Search results for 'epistemic modals' (try it on Scholar)

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  1. Seth Yalcin (2007). Epistemic Modals. Mind 116 (464):983-1026.
    Epistemic modal operators give rise to something very like, but also very unlike, Moore's paradox. I set out the puzzling phenomena, explain why a standard relational semantics for these operators cannot handle them, and recommend an alternative semantics. A pragmatics appropriate to the semantics is developed and interactions between the semantics, the pragmatics, and the definition of consequence are investigated. The semantics is then extended to probability operators. Some problems and prospects for probabilistic representations of content and context are (...)
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  2. Janice Dowell, J. L. (2011). A Flexible Contextualist Account of Epistemic Modals. Philosophers' Imprint 11 (14):1-25.
    On Kratzer’s canonical account, modal expressions (like “might” and “must”) are represented semantically as quantifiers over possibilities. Such expressions are themselves neutral; they make a single contribution to determining the propositions expressed across a wide range of uses. What modulates the modality of the proposition expressed—as bouletic, epistemic, deontic, etc.—is context.2 This ain’t the canon for nothing. Its power lies in its ability to figure in a simple and highly unified explanation of a fairly wide range of language use. (...)
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  3.  84
    Charity Anderson (2014). Fallibilism and the Flexibility of Epistemic Modals. Philosophical Studies 167 (3):597-606.
    It is widely acknowledged that epistemic modals admit of inter-subjective flexibility. This paper introduces intra-subjective flexibility for epistemic modals and draws on this flexibility to argue that fallibilism is consistent with the standard account of epistemic modals.
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  4.  70
    Eric Swanson (2010). On Scope Relations Between Quantifiers and Epistemic Modals. Journal of Semantics 27 (4):529-540.
    This paper presents and discusses a range of counterexamples to the common view that quantifiers cannot take scope over epistemic modals. Some of the counterexamples raise problems for ‘force modifier’ theories of epistemic modals. Some of the counterexamples raise problems for Robert Stalnaker’s theory of counterfactuals, according to which a special kind of epistemic modal must be able to scope over a whole counterfactual. Finally, some of the counterexamples suggest that David Lewis must countenance ‘would’ (...)
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  5.  32
    Malte Willer (forthcoming). An Update on Epistemic Modals. Journal of Philosophical Logic:1-15.
    Epistemic modals are a prominent topic in the literature on natural language semantics, with wide-ranging implications for issues in philosophy of language and philosophical logic. Considerations about the role that epistemic "might" and "must" play in discourse and reasoning have led to the development of several important alternatives to classical possible worlds semantics for natural language modal expressions. This is an opinionated overview of what I take to be some of the most exciting issues and developments in (...)
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  6. 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 (...)
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    Torfinn Thomesen Huvenes (2015). Epistemic Modals and Credal Disagreement. Philosophical Studies 172 (4):987-1011.
    Considerations involving disagreement, as well as related considerations involving correction and retraction, have played an important role in recent debates about epistemic modals. For instance, it has been argued that contextualist views about epistemic modals have problems when it comes to explaining cases of disagreement. In response to these challenges, I explore the idea that the relevant cases of disagreement may involve credal disagreement. In a case of credal disagreement, the parties have different degrees of belief (...)
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  8. Wesley H. Holliday & Thomas F. Icard (2013). Measure Semantics and Qualitative Semantics for Epistemic Modals. Proceedings of SALT 23:514-534.
    In this paper, we explore semantics for comparative epistemic modals that avoid the entailment problems shown to result from Kratzer’s (1991) semantics by Yalcin (2006, 2009, 2010). In contrast to the alternative semantics presented by Yalcin and Lassiter (2010, 2011), based on finitely additive probability measures, we introduce semantics based on qualitatively additive measures, as well as semantics based on purely qualitative orderings, including orderings on propositions derived from orderings on worlds in the tradition of Kratzer (1991). All (...)
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  9. Mark Schroeder (forthcoming). Hard Cases for Combining Expressivism and Deflationist Truth: Conditionals and Epistemic Modals. In Steven Gross & Michael Williams (eds.), (unknown). Oxford
    In this paper I will be concerned with the question as to whether expressivist theories of meaning can coherently be combined with deflationist theories of truth. After outlining what I take expressivism to be and what I take deflationism about truth to be, I’ll explain why I don’t take the general version of this question to be very hard, and why the answer is ‘yes’. Having settled that, I’ll move on to what I take to be a more pressing and (...)
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    Peter Ludlow (forthcoming). Incorporation and Alleged Epistemic Modals. Topoi:1-5.
