Thought: A Journal of Philosophy

ISSNs: 2161-2234, 2161-2234

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  1.  24
    The Problem of Isomorphic Structures.Owain Griffin - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (4):206-214.
    Structuralism is one of the most popular contemporary accounts of mathematics. Despite its popularity, it has been challenged on the grounds of consistency. In this paper, I show that existing arguments purporting to establish an inconsistency miss the mark. I then proceed to develop a new argument against realist structuralism, to show that the commitment to mathematical pluralism and the structural identity criterion embraced by the realist structuralist jointly entail a contradiction.
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  2.  27
    Completeness also Solves Carnap’s Problem.Eric Johannesson - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (4):192-198.
    In what sense, and to what extent, do rules of inference determine the meaning of logical constants? Motivated by the principle of charity, a natural constraint on the interpretation of logical constants is to make the rules of inference come out sound. But, as Carnap observed, although this constraint does rule out some non-standard interpretations, it does not rule them all out. This is known as Carnap’s problem. I suggest that a charitable interpretation of the logical constants should, as far (...)
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  3.  10
    Snyder and Shapiro’s Critique of Pseudo-Singularity.Alexander Oliver & Timothy Smiley - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (4):226-231.
    Call a term ‘pseudo-singular’ if it is syntactically singular but semantically plural. ‘The pair who wrote Principia’ is a good example, standing as it does for the two individuals, Whitehead and Russell. In this journal (2021), Eric Snyder and Stewart Shapiro launched an attack on the idea, calling it ‘linguistically and logically untenable.’ In this reply we rebut every one of their criticisms.
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  4.  33
    Kripke against Kripkenstein.Jaakko Reinikainen - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (4):241-248.
    What was Saul Kripke’s personal stance on the sceptical challenge that he famously attributed to Ludwig Wittgenstein? It will be argued that despite his statements to the contrary, we can, in fact, outline at least a rough sketch of Kripke’s own views on the challenge and its aftermath on the basis of the remarks he left in the text. In summary, Kripke (a) rejected the sceptical solution to the challenge and (b) leaned towards a non-sceptical primitivist solution. If this is (...)
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  5.  33
    In Defence of Radically Enactive Imagination.Ian George Robertson - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (4):184-191.
    Hutto and Myin defend, on the basis of their “radically enactive” approach to cognition, the contention that there are certain forms of imaginative activity that are entirely devoid of representational content. In a recent Thought article, Roelofs argues that Hutto and Myin’s arguments fail to recognise the role of representation in maintaining the structural isomorphisms between mental models and things in the world required for imagination be action-guiding. This reply to Roelofs argues that his objection fails because it fails to (...)
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  6.  12
    Shadows of Sentences.Giorgio Sbardolini - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (4):215-225.
    Propositions are defined by abstraction from an equivalence relation on sentences. The equivalence is synonymy. The resulting view, Propositional Abstractionism, has roots in Frege’s work, and considerable advantages over competitors. The key to the advantages is that Propositional Abstractionism puts language first. Consequently, in metaphysics, granularity debates benefit from linguistic evidence; in logic, abstraction is a safeguard against higher-order paradoxes; in epistemology, questions of knowledge of propositions can be approached as questions about semantic competence. These benefits form a package that (...)
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  7.  79
    The Paper Chase Case and Epistemic Accounts of Request Normativity.Danny Weltman - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (4):199-205.
    According to the epistemic account of request normativity, a request gives us reasons by revealing normatively relevant information. The information is normative, not the request itself. I raise a new objection to the epistemic account based on situations where we might try to avoid someone requesting something of us. The best explanation of these situations seems to be that we do not want to acquire a new reason to do something. For example, if you know I am going to ask (...)
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  8. Two-Dimensional Theories of Art.Thomas N. P. A. Brouwer - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (3):142-149.
    What determines whether an object is an artwork? In this paper I consider what I will call ‘social’ theories of art, according to which the arthood of objects depends in some way on the art-related social practices that we have. Though such a dependence claim is plausible in principle, social theories of art tend to unpack the determining link between artworks and social practices in terms of intentional relations between the objects in question and the people involved in the relevant (...)
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  9.  20
    Two-Dimensional Theories of Art.Thomas N. P. A. Brouwer - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (3):142-149.
