Certain philosophers have held the thesis of the unity of science. As often conceived, the thesis has two parts: the thesis of physicalism and the thesis of extensionality. For each of these two parts there is an outstanding problem, i.e. the problem of intentionality and the problem of intensionality respectively. The purpose of this paper is twofold: first, to make explicit the nature of these two problems, and second, to show to what extent they can be said to be (...) the same problem. Thus I am not at all interested here either to defend or attack this thesis or either of its parts. (shrink)
In this paper, I present a new objection to process reliabilism about epistemic justification: we may not substitute co-referring expressions in the context of epistemically justified beliefs, and reliabilism cannot accommodate that.
This essay argues that relativist semantics provide fruitful frameworks for the study of the relationships between meaning and truth-conditions, and consequently for the analysis of the logical properties of expressions. After a discussion of the role of intensionality and indexicality within classic double-indexed semantics, I explain that the non-relativistic identification of the parameters needed for the definition of truth and for the interpretation of indexicals is grounded on considerations that are irrelevant for the assessment of the relationships between meaning (...) and truth. (shrink)
We identify a class of paradoxes that are neither set-theoretical or semantical, but that seem to depend on intensionality. In particular, these paradoxes arise out of plausible properties of propositional attitudes and their objects. We try to explain why logicians have neglected these paradoxes, and to show that, like the Russell Paradox and the direct discourse Liar Paradox, these intensional paradoxes are recalcitrant and challenge logical analysis. Indeed, when we take these paradoxes seriously, we may need to rethink the (...) commonly accepted methods for dealing with the logical paradoxes. (shrink)
The traditional scope theory of intensionality (STI) (see Russell 1905; Montague 1973; Ladusaw 1977; Ogihara 1992, 1996; Stowell 1993) is simple, elegant, and, for the most part, empirically adequate. However, a few quite troubling counterexamples to this theory have lead researchers to propose alternatives, such as positing null situation pronouns (Percus 2000) or actuality operators (Kamp 1971; Cresswell 1990) in the syntax of natural language. These innovative theories do correct the undergeneration of the original scope theory, but at a (...) cost: the situation pronoun and operator theories overgenerate, as argued extensively by Percus (2000) and Keshet (2008). This paper presents new data that supports the STI over other analyses, such as structures where DPs lose their de re readings in positions where syntactic movement is blocked. These data point the way to a new theory of intensionality. This new theory, called split intensionality, is a modification of the STI which aims to solve the problems raised for the original scope theory without overgenerating. The proposal calls for an additional intensional abstraction operator that creates an expression denoting an intension from an expression denoting an extension. When a DP moves to a position above this operator, it is interpreted de re; otherwise it is de dicto. The crucial part of the new proposal is that a DP may move above this operator and yet remain, for instance, below an intentional verb or inside an if-clause. Therefore, a DP within an island for syntactic movement may be de re and yet not move out of the island when the intensional abstraction operator is also within the island. (shrink)
This paper proposes interpretations of the vexed notions of intensionality and intentionality and then investigates their resulting interrelations.The notion of intentionality comes from Brentano, in connection with his view that it can help us understand the mental. Setting aside Husserl’s basic definition of intentionality as not quite in line with Brentano’s explanatory purpose, this paper proposes that intentionality be defined in terms of inexistence and indeterminacy.It results that Brentano’s thesis (that all and only mental phenomena are intentional) will not (...) be strictly true. However, intentional descriptions will always be intensional, though not all intensional descriptions will be intentional. (shrink)
According to the standard view, alethic (or modal) statements are intensional in that the Principle of Substitution (PS) fails for them -- e.g. substituting 'nine' in "Necessarily, nine is composite" with the co-referring 'the number of planets' turns this statement from true to false. It is argued in the paper that we could avoid ascribing intensionality to alethic statements altogether by separating between singular and functional uses of definite descriptions: on the singular use the description given above amounts to (...) 'the actual number of planets', which is salva veritate substitutable to 'nine' in all alethic statements; on the functional use, in turn, that description is really a function from possible worlds to numbers, and thus the Principle of Substitution is not violated in this case either, since such a function cannot be held to be co-referential with 'nine'. (shrink)
The relationship between Lexical-Functional Grammar (LFG) functional structures (f-structures) for sentences and their semanticinterpretations can be formalized in linear logic in a way thatcorrectly explains the observed interactions between quantifier scopeambiguity, bound anaphora and intensionality.Our linear-logic formalization of the compositional properties ofquantifying expressions in natural language obviates the need forspecial mechanisms, such as Cooper storage, in representing thescoping possibilities of quantifying expressions. Instead, thesemantic contribution of a quantifier is recorded as a linear-logicformula whose use in a proof will establish (...) the scope of thequantifier. Different proofs can lead to different scopes. In eachcomplete proof, the properties of linear logic ensure thatquantifiers are properly scoped. (shrink)
In this paper I argue that perceptual ascriptions lend themselves to intensional readings, and that perceptual predicates can denote phenomenal states on such readings. I show that Montague's treatment of quantification in intensional contexts applies to intensional perceptual ascriptions. I conclude with some remarks on the implications of these findings for disjunctive and non-disjunctive theories of perceptual experience.