    Part of what makes working with modals such a tricky business is that apparent modal forms are deployed in all sorts of ways in language. In this paper I explore an interesting example of an apparent modal—the Blofeld case—which was introduced by Gilles and von Fintel as part of their argument against context of assessment accounts of epistemic modals. I argue that the example is subtle, and that the apparent modal may not be an epistemic modal (...)
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    Joshua D. Crabill (2013). Suppose Yalcin is Wrong About Epistemic Modals. Philosophical Studies 162 (3):625-635.
    In “Epistemic Modals,” Seth Yalcin argues that what explains the deficiency of sentences containing epistemic modals of the form ‘p and it might be that not-p’ is that sentences of this sort are strictly contradictory, and thus are not instances of a Moore-paradox as has been previous suggested. Benjamin Schnieder, however, argues in his Yalcin’s explanation of these sentences’ deficiency turns out to be insufficiently general, as it cannot account for less complex but still defective sentences, (...)
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    Moritz Schulz (2010). Epistemic Modals and Informational Consequence. Synthese 174 (3):385 - 395.
    Recently, Yalcin (Epistemic modals. Mind, 116 , 983–1026, 2007) put forward a novel account of epistemic modals. It is based on the observation that sentences of the form ‘ & Might ’ do not embed under ‘suppose’ and ‘if’. Yalcin concludes that such sentences must be contradictory and develops a notion of informational consequence which validates this idea. I will show that informational consequence is inadequate as an account of the logic of epistemic modals: (...)
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  13. Andy Egan (2007). Epistemic Modals, Relativism and Assertion. Philosophical Studies 133 (1):1--22.
    I think that there are good reasons to adopt a relativist semantics for epistemic modal claims such as ``the treasure might be under the palm tree'', according to which such utterances determine a truth value relative to something finer-grained than just a world (or a <world, time> pair). Anyone who is inclined to relativise truth to more than just worlds and times faces a problem about assertion. It's easy to be puzzled about just what purpose would be served by (...)
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  14. Tamina Stephenson (2007). Judge Dependence, Epistemic Modals, and Predicates of Personal Taste. Linguistics and Philosophy 30 (4):487--525.
    Predicates of personal taste (fun, tasty) and epistemic modals (might, must) share a similar analytical difficulty in determining whose taste or knowledge is being expressed. Accordingly, they have parallel behavior in attitude reports and in a certain kind of disagreement. On the other hand, they differ in how freely they can be linked to a contextually salient individual, with epistemic modals being much more restricted in this respect. I propose an account of both classes using Lasersohn’s (...)
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  15. John MacFarlane (2009). Epistemic Modals Are Assessment-Sensitive. In Andy Egan & B. Weatherson (eds.), Epistemic Modality. Oxford University Press
    By “epistemic modals,” I mean epistemic uses of modal words: adverbs like “necessarily,” “possibly,” and “probably,” adjectives like “necessary,” “possible,” and “probable,” and auxiliaries like “might,” “may,” “must,” and “could.” It is hard to say exactly what makes a word modal, or what makes a use of a modal epistemic, without begging the questions that will be our concern below, but some examples should get the idea across. If I say “Goldbach’s conjecture might be true, and (...)
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  16. Cian Dorr & John Hawthorne (2013). Embedding Epistemic Modals. Mind 122 (488):867-914.
    Seth Yalcin has pointed out some puzzling facts about the behaviour of epistemic modals in certain embedded contexts. For example, conditionals that begin ‘If it is raining and it might not be raining, … ’ sound unacceptable, unlike conditionals that begin ‘If it is raining and I don’t know it, … ’. These facts pose a prima facie problem for an orthodox treatment of epistemic modals as expressing propositions about the knowledge of some contextually specified individual (...)
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  17. Ezra Cook (2013). Epistemic Modals and Common Ground. Inquiry 56 (2-3):179-209.
    This paper considers some questions related to the determination of epistemic modal domains. Specifically, given situations in which groups of agents have epistemic states that bear on a modal domain, how is the domain best restricted? This is a metasemantic project, in which I combine a standard semantics for epistemic modals, as developed by Kratzer, with a standard story about conversational dynamics, as developed by Stalnaker. I show how a standard framework for epistemic logic can (...)
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  18. Joshua Knobe & Seth Yalcin (2014). Epistemic Modals and Context: Experimental Data. Semantics and Pragmatics 7 (10):1-21.
    Recently, a number of theorists (MacFarlane (2003, 2011), Egan et al. (2005), Egan (2007), Stephenson (2007a,b)) have argued that an adequate semantics and pragmatics for epistemic modals calls for some technical notion of relativist truth and/or relativist content. Much of this work has relied on an empirical thesis about speaker judgments, namely that competent speakers tend to judge a present-tense bare epistemic possibility claim true only if the prejacent is compatible with their information. Relativists have in particular (...)
