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Modality

Edited by Tuomas E. Tahko (University of Helsinki)
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Summary In philosophical contexts, the study of modality is primarily the study of necessity and possibility. Sometimes this is expressed by talking about possible worlds, but this is to a certain extent just a façon de parler. In metaphysics, we are interested in the nature of the modal space -- are the so called possible worlds merely conventional or are they concrete, as modal realism would have it? Whatever the nature of the modal space, questions remain about the status of the different varieties of modality, and our epistemic access to modality. One central topic in recent literature concerns the ground of modal truths, that is, in virtue of what is something necessary? This is also linked to essentialism and de re modality: can we explain transworld identity in terms of essential properties, or perhaps even ground modal truths to essentialist truths?
Key works Some of the most important discussion starters regarding modality include Armstrong 1989, Fine 1994, Forbes 1985, Hale 1996, Kripke 1980, Lewis 1986, Lewis 1973, and Plantinga 1992. Some significant early work (e.g. by Adams, Chisholm, Hintikka, Kripke, Kaplan, Lewis, Plantinga, Quine, Stalnaker) on modality has been collected in volumes such as Linsky 1971, Loux 1979, and Tooley 1999. Many classic papers are also included in Plantinga 2003, Stalnaker 2003, and Fine 2005. The contemporary literature is enormous, some important contributions are Lowe 1998, Soames 2002, Williamson 2007, and Jubien 2009. For modal epistemology in particular, Gendler & Hawthorne 2002 is an excellent resource.
Introductions Chihara 1998; Divers 2002; Girle 2003; Hale & Hoffmann 2010; Melia 2003; Vaidya 2007.
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  1. Thomas Baldwin (1977). Meaning and Modality. Philosophical Books 18 (3):130-131.
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  2. Roberta Ballarin (2004). The Interpretation of Necessity and the Necessity of Interpretation. Journal of Philosophy 101 (12):609 - 638.
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  3. Greg Bayer (1996). Mackie, Kripke, and Causal Necessity. Southwest Philosophy Review 12 (1):237-246.
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  4. Gary Bedell (1977). Necessary Truths About the World. New Scholasticism 51 (4):537-545.
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  5. Helen Beebee (2013). Nature Without Abandoning Kripke–Putnam Semantics1. In Stephen Mumford & Matthew Tugby (eds.), Metaphysics and Science. Oxford University Press 141.
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  6. Werner Beierwaltes (1985). The Aristotelian Modal Theory. Philosophy and History 18 (2):126-127.
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  7. Robert C. Beissel (1992). The Modality of Being. The Thomist 56:49-69.
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  8. Max Black (1960). Possibility. Journal of Philosophy 57 (4):117-126.
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  9. Max Black (1943). The Analysis of a Simple Necessary Statement. Journal of Philosophy 40 (2):39-46.
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  10. George Boas (1925). Beyond the Essence. Journal of Philosophy 22 (24):645-654.
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  11. Richard Brandt, Henry W. Johnstone, Manley Thompson & Gustav Bergmann (1952). Comments on Mr. Raab's Theses. Review of Metaphysics 6 (1):124-129.
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  12. Gordon G. Brittan Jr (ed.) (1991). Causality, Method and Modality. Kluwer.
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  13. K. Britton (1936). Possibility. [REVIEW] Mind 45:530.
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  14. Mark A. Brown (1990). "The Metaphysics of Modality" by Graeme Forbes. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 50 (3):615.
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  15. Tervoort Bt (1976). The Neglected Modality: A Book on Writing. Foundations of Language 14 (4):587-595.
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  16. Hans Burkhardt (1983). Teoría modal y lógica modal en la Escolástica y en Leibniz. Anuario Filosófico 16 (1):273-292.
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  17. V. C. C. (1957). Meaning and Necessity. Review of Metaphysics 10 (3):536-536.
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  18. Keith Campbell (2014). David Malet Armstrong (8 July 1926 – 13 May 2014). Australasian Journal of Philosophy 92 (3):617-618.
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  19. Richard Campbell (1964). Modality de Dicto and de Re. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 42 (3):345 – 359.
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  20. Bill Capra (2010). A Kripkean Argument for Goatism. Philosophy Now 79:26-27.
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  21. Rodrigo Neira Castaño (2013). " Possibility", de Michael Jubien. Teorema: International Journal of Philosophy 32 (3):179-183.
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  22. Claudio Cerrato (1996). Modal Sequents. In H. Wansing (ed.), Proof Theory of Modal Logic. Kluwer 141--166.
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  23. David J. Chalmers, Mind and Modality.
    What follows are compressed versions of three lectures on the subject of "Mind and Modality", given at Princeton University the week of October 12-16, 1998. The first two form a series; the third stands alone to some extent. All are philosophically technical, and probably of interest mainly to philosophers. I hope that they make sense, at least to those familiar with my book _The Conscious Mind_ . Lecture 1 recapitulates some of the material in the book in a somewhat different (...)
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  24. Roderick M. Chisholm (1967). Identity Through Possible Worlds: Some Questions. Noûs 1 (1):1-8.
