Indiscriminability as indiscernibility by default

Studia Logica 90 (3):369 - 383 (2008)
Most solutions to the sorites reject its major premise, i.e. the quantified conditional . This rejection appears to imply a discrimination between two elements that are supposed to be indiscriminable. Thus, the puzzle of the sorites involves in a fundamental way the notion of indiscriminability. This paper analyzes this relation and formalizes it, in a way that makes the rejection of the major premise more palatable. The intuitive idea is that we consider two elements indiscriminable by default, i.e. unless we know some information that discriminates between them. Specifically, following Rough Set Theory, two elements are defined to be indiscernible if they agree on the vague property in question. Then, a is defined to be indiscriminable from b if a is indiscernible by default from b . That is to say, a is indiscriminable from b if it is consistent to assume that a and b agree on the relevant vague property.
Keywords Philosophy   Computational Linguistics   Mathematical Logic and Foundations   Logic
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DOI 10.2307/40269015
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