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  1. All Men Are Animals: Hypothetical, Categorical, or Material?Rani Lill Anjum & Johan Arnt Myrstad - manuscript
    The conditional interpretation of general categorical statements like ‘All men are animals’ as universally quantified material conditionals ‘For all x, if x is F, then x is G’ suggests that the logical structure of law statements is conditional rather than categorical. Disregarding the problem that the universally quantified material conditional is trivially true whenever there are no xs that are F, there are some reasons to be sceptical of Frege’s equivalence between categorical and conditional expressions. -/- Now many philosophers will (...)
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  2. In Defence of a Naïve Conditional Epistemology.Andrew Bacon - manuscript
    Numerous triviality results have been directed at a collection of views that tie the probability of a conditional sentence to the conditional probability of the consequent on its antecedent. -/- In this paper I argue that this identification makes little sense if conditional sentences are context sensitive. The best alternative, I argue, is a version of the thesis which states that if your total evidence is E then the evidential probability of a conditional evaluated in a context where E is (...)
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  3. Breaking de Morgan's Law in Counterfactual Antecedents.Lucas Champollion, Ivano Ciardelli & Linmin Zhang - manuscript
    The main goal of this paper is to investigate the relation between the meaning of a sentence and its truth conditions. We report on a comprehension experiment on counterfactual conditionals, based on a context in which a light is controlled by two switches. Our main finding is that the truth-conditionally equivalent clauses (i) "switch A or switch B is down" and (ii) "switch A and switch B are not both up" make different semantic contributions when embedded in a conditional antecedent. (...)
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  4. Modus Ponens and the Logic of Decision.Nate Charlow - manuscript
  5. Keep All Your Textbooks.Matheus Silva - manuscript
    Akman (2017) argued that our logic textbooks should be burned, since they present a propositional analysis of necessary and sufficient conditions that leads to a contradiction. According to Akman, we should instead adopt a first-order analysis where conditions are interpreted as one-place predicates. I will argue that (1) Akman’s argument fails to show that the propositional analysis of conditions leads to a contradiction, since the negation of a conjunction is not a conjunction with negated conjuncts, but rather a disjunction with (...)
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  6. Looking for the Missing Antecedent.Matheus Silva - manuscript
    The conclusion of a valid deductive argument is contained in its premises, but the deductive argument can still be informative if the arguer is trying to find the missing premises that together with the accepted premises will ensure the truth of the conclusion. Necessarily true conditionals have a deductive-like character so their consequents are contained in their antecedents. These conditionals can be informative, so we need to find the missing antecedent that makes the connection between the antecedent and the consequent. (...)
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  7. Modus Ponens, Conditional-Circularity and Material Implication.Matheus Silva - manuscript
    The modus ponens can be interpreted as an answer to a circularity charge, but this strategy is only feasible if the additional conditional premise is interpreted as a claim to a material implication. Here’s how it works.
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  8. Subjunctive Conditionals Are Material.Matheus Silva - manuscript
    The material account claims that indicative conditionals are material. However, the conventional wisdom even among material account enthusiasts is that the material account cannot be extended to subjunctive conditionals. There are mainly three reasons that motivate this consensus: (1) the belief that if subjunctives were material, most subjunctive conditionals would be vacuously true, which is implausible; (2) its inconsistency with Adam pairs, which suggest that indicative and subjunctive conditionals have different truth conditions; and (3) the belief that it is an (...)
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  9. The Inextricable Link Between Conditionals and Logical Consequence.Matheus Silva - manuscript
    There is a profound, but frequently ignored, relationship between the classical conception of logical consequence and the material implication. The first repeats the patterns of the latter, but with a wider modal reach. This relationship suggests that there should be also a connection between the notion of logical consequence and the conditional connective of any given logical system. This implies, among other things, that it is incoherent to propose alternatives to the material implication while maintaining the classical conception of logical (...)
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  10. Directional Bias - Why Most Philosophers (Wrongly) Believe Conditionals Are Not Material.Matheus Silva - manuscript
    There is almost a consensus among philosophers that indicative conditionals are not material. Their thought hinges on the idea that if conditionals were material, A → B could be vacuously true even if the truth of A would lead to the falsity of B. But since this consequence is implausible, the material account must be false. I will argue that this point of view is mistaken, since it is motivated by the grammatical form of conditional sentences and the symbols used (...)