NPs with intensional relative clauses such as 'the impact of the book John needs to write' pose a significant challenge for trope theory (the theory of particularized properties), since they seem to refer to tropes that lack an actual bearer. This paper proposes a novel semantic analysis of such NPs on the basis of the notion of a variable object. The analysis avoids a range of difficulties that an alternative analysis based on the notion of an individual concept would face.
[Graeme Forbes] In I, I summarize the semantics for the relational/notional distinction for intensional transitives developed in Forbes (2000b). In II-V I pursue issues about logical consequence which were either unsatisfactorily dealt with in that paper or, more often, not raised at all. I argue that weakening inferences, such as 'Perseus seeks a mortal gorgon, therefore Perseus seeks a gorgon', are valid, but that disjunction inferences, such as 'Perseus seeks a mortal gorgon, therefore Perseus seeks a mortal gorgon or an (...) immortal gorgon', are invalid. Since 'a gorgon' and 'a mortal gorgon or an immortal gorgon' are extensionally and intensionally the same quantifier, it is not completely trivial to arrange the semantics of intensional transitives so that this classification of the inferences is obtained. (This paper is an abridged version of Forbes (2001a); the latter will be incorporated into a forthcoming monograph, Attitude Problems.) /// [Jennifer Saul] This paper discusses the question of which verbs are intensional transitives. In particular, I ask which verbs Forbes should take to be intensional transitives. I argue that it is very difficult to arrive at a clear and plausible understanding of what an intensional transitive is-making it difficult to answer these questions. I end by briefly raising some questions about the usefulness of the category of intensional transitives. (shrink)
This paper discusses the question of which verbs are intensional transitives. In particular, I ask which verbs Forbes should take to be intensional transitives. I argue that it is very difficult to arrive at a clear and plausible understanding of what an intensional transitive is— making it difficult to answer these questions. I end by briefly raising some questions about the usefulness of the category of intensional transitives.
Ascriptions of mental states to oneself and others give rise to many interesting logical and semantic problems. Attitude Problems presents an original account of mental state ascriptions that are made using intensional transitive verbs such as 'want', 'seek', 'imagine', and 'worship'. Forbes offers a theory of how such verbs work that draws on ideas from natural language semantics, philosophy of language, and aesthetics.