    What determines whether an object is an artwork? In this paper I consider what I will call ‘social’ theories of art, according to which the arthood of objects depends in some way on the art-related social practices that we have. Though such a dependence claim is plausible in principle, social theories of art tend to unpack the determining link between artworks and social practices in terms of intentional relations between the objects in question and the people involved in the relevant (...)
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  10.  5
    Subset Realization and the Entailment Problem.Jonas F. Christensen - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (3):165-169.
    According to the principle of conditional power aggregation (CPA), conditional powers conjoin when the properties that bestow them conjoin. Sophie Gibb has argued that CPA is false given Shoemaker’s account of conditional powers and that this leads to a problem for his account of subset realization. In short: If CPA is rejected, subset realization fails to be an entailment relation, in which case it cannot provide a basis for non-reductive physicalism. I defend the subset account against this argument by denying (...)
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  11.  34
    Faultless Disagreement as Evidence for Moral Relativism.Patrick Denning - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (3):122-133.
    Arguments from faultless disagreement appeal to the possibility of mistake-free disagreement as evidence for semantic relativism. Typically, these arguments focus on paradigmatically subjective topics such as taste, aesthetics, and comedy. Many philosophers hold that ethics is also a subjective topic. But so far, there has been little discussion of faultless disagreement in ethics. In this paper, I advance an argument from faultless moral disagreement, in favour of a relativist semantics for ethics.
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  12. Epistemic Domination.Keith Raymond Harris - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (3):134-141.
    This paper identifies and elucidates the underappreciated phenomenon of epistemic domination. Epistemic domination is the nonmutual capacity of one party to control the evidence available to another. Where this capacity is exercised, especially by parties that are ill-intentioned or ill-informed, the dominated party may have difficulty attaining epistemically valuable states. I begin with a discussion of epistemic domination and how it is possible. I then highlight three negative consequences that may result from epistemic domination.
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  13.  43
    Removing Realizers: Reply to Rellihan.Thomas Krödel - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (3):150-156.
    The paper replies to Matthew Rellihan’s recent criticism of Thomas Kroedel’s simple argument for downward causation. Rellihan argues that the simple argument equivocates between two notions of realizers of mental properties, namely total realizers and core realizers. According to Rellihan, one premise of the argument is false on each disambiguation. In response, this paper argues that the version of the argument in terms of total realizers is sound after all if we evaluate counterfactual conditionals about the non-occurrence of total realizers (...)
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  14.  12
    The Knowledge of Contradictions.Daniel Molto & Spencer Johnston - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (3):157-164.
    If there are true contradictions, where are they? In language or in the world? According to one important view, best represented by Jc Beall (2009), only the former. In this paper, we raise a problem for this view. In order to defend a “merely semantic” version of dialetheism (aka ‘glut theory’), Beall adopts transparent accounts of truth and falsity, which gives rise to “dialethic ascent” on which true contradictions are also, contradictorily, untrue contradictions. This is a consequence of trying to (...)
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  15.  36
    Suppositional Attitudes and the Reliability of Heuristics for Assessing Conditionals.Joseph Salerno - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (3):175-183.
    Timothy Williamson contends that our primary cognitive heuristic for prospectively assessing conditionals, i.e., the suppositional procedure, is provably inconsistent. Our diagnosis is that stipulations about the nature of suppositional rejection are the likely source of these results. We show that on at least one alternative, and quite natural, understanding of the suppositional attitudes, the inconsistency results are blocked. The upshot is an increase in the reliability of our suppositional heuristics across a wider range of contexts. One interesting consequence of the (...)
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  16.  5
    The Co-Intension Problem.Jarred Jace Snodgrass - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (3):170-174.
    Gonzalo Rodriguez-Pereyra has presented an objection to the co-intension problem. According to this objection, the examples of properties often cited to motivate the co-intension problem are actually relational properties, and so turn out not to be co-intensional. In this essay, I want to revisit Rodriguez-Pereyra’s objection and explain why I find it defective.
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  17.  18
    Fictional Resistance and Real Feelings.Niall Connolly - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (2):106-113.
