This book makes a stimulating contribution to the philosophy of language and philosophy of mind. It begins with a spirited defense of the view that propositions are structured and that propositional structure is "psychologically real." The author then develops a subtle view of propositions and attitude ascription. The view is worked out in detail with attention to such topics as the semantics of conversations, iterated attitude ascriptions, and the role of propositions as bearers of truth. Along the way important issues (...) in the philosophy of mind are addressed. (shrink)
Precis of When Truth Gives Out Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-4 DOI 10.1007/s11098-011-9792-4 Authors MarkRichard, Philosophy Department, Harvard University, Emerson Hall, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA Journal Philosophical Studies Online ISSN 1573-0883 Print ISSN 0031-8116.
The Philosophical Review, Vol. XCVI, No. 4 (October 1987) Mark I. Fix a language; Leibniz's Law for that language is the principle (L) Any universal closure of a sentence of the form of if x is identical with y, then, if S, then S'.
Individual differences on a variety of framing and conjunction problems were examined in light of Slovic and Tversky's (1974) understanding/acceptance principle-that more reflective and skilled reasoners are more likely to affirm the axioms that define normative reasoning and to endorse the task construals of informed experts. The predictions derived from the principle were confirmed for the much discussed framing effect in the Disease Problem and for the conjunction fallacy on the Linda Problem. Subjects of higher cognitive ability were disproportionately likely (...) to avoid each fallacy. Other framing problems produced much more modest levels of empirical support. It is conjectured that the varying patterns of individual differences are best explained by two-process theories of reasoning (e.g. Evans, 1984, 1996; Sloman, 1996) conjoined with the assumption that the two processes differentially reflect interactional and analytic intelligence. (shrink)
Herman Cappelen and John Hawthorne’s Relativism and Monadic Truth presses a number of worries about relativistic content. It forces one to think carefully about what a relativist should mean by saying that speakers disagree or contradict one another in asserting such content. My focus is on this question, though at points (in particular in Sect. 4) I touch on other issues Cappelen and Hawthorne (CH) raise.
Epithets and attitudes -- When truth gives out -- What the emotivists should have said -- What's the matter with relativism? -- Matters of taste -- Appendix 1 : what can be said? -- Appendix 2 : relativism and contextualism about knowledge.
This paper responds to discussions of my book When Truth Gives Out by Michael Lynch, Nenad Miščević, and Isidora Stojanović. Among the topics discussed are: whether relativism is incoherent (because it requires one to think that certain of one’s views are and are not epistemically superior to views one denies); whether and when sentences in which one slurs an individual or group are truth valued; whether relativism about matters of taste gives an account of “faultless disagreement” superior to certain “absolutist” (...) accounts of the matter. (shrink)
Individual differences in performance on a variety of selection tasks were examined in three studies employing over 800 participants. Nondeontic tasks were solved disproportionately by individuals of higher cognitive ability. In contrast, responses on two deontic tasks that have shown robust performance facilitationthe Drinking-age Problem and the Sears Problem-were unrelated to cognitive ability. Performance on deontic and nondeontic tasks was consistently associated. Individuals in the correct/correct cell of the bivariate performance matrix were over-represented. That is, individuals giving the modal response (...) on a nondeontic task (P and Q) were significantly less likely to give the modal response on a deontic task (P and not-Q) than were individuals who made the non-modal P and not-Q selection on nondeontic problems. The implications of the results are discussed within the heuristic-analytic framework of Evans (1996; Evans & Over, 1996) and the optimal data selection model of Oaksford and Chater (1994). (shrink)
The collection addresses a range of topics in philosophical semantics and philosophy of mind, and is accompanied by a new Introduction which discusses attitudes realized by dispositions and other non-linguistic cognitive structures.
Girotto and Legrenzi's 1993 facilitation effect for their SARS version of Wason s THOG problem a disjunctive reasoning task was examined. The effect was not replicated when the standard THOG problem instructions were used in Experiments 1 and 2. However, in Experiment 3 when Girotto and Legrenzi's precise instructions were used, facilitation was observed. Experiment 4 further investigated the role of the type of instructions in the observed facilitation. The results suggest that such facilitation may result from attentional factors rather (...) than the use of a combinatorial analysis in the problem. (shrink)
Reviso, pero no suscribo, los argumentos de Marcus a favor de que las creencias imposibles son imposibles. Defiendo su tesis de que los objetos de las creencias no son, en algún sentido importante, los soportes de la verdad y la falsedad; discuto su disposicionalismo acerca de las creencias y argumento que encaja bien con la idea de que los objetos de las creencias son estados de cosas russellianos.
“Choose your words wisely,” my mother used to say, “because you never know who’s listening.” Oddly, this is something about which my dear mother and MarkRichard apparently would agree. They both seem to think that the words you use say something about who you are, and if you use bad words, then you are a bad person. About this, I have no doubt that they are right - those who use slurs, at least in the context of (...) many assertive utterances, are surely racists, anti-Semites or whatever. But MR in his paper points out that matters go further than this, for our conversational interactions with slur words can show us to be of such dubious moral status even if we don’t utter them; just our normal practices of accepting the utterances of others would be sufficient for this result. But something is surely amiss here; no doubt we can know the meaning of slur-words, and so comprehend the utterances of others, without impugning our moral stature in any way. (shrink)
The popular expedient of identifying noncognitivism with the claim that moral judgments are neither true nor false leaves open the question of what kind of thing a moral judgment is—an indeterminacy that has led to decades of confusion as to what the noncognitivist is more precisely committed to. Sometimes noncognitivism is presented as a claim about mental states (“Moral judgments are not beliefs”), sometimes as a claim about meaning (“X is morally good” means no more than “X: hurray!”), sometimes as (...) a claim about speech acts (“Moral judgments are not assertions”). Focus on the last two possibilities. The former calls for a translation schema from a propositional surface grammar to a non-propositional deep structure. Such schemata from the noncognitivist are familiar to students of metaethics. (Cf. A.J. Ayer’s claim that in saying “You acted wrongly in stealing that money” one is “not saying anything more than … ‘You stole that money,’ [but] in a peculiar tone of horror.”) It is less widely realized that the noncognitivist is not obliged to offer any such translation schema, for she might instead plump for the last option, of formulating noncognitivism as a theory not of meaning but of use. Perhaps the moral cognitivist is correct about the meaning of moral sentences (there is a wide range of possibilities here) but wrong about the way people use moral sentences: perhaps people do not assert moral sentences, perhaps the nature of acceptance of a moral claim is not belief. (shrink)