David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Synthese 33 (2-4):195--210 (1976)
A semantics of vagueness should reject the principle that every statement has a truth-value yet retain the classical tautologies. A many-value, non-truth-functional semantics and a semantics of super-valuations each have this result. According to the super-valuation approach, 'if a man with n hairs on his head is bald, then a man with n plus one hairs on his head is also bald' is false because it comes out false no matter how the vague predicate 'is bald' is appropriately made precise. But why should a sentence in which components actually remain imprecise be regarded as actually false just because it would be false if its components were precise? On one of the alternative treatments of quantification allowed by the many-value approach, the sentence in question is assigned an intermediate value closer to 'false' than to 'true'. Despite the elegance of the super-valuation approach, there are reasons to prefer the many-value approach.
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Citations of this work BETA
H. Kamp (1995). Prototype Theory and Compositionality. Cognition 57 (2):129-191.
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Mark Sainsbury (2015). Vagueness and Semantic Methodology. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 90 (2):475-482.
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Matti Eklund (2001). Supervaluationism, Vagueifiers, and Semantic Overdetermination. Dialectica 55 (4):363–378.
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