    This paper outlines a solution to the puzzle of imaginative resistance that makes—and if successful helps to vindicate—two assumptions. The solution first assumes a relationship between moral judgements and affective states of the subject. It also assumes the correctness of accounts of imaginative engagement with fiction—like Kendall Walton’s account—that treat engagement with fiction as prop-based make-believe in which works of fiction, but also appreciators of those works, figure as props. The key to understanding imaginative resistance, it maintains, is understanding how (...)
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  18.  34
    Willpower and Well-Being.Daniel Coren - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (2):114-121.
    How is willpower possible? Which desires are relevant to well-being? Despite a surge of interest in both questions, recent philosophical discussions have not connected them. I connect them here. In particular, the puzzle of synchronic self-control says that synchronic self-control requires a contradiction, namely, wanting not to do what we most want to do. Three responses have been developed: Sripada’s divided mind view, Mele’s motivational shift thesis, and Kennett and Smith’s non-actional approach. These responses do not incorporate distinctions from desire-satisfaction (...)
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  19.  18
    Willpower and Well-Being.Daniel Coren - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (2):114-121.
    How is willpower possible? Which desires are relevant to well-being? Despite a surge of interest in both questions, recent philosophical discussions have not connected them. I connect them here. In particular, the puzzle of synchronic self-control says that synchronic self-control requires a contradiction, namely, wanting not to do what we most want to do. Three responses have been developed: Sripada’s divided mind view, Mele’s motivational shift thesis, and Kennett and Smith’s non-actional approach. These responses do not incorporate distinctions from desire-satisfaction (...)
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  20.  51
    The Death of Logic?Travis Figg - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (2):72-77.
    In support of logical nihilism, according to which there are no logical laws, Gillian Russell offers purported counterexamples to two laws of logic. Russell’s examples rely on cleverly constructed predicates not found in ordinary English. I show that similar apparent counterexamples to the same logical laws can be constructed without exotic predicates but using only what ordinary language provides. We correctly analyze such arguments so that they do not actually constitute counterexamples to any logic laws. I claim that we can (...)
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  21. Decisions under Ignorance and the Individuation of States of Nature.Johan E. Gustafsson - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (2):86-92.
    How do you make decisions under ignorance? That is, how do you decide when you lack subjective probabilities for some of your options’ possible outcomes? One answer is that you follow the Laplace Rule: you assign an equal probability to each state of nature for which you lack a subjective probability (that is, you use the Principle of Indifference) and then you maximize expected utility. The most influential objection to the Laplace Rule is that it is sensitive to the individuation (...)
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  22. Reconciling the Epistemic and the Zetetic.Eliran Haziza - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (2):93-100.
    In recent work, Jane Friedman has argued that commonly accepted epistemic norms conflict with a basic instrumental principle of inquiry, according to which one ought to take the necessary means to resolving one’s inquiry. According to Friedman, we ought to reject the epistemic norms in question and accept instead that the only genuine epistemic norms are zetetic norms—norms that govern inquiry. I argue that there is a more attractive way out of the conflict, one which reconciles the epistemic and the (...)
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  23. Goodness beyond Reason.Roberto Keller - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (2):78-85.
    Reasons-first theorists claim that facts about reasons for attitudes are normatively primitive, and that all other normative facts ultimately reduce to facts about reasons. According to their view, for example, the fact that something is good ultimately reduces to facts about reasons to favour it. I argue that these theories face a challenging dilemma due to the normativity of arational lifeforms, for instance the fact that water is good for plants. If all normative facts are, ultimately, facts about reasons for (...)
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  24. On a Definition of Logical Consequence.Nils Kürbis - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (2):64-71.
    Bilateralists, who accept that there are two primitive speech acts, assertion and denial, can offer an attractive definition of consequence: Y follows from X if and only if it is incoherent to assert all formulas X and to deny all formulas Y. The present paper argues that this definition has consequences many will find problematic, amongst them that truth coincides with assertibility. Philosophers who reject these consequences should therefore reject this definition of consequence.
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  25.  45
    Preference Change and Utility Conditionalization.Michael Nielsen - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (2):101-105.