There are different ways we use the expressions “extension” and “intension”. I specify in the first part of this paper two basic senses of this distinction, and try to show that the old metaphysical sense, by means of particular instance vs. universal, is more fundamental than the contemporary sense by means of substitutivity. In the second part, I argue that logic in general is essentially intensional, not only because logic is a rule-guided activity, but because even the extensional definition of (...) a logic system presupposes an intensional notion of logical consequence. DOI:10.5007/1808-1711.2010v14n1p111. (shrink)
This book tackles the issues that arise in connection with intensional logic -- a formal system for representing and explaining the apparent failures of certain important principles of inference such as the substitution of identicals and existential generalization-- and intentional states --mental states such as beliefs, hopes, and desires that are directed towards the world. The theory offers a unified explanation of the various kinds of inferential failures associated with intensional logic but also unifies the study of intensional contexts and (...) intentional states by grounding the explanation of both phenomena in a single theory. When an axiomatized realm of abstract entities is added to the metaphysical structure of the world, we can use them to identify and individuate the contents of directed mental states. The special abstract entities can be viewed as the objectified contents of mental files, and they play a crucial role in the analysis of truth conditions of the sentences involved in inferential failures. (shrink)
On the basis of arguments put forth by (Kripke, 1977a) and (Kripke, 1980), it is widely held that one can sometimes rationally accept propositions of the form "P and not-P" and also that there are necessary a posteriori truths. We will find that Kripke's arguments for these views appear probative only so long as one fails to distinguish between semantics and presemantics—between the literal meanings of sentences, on the one hand, and the information on the basis of which one identifies (...) those literal meanings, on the other. This same failure, it will be argued, underlies the popular thesis that intersubstituting co-referring terms sometimes turns true sentences into false ones and vice versa. Though seemingly plausible, this thesis has a number of counterintuitive consequences, among them that the occurrence of “snow” in “it is true that snow is white” doesn’t refer to snow. An understanding of the distinction between semantics and presemantics suggests a way to develop a semantic system that doesn’t have these consequences and that, moreover, reconciles our intuitions concerning cognitive content with some powerfully argued theses of contemporary philosophy of language. Some of this paper's main contentions are anticipated by Andrzej Boguslawski in his 1994 paper “Sentential Complementation and Truth.”. (shrink)
It is arguably desirable to have a theory of meaning that (i) does not identify propositions with sets of worlds, (ii) enables to capture the dynamic character of semantic interpretation and (iii) provides the basis for a semantic program that incorporates and extends the achievements of Montague semantics. A theory of properties and propositions that meets these desiderata is developed and several applications to the semantic analysis of natural languages are explored.
Ausonio Marras has argued that Jaegwon Kim's principle of explanatory exclusion depends on an implausibly strong interpretation of explanatory realism that should be rejected because it leads to an extensional criterion of individuation for explanations. I examine the role explanatory realism plays in Kim's justification for the exclusion principle and explore two ways in which Kim can respond to Marras's criticism. The first involves separating criteria for explanatory truth from questions of explanatory adequacy, while the second appeals to Kim's fine-grained (...) theory of events. I argue that the first response is unconvincing on its own but when coupled with the second might provide a viable way for Kim to avoid Marras's criticism. However, I show that the second strategy is weak from a polemical point of view because Kim's theory of events already assumes what the principle of explanatory exclusion was introduced to establish: the falsity of nonreductive physicalism. (shrink)
A common argumentative strategy employed by anti-reductionists involves claiming that one kind of entity cannot be identified with or reduced to a second because what can intelligibly be predicated of one cannot be predicated intelligibly of the other. For instance, it might be argued that mind and brain are not identical because it makes sense to say that minds are rational but it does not make sense to say that brains are rational. The scope and power of this kind of (...) argument â if valid â are obvious; but if it turns out that âIt makes sense to say that...â creates an opaque context, such arguments will fail. I analyze a possible counterexample to validity and show that it is not conclusive, as it depends on what syntactical construction is given to the premises. This leads to the general observation that the argument form under consideration works for some constructions but not others, and thus to the conclusion that further analysis of intelligibility is called for before it can be known whether the argumentative strategy is open to the anti-reductionist or not. (shrink)
