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Profile: Joe Salerno (Saint Louis University)
  1. Joe Salerno, Epistemic Modal Eavesdropping: A Straight Solution to a Relativist Challenge.
    A primary challenge from the relativist to the contextualist about epistemic modals is to explain eavesdropping data—i.e., why the eavesdropper is inclined to judge the speaker as having uttered an epistemic modal falsehood (when she is so inclined), even though the speaker’s utterance is true according to reasonable contextualist truth conditions. The issue turns in large part on the strength and shape of the data, both of which are in dispute. One complaint is that an eavesdropper’s truth value judgments fluctuate (...)
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  2. Joe Salerno, How to Embed Epistemic Modals Without Violating Modus Tollens.
    Epistemic modals in consequent place of indicative conditionals give rise to apparent counterexamples to Modus Ponens and Modus Tollens. Familiar assumptions of fa- miliar truth conditional theories of modality facilitate a prima facie explanation—viz., that the target cases harbor epistemic modal equivocations. However, these explana- tions go too far. For they foster other predictions of equivocation in places where in fact there are no equivocations. It is argued here that the key to the solution is to drop the assumption that (...)
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  3. Joe Salerno, Truth-Tracking and the Problem of Reflective Knowledge Joseph Salerno Saint Louis University.
    In “Reliabilism Leveled” Jonathan Vogel (2000) provides a strong case against epistemic theories that stress the importance of tracking/sensitivity conditions. A tracking/sensitivity condition is to be understood as some version of the following counterfactual.
     
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  4. Berit Brogaard & Joe Salerno (forthcoming). A Counterfactual Account of Essence. The Reasoner.
    Kit Fine (1994. “Essence and Modality”, Philosophical Perspectives 8: 1-16) argues that the standard modal account of essence as de re modality is ‘fundamentally misguided’ (p. 3). We agree with his critique and suggest an alternative counterfactual analysis of essence. As a corollary, our counterfactual account lends support to non-vacuism the thesis that counterpossibles (i.e., counterfactual conditionals with impossible antecedents) are not always vacuously true.
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  5. Berit Brogaard & Joe Salerno (forthcoming). Why Counterpossibles Are Non-Trivial. In Vincent Hendricks (ed.), Synthese volume.
    I. Non-Trivial Counterpossibles On Lewis’ account, a subjunctive of the form ‘if it were the case that p, it would be the case that q’ (represented as ‘p → q’) is to be given the following rough meta-linguistic truth-conditions1.
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  6. Joe Salerno & Berit Brogaard (forthcoming). Williamson on Counterpossibles. The Reasoner.
    Lewis/Stalnaker semantics has it that all counterpossibles (i.e., counterfactual conditionals with impossible antecedents) are vacuously true. Non-vacuism, by contrast, says the truth-values of counterpossibles are affected by the truth-values of the consequents. Some counterpossibles are true, some false. Williamson objects to non-vacuism. He asks us to consider someone who answered ‘11’ to ‘What is 5 + 7?’ but who mistakenly believes that he answered ‘13’. For the non-vacuist, (1) is false, (2) true: (1) If 5 + 7 were 13, x (...)
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  7. Berit Brogaard & Joe Salerno (2013). Remarks on Counterpossibles. Synthese 190 (4):639-660.
    Since the publication of David Lewis’ Counterfactuals, the standard line on subjunctive conditionals with impossible antecedents (or counterpossibles) has been that they are vacuously true. That is, a conditional of the form ‘If p were the case, q would be the case’ is trivially true whenever the antecedent, p, is impossible. The primary justification is that Lewis’ semantics best approximates the English subjunctive conditional, and that a vacuous treatment of counterpossibles is a consequence of that very elegant theory. Another justification (...)
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  8. Berit Brogaard & Joe Salerno, Fitch's Paradox of Knowability. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    The paradox of knowability is a logical result suggesting that, necessarily, if all truths are knowable in principle then all truths are in fact known. The contrapositive of the result says, necessarily, if in fact there is an unknown truth, then there is a truth that couldn't possibly be known. More specifically, if p is a truth that is never known then it is unknowable that p is a truth that is never known. The proof has been used to argue (...)
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  9. Joe Salerno (2010). Introduction to Knowability and Beyond. Synthese 173 (1):1-8.
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  10. Joe Salerno (ed.) (2009). New Essays on the Knowability Paradox. Oxford University Press.
    This collection assembles Church's referee reports, Fitch's 1963 paper, and nineteen new papers on the knowability paradox.
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  11. Joe Salerno (2009). . In , New Essays on the Knowability Paradox. Oxford University Press.
     
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  12. Joe Salerno (2009). Knowability Noir: 1945-1963. In , New Essays on the Knowability Paradox. Oup Oxford.
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  13. Berit Brogaard & Joe Salerno (2008). Counterfactuals and Context. Analysis 68 (297):39–46.
    It is widely agreed that contraposition, strengthening the antecedent and hypothetical syllogism fail for subjunctive conditionals. The following putative counter-examples are frequently cited, respectively.
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  14. Berit Brogaard & Joe Salerno (2008). Knowability, Possibility and Paradox. In Vincent Hendricks (ed.), New Waves in Epistemology. Palgrave Macmillan.
    The paradox of knowability threatens to draw a logical equivalence between the believable claim that all truths are knowable and the obviously false claim that all truths are known. In this paper we evaluate prominent proposals for resolving the paradox of knowability. For instance, we argue that Neil Tennant’s restriction strategy, which aims principally to restrict the main quantifier in ‘all truths are knowable’, does not get to the heart of the problem since there are knowability paradoxes that the restriction (...)
     
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  15. Berit Brogaard & Joe Salerno (2006). Knowability and a Modal Closure Principle. American Philosophical Quarterly 43 (3):261-270.
    Does a factive conception of knowability figure in ordinary use? There is some reason to think so. ‘Knowable’ and related terms such as ‘discoverable’, ‘observable’, and ‘verifiable’ all seem to operate factively in ordinary discourse. Consider the following example, a dialog between colleagues A and B: A: We could be discovered. B: Discovered doing what? A: Someone might discover that we're having an affair. B: But we are not having an affair! A: I didn’t say that we were. A’s remarks (...)
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  16. Berit Brogaard & Joe Salerno (2005). Antirealism, Theism and the Conditional Fallacy. Noûs 39 (1):123–139.
    In his presidential address to the APA, ‘‘How to be an Anti-realist’’ (1982, 64–66), Alvin Plantinga argues that the only sensible way to be an antirealist is to be a theist.1 Anti-realism (AR) in this context is the epistemic analysis of truth that says, (AR) necessarily, a statement is true if and only if it would be believed by an ideally [or sufficiently] rational agent/community in ideal [or sufficiently good] epistemic circumstances. Plantinga demonstrates, with modest modal resources, that AR entails (...)
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  17. Berit Brogaard & Joe Salerno (2002). Clues to the Paradoxes of Knowability: Reply to Dummett and Tennant. Analysis 62 (2):143–150.
    Tr(A) iff ‡K(A) To remedy the error, Dummett’s proposes the following inductive characterization of truth: (i) Tr(A) iff ‡K(A), if A is a basic statement; (ii) Tr(A and B) iff Tr(A) & Tr(B); (iii) Tr(A or B) iff Tr(A) v Tr(B); (iv) Tr(if A, then B) iff (Tr(A) Æ Tr(B)); (v) Tr(it is not the case that A) iff ¬Tr(A), where the logical constant on the right-hand side of each biconditional clause is understood as subject to the laws of intuitionistic (...)
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