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Moderate Modal Skepticism

In Matthew A. Benton, John Hawthorne & Dani Rabinowitz (eds.), Knowledge, Belief, and God: New Insights in Religious Epistemology. Oxford University Press. pp. 302-321 (2018)

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  1. The Conscious Mind: In Search of a Fundamental Theory.David J. Chalmers - 1996 - Oxford University Press.
    The book is an extended study of the problem of consciousness. After setting up the problem, I argue that reductive explanation of consciousness is impossible , and that if one takes consciousness seriously, one has to go beyond a strict materialist framework. In the second half of the book, I move toward a positive theory of consciousness with fundamental laws linking the physical and the experiential in a systematic way. Finally, I use the ideas and arguments developed earlier to defend (...)
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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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  • 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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  • The Problem of Evil.Peter van Inwagen - 2007 - Philosophical Quarterly 57 (229):696-698.
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  • Mere Possibilities: Metaphysical Foundations of Modal Semantics.Robert Stalnaker - 2011 - Princeton University Press.
    The book also sheds new light on the nature of metaphysical theorizing by exploring the interaction of semantic and metaphysical issues, the connections between different metaphysical issues, and the nature of ontological commitment.
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  • What is Meaning?Scott Soames - 2010 - Princeton University Press.
    The tradition descending from Frege and Russell has typically treated theories of meaning either as theories of meanings, or as theories of truth conditions. However, propositions of the classical sort don't exist, and truth conditions can't provide all the information required by a theory of meaning. In this book, one of the world's leading philosophers of language offers a way out of this dilemma. Traditionally conceived, propositions are denizens of a "third realm" beyond mind and matter, "grasped" by mysterious Platonic (...)
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  • Writing the Book of the World.Theodore Sider - 2011 - Oxford University Press.
    In order to perfectly describe the world, it is not enough to speak truly. One must also use the right concepts - including the right logical concepts. One must use concepts that "carve at the joints", that give the world's "structure". There is an objectively correct way to "write the book of the world". Much of metaphysics, as traditionally conceived, is about the fundamental nature of reality; in the present terms, this is about the world's structure. Metametaphysics - inquiry into (...)
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  • There Are No Abstract Objects.Cian Dorr - 2008 - In Theodore Sider, John Hawthorne & Dean W. Zimmerman (eds.), Contemporary Debates in Metaphysics. Blackwell.
    I explicate and defend the claim that, fundamentally speaking, there are no numbers, sets, properties or relations. The clarification consists in some remarks on the relevant sense of ‘fundamentally speaking’ and the contrasting sense of ‘superficially speaking’. The defence consists in an attempt to rebut two arguments for the existence of such entities. The first is a version of the indispensability argument, which purports to show that certain mathematical entities are required for good scientific explanations. The second is a speculative (...)
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  • A Theory of Conditionals.Robert C. Stalnaker - 1968 - In Nicholas Rescher (ed.), Studies in Logical Theory (American Philosophical Quarterly Monographs 2). Oxford: Blackwell. pp. 98-112.
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  • The Nature of Necessity.Alvin Plantinga - 1974 - Clarendon Press.
    This book, one of the first full-length studies of the modalities to emerge from the debate to which Saul Kripke, David Lewis, Ruth Marcus, and others are contributing, is an exploration and defense of the notion of modality de re, the idea that objects have both essential and accidental properties. Plantinga develops his argument by means of the notion of possible worlds and ranges over such key problems as the nature of essence, transworld identity, negative existential propositions, and the existence (...)
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  • Naming and Necessity.S. Kripke - 1972 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 45 (4):665-666.
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  • Frege's Puzzle. [REVIEW]Jan Wolenski - 1988 - Studia Logica 47 (4):439-440.
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  • Frege’s Puzzle. [REVIEW]A. D. Smith - 1988 - Mind 97 (385):136-137.
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  • Frege's Puzzle. [REVIEW]Graeme Forbes - 1987 - Philosophical Review 96 (3):455.
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  • Frege's Puzzle.Nathan U. Salmon - 1986 - Ridgeview.
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  • On the Plurality of Worlds.William G. Lycan - 1988 - Journal of Philosophy 85 (1):42-47.
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  • The Nature of Necessity.Fabrizio Mondadori - 1976 - Journal of Philosophy 73 (12):354-363.
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  • Counterpart Theory and Quantified Modal Logic.David K. Lewis - 1968 - Journal of Philosophy 65 (5):113-126.
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  • The Necessity of God’s Goodness.Thomas V. Morris - 1985 - New Scholasticism 59 (4):418-448.