The paper is a study of properties of quasi-consequence operation which is a key notion of the so-called inferential approach in the theory of sentential calculi established in . The principal motivation behind the quasi-consequence, q-consequence for short, stems from the mathematical practice which treats some auxiliary assumptions as mere hypotheses rather than axioms and their further occurrence in place of conclusions may be justified or not. The main semantic feature of the q-consequence reflecting the idea is that its rules (...) lead from the non-rejected assumptions to the accepted conclusions.First, we focus on the syntactic features of the framework and present the q-consequence as related to the notion of proof. Such a presentation uncovers the reasons for which the adjective inferential is used to characterize the approach and, possibly, the term inference operation replaces q-consequence. It also shows that the inferential approach is a generalisation of the Tarski setting and, therefore, it may potentially absorb several concepts from the theory of sentential calculi, cf. . However, as some concrete applications show, see e.g., the new approach opens perspectives for further exploration. (shrink)
Specificational sentences show Connectivity Effects (Akmajian 1970, Higgins 1979, Halvorsen 1978, Jacobson 1994, among others). For example, an NP like no man embedded in a relative clause in general cannot bind a pronoun outside the relative clause, as illustrated in (3a); but in specificational copular sentences this binding is possible, as in (3b). This effect is called Variable Binding Connectivity. Similarly, the NP a unicorn cannot be interpreted de dicto with respect to the embedded verb look for in (4a); but (...) a de dicto reading is possible in the specificational sentence (4b) (Opacity Connectivity). Connectivity will be used in this paper as a diagnosis for specificational sentences. (shrink)
It is commonly argued that natural language has the expressive power of quantifying over intensional entities, such as times, worlds, or situations. A standard way of modelling this assumes that there are unpronounced but syntactically represented variables of the corresponding type. Not all that much as has been said, however, about the exact syntactic location of these variables. Meanwhile, recent work has highlighted a number of problems that arise because the interpretive options for situation pronouns seem to be subject to (...) various restrictions. This paper is primarily concerned with situation pronouns inside of determiner phrases, arguing that they are introduced as arguments of (certain) determiners. Verbal predicates, on the other hand, are assumed to not combine with a situation pronoun. The various restrictions on their interpretation are shown to fall out from the semantic system that is developed based on that view. Further support for such an account comes from situation semantic analyses of donkey sentences as well as data on the temporal interpretation of nominal predicates. Its ability to account for this full range of data in a unified manner is shown to set it apart from previous proposals. The paper closes with an outlook on further extensions, including an account of quantifier domain restriction based on situation pronouns. (shrink)
After a brief history of Brentano's thesis of intentionality, it is argued that intentionality presents a serious problem for materialism. First, it is shown that, if no general materialist analysis (or reduction) of intentionality is possible, then intentional phenomena would have in common at least one nonphysical property, namely, their intentionality. A general analysis of intentionality is then suggested. Finally, it is argued that any satisfactory general analysis of intentionality must share with this analysis a feature which entails the existence (...) of a nonphysical "level of organization". (shrink)
Mark Wilson presents a highly original and broad-ranging investigation of the way we get to grips with the world conceptually, and the way that philosophical problems commonly arise from this. He combines traditional philosophical concerns about human conceptual thinking with illuminating data derived from a large variety of fields including physics and applied mathematics, cognitive psychology, and linguistics. Wandering Significance offers abundant new insights and perspectives for philosophers of language, mind, and science, and will also reward the interest of psychologists, (...) linguists, and anyone curious about the mysterious ways in which useful language obtains its practical applicability. (shrink)