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  19. Andy Egan, John Hawthorne & Brian Weatherson (2005). Epistemic Modals in Context. In G. Preyer & G. Peter (eds.), Contextualism in Philosophy. Oxford University Press 131-170.
    A very simple contextualist treatment of a sentence containing an epistemic modal, e.g. a might be F, is that it is true iff for all the contextually salient community knows, a is F. It is widely agreed that the simple theory will not work in some cases, but the counterexamples produced so far seem amenable to a more complicated contextualist theory. We argue, however, that no contextualist theory can capture the evaluations speakers naturally make of sentences containing epistemic (...)
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  20. Benjamin Schnieder (2010). Expressivism Concerning Epistemic Modals. Philosophical Quarterly 60 (240):601-615.
    I develop a new argument for an expressivist account of epistemic modals, which starts from a puzzle about epistemic modals which Seth Yalcin recently presented. I reject Yalcin's own solution to the puzzle, and give a better explanation based on expressivism concerning epistemic modals. I also address two alleged problems for expressivism: do embeddings of epistemic modals pose a serious threat to expressivism, and how can expressivism account for disagreements about statements containing (...)
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  21. Seth Yalcin (2009). More on Epistemic Modals. Mind 118 (471):785-793.
    I respond to comments by David Barnett and Roy Sorensen on my paper ‘Epistemic Modals’.
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  22. Gunnar Björnsson & Alexander Almér (2010). The Pragmatics of Insensitive Assessments: Understanding The Relativity of Assessments of Judgments of Personal Taste, Epistemic Modals, and More. In Barbara H. Partee, Michael Glanzberg & Jurģis Šķilters (eds.), The Baltic International Yearbook of Cognition, Logic and Communication. 1-45.
    In assessing the veridicality of utterances, we normally seem to assess the satisfaction of conditions that the speaker had been concerned to get right in making the utterance. However, the debate about assessor-relativism about epistemic modals, predicates of taste, gradable adjectives and conditionals has been largely driven by cases in which seemingly felicitous assessments of utterances are insensitive to aspects of the context of utterance that were highly relevant to the speaker’s choice of words. In this paper, we (...)
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    Benjamin Lennertz (2014). Simple Contextualism About Epistemic Modals Is Incorrect. Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 3 (4):252-262.
    I argue against a simple contextualist account of epistemic modals. My argument, like the argument on which it is based , charges that simple contextualism cannot explain all of the conversational data about uses of epistemic modals. My argument improves on its predecessor by insulating itself from recent contextualist attempts by Janice Dowell and Igor Yanovich to get around that argument. In particular, I use linguistic data to show that an utterance of an epistemic modal (...)
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  24. Jonathan Schaffer (2009). Perspective in Taste Predicates and Epistemic Modals. In Andy Egan & B. Weatherson (eds.), Epistemic Modality. Oxford University Press
    Imagine that Ann, asked to name her favorite treat, answers: 1. Licorice is tasty Imagine that Ben, having hidden some licorice in the cupboard, whispers to Ann: 2. There might be licorice in the cupboard. What if any role is played by perspective—whom the licorice is tasty to, whose evidence allows for licorice in the cupboard—in the semantics of such sentences?
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  25.  7
    Martin Montminy (2012). Epistemic Modals and Indirect Weak Suggestives. Dialectica 66 (4):583-606.
    I defend a contextualist account of bare epistemic modal claims against recent objections. I argue that in uttering a sentence of the form ‘It might be that p,’ a speaker is performing two speech acts. First, she is (directly) asserting that in view of the knowledge possessed by some relevant group, it might be that p. The content of this first speech act is accounted for by the contextualist view. But the speaker's utterance also generates an indirect speech act (...)
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  26. Richard Dietz (2008). Epistemic Modals and Correct Disagreement. In G. Carpintero & M. Koelbel (eds.), Relative Truth. Oxford University Press 239--264.
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  27. Brian Weatherson & Andy Egan, Epistemic Modals and Epistemic Modality.
    There is a lot that we don’t know. That means that there are a lot of possibilities that are, epistemically speaking, open. For instance, we don’t know whether it rained in Seattle yesterday. So, for us at least, there is an epistemic possibility where it rained in Seattle yesterday, and one where it did not. It’s tempting to give a very simple analysis of epistemic possibility: • A possibility is an epistemic possibility if we do not know (...)
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    Kai von Fintel, Epistemic Modals: A Linguistic Perspective.
