Anti-realistic conceptions of truth and falsity are usually epistemic or inferentialist. Truth is regarded as knowability, or provability, or warranted assertability, and the falsity of a statement or formula is identified with the truth of its negation. In this paper, a non-inferentialist but nevertheless anti-realistic conception of logical truth and falsity is developed. According to this conception, a formula (or a declarative sentence) A is logically true if and only if no matter what is told about what (...) is told about the truth or falsity of atomic sentences, A always receives the top-element of a certain partial order on non-ontic semantic values as its value. The ordering in question is a told-true order. Analogously, a formula A is logically false just in case no matter what is told about what is told about the truth or falsity of atomic sentences, A always receives the top-element of a certain told-false order as its value. Here, truth and falsity are pari passu , and it is the treatment of truth and falsity as independent of each other that leads to an informational interpretation of these notions in terms of a certain kind of higher-level information. (shrink)
Material Falsity and Error in Descartes' Meditations approaches Descartes' Meditations as an intellectual journey, wherein Descartes' views develop and change as he makes new discoveries about self, God and matter. The first book to focus closely on Descartes' notion of material falsity, it shows how Descartes' account of material falsity and correspondingly his account of crucial notions such as truth, falsehood and error evolves according to the epistemic advances in the Meditations. It also offers important new insights (...) on the crucial role of Descartes' Third Meditation discussion of material falsity in advancing many subsequent arguments in the Meditations. This book will be of interest to those working on Descartes and early modern philosophy. It offers an independent reading on issues of perennial interest, such as Descartes' views on error, truth and falsehood. It also makes important contributions to topics that have been the focus of much recent scholarship, such as Descartes' ethics and his theodicy. Those working on the interface between medieval and modern philosophy will find the discussions on Descartes' debt to predecessors like Suárez and Augustine useful. (shrink)
I highlight the importance of the notion of falsity for a semantical consideration of intuitionistic logic. One can find two principal (and non-equivalent) versions of such a notion in the literature, namely, falsity as non-truth and falsity as truth of a negative proposition. I argue in favor of the first version as the genuine intuitionistic notion of falsity.
The logic BKc1 is the basic constructive logic for weak consistency (i.e., absence of the negation of a theorem) in the ternary relational semantics without a set of designated points. In this paper, a number of extensions of B Kc1 defined with a propositional falsity constant are defined. It is also proved that weak consistency is not equivalent to negation-consistency or absolute consistency (i.e., non-triviality) in any logic included in positive contractionless intermediate logic LC plus the constructive negation of (...) BKc1 and the (constructive) contraposition axioms. (shrink)
Keith DeRose has argued that context shifting experiments should be designed in a specific way in order to accommodate what he calls a ‘truth/falsity asymmetry’. I explain and critique DeRose's reasons for proposing this modification to contextualist methodology, drawing on recent experimental studies of DeRose's bank cases as well as experimental findings about the verification of affirmative and negative statements. While DeRose's arguments for his particular modification to contextualist methodology fail, the lesson of his proposal is that there is (...) good reason to pay close attention to several subtle aspects of the design of context shifting experiments. (shrink)
According to the principle of bivalence, truth and falsity are jointly exhaustive and mutually exclusive options for a statement. It is either true or false, and not both, even in a borderline case. That highly controversial claim is central to the epistemic theory of vagueness, which holds that borderline cases are distinguished by a special kind of obstacle to knowing the truth-value of the statement. But this paper is not a defence of the epistemic theory. If bivalence holds, it (...) presumably does so as a consequence of what truth and falsity separately are. One may therefore expect bivalence to be derivable from a combination of some principles characterizing truth and other principles characterizing falsity. Indeed, such derivations are easily found. Their form will of course depend on the initial characterizations of truth and falsity, and not all such characterizations will permit bivalence to be derived. In this paper we focus on the relation between its derivability and some principles about truth and falsity. We will use borderline cases for vague expressions as primary examples of an urgent.. (shrink)
Timothy Williamson famously offered an argument from these Tarskian principles in favor of bivalence. I show, dwelling on (Andjelkovic & Williamson, 2000), that the argument depends on a contentious formulation of the Tarskian principles about truth (and falsity), which the supervaluationist can reject without jeopardizing the Tarskian insight. In the mentioned paper, Adjelkovic and Williamson argue that, even if the appropriate formulation seems to make room for failure of bivalence in borderline cases, this appearance is illusory, once one grants (...) an independent further principle involving biconditionals. I finally argue that the formulation of this is, however, contentious in a similar manner. (shrink)
Here I develop an interpretation of Descartes' theory of ideas which differs from the standard reading in that it incorporates a distinction between what an idea appears to represent and what it represents. I argue that this interpretation not only finds support in the texts but also is required to explain a large number of assertions in Descartes which would otherwise appear irremediably obscure or problematic. For example, in my interpretation it is not puzzling that Descartes responds to Arnauld's difficulty (...) concerning the notion of material falsity by drawing a distinction between that to which an idea conforms (that of which the idea truly is) and that to which it refers. Furthermore, my interpretation also explains how Descartes can intelligibly reject the view that saying that something is clear and distinct is equivalent to saying that it is obvious. Finally, I argue that my interpretation allows Descartes' view that we have some sort of internal access to the objects actually represented by an idea. (shrink)
Although there is a massive amount of work on truth, there is very little work on falsity. Most philosophers probably think this is appropriate; after all, once we have a solid understanding of truth, falsity should not prove to be much of a challenge. However, there are several interesting and difficult issues associated with understanding falsity. After considering two prominent definitions of falsity and presenting objections to each one, I propose a definition that avoids their problems.
