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Speaking of everything

Noûs 28 (1):1-20 (1994)

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  1. The Price of Mathematical Scepticism.Paul Blain Levy - forthcoming - Philosophia Mathematica.
    This paper argues that, insofar as we doubt the bivalence of the Continuum Hypothesis or the truth of the Axiom of Choice, we should also doubt the consistency of third-order arithmetic, both the classical and intuitionistic versions. -/- Underlying this argument is the following philosophical view. Mathematical belief springs from certain intuitions, each of which can be either accepted or doubted in its entirety, but not half-accepted. Therefore, our beliefs about reality, bivalence, choice and consistency should all be aligned.
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  • Maurinian Truths : Essays in Honour of Anna-Sofia Maurin on Her 50th Birthday.Robin Stenwall & Tobias Hansson Wahlberg (eds.) - 2019 - Lund, Sverige: Department of Philosophy, Lund University.
    This book is in honour of Professor Anna-Sofia Maurin on her 50th birthday. It consists of eighteen essays on metaphysical issues written by Swedish and international scholars.
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  • The Logic of Sortals: A Conceptualist Approach.Max A. Freund - 2019 - Cham, Switzerland: Springer Verlag.
    Sortal concepts are at the center of certain logical discussions and have played a significant role in solutions to particular problems in philosophy. Apart from logic and philosophy, the study of sortal concepts has found its place in specific fields of psychology, such as the theory of infant cognitive development and the theory of human perception. In this monograph, different formal logics for sortal concepts and sortal-related logical notions are characterized. Most of these logics are intensional in nature and possess, (...)
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  • Speaking with Shadows: A Study of Neo‐Logicism.Fraser MacBride - 2003 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 54 (1):103-163.
    According to the species of neo-logicism advanced by Hale and Wright, mathematical knowledge is essentially logical knowledge. Their view is found to be best understood as a set of related though independent theses: (1) neo-fregeanism-a general conception of the relation between language and reality; (2) the method of abstraction-a particular method for introducing concepts into language; (3) the scope of logic-second-order logic is logic. The criticisms of Boolos, Dummett, Field and Quine (amongst others) of these theses are explicated and assessed. (...)
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  • Classes, Why and How.Thomas Schindler - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (2):407-435.
    This paper presents a new approach to the class-theoretic paradoxes. In the first part of the paper, I will distinguish classes from sets, describe the function of class talk, and present several reasons for postulating type-free classes. This involves applications to the problem of unrestricted quantification, reduction of properties, natural language semantics, and the epistemology of mathematics. In the second part of the paper, I will present some axioms for type-free classes. My approach is loosely based on the Gödel–Russell idea (...)
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  • Word and Objects.Agust\’in Rayo - 2002 - Noûs 36 (3):436–464.
    The aim of this essay is to show that the subject-matter of ontology is richer than one might have thought. Our route will be indirect. We will argue that there are circumstances under which standard first-order regimentation is unacceptable, and that more appropriate varieties of regimentation lead to unexpected kinds of ontological commitment.
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  • Unrestricted Quantification and Natural Theology: Is" the World" on the Index?Stig Børsen Hansen - 2010 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 2 (2):89-110.
    The first section of this paper introduces talk about absolutely everything -- the world as a totality -- as an integral element in the project of natural theology, as it has been presented by Fergus Kerr and Denys Turner respectively. The following section presents talk about the world as a totality of facts as a theme in philosophical logic and outlines a problem it has given rise to there. After confronting the solution originally suggested by Bertrand Russell and defended by (...)
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  • How’s Everything?Sébastien Motta - forthcoming - Axiomathes:1-14.
    After a critical presentation of the debate between absolutists and relativists regarding generality where I show that the debate is framed in a way that is bound to be harmful to the relativist’s position, I examine critically one of the customary arguments advanced against the relativist: the expressibility objection. I then propose a radical way out of this debate-usually centered on semantic paradoxes-by arguing that it rests on an unintelligible notion of “object”. I finally introduce a useful distinction between omnis (...)