    Expressions of epistemic modality mark the possibility/necessity of the prejacent proposition relative to some body of evidence/knowledge.
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  29. Brian Weatherson & Andy Egan (2009). Introduction: Epistemic Modals and Epistemic Modality. In Andy Egan & B. Weatherson (eds.), Epistemic Modality. Oxford University Press
     
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  30. Brian Weatherspoon & Andy Egan (2009). Introduction: Epistemic Modals and Epistemic Modality. In Andy Egan & B. Weatherson (eds.), Epistemic Modality. Oxford University Press
     
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  31.  69
    John Hawthorne (2007). Eavesdroppers and Epistemic Modals. Philosophical Issues 17 (1):92-101.
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    Dan Quattrone (2012). A Two-Dimensional Semantics for Epistemic Modals. Philosophia Scientiae 16 (2):59-84.
    Tout le monde ne sait pas que l’eau est du H2O. Supposons qu’Alice soit l’une de ces personnes. Alice dit : « Pour autant que je sache, l’eau pourrait ne pas être du H2O. » Intuitivement, il semble qu’Alice ait dit quelque chose de vrai. Autrement dit, il semble qu’il soit épistémiquement possible que l’eau ne soit pas du H2O. Pourtant, les conceptions traditionnelles de la modalité en linguistique et en philosophie du langage prédisent que tout énoncé métaphysiquement impossible est (...)
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  33. Dan Quattrone (2012). A Two-Dimensional Semantics for Epistemic Modals. Philosophia Scientae 16:59-84.
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  34. B. Weatherson & A. Egan (eds.) (forthcoming). Epistemic Modals. Oxford.
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  35.  58
    Malte Willer (2013). Dynamics of Epistemic Modality. Philosophical Review 122 (1):45-92.
    A dynamic semantics for epistemically modalized sentences is an attractive alternative to the orthodox view that our best theory of meaning ascribes to such sentences truth-conditions relative to what is known. This essay demonstrates that a dynamic theory about might and must offers elegant explanations of a range of puzzling observations about epistemic modals. The first part of the story offers a unifying treatment of disputes about epistemic modality and disputes about matters of fact while at the (...)
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  36.  36
    Sarah Moss (forthcoming). On the Semantics and Pragmatics of Epistemic Vocabulary. Semantics and Pragmatics.
    This paper motivates and develops a novel semantics for several epistemic expressions, including possibility modals and indicative conditionals. The semantics I defend constitutes an alternative to standard truth conditional theories, as it assigns sets of probability spaces as sentential semantic values. I argue that what my theory lacks in conservatism is made up for by its strength. In particular, my semantics accounts for the distinctive behavior of nested epistemic modals, indicative conditionals embedded under probability operators, and (...)
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  37.  33
    Seth Yalcin (2015). Epistemic Modality De Re. Ergo, an Open Access Journal of Philosophy 2 (19):475-527.
    Focusing on cases which involve binding into epistemic modals with definite descriptions and quantifiers, I raise some new problems for standard approaches to all of these expressions. The difficulties are resolved in a semantic framework that is dynamic in character. I close with a new class of problems about de re readings within the scope of modals.
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  38. 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 (...)
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  39. Katarzyna Kijania-Placek (forthcoming). Descriptive Indexicals and Epistemic Modality. Topoi:1-10.
    In this paper I argue for a non-referential interpretation of some uses of indexicals embedded under epistemic modals. The so-called descriptive uses of indexicals come in several types and it is argued that those embedded within the scope of modal operators do not require non-referential interpretation, provided the modality is interpreted as epistemic. I endeavor to show that even if we allow an epistemic interpretation of modalities, the resulting interpretation will still be inadequate as long as (...)
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    Fabrizio Cariani (2013). Epistemic and Deontic Should. Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 2 (1):73-84.
    Probabilistic theories of “should” and “ought” face a predicament. At first blush, it seems that such theories must provide different lexical entries for the epistemic and the deontic interpretations of these modals. I show that there is a new style of premise semantics that can avoid this consequence in an attractively conservative way.
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  41. Teresa Marques (2015). Retractions. Synthese:1-25.
    Intuitions about retractions have been used to motivate truth relativism about certain types of claims. Among these figure epistemic modals, knowledge attributions, or personal taste claims. On MacFarlane’s prominent relativist proposal, sentences like “the ice cream might be in the freezer” or “Pocoyo is funny” are only assigned a truth-value relative to contexts of utterance and contexts of assessment. Retractions play a crucial role in the argument for assessment-relativism. A retraction of a past assertion is supposed to be (...)
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  42. Max Kölbel (2009). The Evidence for Relativism. Synthese 166 (2):375-395.