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  11. The Logical Web - Why Most Alternatives to the Material Account Are Ad Hoc.Matheus Silva - manuscript
    The material account of indicative conditionals states that indicative conditional sentences and the material implication have the same truth conditions. Many conditional logics are motivated by attempts to fix the counter-intuitive aspects associated with the material account. Some counter-intuitive instances of classical argumentative forms, e.g., strengthening of the antecedent, contraposition, and conditional negation, are regarded as evidence that the material account is wrong and that classical logic should be rejected in favour of a new logic system in which these argumentative (...)
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  12. Indicative Conditionals Are Material - Expanding the Survey.Matheus Martins Silva - manuscript
    The material account of indicative conditionals states that indicative conditional sentences and the material implication have the same truth conditions. Recently, Adam Rieger has carried out a survey of arguments in favour of the material account. In this paper, I extend this survey by presenting yet more arguments for the material account. On top of presenting more arguments, I also want to argue that it is plausible to extend the material account to subjunctive conditionals. For that reason, the arguments here (...)
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  13. If Counterfactuals Were Neg-Raisers, Conditional Excluded Middle Wouldn’T Be Valid.Patrick Todd & Brian Rabern - manuscript
    The principle of Conditional Excluded Middle has been a matter of longstanding controversy in both semantics and metaphysics. According to this principle, we are, inter alia, committed to claims like the following: If the coin had been flipped, it would have landed heads, or if the coin had been flipped, it would not have landed heads. In favour of the principle, theorists have appealed, primarily, to linguistic data such as that we tend to hear ¬(A > B) as equivalent to (...)
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  14. Some Strong Conditionals for Sentential Logics.Jason Zarri - manuscript
    In this article I define a strong conditional for classical sentential logic, and then extend it to three non-classical sentential logics. It is stronger than the material conditional and is not subject to the standard paradoxes of material implication, nor is it subject to some of the standard paradoxes of C. I. Lewis’s strict implication. My conditional has some counterintuitive consequences of its own, but I think its pros outweigh its cons. In any case, one can always augment one’s language (...)
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  15. The Logic of Counterfactuals in Causal Inference.Judea Pearl - manuscript
  16. How Strong is a Counterfactual?David Boylan & Ginger Schultheis - forthcoming - Journal of Philosophy.
    There are two leading theories about the meaning of counterfactuals, the Variably Strict Analysis (VSA) and the Strict Analysis (SA). Perhaps most famously, VSA and SA disagree about a principle known as Antecedent Strengtheing: SA validates the principle; VSA does not. Early VSA theorists believed that certain apparent counterexamples to Antecedent Strengthening— now known as Sobel Sequences—refuted SA. More recently, defenders of SA have enriched SA with certain dynamic principles governing how context evolves and argued that Sobel sequences are not (...)
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  17. Experimenting with (Conditional) Perfection.Fabrizio Cariani & Lance J. Rips - forthcoming - In Stefan Kaufmann, David Over & Ghanshyam Sharma (eds.), Conditionals: Logic, Semantics, Psychology.
    Conditional perfection is the phenomenon in which conditionals are strengthened to biconditionals. In some contexts, “If A, B” is understood as if it meant “A if and only if B.” We present and discuss a series of experiments designed to test one of the most promising pragmatic accounts of conditional perfection. This is the idea that conditional perfection is a form of exhaustification—that is a strengthening to an exhaustive reading, triggered by a question that the conditional answers. If a speaker (...)
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  18. Indicative and counterfactual conditionals: a causal-modeling semantics.Duen-Min Deng & Kok Yong Lee - forthcoming - Synthese:1-22.
    We construct a causal-modeling semantics for both indicative and counterfactual conditionals. As regards counterfactuals, we adopt the orthodox view that a counterfactual conditional is true in a causal model M just in case its consequent is true in the submodel \, generated by intervening in M, in which its antecedent is true. We supplement the orthodox semantics by introducing a new manipulation called extrapolation. We argue that an indicative conditional is true in a causal model M just in case its (...)