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  • The Necessity of God’s Goodness.Thomas V. Morris - 1985 - New Scholasticism 59 (4):418-448.
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  • On the Plurality of Worlds.David K. Lewis - 1986 - Wiley-Blackwell.
    This book is a defense of modal realism; the thesis that our world is but one of a plurality of worlds, and that the individuals that inhabit our world are only a few out of all the inhabitants of all the worlds. Lewis argues that the philosophical utility of modal realism is a good reason for believing that it is true.
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  • Possible Patterns.Jeffrey Sanford Russell & John Hawthorne - forthcoming - Oxford Studies in Metaphysics.
    “There are no gaps in logical space,” David Lewis writes, giving voice to sentiment shared by many philosophers. But different natural ways of trying to make this sentiment precise turn out to conflict with one another. One is a *pattern* idea: “Any pattern of instantiation is metaphysically possible.” Another is a *cut and paste* idea: “For any objects in any worlds, there exists a world that contains any number of duplicates of all of those objects.” We use resources from model (...)
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  • Perceptual Knowledge of Nonactual Possibilities.Margot Strohminger - 2015 - Philosophical Perspectives 29 (1):363-375.
    It is widely assumed that sense perception cannot deliver knowledge of nonactual (metaphysical) possibilities. We are not supposed to be able to know that a proposition p is necessary or that p is possible (if p is false) by sense perception. This paper aims to establish that the role of sense perception is not so limited. It argues that we can know lots of modal facts by perception. While the most straightforward examples concern possibility and contingency, others concern necessity and (...)
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  • Modal Science.Timothy Williamson - 2016 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 46 (4-5):453-492.
    This paper explains and defends the idea that metaphysical necessity is the strongest kind of objective necessity. Plausible closure conditions on the family of objective modalities are shown to entail that the logic of metaphysical necessity is S5. Evidence is provided that some objective modalities are studied in the natural sciences. In particular, the modal assumptions implicit in physical applications of dynamical systems theory are made explicit by using such systems to define models of a modal temporal logic. Those assumptions (...)
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  • Modal Skepticism and Counterfactual Knowledge.Juhani Yli-Vakkuri - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 162 (3):605-623.
    Abstract Timothy Williamson has recently proposed to undermine modal skepticism by appealing to the reducibility of modal to counterfactual logic ( Reducibility ). Central to Williamson’s strategy is the claim that use of the same non-deductive mode of inference ( counterfactual development , or CD ) whereby we typically arrive at knowledge of counterfactuals suffices for arriving at knowledge of metaphysical necessity via Reducibility. Granting Reducibility, I ask whether the use of CD plays any essential role in a Reducibility-based reply (...)
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  • Diamonds Are Forever.Cian Dorr & Jeremy Goodman - forthcoming - Noûs.
    We defend the thesis that every necessarily true proposition is always true. Since not every proposition that is always true is necessarily true, our thesis is at odds with theories of modality and time, such as those of Kit Fine and David Kaplan, which posit a fundamental symmetry between modal and tense operators. According to such theories, just as it is a contingent matter what is true at a given time, it is likewise a temporary matter what is true at (...)
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  • The Nature of Necessity.Desmond Paul Henry - 1975 - Philosophical Quarterly 25 (99):178-180.
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  • On The Plurality of Worlds.Graeme Forbes - 1988 - Philosophical Quarterly 38 (151):222-240.
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  • Van Inwagen and the Possibility of Gunk.Theodore Sider - 1993 - Analysis 53 (4):285 - 289.
    We often speak of an object being composed of various other objects. We say that the deck is composed of the cards, that a road is the sum total of its sections, that a house is composed of its walls, ceilings, floors, doors, etc. Suppose we have some material objects. Here is a philosophical question: what conditions must obtain for those objects to compose something? In his recent book Material Beings, Peter van Inwagen addresses this question, which he calls the (...)
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  • Is Conceivability a Guide to Possibility?Stephen Yablo - 1993 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 53 (1):1-42.
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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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  • Worlds, Times and Selves.Peter van Inwagen - 1980 - Noûs 14 (2):251-259.
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  • Modal Realism.David Lewis - unknown
    When I profess realism about possible worlds, I mean to be taken literally. Possible worlds are what they are, and not some other thing. If asked what sort of thing they are, I cannot give the kind of reply my questioner probably expects: that is, a proposal to reduce possible worlds to something else. I can only ask him to admit that he knows what sort of thing our actual world is, and then explain that possible worlds are more things (...)