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  25. Condoravdi Cleo & Kaufmann Stefan (2005). Modality and Temporality. Journal of Semantics 22 (2).
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  26. Jeffrey Scott Coombs (1990). The Truth and Falsity of Modal Propositions in Renaissance Nominalism. Dissertation, The University of Texas at Austin
    During a short-lived renaissance of medieval Nominalism lasting from approximately 1480 to 1530, many Renaissance Nominalist logicians devoted a great deal of attention to the task of developing an account of the truth and falsity of modal propositions. A modal proposition is any proposition containing one or more occurrences of the four modal terms: possible, necessary, impossible, and contingent. The Nominalist account follows the general procedure outlined in William of Ockham's Summa totius logicae, the goal of which is to translate (...)
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  27. D. E. Cooper (1978). LEWY, C. "Meaning and Modality". [REVIEW] Mind 87:616.
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  28. Alexandre Costa-Leite (2013). Modalities and Multimodalities. Manuscrito 36 (1):191-195.
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  29. I. I. I. Costs, Modal Statements Are About What Could Have Been: Hitler Could Have Won World War II; I Could Have Been a Fisherman; the Speed of Light Could Have Been Twice as Fast as It Actually is; Swans Could..
    Hitler could have won World War II; I could have been a fisherman; The speed of light could have been twice as fast as it actually is; Swans could have been black; It’s impossible for there to be round squares; Necessarily, 2+2=4. Modal statements also include counterfactual statements: Scientific: If the speed of light were faster, atomic explosions would be more deadly; Ethical: If you hadn’t have made the deceased play on the motorway, he would’ve lived; Everyday: If I hadn’t (...)
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  30. Sam Cowling (2010). Michael Jubien, Possibility. [REVIEW] Philosophy in Review 30:47-49.
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  31. M. J. Cresswell (2012). The World-Time Parallel: Tense and Modality in Logic and Metaphysics. Cambridge University Press.
    Is what could have happened but never did as real as what did happen? What did happen, but isn't happening now, happened at another time. Analogously, one can say that what could have happened happens in another possible world. Whatever their views about the reality of such things as possible worlds, philosophers need to take this analogy seriously. Adriane Rini and Max Cresswell exhibit, in an easy step-by-step manner, the logical structure of temporal and modal discourse, and show that every (...)
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  32. M. J. Cresswell (1973). Physical theories and possible worlds. Logique Et Analyse 16 (63):495.
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  33. M. J. Cresswell & A. A. Rini (2010). Contingent Facts: Comments on Mellor's Reply. Analysis 71 (1):69-72.
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  34. Max Cresswell (1991). In Defence of the Barcan Formula. Logique Et Analyse 135 (136):271-282.
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  35. S. Croddy (1985). Quine and de Dicto Modal Substitution. Logique Et Analyse 28 (112):395-402.
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  36. W. S. Croddy (1985). Quine and de dicto modal substitution. Logique Et Analyse 28 (12):395.
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  37. Jean David, Georges Kleiber & Université de Metz (1983). La Notion Sémantico-Logique de Modalité Colloque. Monograph Collection (Matt - Pseudo).
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  38. Matthew Davidson (ed.) (2003). Essays in the Metaphysics of Modality. Oxford University Press, USA.
    This volume contains some of the best work in metaphysics from the past 30 years, and will remain a source of critical contention and keen interest among ...
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  39. Lorenz Demey & Jan Heylen (2013). Syntactical Treatment of Modalities, 6 February. The Reasoner 7 (4):45-45.
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  40. Raphael Demos (1926). Possibility and Becoming. Journal of Philosophy 23 (9):234-240.
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  41. John Devlin (1999). Truth, Modality, and Ontology. Dissertation, University of Michigan
    Minimalists about truth think they've hit on something like a job description for a truth predicate: A truth predicate facilitates the expression of certain generalizations, such as "Whatever N. said is true" that would otherwise require a substitutional quantifier, or an infinite conjunction or disjunction. In the first chapter I argue that even if truth predicates have that function, it would be a mistake to suppose that this is their only role. There is an internal relation between truth and assertion (...)
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  42. J. Divers (2011). Possibility, by Michael Jubien. Mind 119 (476):1189-1193.
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  43. John Divers (2014). Modal Reality and (Modal) Logical Space. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 88 (3):726-733.
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  44. John Divers (1997). The Analysis of Possibility and the Possibility of Analysis. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 97 (2):141–160.
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  45. Patrick Doherty (1996). Partiality, Modality, and Nonmonotonicity.
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  46. Jude P. Dougherty (2011). Theism and Ultimate Explanation. Review of Metaphysics 64 (3):649-651.
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  47. Stephen Downes (unknown). Models and Modality. Eidos: The Canadian Graduate Journal of Philosophy 6.
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  48. Mircea Dumitru (ed.) (forthcoming). Metaphysics, Meaning, and Modality. Themes From Kit Fine. Oxford UP.
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  49. John Timlin Dunlap (1972). Models and Modality. Dissertation, University of Georgia
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  50. Dorothy Edgington (1988). Graeme Forbes, "The Metaphysics of Modality". [REVIEW] Philosophical Quarterly 38 (52):365.
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