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  19. Indicative Conditionals Without Iterative Epistemology.Ben Holguín - forthcoming - Noûs.
    This paper argues that two widely accepted principles about the indicative conditional jointly presuppose the falsity of one of the most prominent arguments against epistemological iteration principles. The first principle about the indicative conditional, which has close ties both to the Ramsey test and the “or-to-if” inference, says that knowing a material conditional suffices for knowing the corresponding indicative. The second principle says that conditional contradictions cannot be true when their antecedents are epistemically possible. Taken together, these principles entail that (...)
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  20. Counterlogicals as Counterconventionals.Alexander W. Kocurek & Ethan J. Jerzak - forthcoming - Journal of Philosophical Logic:1-32.
    We develop and defend a new approach to counterlogicals. Non-vacuous counterlogicals, we argue, fall within a broader class of counterfactuals known as counterconventionals. Existing semantics for counterconventionals (developed by Einheuser (2006) and Kocurek et al. (2020)) allow counterfactuals to shift the interpretation of predicates and relations. We extend these theories to counterlogicals by allowing counterfactuals to shift the interpretation of logical vocabulary. This yields an elegant semantics for counterlogicals that avoids problems with the usual impossible worlds semantics. We conclude by (...)
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  21. The Case of the Missing ‘If’: Accessibility Relations in Stalnaker’s Theory of Conditionals.Matthew Mandelkern - forthcoming - Semantics and Pragmatics.
    A part of Stalnaker (1968)’s influential theory of conditionals has been neglected, namely the role for an accessibility relation between worlds. I argue that the accessibility relation does not play the role intended for it in the theory as stated, and propose a minimal revision which solves the problem, and brings the theory in line with the formulation in Stalnaker & Thomason 1970.
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  22. If P, Then P!Matthew Mandelkern - forthcoming - Journal of Philosophy.
    The Identity principle says that conditionals with the form 'If p, then p' are logical truths. Identity is overwhelmingly plausible, and has rarely been explicitly challenged. But a wide range of conditionals nonetheless invalidate it. I explain the problem, and argue that the culprit is the principle known as Import-Export, which we must thus reject. I then explore how we can reject Import-Export in a way that still makes sense of the intuitions that support it, arguing that the differences between (...)
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  23. Necessary and Sufficient Conditions.Michael Shaffer - forthcoming - In Introduction to Logic. Rebus.
  24. Indicative Conditionals: Probabilities and Relevance.Franz Berto & Aybüke Özgün - 2021 - Philosophical Studies.
    We propose a new account of indicative conditionals, giving acceptability and logical closure conditions for them. We start from Adams’ Thesis: the claim that the acceptability of a simple indicative equals the corresponding conditional probability. The Thesis is widely endorsed, but arguably false and refuted by empirical research. To fix it, we submit, we need a relevance constraint: we accept a simple conditional 'If φ, then ψ' to the extent that (i) the conditional probability p(ψ|φ) is high, provided that (ii) (...)
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  25. Roads to Necessitarianism.Matthew Mandelkern & Daniel Rothschild - 2021 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 50 (1):89-96.
    We show that each of three natural sets of assumptions about the conditional entails necessitarianism: that anything possible is necessary.
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  26. Context and Coherence: The Logic and Grammar of Prominence.Una Stojnic - 2021 - Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
    Natural languages are riddled with context-sensitivity. One and the same string of words can express many different meanings on occasion of use, and yet we understand one another effortlessly, on the fly. How do we do so? What fixes the meaning of context-sensitive expressions, and how are we able to recover the meaning so effortlessly? -/- This book offers a novel response: we can do so because we draw on a broad array of subtle linguistic conventions that determine the interpretation (...)
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  27. Algebraic Aspects and Coherence Conditions for Conjoined and Disjoined Conditionals.Angelo Gilio & Giuseppe Sanfilippo - 2020 - International Journal of Approximate Reasoning 126:98-123.
