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Profile: Corine Besson (Oxford University)
Profile: Corine Besson (Birkbeck College)
  1. Corine Besson & Anandi Hattiangadi (2014). The Open Future, Bivalence and Assertion. Philosophical Studies 167 (2):251-271.
    It is highly now intuitive that the future is open and the past is closed now—whereas it is unsettled whether there will be a fourth world war, it is settled that there was a first. Recently, it has become increasingly popular to claim that the intuitive openness of the future implies that contingent statements about the future, such as ‘There will be a sea battle tomorrow,’ are non-bivalent (neither true nor false). In this paper, we argue that the non-bivalence of (...)
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  2. Corine Besson (2012). Empty Natural Kind Terms and Dry-Earth. Erkenntnis 76 (3):403-425.
    This paper considers the problem of assigning meanings to empty natural kind terms. It does so in the context of the Twin-Earth externalist-internalist debate about whether the meanings of natural kind terms are individuated by the external physical environment of the speakers using these terms. The paper clarifies and outlines the different ways in which meanings could be assigned to empty natural kind terms. And it argues that externalists do not have the semantic resources to assign them meanings. The paper (...)
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  3. Corine Besson (2012). Logical Knowledge and Ordinary Reasoning. Philosophical Studies 158 (1):59-82.
    This paper argues that the prominent accounts of logical knowledge have the consequence that they conflict with ordinary reasoning. On these accounts knowing a logical principle, for instance, is having a disposition to infer according to it. These accounts in particular conflict with so-called ‘reasoned change in view’, where someone does not infer according to a logical principle but revise their views instead. The paper also outlines a propositional account of logical knowledge which does not conflict with ordinary reasoning.
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  4. Corine Besson (2010). Propositions, Dispositions and Logical Knolwedge. In M. Bonelli & A. Longo (eds.), Quid Est Veritas? Essays in Honour of Jonathan Barnes. Bibliopolis.
    This paper considers the question of what knowing a logical rule consists in. I defend the view that knowing a logical rule is having propositional knowledge. Many philosophers reject this view and argue for the alternative view that knowing a logical rule is, at least at the fundamental level, having a disposition to infer according to it. To motivate this dispositionalist view, its defenders often appeal to Carroll’s regress argument in ‘What the Tortoise Said to Achilles’. I show that this (...)
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  5. Corine Besson (2010). Rigidity, Natural Kind Terms, and Metasemantics. In Helen Beebee & Nigel Sabbarton-Leary (eds.), The Semantics and Metaphysics of Natural Kinds. Routledge. 25--44.
    A paradigmatic case of rigidity for singular terms is that of proper names. And it would seem that a paradigmatic case of rigidity for general terms is that of natural kind terms. However, many philosophers think that rigidity cannot be extended from singular terms to general terms. The reason for this is that rigidity appears to become trivial when such terms are considered: natural kind terms come out as rigid, but so do all other general terms, and in particular all (...)
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  6. Corine Besson, Understanding the Logical Constants and Dispositions. The Baltic International Yearbook of Cognition, Logic and Communication (2010).
    Many philosophers claim that understanding a logical constant (e.g. ‘if, then’) fundamentally consists in having dispositions to infer according to the logical rules (e.g. Modus Ponens) that fix its meaning. This paper argues that such dispositionalist accounts give us the wrong picture of what understanding a logical constant consists in. The objection here is that they give an account of understanding a logical constant which is inconsistent with what seem to be adequate manifestations of such understanding. I then outline an (...)
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  7. Corine Besson (2009). Externalism, Internalism, and Logical Truth. Review of Symbolic Logic 2 (1):1-29.
    The aim of this paper is to show what sorts of logics are required by externalist and internalist accounts of the meanings of natural kind nouns. These logics give us a new perspective from which to evaluate the respective positions in the externalist-internalist debate about the meanings of such nouns. The two main claims of the paper are the following: first, that adequate logics for internalism and externalism about natural kind nouns are second-order logics; second, that an internalist second-order logic (...)
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  8. Corine Besson (2009). Logical Knowledge and Gettier Cases. Philosophical Quarterly 59 (234):1-19.
    Knowledge of the basic rules of logic is often thought to be distinctive, for it seems to be a case of non-inferential a priori knowledge. Many philosophers take its source to be different from those of other types of knowledge, such as knowledge of empirical facts. The most prominent account of knowledge of the basic rules of logic takes this source to be the understanding of logical expressions or concepts. On this account, what explains why such knowledge is distinctive is (...)
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