Ontological functionalism's defining tenet is that mental properties canbe defined wholly in terms of the general pattern of interaction ofontologically prior realizations. Ideological (or nonreductive)functionalism's defining tenet is that mental properties can only bedefined nonreductively, in terms of the general pattern of theirinteraction with one another. My Self-consciousness Argumentestablishes: (1) ontological functionalism is mistaken because itsproposed definitions wrongly admit realizations (vs. mentalproperties) into the contents of self-consciousness; (2)ideological (nonreductive) functionalism is the only viable alternativefor functionalists. Michael Tooley's critique misses the (...) target:he offers no criticism of (1) – except for an incidental, andincorrect, attack on certain self-intimation principles – and,since he himself proposes a certain form of nonreductive definition, hetacitly accepts (2). Finally, as with all other nonreductivedefinitions, Tooley's proposal can be shown to undermine functionalism'sultimate goal: its celebrated materialist solution to theMind-Body Problem. The explanation of these points will require adiscussion of: Frege-Russell disagreements regarding intensionalcontexts; the relationship between self-consciousness and thetraditional doctrine of acquaintance; the role of self-intimationprinciples in functionalist psychology; and the Kripke-Lewiscontroversy over the nature of theoretical terms. (shrink)
In this paper I rehearse two central failings of traditional possible world semantics. I then present a much more robust framework for intensional logic and semantics based liberally on the work of George Bealer in his book Quality and Concept. Certain expressive limitations of Bealer's approach, however, lead me to extend the framework in a particularly natural and useful way. This extension, in turn, brings to light associated limitations of Bealer's account of predication. In response, I develop a more general (...) and intuitively more adequate account of the logical form of predication. (shrink)
It is commonly held, plausibly, that many true beliefs are true only contingently, that is, are actually true (or true with respect to the actual world) but would be false were the world in some relevant ways otherwise (i.e. are false with respect to some other possible worlds). However, a radically different approach, according to which no belief is contingently true, is entirely defensible. The key point in this alternative approach is that each belief concerns the world in which the (...) believer is (or would be) situated, which makes it the case that, say, the actual belief that Kofi Annan is not bald is different from the belief, in any other world, that Kofi Annan is not bald. This difference is further backed up by considerations related to disagreement between believers, and to knowledge. The most important objection to this alternative approach is that it cannot be right since it makes all true beliefs necessarily true. It will be shown, as a reply to this objection, that under this alternative approach it can still be said truly, for instance, that Annan is not bald but could have been so. (shrink)
The paper presents Property Theory with Curry Typing (PTCT) where the language of terms and well-formed formulæ are joined by a language of types. In addition to supporting fine-grained intensionality, the basic theory is essentially first-order, so that implementations using the theory can apply standard first-order theorem proving techniques. Some extensions to the type theory are discussed, type polymorphism, and enriching the system with sufficient number theory to account for quantifiers of proportion, such as “most.”.
Building on Ben-Avi and Winter’s (2007) work, this paper provides a general “intensionalization” procedure that turns an extensional semantics for a language into an intensionalized one that is capable of accommodating “truly intensional” lexical items without changing the compositional semantic rules. We prove some formal properties of this procedure and clarify its relation to the procedure implicit in Montague’s (1973) PTQ.
In Attitude Problems , I gave an account of opacity in the complement of intensional transitive verbs that combined neo-Davidsonian event-semantics with a hidden-indexical account of substitution failure. In this paper, I extend the account to clausal verbs.
A verb is transitive iff it usually occurs with a direct object, and in such occurrences it is said to occur transitively . Thus ‘ate’ occurs transitively in ‘I ate the meat and left the vegetables’, but not in ‘I ate then left’ (perhaps it is not the same verb ‘left’ in these two examples, but it seems to be the same ‘ate’). A verb is intensional if the verb phrase (VP) it forms with its complement is anomalous in at (...) least one of three ways: (i) interchanging expressions in the complement referring to the same entity can change the truth-value of the sentence embedding the VP; (ii) the VP admits of a special “unspecific” reading if it contains a quantifier, or a certain type of quantifier; and (iii) the normal existential commitments of names and existential quantifiers in the complement are suspended even when the embedding sentence is negation-free. (shrink)
The author examines the differences between the general intensional logic defined in his recent book and Montague's intensional logic. Whereas Montague assigned extensions and intensions to expressions (and employed set theory to construct these values as certain sets), the author assigns denotations to terms and relies upon an axiomatic theory of intensional entities that covers properties, relations, propositions, worlds, and other abstract objects. It is then shown that the puzzles for Montague's analyses of modality and descriptions, propositional attitudes, and directedness (...) towards nonexistents can be solved using the author's logic. (shrink)
In this paper we deﬁne intensional models for the classical theory of types, thus arriving at an intensional type logic ITL. Intensional models generalize Henkin’s general models and have a natural deﬁnition. As a..