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  • Absolutely General Knowledge.Rachel Elizabeth Fraser & Beau Madison Mount - 2022 - Wiley: Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 103 (3):547-566.
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, Volume 103, Issue 3, Page 547-566, November 2021.
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  • Quantifiers and Quantification.Gabriel Uzquiano - 2014 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
  • Strengthening the Russellian Argument Against Absolutely Unrestricted Quantification.Laureano Luna - 2022 - Synthese 200 (3):1-13.
    The Russellian argument against the possibility of absolutely unrestricted quantification can be answered by the partisan of that quantification in an apparently easy way, namely, arguing that the objects used in the argument do not exist because they are defined in a viciously circular fashion. We show that taking this contention along as a premise and relying on an extremely intuitive Principle of Determinacy, it is possible to devise a reductio of the possibility of absolutely unrestricted quantification. Therefore, there are (...)
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  • Putnam, Context, and Ontology.Steven Gross - 2004 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 34 (4):507 - 553.
    When a debate seems intractable, with little agreement as to how one might proceed towards a resolution, it is understandable that philosophers should consider whether something might be amiss with the debate itself. Famously in the last century, philosophers of various stripes explored in various ways the possibility that at least certain philosophical debates are in some manner deficient in sense. Such moves are no longer so much in vogue. For one thing, the particular ways they have been made have (...)
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  • All Things Must Pass Away.Joshua Spencer - 2012 - Oxford Studies in Metaphysics 7:67.
    Are there any things that are such that any things whatsoever are among them. I argue that there are not. My thesis follows from these three premises: (1) There are two or more things; (2) for any things, there is a unique thing that corresponds to those things; (3) for any two or more things, there are fewer of them than there are pluralities of them.
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  • Quantifier Variance and Indefinite Extensibility.Jared Warren - 2017 - Philosophical Review 126 (1):81-122.
    This essay clarifies quantifier variance and uses it to provide a theory of indefinite extensibility that I call the variance theory of indefinite extensibility. The indefinite extensibility response to the set-theoretic paradoxes sees each argument for paradox as a demonstration that we have come to a different and more expansive understanding of ‘all sets’. But indefinite extensibility is philosophically puzzling: extant accounts are either metasemantically suspect in requiring mysterious mechanisms of domain expansion, or metaphysically suspect in requiring nonstandard assumptions about (...)
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  • The Nature of Epistemic Space.David J. Chalmers - 2011 - In Andy Egan & Brian Weatherson (eds.), Epistemic Modality. Oxford University Press.
    A natural way to think about epistemic possibility is as follows. When it is epistemically possible (for a subject) that p, there is an epistemically possible scenario (for that subject) in which p. The epistemic scenarios together constitute epistemic space. It is surprisingly difficult to make the intuitive picture precise. What sort of possibilities are we dealing with here? In particular, what is a scenario? And what is the relationship between scenarios and items of knowledge and belief? This chapter tries (...)
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  • A Modal Account of Propositions.Andy Demfree Yu - 2017 - Dialectica 71 (4):463-488.
    In this paper, I motivate a modal account of propositions on the basis of an iterative conception of propositions. As an application, I suggest that the account provides a satisfying solution to the Russell-Myhill paradox. The account is in the spirit of recently developed modal accounts of sets motivated on the basis of the iterative conception of sets.
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  • The Subtraction Argument for the Possibility of Free Mass.David Efird & Tom Stoneham - 2010 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 80 (1):50-57.
    Could an object have only mass and no other property? In giving an affirmative answer to this question, Jonathan Schaffer (2003, pp. 136-8) proposes what he calls ‘the subtraction argument’ for ‘the possibility of free mass’. In what follows, we aim to assess the cogency of this argument in comparison with an argument of the same general form which has also been termed a subtraction argument, namely, Thomas Baldwin’s (1996) subtraction argument for metaphysical nihilism, which is the claim that there (...)