    We deepen the study of conjoined and disjoined conditional events in the setting of coherence. These objects, differently from other approaches, are defined in the framework of conditional random quantities. We show that some well known properties, valid in the case of unconditional events, still hold in our approach to logical operations among conditional events. In particular we prove a decomposition formula and a related additive property. Then, we introduce the set of conditional constituents generated by $n$ conditional events and (...)
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  28. The counterfactual direct argument.Simon Goldstein - 2020 - Linguistics and Philosophy 43 (2):193-232.
    Many have accepted that ordinary counterfactuals and might counterfactuals are duals. In this paper, I show that this thesis leads to paradoxical results when combined with a few different unorthodox yet increasingly popular theses, including the thesis that counterfactuals are strict conditionals. Given Duality and several other theses, we can quickly infer the validity of another paradoxical principle, ‘The Counterfactual Direct Argument’, which says that ‘A> ’ entails ‘A> ’. First, I provide a collapse theorem for the ‘counterfactual direct argument’. (...)
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  29. On the Substitution of Identicals in Counterfactual Reasoning.Alexander W. Kocurek - 2020 - Noûs 54 (3):600-631.
    It is widely held that counterfactuals, unlike attitude ascriptions, preserve the referential transparency of their constituents, i.e., that counterfactuals validate the substitution of identicals when their constituents do. The only putative counterexamples in the literature come from counterpossibles, i.e., counterfactuals with impossible antecedents. Advocates of counterpossibilism, i.e., the view that counterpossibles are not all vacuous, argue that counterpossibles can generate referential opacity. But in order to explain why most substitution inferences into counterfactuals seem valid, counterpossibilists also often maintain that counterfactuals (...)
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  30. A Counterexample to Modus Ponenses.Matthew Mandelkern - 2020 - Journal of Philosophy 117 (6):315-331.
    McGee argued that modus ponens was invalid for the natural language conditional ‘If…then…’. Many subsequent responses have argued that, while McGee’s examples show that modus ponens fails to preserve truth, they do not show that modus ponens fails to preserve rational full acceptance, and thus modus ponens may still be valid in the latter informational sense. I show that when we turn our attention from indicative conditionals to subjunctive conditionals, we find that modus ponens does not preserve either truth or (...)
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  31. Import‐Export and ‘And’.Matthew Mandelkern - 2020 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 100 (1):118-135.
    Import-Export says that a conditional 'If p, if q, r' is always equivalent to the conditional 'If p and q, r'. I argue that Import-Export does not sit well with a classical approach to conjunction: given some plausible and widely accepted principles about conditionals, Import-Export together with classical conjunction leads to absurd consequences. My main goal is to draw out these surprising connections. In concluding I argue that the right response is to reject Import-Export and adopt instead a limited version (...)
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  32. Indicative Conditionals in Objective Contexts.Vít Punčochář & Christopher Gauker - 2020 - Theoria 86 (5):651-687.
    A conversation can be conceived as aiming to circumscribe a set of possibilities that are relevant to the goals of the conversation. This set of possibilities may be conceived as determined by the goals and objective circumstances of the interlocutors and not by their propositional attitudes. An indicative conditional can be conceived as circumscribing a set of possibilities that have a certain property: If the set of relevant possibilities is subsequently restricted to one in which the antecedent holds, then it (...)
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  33. The Spectre of Triviality.Nate Charlow - 2019 - Analysis 79 (4):595-605.
    A spectre haunts the semantics of natural language — the spectre of Triviality. Semanticists (in particular Rothschild 2013; Khoo and Mandelkern 2018a,b) have entered into a holy alliance to exorcise this spectre. None, I will argue, have yet succeeded.
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  34. Generalized Logical Operations Among Conditional Events.Angelo Gilio & Giuseppe Sanfilippo - 2019 - Applied Intelligence 49:79-102.
    We generalize, by a progressive procedure, the notions of conjunction and disjunction of two conditional events to the case of n conditional events. In our coherence-based approach, conjunctions and disjunctions are suitable conditional random quantities. We define the notion of negation, by verifying De Morgan’s Laws. We also show that conjunction and disjunction satisfy the associative and commutative properties, and a monotonicity property. Then, we give some results on coherence of prevision assessments for some families of compounded conditionals; in particular (...)
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  35. A Theory of Conditional Assertion.Simon Goldstein - 2019 - Journal of Philosophy 116 (6):293-318.