According to a widespread view in medieval scholarship, theories of supposition are the medieval counterparts of theories of reference, and are thus essentially extensional theories. I propose an alternative interpretation: theories of supposition are theories of properties of terms, but whose aim is to allow for the interpretation of sentences. This holds especially of Ockham’s supposition theory, which is the main object of analysis in this paper. In particular, I argue for my intensional interpretation of his theory on the basis (...) of two key-phrases in his Summa Logicae: ‘denotatur’ and ‘propositio est distinguenda’. Finally, I offer a reconstruction of his theory as a set of instructions to be carried out in order to generate the possible readings of (certain) sentences. (shrink)
In this note we present a three-valued intensional logic, which is an extension of both Montague's intensional logic and ukasiewicz three-valued logic. Our system is obtained by adapting Gallin's version of intensional logic (see Gallin, D., Intensional and Higher-order Modal Logic). Here we give only the necessary modifications to the latter. An acquaintance with Gallin's work is pressuposed.
There is an obvious difference between what a term designates and what it means. At least it is obvious that there is a difference. In some way, meaning determines designation, but is not synonymous with it. After all, “the morning star” and “the evening star” both designate the planet Venus, but don't have the same meaning. Intensional logic attempts to study both designation and meaning and investigate the relationships between them.
The complement of intensional transitive verbs, like any nonreferential complement, can be replaced by a ‘special quantifier’ or ‘special pronoun’ such as 'something', 'the same thing', or 'what'. In this paper, I will defend the ‘Nominalization Theory’ of special quantifiers against a range of apparent counterexamples involving intensional transitive verbs.
First-order modal logic is very much under current development, with many diﬀerent semantics proposed. The use of rigid objects goes back to Saul Kripke. More recently several semantics based on counterparts have been examined, in a development that goes back to David Lewis. There is yet another line of research, using intensional objects, that traces back to Richard Montague. I have been involved with this line of development for some time. In the present paper I brieﬂy sketch several of (...) the approaches to ﬁrst-order modal logic. Then I present one that I call FOIL (for ﬁrst-order intensional logic) in the Montague tradition that, I believe, is both expressive and natural. I brieﬂy discuss in what sense it can be made to encompass the other approaches. Finally I provide tableau rules to go with the FOIL semantics. (shrink)
Although the use of possible worlds in semantics has been very fruitful and is now widely accepted, there is a puzzle about the standard definition of validity in possible-worlds semantics that has received little notice and virtually no comment. A sentence of an intensional language is typically said to be valid just in case it is true at every world under every model on every model structure of the language. Each model structure contains a set of possible worlds, and models (...) are defined relative to model structures, assigning truth-values to sentences at each world countenanced by the model structure. The puzzle is why more than one model structure is used in the definition of validity. There is presumably just one class of all possible worlds and just one model structure defined on this class that does correctly the things that model structures are supposed to do. (These include, but need not be limited to, specifying the set of individuals in each world as well as various accessibility relations between worlds.) Why not define validity simply as truth at every world under every model on this one model structure? What is the point of bringing in more model structures than just this one?
We investigate these questions in some detail and conclude that for many intensional languages the puzzle points to a genuine difficulty: the standard definition of validity is insufficiently motivated. We begin (Section 1) by showing that a plausible and natural account of validity for intensional languages can be based on a single model structure, and that validity so defined is analogous in important respects to the standard account of validity for extensional languages. We call this notion of validity "validity!", and in Section 2 we contrast it with the standard notion, which we call "validity2". Several attempts are made to discover a rationale for the almost universal acceptance of validity2, but in most of these attempts we come up empty-handed. So in Section 3 we investigate validity! for some intensional languages. Our investigation includes providing axiomatizations for several propositional and predicate logics, most of which are provably complete. The completeness proofs are given in the Appendix, which also contains a sketch of a compactness proof for one of the predicate logics. (shrink)
Classical ﬁrst-order logic can be extended in two diﬀerent ways to serve as a foundation for mathematics: introduce higher orders, type theory, or introduce sets. As it happens, both approaches have natural analogs for quantiﬁed modal logics, both approaches date from the 1960’s, one is not very well-known, and the other is well-known as something else. I will present the basic semantic ideas of both higher order intensional logic, and intensional set theory. Before doing so, I’ll quickly sketch some necessary (...) background material from quantiﬁed modal logic. Except for standard material concerning propositional modal logics, the paper is essentially self-contained. (shrink)
A system of tensed intensional logic excluding iterations of intensions is introduced. Instead of using the type symbols (for ‘sense’), extensional and intensional functor types are distinguished. A peculiarity of the semantics is the general acceptance of value-gaps (including truth-value-gaps): the possible semantic values (extensions) of extensional functors are partial functions. Some advantages of the system (relatively to R. Montague's intensional logic) are briefly indicated. Also, applications for modelling natural languages are illustrated by examples.