    Olav Vassend has recently (2021) presented a decision-theoretic argument for updating utility functions by what he calls “utility conditionalization.” Vassend’s argument is meant to mirror closely the well-known argument for Bayesian conditionalization due to Hilary Greaves and David Wallace (2006). I show that Vassend’s argument is inconsistent with ZF set theory and argue that it therefore does not provide support for utility conditionalization.
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  26. Scalar Epistemic Consequentialism.Dan Cavedon-Taylor - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (1):1-5.
    The following is an advertisement for scalar epistemic consequentialism. Benefits include an epistemic consequentialism that (i) is immune from the the no-positive-epistemic-duties objection and (ii) doesn’t require bullet-biting on the rightness of epistemic tradeoffs. The advertisement invites readers to think more carefully about both the definition and logical space of epistemic consequentialism.
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  27.  58
    No Choice for Incompatibilism.Julio De Rizzo - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (1):6-13.
    P. van Inwagen famously offered three precise versions of the so-called Consequence Argument for incompatibilism. The third of these essentially employs the notion of an agent’s having a choice with respect to a proposition. In this paper, I offer two intuitively attractive accounts of this notion in terms of the explanatory connective ‘because’ and explore the prospects of the third argument once they are in play. Under either account, the argument fails.
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  28. Splitting the (In)Difference: Why Fine-Tuning Supports Design.Chris Dorst & Kevin Dorst - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (1):14-23.
    Given the laws of our universe, the initial conditions and cosmological constants had to be "fine-tuned" to result in life. Is this evidence for design? We argue that we should be uncertain whether an ideal agent would take it to be so—but that given such uncertainty, we should react to fine-tuning by boosting our confidence in design. The degree to which we should do so depends on our credences in controversial metaphysical issues.
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  29. The Out of Character Objection to the Character Condition on Moral Responsibility.Robert J. Hartman & Benjamin Matheson - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (1):24-31.
    According to the character condition, a person is morally responsible for an action A only if a character trait of hers non-accidentally motivates her performing A. But that condition is untenable according to the out of character objection because people can be morally responsible for acting out of character. We reassess this common objection. Of the seven accounts of acting out of character that we outline, only one is even a prima facie counterexample to the character condition. And it is (...)
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  30. Finding Excuses for J=K.Roman Matthaeus Heil - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (1):32-40.
    According to J=K, only beliefs that qualify as knowledge are epistemically justified. Traditionalists about justification have objected to this view that it predicts that radically deceived subjects do not have justified beliefs, which they take to be counter-intuitive. In response, proponents of J=K have argued that traditionalists mistake being justified with being excused in the relevant cases. To make this response work, Timothy Williamson has offered a dispositional account of excuse which has recently been challenged by Jessica Brown. She has (...)
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  31. Not More than a Feeling.Kevin Reuter, Michael Messerli & Luca Barlassina - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (1):41-50.
    Affect-based theorists and life satisfaction theorists disagree about the nature of happiness, but agree about this methodological principle: a philosophical theory of happiness should be in line with the folk concept HAPPINESS. In this article, we present two empirical studies indicating that it is affect-based theories that get the folk concept HAPPINESS right: competent speakers judge a person to be happy if and only if that person is described as feeling pleasure/good most of the time. Our studies also show that (...)
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  32. A Higher-Order Approach to Diachronic Continence.Catherine Rioux - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (1):51-58.
    We often form intentions to resist anticipated future temptations. But when confronted with the temptations our resolutions were designed to withstand, we tend to revise our previous evaluative judgments and conclude that we should now succumb—only to then revert to our initial evaluations, once temptation has subsided. Some evaluative judgments made under the sway of temptation are mistaken. But not all of them are. When the belief that one should now succumb is a proper response to relevant considerations that have (...)
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  33.  27
    Everett, Lotteries, and Fairness.Thomas Rowe & David Papineau - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (1):59-63.
    Defenders of the Everettian version of quantum mechanics generally hold that it makes no difference to what we ought to do. This paper will argue against this stance, by considering the use of lotteries to select the recipients of indivisible goods. On orthodox non-Everettian metaphysics this practice faces the objection that only actual and not probable goods matter to distributive justice. However, this objection loses all force within Everettianism. This result should be of interest to both philosophers of physics and (...)
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  34.  11
    Editorial Note.Crispin Wright - 2022 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 11 (1):4-4.
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