    According to one tradition, uttering an indicative conditional involves performing a special sort of speech act: a conditional assertion. We introduce a formal framework that models this speech act. Using this framework, we show that any theory of conditional assertion validates several inferences in the logic of conditionals, including the False Antecedent inference. Next, we determine the space of truth-conditional semantics for conditionals consistent with conditional assertion. The truth value of any such conditional is settled whenever the antecedent is false, (...)
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  36. Two Ways to Want?Ethan Jerzak - 2019 - Journal of Philosophy 116 (2):65-98.
    I present unexplored and unaccounted for uses of 'wants'. I call them advisory uses, on which information inaccessible to the desirer herself helps determine what she wants. I show that extant theories by Stalnaker, Heim, and Levinson fail to predict these uses. They also fail to predict true indicative conditionals with 'wants' in the consequent. These problems are related: intuitively valid reasoning with modus ponens on the basis of the conditionals in question results in unembedded advisory uses. I consider two (...)
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  37. Difference-Making Conditionals and the Relevant Ramsey Test.Hans Rott - 2019 - Review of Symbolic Logic:1-39.
    This paper explores conditionals expressing that the antecedent makes a difference for the consequent. A 'relevantised' version of the Ramsey Test for conditionals is employed in the context of the classical theory of belief revision. The idea of this test is that the antecedent is relevant to the consequent in the following sense: a conditional is accepted just in case (i) the consequent is accepted if the belief state is revised by the antecedent and (ii) the consequent fails to be (...)
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  38. Folk Judgments About Conditional Excluded Middle.Michael J. Shaffer & James Beebe - 2019 - In Andrew Aberdein & Matthew Inglis (eds.), Advances in Experimental Philosophy of Logic and Mathematics. London: Bloomsbury Academic. pp. 251-276.
    In this chapter we consider three philosophical perspectives (including those of Stalnaker and Lewis) on the question of whether and how the principle of conditional excluded middle should figure in the logic and semantics of counterfactuals. We articulate and defend a third view that is patterned after belief revision theories offered in other areas of logic and philosophy. Unlike Lewis’ view, the belief revision perspective does not reject conditional excluded middle, and unlike Stalnaker’s, it does not embrace supervaluationism. We adduce (...)
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  39. Boxes and Diamonds. An Open Introduction to Modal Logic.Richard Zach - 2019
    A textbook for modal and other intensional logics based on the Open Logic Project. It covers normal modal logics, relational semantics, axiomatic and tableaux proof systems, intuitionistic logic, and counterfactual conditionals.
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  40. Conditional Heresies.Fabrizio Cariani & Simon Goldstein - 2018 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research (2):251-282.
  41. Two Switches in the Theory of Counterfactuals: A Study of Truth Conditionality and Minimal Change.Ivano Ciardelli, Linmin Zhang & Lucas Champollion - 2018 - Linguistics and Philosophy (6).
    Based on a crowdsourced truth value judgment experiment, we provide empirical evidence challenging two classical views in semantics, and we develop a novel account of counterfactuals that combines ideas from inquisitive semantics and causal reasoning. First, we show that two truth-conditionally equivalent clauses can make different semantic contributions when embedded in a counterfactual antecedent. Assuming compositionality, this means that the meaning of these clauses is not fully determined by their truth conditions. This finding has a clear explanation in inquisitive semantics: (...)
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  42. Talking About Worlds.Matthew Mandelkern - 2018 - Philosophical Perspectives 32 (1):298-325.
    I explore the logic of the conditional, using credence judgments to argue against Duality and in favor of Conditional Excluded Middle. I then explore how to give a theory of the conditional which validates the latter and not the former, developing a variant on Kratzer (1981)'s restrictor theory, as well as a proposal which combines Stalnaker (1968)'s theory of the conditional with the theory of epistemic modals I develop in Mandelkern 2019a. I argue that the latter approach fits naturally with (...)
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  43. A 4-Valued Logic of Strong Conditional.Fabien Schang - 2018 - South American Journal of Logic 3 (1):59-86.