One of the fundamental properties inclassical equational reasoning isLeibniz's principle of substitution. Unfortunately, this propertydoes not hold instandard epistemic logic. Furthermore,Herbrand's lifting theorem which isessential to thecompleteness ofresolution andParamodulation in theclassical first order logic (FOL), turns out to be invalid in standard epistemic logic. In particular, unlike classical logic, there is no skolemization normal form for standard epistemic logic. To solve these problems, we introduce anintensional epistemic logic, based on avariation of Kripke's possible-worlds semantics that need not have a constant (...) domain. We show how a weaker notion of substitution through indexed terms can retain the Herbrand theorem. We prove how the logic can yield a satisfibility preserving skolemization form. In particular, we present an intensional principle for unifing indexed terms. Finally, we describe asound andcomplete inference system for a Horn subset of the logic withequality, based onepistemic SLD-resolution. (shrink)
This paper investigates relative constructions as in The gifted mathematician that you claim to be should be able to solve this equation, in which the head noun (gifted mathematician) is semantically dependent on an intensional operator in the relative clause (claim), even though it is not c-commanded by it. This is the kind of situation that has led, within models of linguistic description that assume a syntactic level of Logical Form, to analyses in which the head noun is interpreted within (...) the CP-internal gap by reconstruction or interpretation of a lower element of a chain. We offer a solution that views surface representation as the input to semantics. The apparent inverted scope effects are traced back to the interpretation of the head nominal gifted mathematician as applying to individual concepts, and of the relative clause that you claim to be as including an equational statement. According to this view, the complex DP in question refers to the individual concept that exists just in the worlds that are compatible with what is generally supposed to be the case, is a gifted mathematician in those worlds, and is identical to you in those worlds. Our solution is related to the nonreconstructionist analysis of binding of pronouns that do not stand in a c-command relationship to their binder, as in The woman that every man hugged was his mother in Jacobson (in: Harvey, Santelmann (eds.) Proceedings of Semantics and Linguistic Theory IV:161–178, 1994) and Sharvit (in: Galloway, Spence (eds.) Proceedings of Semantics and Linguistic Theory VI:227–244, 1996), and allows us to capture both similarities with and differences from the latter type of construction. We point out and offer explanations for a number of properties of such relative clauses—in particular their need for an internal intensional operator, their incompatibility with any determiner other than the definite article, and the fact that some of their properties are shared by demonstrably distinct kinds of relative clauses. (shrink)
In philosophical logic necessity is usually conceived as a sentential operator rather than as a predicate. An intensional sentential operator does not allow one to express quantified statements such as 'There are necessary a posteriori propositions' or 'All laws of physics are necessary' in first-order logic in a straightforward way, while they are readily formalized if necessity is formalized by a predicate. Replacing the operator conception of necessity by the predicate conception, however, causes various problems and forces one to reject (...) many philosophical accounts involving necessity that are based on the use of operator modal logic. We argue that the expressive power of the predicate account can be restored if a truth predicate is added to the language of first-order modal logic, because the predicate 'is necessary' can then be replaced by 'is necessarily true'. We prove a result showing that this substitution is technically feasible. To this end we provide partial possible-worlds semantics for the language with a predicate of necessity and perform the reduction of necessities to necessary truths. The technique applies also to many other intensional notions that have been analysed by means of modal operators. (shrink)