    The aim of this paper is to examine the kind of evidence that might be adduced in support of relativist semantics of a kind that have recently been proposed for predicates of personal taste, for epistemic modals, for knowledge attributions and for other cases. I shall concentrate on the case of taste predicates, but what I have to say is easily transposed to the other cases just mentioned. I shall begin by considering in general the question of what (...)
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  43.  69
    Justin Khoo (2015). Modal Disagreements. Inquiry (5):1-24.
    It is often assumed that when one party felicitously rejects an assertion made by an- other party, the first party thinks that the proposition asserted by the second is false. This assumption underlies various disagreement arguments used to challenge contex- tualism about some class of expressions. As such, many contextualists have resisted these arguments on the grounds that the disagreements in question may not be over the proposition literally asserted. The result appears to be a dialectical stalemate, with no independent (...)
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    Eric Swanson (forthcoming). The Application of Constraint Semantics to the Language of Subjective Uncertainty. Journal of Philosophical Logic:1-26.
    This paper develops a compositional, type-driven constraint semantic theory for a fragment of the language of subjective uncertainty. In the particular application explored here, the interpretation function of constraint semantics yields not propositions but constraints on credal states as the semantic values of declarative sentences. Constraints are richer than propositions in that constraints can straightforwardly represent assessments of the probability that the world is one way rather than another. The richness of constraints helps us model communicative acts in essentially the (...)
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  45.  68
    Malte Willer (2011). Realizing What Might Be. Philosophical Studies 153 (3):365 - 375.
    Schulz has shown that the suppositional view of indicative conditionals leads to a corresponding view of epistemic modals. But his case backfires: the resulting theory of epistemic modals gets the facts wrong, and so we end up with a good argument against the suppositional view. I show how and why a dynamic view of indicative conditionals leads to a better theory of epistemic modals.
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  46.  66
    Moritz Schulz (2010). Wondering What Might Be. Philosophical Studies 149 (3):367 - 386.
    This paper explores the possibility of supplementing the suppositional view of indicative conditionals with a corresponding view of epistemic modals. The most striking feature of the suppositional view consists in its claim that indicative conditionals are to be evaluated by conditional probabilities. On the basis of a natural link between indicative conditionals and epistemic modals, a corresponding thesis about the probabilities of statements governed by epistemic modals can be derived. The paper proceeds by deriving (...)
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    Crispin Wright (2009). Trumping Assessments and the Aristotelian Future. Synthese 166 (2):309 - 331.
    In the paper we argue that truth-relativism is potentially hostage to a problem of exhibiting witnesses of its own truth. The problem for the relativist stems from acceptance of a trumping principle according to which there is a dependency between ascriptions of truth of an utterance and ascriptions of truth to other ascriptions of truth of that utterance. We argue that such a dependency indeed holds in the case of future contingents and the case of epistemic modals and (...)
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    Alex Silk (2014). Accommodation and Negotiation with Context‐Sensitive Expressions. Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 3 (2):115-123.
    Contextualists and relativists about predicates of personal taste, epistemic modals, and so on (“CR-expressions”) agree that the interpretation of these expressions depends, in some sense, on context. Relativists claim that the sort of context-sensitivity exhibited by CR-expressions is importantly different from that exhibited by paradigm context-sensitive expressions. This bifurcation is often motivated by the claim that the two classes of expressions behave differently in patterns of agreement and disagreement. I provide cases illustrating that the same sorts of discourse (...)
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    Axel Arturo Barceló Aspeitia (2012). Semantic and Moral Luck. Metaphilosophy 43 (3):204-220.
    The similarities between the philosophical debates surrounding assessment sensitivity and moral luck run so deep that one can easily adapt almost any argument from one debate, change some terms, adapt the examples, and end up with an argument relevant to the other. This article takes Brian Rosebury's strategy for resisting moral luck in “Moral Responsibility and ‘Moral Luck' ” (1995) and turns it into a strategy for resisting assessment sensitivity. The article shows that one of Bernard Williams's examples motivating moral (...)
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    Moritz Schulz (2013). Modalised Conditionals: A Response to Willer. Philosophical Studies 163 (3):673-682.
    A paper by Schulz (Philos Stud 149:367–386, 2010) describes how the suppositional view of indicative conditionals can be supplemented with a derived view of epistemic modals. In a recent criticism of this paper, Willer (Philos Stud 153:365–375, 2011) argues that the resulting account of conditionals and epistemic modals cannot do justice to the validity of certain inference patterns involving modalised conditionals. In the present response, I analyse Willer’s argument, identify an implicit presupposition which can plausibly be (...)
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