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  • Is Metaphysical Nihilism Interesting?David Efird & Tom Stoneham - 2009 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 90 (2):210-231.
    Suppose nothing exists. Then it is true that nothing exists. What makes that true? Nothing! So it seems that if nothing existed, then the principle that every truth is made true by something (the truthmaker principle) would be false. So if it is possible that nothing exists, a claim often called 'metaphysical nihilism', then the truthmaker principle is not necessary. This paper explores various ways to resolve this conflict without restricting metaphysical nihilism in such a way that it would become (...)
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  • An Appearance–Reality Distinction in an Unreal World.Allison Aitken - 2022 - Analysis 82 (1):114-130.
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  • What is the Principle of Recombination?David Efird & Tom Stoneham - 2008 - Dialectica 62 (4):483-494.
    In this paper, we give a precise characterization of the principle of recombination and argue that it need not be subject to any restrictions.
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  • What is the Principle of Recombination?Tom Stoneham David Efird - 2008 - Dialectica 62 (4):483-494.
    In this paper, we give a precise characterization of the principle of recombination and argue that it need not be subject to any restrictions.
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  • The Paradox of Sufficient Reason.Samuel Levey - 2016 - Philosophical Review Recent Issues 125 (3):397-430.
    It can be shown by means of a paradox that, given the Principle of Sufficient Reason, there is no conjunction of all contingent truths. The question is, or ought to be, how to interpret that result: _Quid sibi velit?_ A celebrated argument against PSR due to Peter van Inwagen and Jonathan Bennett in effect interprets the result to mean that PSR entails that there are no contingent truths. But reflection on parallels in philosophy of mathematics shows it can equally be (...)
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  • Unrestricted Quantification.Salvatore Florio - 2014 - Philosophy Compass 9 (7):441-454.
    Semantic interpretations of both natural and formal languages are usually taken to involve the specification of a domain of entities with respect to which the sentences of the language are to be evaluated. A question that has received much attention of late is whether there is unrestricted quantification, quantification over a domain comprising absolutely everything there is. Is there a discourse or inquiry that has absolute generality? After framing the debate, this article provides an overview of the main arguments for (...)
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  • Nominalism.Zoltan Gendler Szabo - 2003 - In Michael J. Loux & Dean W. Zimmerman (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Metaphysics. Oxford University Press.
    …entities? 2. How to be a nominalist 2.1. “Speak with the vulgar …” 2.2. “…think with the learned” 3. Arguments for nominalism 3.1. Intelligibility, physicalism, and economy 3.2. Causal..
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  • Dadaism: Restrictivism as Militant Quietism.Tim Button - 2010 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 110 (3pt3):387-398.
    Can we quantify over everything: absolutely, positively, definitely, totally, every thing? Some philosophers have claimed that we must be able to do so, since the doctrine that we cannot is self-stultifying. But this treats restrictivism as a positive doctrine. Restrictivism is much better viewed as a kind of militant quietism, which I call dadaism. Dadaists advance a hostile challenge, with the aim of silencing everyone who holds a positive position about ‘absolute generality’.
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  • Countability and self-identity.Adrian Heathcote - 2021 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 11 (4):1-23.
    The Received View of particles in quantum mechanics is that they are indistinguishable entities within their kinds and that, as a consequence, they are not individuals in the metaphysical sense and self-identity does not meaningfully apply to them. Nevertheless cardinality does apply, in that one can have n> 1 such particles. A number of authors have recently argued that this cluster of claims is internally contradictory: roughly, that having more than one such particle requires that the concepts of distinctness and (...)
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  • The Metasemantics of Indefinite Extensibility.Vera Flocke - 2021 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 99 (4):817-834.