Arnauld's criticisms as "a model of confusion confounded.” In a review of Wilson's book, R. McRae refers to "the difficult and not too coherent subject of material falsity. '' J. Cottingham describes the Descartes-Arnauld debate on the material falsity of adventitious ideas as "an involved and rather inconclusive exchange " and claims that the example of the material falsity of such ideas espoused by Descartes in Meditation III is "needlessly complicated. " A. Kenny, in turn, notes that (...) several things are "confusing in Descartes' account of false ideas. " Later reference is made to the fact that "Descartes appears confused. [...] and that "Descartes, it seems, cannot give a consistent answer. '' As will become clear, I take issue with each of these assessments. When Descartes' position on material falsity is understood in the light of late Scholastic sources, especially Suarez, whence it draws its strength and inspiration, the alleged confusion and incoherency vanishes. .. (shrink)
Descartes claims in the Third Meditation that ideas of sense might be materially false. While an accurate interpretation of this claim has the potential of providing some valuable insights into Descartes's theory of ideas in general and his understanding of the epistemic status of sensations in particular, the explanation Descartes provides of the material falsity of ideas is itself obscure and misleading, making accurate interpretation difficult. In this paper an interpretation of material falsity is offered which identifies the (...) fault of materially false ideas in the logical incoherence of their objective content. The implications of this interpretation are also discussed. (shrink)
We present $\in_I$-Logic (Epsilon-I-Logic), a non-Fregean intuitionistic logic with a truth predicate and a falsity predicate as intuitionistic negation. $\in_I$ is an extension and intuitionistic generalization of the classical logic $\in_T$ (without quantifiers) designed by Sträter as a theory of truth with propositional self-reference. The intensional semantics of $\in_T$ offers a new solution to semantic paradoxes. In the present paper we introduce an intuitionistic semantics and study some semantic notions in this broader context. Also we enrich the quantifier-free language (...) by the new connective < that expresses reference between statements and yields a finer characterization of intensional models. Our results in the intuitionistic setting lead to a clear distinction between the notion of denotation of a sentence and the here-proposed notion of extension of a sentence (both concepts are equivalent in the classical context). We generalize the Fregean Axiom to an intuitionistic version not valid in $\in_I$. A main result of the paper is the development of several model constructions. We construct intensional models and present a method for the construction of standard models which contain specific (self-)referential propositions. (shrink)
This paper aims to establish three major theses: (1) Not only declarative sentences, but also interrogatives and imperatives, may be classified as true or as false. (2) Declarative, imperative, and interrogative utterances may also be classified as honest or as dishonest. (3) Whether an utterance is honest or dishonest is logically independent of whether it is true or is false. The establishment of the above theses follows upon the adoption of a principle for identifying what is meant by any sentence, (...) declarative, interrogative, or imperative. The analysis aims to show that meaning is to be attributed to the uttered or written sentence-token, rather to the thereby exhibited sentence-type. Further, the meaning of the sentential token is to be identified with a purpose of the speaker, that the speaker would reveal to the addressee by uttering the sentence. The to be revealed purpose is analysed into two components: an ultimate concern (that the addressee stand in such and such a relation--e.g., of believing, or informing the speaker about, or making it true that) and an ultimate topic of concern (the state of affairs, i.e., proposition, relative to which the speaker would have the addressee stand in the specified relation). Sentential utterances "signify" different purposes by "expressing" different ultimate concerns and "indicating" different ultimate topics of concern. Variations in expressed concern are correlated with variations in sentential form, such as declarative, interrogative and imperative. Variations in indicated topic of concern are correlated with variations in the subject and predicate of the uttered sentence. Thus, for example, utterances of "Johnny will jump in the lake," "Will Johnny jump in the lake?" and "Johnny, go jump in the lake!" all indicate one and the same ultimate topic of concern but express different ultimate concerns with this topic. A sentential utterance is true or false according as its indicated topic of concern is true or false. Hence, declaratives, interrogatives and imperatives may all be classified as true or as false. But honesty or dishonesty is a function (explained in the paper) of the expressed concern, rather than of the topic of concern. Hence, although utterances of all sentential forms are honest or dishonest, their honesty or dishonesty is logically independent of their truth or falsity. (shrink)
