947 - Journal of Symbolic Logic 12 (4):139.
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  • Counterfactuals.Dorothy Edgington - 2008 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 108 (1pt1):1-21.
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  • Who's Afraid of Impossible Worlds?Edwin D. Mares - 1997 - Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 38 (4):516-526.
    A theory of ersatz impossible worlds is developed to deal with the problem of counterpossible conditionals. Using only tools standardly in the toolbox of possible worlds theorists, it is shown that we can construct a model for counterpossibles. This model is a natural extension of Lewis's semantics for counterfactuals, but instead of using classical logic as its base, it uses the logic LP.
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  • Counterfactual Discourse in Context.Karen S. Lewis - 2018 - Noûs 52 (3):481-507.
    The classic Lewis-Stalnaker semantics for counterfactuals captures that Sobel sequences are consistent sequences, for example: a.If Sophie had gone to the parade, she would have seen Pedro dance. b.But if Sophie had gone to the parade and been stuck behind someone tall, she would not have seen Pedro dance. But reverse a sequence like this one and it no longer sounds so good, which is surprising on the classic semantics. This observation motivated Kai von Fintel and Thony Gillies to propose (...)
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  • An Extended Lewis-Stalnaker Semantics and The New Problem of Counterpossibles.Jeffrey Goodman - 2004 - Philosophical Papers 33 (1):35-66.
    Closest-possible-world analyses of counterfactuals suffer from what has been called the ‘problem of counterpossibles’: some counterfactuals with metaphysically impossible antecedents seem plainly false, but the proposed analyses imply that they are all (vacuously) true. One alleged solution to this problem is the addition of impossible worlds. In this paper, I argue that the closest possible or impossible world analyses that have recently been suggested suffer from the ‘new problem of counterpossibles’: the proposed analyses imply that some plainly true counterpossibles (viz., (...)
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  • Critical Notice.Review author[S.]: Kit Fine - 1975 - Mind 84 (335):451-458.
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  • On Subjunctive Conditionals with Impossible Antecedents.Karl R. Popper - 1959 - Mind 68 (272):518-520.
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  • The Problem of Counterpossibles.Daniel H. Cohen - 1987 - Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 29 (1):91-101.
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  • Counterfactuals.[author unknown] - 2013 - Wiley.
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