David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
In Majda Trobok, Nenad Miscevic & Berislav Zarnic (eds.), Between Logic and Reality: Modeling Inference, Action and Understanding. Springer. 269 (2012)
An incorrect interpretation of Goodman’s theory of counterfactuals is persistently being offered in the literature. I find that strange. Even more so since the incorrectness is rather obvious. In this paper I try to figure out why is that happening. First I try to explain what Goodman did say, which of his claims are ignored, and what he did not say but is sometimes ascribed to him. I emphasize one of the bad features of the interpretation: it gives counterfactuals some formal properties that neither Goodman nor (usually) the interpreter would accept. The usual interpretation (UI), which I claim should not be ascribed to Goodman, considers a counterfactual A>C true iff A, together with natural laws and all contingent truths cotenable with it, entails C. (UI) makes valid the law of conditional excluded middle, which Goodman clearly rejected. Among possible reasons for which the interpreters might find (UI) adequate is that (UI), as I argue, smuggles in the idea of minimal change, which is otherwise attractive, natural to many, but not to be found anywhere in Goodman’s paper. At the end I stress the significance of Goodman’s theory by arguing that we still need some of his notions to test the adequacy of our modern theories.
|Keywords||Goodman Conditionals Counterfactuals Conditional Excluded Middle Cotenability Background facts Possible worlds semantics for counterfactauls|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Vladan Djordjevic (2013). Similarity and Cotenability. Synthese 190 (4):681-691.
Ivar Hannikainen (2011). Might-Counterfactuals and the Principle of Conditional Excluded Middle. Disputatio 4 (30):127-149.
Damian Cox (2003). Goodman and Putnam on the Making of Worlds. Erkenntnis 58 (1):33 - 46.
Daniel Cohnitz (2009). The Unity of Goodman's Thought. In G. Ernst, J. Steinbrenner & O. Scholz (eds.), From Logic to Art: Themes from Nelson Goodman. Ontos. 7--33.
Johanna Seibt (1997). The 'Umbau' - From Constitution Theory to Constructional Ontology. History of Philosophy Quarterly 14 (3):305 - 348.
Tor Sandqvist (2003). Circularities in the Analysis of Counterfactuals. Studia Logica 73 (2):281 - 298.
Peter J. Mehl (1995). The Self Well Lost. Philosophy in the Contemporary World 2 (4):16-21.
Xavier de Donato-Rodríguez (2009). Construction and Worldmaking. Theoria 24 (2):213-225.
Branden Fitelson (2008). Goodman's "New Riddle". Journal of Philosophical Logic 37 (6):613 - 643.
Stephen Barker (2011). Can Counterfactuals Really Be About Possible Worlds? Noûs 45 (3):557-576.
Mark Textor (2008). Samples as Symbols. Ratio 21 (3):344-359.
Frank Jackson (ed.) (1991). Conditionals. Oxford University Press.
Marek Polański (2009). Goodman's Extensional Isomorphism and Syntactical Interpretations. Theoria 24 (2):203-211.
Eric Swanson (2012). Conditional Excluded Middle Without the Limit Assumption. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 85 (2):301-321.
Added to index2011-12-13
Total downloads53 ( #30,206 of 1,101,677 )
Recent downloads (6 months)5 ( #59,534 of 1,101,677 )
How can I increase my downloads?