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  • The Nature and Structure of Content.Jeffrey C. King - 2007 - Oxford University Press.
    Belief in propositions has had a long and distinguished history in analytic philosophy. Three of the founding fathers of analytic philosophy, Gottlob Frege, Bertrand Russell, and G. E. Moore, believed in propositions. Many philosophers since then have shared this belief; and the belief is widely, though certainly not universally, accepted among philosophers today. Among contemporary philosophers who believe in propositions, many, and perhaps even most, take them to be structured entities with individuals, properties, and relations as constituents. For example, the (...)
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  • Modal Logic as Metaphysics.Timothy Williamson - 2013 - Oxford University Press.
    Timothy Williamson gives an original and provocative treatment of deep metaphysical questions about existence, contingency, and change, using the latest resources of quantified modal logic. Contrary to the widespread assumption that logic and metaphysics are disjoint, he argues that modal logic provides a structural core for metaphysics.
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  • Ontological Arguments and Belief in God. [REVIEW]Richard M. Gale - 1995 - Philosophical and Phenomenological Research 58 (3):715-719.
    Review of Graham Oppy *Ontological Arguments and Belief in God*.
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  • Is Conceivability a Guide to Possibility?Stephen Yablo - 1993 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 53 (1):1-42.
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  • The Real Distinction Between Mind and Body.Stephen Yablo - 1990 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 20 (sup1):149-201.
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  • Reply to Vetter.Timothy Williamson - 2016 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 46 (4-5):796-802.
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  • Interval Semantics for Tense Logic: Some Remarks. [REVIEW]I. L. Humberstone - 1979 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 8 (1):171 - 196.
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  • From Modal Discourse to Possible Worlds.Maxwell J. Cresswell - 2006 - Studia Logica 82 (3):307-327.
    The possible-worlds semantics for modality says that a sentence is possibly true if it is true in some possible world. Given classical prepositional logic, one can easily prove that every consistent set of propositions can be embedded in a ‘maximal consistent set’, which in a sense represents a possible world. However the construction depends on the fact that standard modal logics are finitary, and it seems false that an infinite collection of sets of sentences each finite subset of which is (...)
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  • From Worlds to Possibilities.I. L. Humberstone - 1981 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 10 (3):313 - 339.
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  • Counterfactuals. [REVIEW]William Parry - 1973 - Journal of Symbolic Logic 44 (2):278-281.
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  • Plenitude, Convention, and Ontology.John Hawthorne - 2006 - In Metaphysical Essays. Oxford University Press. pp. 53--69.
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  • Knowledge and Objective Chance.John Hawthorne & Maria Lasonen-Aarnio - 2009 - In Patrick Greenough & Duncan Pritchard (eds.), Williamson on Knowledge. Oxford University Press. pp. 92--108.
    We think we have lots of substantial knowledge about the future. But contemporary wisdom has it that indeterminism prevails in such a way that just about any proposition about the future has a non-zero objective chance of being false.2, 3 What should one do about this? One, pessimistic, reaction is scepticism about knowledge of the future. We think this should be something of a last resort, especially since this scepticism is likely to infect alleged knowledge of the present and past. (...)
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  • Ontological Arguments and Belief in God.Graham Oppy - 1995 - Cambridge University Press.
    This book is a unique contribution to the philosophy of religion. It offers a comprehensive discussion of one of the most famous arguments for the existence of God: the ontological argument. The author provides and analyses a critical taxonomy of those versions of the argument that have been advanced in recent philosophical literature, as well as of those historically important versions found in the work of St Anselm, Descartes, Leibniz, Hegel and others. A central thesis of the book is that (...)
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  • Fact, Fiction and Forecast.NELSON GOODMAN - 1955 - Philosophy 31 (118):268-269.
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  • Ontological Arguments and Belief in God.Graham Oppy - 1995 - Cambridge University Press.
    This book is an interesting contribution to the philosophy of religion. It offers a comprehensive discussion of one of the most famous arguments for the existence of God: the ontological argument. The author provides and analyses a critical taxonomy of those versions of the argument that have been advanced in recent philosophical literature, as well as of those historically important versions found in the work of St Anselm, Descartes, Leibniz, Hegel and others. A central thesis of the book is that (...)
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  • Scroggs Schiller Joe. Extensions of the Lewis System S5.Naoto Yonemitsu - 1951 - Journal of Symbolic Logic 16 (4):272-273.
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  • A Completeness Theorem in Modal Logic.Saul A. Kripke - 1959 - Journal of Symbolic Logic 24 (1):1-14.
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