In this essay I show how Nietzsche's use of metaphor in "Truth and Falsity in an Ultra-Moral Sense" helps make the general point of the essay itself. I argue that the essay both distinguishes between the human and the natural order and yet works to erase that distinction, just as it both posits and denies a difference between truth and lie, dream and reality. Given that Nietzsche's text is directed against the possibility of literal truth, I argue that by (...) proposing metaphors which subvert his message, Nietzsche provides us with a text that enacts precisely what it describes. (shrink)
A standard interpretation of aristotle's "de anima" 3.6 is challenged. On this interpretation aristotle adopts apparently inconsistent positions on truth and falsity within "de anima" 3.6 by withholding truth as well as falsity from certain items earlier in the chapter, But allowing such items truth in the chapter's closing lines. However, A close reading shows that the earlier passage can perfectly well be read as one in which aristotle withholds not truth but only falsity from these items. (...) Thus the textual evidence of "de anima" 3.6 does not support the standard interpretation under consideration. (shrink)
The trilattice SIXTEEN₃ is a natural generalization of the wellknown bilattice FOUR₂. Cut-free, sound and complete sequent calculi for truth entailment and falsity entailment in SIXTEEN₃, are presented.
The "Theaetetus" and the "Sophist" both stand in the shadow of the "Parmenides," to which they refer. I propose to interpret these two dialogues as Plato's first move in the project of reshaping his metaphysics with the double aim of avoiding problems raised in the "Parmenides" and applying his general theory to the philosophy of nature. The classical doctrine of Forms is subject to revision, but Plato's fundamental metaphysics is preserved in the "Philebus" as well as in the "Timaeus." The (...) most important change is the explicit enlargement of the notion of Being to include the nature of things that change. This reshaping of the metaphysics is prepared in the "Theaetetus" and "Sophist" by an analysis of sensory phenomena in the former and, in the latter, a new account of Forms as a network of mutual connections and exclusions. The division of labor between the two dialogues is symbolized by the role of Heraclitus in the former and that of Parmenides in the latter. Theaetetus asks for a discussion of Parmenides as well, but Socrates will not undertake it. For that we need the visitor from Elea. Hence the "Theaetetus" deals with becoming and flux but not with being; that topic is reserved for Eleatic treatment in the "Sophist." But the problems of falsity and Not-Being, formulated in the first dialogue, cannot be resolved without the considerations of truth and Being, reserved for the later dialogue. That is why there must be a sequel to the "Theaetetus.". (shrink)
The paper deals with certain issues with which Olivecrona was mainly concerned in his Philosophy of Law, notably (i) his views about the logical or syntactical form of imperatives as used in the law, and (ii) his views on the semantics of imperatives in the law and on the question whether and to what extent the notions of truth and falsity are applicable to those imperatives at all. In the light of an important critical notice of Olivecrona's work by (...) Marc-Wogau (1940 ), we examine some textual evidence for attributing to Olivecrona a so-called Atheoretical Thesis to the effect that imperatives in the law are neither true nor false or lack truth-value altogether. We close the paper by commenting on the celebrated distinction due to Hedenius (1941 ) and further elaborated by Wedberg (1951 ) between genuine ("rule-stating") normative sentences in the law and spurious ones (stating merely that a given rule is (or is not) in force in a given society at a given time). Two interesting difficulties bound up with that distinction will be dealt with. By means of various quotations we try to capture something of the flavour characterizing the legal philosophical discussion in Sweden in the mid-twentieth century during la belle époque of Scandinavian Legal Realism of which Olivecrona was a typical representative. (shrink)
Participants in the debate about whether simplicity is a guide to truth or merely pragmatically useful typically wrangle over two problems: (1) how to weigh simplicity against other virtues like strength and fitness and (2) whether there is a unique measure for simplicity that straps it to truth. I would like to put forth a third problem: (3) Even if problems (1) and (2) could be solved, it is far from clear whether the simplest theory out of an available class (...) of competitors would always be the one closest to the truth. (shrink)
