On the iterative explanation of the paradoxes

Philosophical Studies 49 (1):37 - 61 (1986)
As the story goes, the source of the paradoxes of naive set theory lies in a conflation of two distinct conceptions of set: the so-called iterative, or mathematical, conception, and the Fregean, or logical, conception. While the latter conception is provably inconsistent, the former, as Godel notes, "has never led to any antinomy whatsoever". More important, the iterative conception explains the paradoxes by showing precisely where the Fregean conception goes wrong by enabling us to distinguish between sets and proper classes, collections that are "too big" to be sets. While I agree wholeheartedly with this distinction, in this paper I argue first that the iterative conception does not provide an explanation of all of the set theoretic paradoxes. I then argue that we need to reconsider the distinction between sets and proper classes rather more carefully. The result will be that ZFC does not capture the iterative conception in its full generality. I close by offering a more general theory that, arguably, does.
Keywords set theory  proper classes  iterative conception of set
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/BF00372882
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 16,667
External links
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.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

336 ( #2,701 of 1,726,249 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

304 ( #769 of 1,726,249 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.