    How to say no less, no more about conditional than what is needed? From a logical analysis of necessary and sufficient conditions (Section 1), we argue that a stronger account of conditional can be obtained in two steps: firstly, by reminding its historical roots inside modal logic and set-theory (Section 2); secondly, by revising the meaning of logical values, thereby getting rid of the paradoxes of material implication whilst showing the bivalent roots of conditional as a speech-act based on affirmations (...)
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  44. Might/Would Duality and The Probabilities of Counterfactuals.Michael J. Shaffer - 2018 - Logique and Analyse 242:119-124.
    In this paper it is shown that Lewis' MWD (might/would duality) and imaging principles lead to wildly implausible probability assignments for would counterfactuals.
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  45. A Logic for the Natural Language Conditional.Monique Whitaker - 2018 - South African Journal of Philosophy 37 (3):261-283.
    Ordinary speakers intuitively assign truth-values to conditional utterances in everyday conversation, but, despite the general ease with which this occurs, it is notoriously difficult to give an account of the implicit logic that is followed in making these truth-value assignments. I propose a twofold logic of the conditional – a relatively simple “factual” logic for conditionals interpreted with regard to what is actually the case, largely following the logic of the material conditional; combined with a variably strict possible-worlds counterfactual logic (...)
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  46. Strengthening Principles and Counterfactual Semantics.David Boylan & Ginger Schultheis - 2017 - Proceedings of the 21st Amsterdam Colloquium.
  47. Preservation, Commutativity and Modus Ponens: Two Recent Triviality Results.Jake Chandler - 2017 - Mind 126 (502):579-602.
    In a recent pair of publications, Richard Bradley has offered two novel no-go theorems involving the principle of Preservation for conditionals, which guarantees that one’s prior conditional beliefs will exhibit a certain degree of inertia in the face of a change in one’s non-conditional beliefs. We first note that Bradley’s original discussions of these results—in which he finds motivation for rejecting Preservation, first in a principle of Commutativity, then in a doxastic analogue of the rule of modus ponens —are problematic (...)
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  48. Presuppositional Anaphora Is The Sobel Truth.Daniel Dohrn - 2017 - In Salvatore Pistoia-Reda & Filippo Domaneschi (eds.), Linguistic and Psycholinguistic Approaches on Implicatures and Presuppositions. Cham: Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 199-238.
    Sobel sequences have had a huge impact on the discussion of counterfactuals. They can be composed of conditionals and mere descriptions. What is especially puzzling about them is that they are often felicitously uttered when their reversal is not. Up to now, there is no unified explanation. I examine two strategies. We might begin with conditionals and proceed to descriptions. Or we might begin with descriptions and proceed to conditionals. I argue for the latter variant and outline a universal theory (...)
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  49. Indicative Conditionals and Dynamic Epistemic Logic.Wesley H. Holliday & Thomas Icard - 2017 - Proceedings of the Sixteenth Conference on Theoretical Aspects of Rationality and Knowledge (TARK 2017), Liverpool, UK, 24-26 July 2017.
    Recent ideas about epistemic modals and indicative conditionals in formal semantics have significant overlap with ideas in modal logic and dynamic epistemic logic. The purpose of this paper is to show how greater interaction between formal semantics and dynamic epistemic logic in this area can be of mutual benefit. In one direction, we show how concepts and tools from modal logic and dynamic epistemic logic can be used to give a simple, complete axiomatization of Yalcin's [16] semantic consequence relation for (...)
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  50. Hiddleston’s Causal Modeling Semantics and the Distinction Between Forward-Tracking and Backtracking Counterfactuals.Kok Yong Lee - 2017 - Studies in Logic 10 (1):79-94.
    Some cases show that counterfactual conditionals (‘counterfactuals’ for short) are inherently ambiguous, equivocating between forward-tracking and backtracking counterfactu- als. Elsewhere, I have proposed a causal modeling semantics, which takes this phenomenon to be generated by two kinds of causal manipulations. (Lee 2015; Lee 2016) In an important paper (Hiddleston 2005), Eric Hiddleston offers a different causal modeling semantics, which he claims to be able to explain away the inherent ambiguity of counterfactuals. In this paper, I discuss these two semantic treatments (...)
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