The Fitzgerald-Lorentz contraction hypothesis, proposed as an explanation of the Michelson-Morley result, fails to account for the Kennedy-Thorndike result. Hence, Grünbaum argues, the hypothesis has been falsified. However, the contraction hypothesis as formulated by Lorentz is false for the very fundamental reason that it entails a contradiction, namely, the consequence that light waves must have a variable velocity along what by definition is taken to be a rest length. Furthermore, the attempt to resolve this contradiction by coupling the Fitzgerald-Lorentz contraction (...) with the hypothesis that clock rates are a function of velocity, is open to a sound, methodological objection. The Michelson-Morley result is fully satisfied, provided only that the lengths of the interferometer arms, in the longitudinal and transverse positions, are thought to be related to one another in a certain ratio, and this ratio may be interpreted as a contraction in both arms. Since this twofold contraction hypothesis suffices to explain both the Michelson-Morley and the Kennedy-Thorndike results, and since it entails no contradiction, there is no need to correct both the length of rods and the rate of clocks. Therefore, the combined clock-rod hypothesis, and with it the Fitzgerald-Lorentz contraction hypothesis, must be rejected. (shrink)
This paper is a preliminary analysis of two among the five definitions of falsity ( mithyātva ) presented by Madhusūdana Sarasvatī (MS) in his magnum opus , the Advaitasiddhi . It is mainly focused on the second and fourth definitions, which at first sight appear to be mere repetitions of one another. The first definition of falsity examined is Prakāśātman’s: “falsity is the property of being the counter-positive of the absolute absence of an entity in the [same] (...) locus in which it is perceived.” The other definition investigated was first given by Citsukha: “falsity is the property of being the counter-positive of the absolute absence residing in its own locus.” The mutual differences among these two definitions will be underlined following MS himself, as well as some other authors of the later Advaita Vedānta textual tradition. (shrink)
From certain sorts of premise, individuals reliably infer invalid conclusions. Two Experiments investigated a possible cause for these illusory inference: Reasoners fail to think about what is false. In Experiment 1, 24 undergraduates drew illusory and control inferences from premises based on exclusive disjunctions (“or else”). In one block, participants were instructed to falsify the premises of each illusory and control inference before making the inference. In the other block, participants did not receive these instructions. There were more correct answers (...) for illusory disjunctions whose premises had been falsified than there were for illusory disjunctions that had not been falsified. A second Experiment introduced illusory inferences in a real world context that accentuated falsification of premises. Accuracy also improved. Knowledge of how to falsify premises and to consider their implications for true premises transferred to a new problem introduced at the end of the Experiment without the falsification instruction. The participants' ratings of the difficulty of the inferences showed that they did not err simply because illusory inferences are perceived to be more difficult than control problems. The model theory predicts these results because it postulates that the limitations of working memory preclude the representation of false information. (shrink)
An instantia is a technique to refute other's arguments, found in many tracts from the latter half of the twelfth century. An instantia has (or appears to have) the same form as the argument to be refuted and its falsity is more evident than that of the argument.Precursors of instantiae are among the teachings of masters active in the first half of the century. These masters produce counter-arguments against various inferential forms in order to examine their validity. But the (...) aim of producing counter-arguments change in the latter half of the century into refuting other's arguments to win in debate by any means available. Logicians of that period do not care whether the counter-arguments (instantiae) are sophistical or not, viz. the falsity of instantiae is or is not due to the flaw common to the argument to be refuted.Many instantiae they produce involve logical entanglements into which they themselves have little clear insight. Some instantiae and the attempts to explain them grows into the new theories in the “terminist texts” around 1200 A.D., when instantia literature itself disappears. Some instantiae and the issues they raise have no place in terminist texts, and sink into oblivion. (shrink)