    ABSTRACT Generality relativism is the view that any domain of quantification can always be expanded. The view promises to resolve a broad range of paradoxes, but, without an explanation of how domains expand, it sounds very mysterious. Proponents of linguistic versions of generality relativism try to demystify the view by likening domain expansions to semantic change. They think that domains expand when we re-interpret certain terms so that, upon re-interpretation, the quantifiers range over more things. This article makes trouble for (...)
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  • Quantification and Realism.Michael Glanzberg - 2004 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 69 (3):541–572.
    This paper argues for the thesis that, roughly put, it is impossible to talk about absolutely everything. To put the thesis more precisely, there is a particular sense in which, as a matter of semantics, quantifiers always range over domains that are in principle extensible, and so cannot count as really being ‘absolutely everything’. The paper presents an argument for this thesis, and considers some important objections to the argument and to the formulation of the thesis. The paper also offers (...)
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  • Necessarily Maybe. Quantifiers, Modality and Vagueness.Alessandro Torza - 2015 - In Quantifiers, Quantifiers, and Quantifiers. Themes in Logic, Metaphysics and Language. (Synthese Library vol 373). Springer. pp. 367-387.
    Languages involving modalities and languages involving vagueness have each been thoroughly studied. On the other hand, virtually nothing has been said about the interaction of modality and vagueness. This paper aims to start filling that gap. Section 1 is a discussion of various possible sources of vague modality. Section 2 puts forward a model theory for a quantified language with operators for modality and vagueness. The model theory is followed by a discussion of the resulting logic. In Section 3, the (...)
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  • Second-Order Logic: Properties, Semantics, and Existential Commitments.Bob Hale - 2019 - Synthese 196 (7):2643-2669.
    Quine’s most important charge against second-, and more generally, higher-order logic is that it carries massive existential commitments. The force of this charge does not depend upon Quine’s questionable assimilation of second-order logic to set theory. Even if we take second-order variables to range over properties, rather than sets, the charge remains in force, as long as properties are individuated purely extensionally. I argue that if we interpret them as ranging over properties more reasonably construed, in accordance with an abundant (...)
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  • Beyond Plurals.Agust\’in Rayo - 2006 - In Agust\’in Rayo & Gabriel Uzquiano (eds.), Absolute Generality. Oxford University Press. pp. 220--54.
    I have two main objectives. The first is to get a better understanding of what is at issue between friends and foes of higher-order quantification, and of what it would mean to extend a Boolos-style treatment of second-order quantification to third- and higherorder quantification. The second objective is to argue that in the presence of absolutely general quantification, proper semantic theorizing is essentially unstable: it is impossible to provide a suitably general semantics for a given language in a language of (...)
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  • Isolation and Non-Arbitrary Division: Frege's Two Criteria for Counting.Kathrin Koslicki - 1997 - Synthese 112 (3):403-430.
    In §54 of the Grundlagen, Frege advances an interesting proposal on how to distinguish among different sorts of concepts, only some of which he thinks can be associated with number. This paper is devoted to an analysis of the two criteria he offers, isolation and non-arbitrary division. Both criteria say something about the way in which a concept divides its extension; but they emphasize different aspects. Isolation ensures that a concept divides its extension into discrete units. I offer two construals (...)
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  • Are There True Contradictions? A Critical Discussion of Graham Priest's, Beyond the Limits of Thought.Jürgen Dümont & Frank Mau - 1998 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 29 (2):289-299.
    The present article critically examines three aspects of Graham Priest's dialetheic analysis of very important kinds of limitations (the limit of what can be expressed, described, conceived, known, or the limit of some operation or other). First, it is shown that Priest's considerations focusing on Hegel's account of the infinite cannot be sustained, mainly because Priest seems to rely on a too restrictive notion of object. Second, we discuss Priest's treatment of the paradoxes in Cantorian set-theory. It is shown that (...)
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  • Truth in Frege's 'Laws of Truth'.Gary Kemp - 1995 - Synthese 105 (1):31 - 51.
  • On Plural Reference and Elementary Set Theory.Helen Morris Cartwright - 1993 - Synthese 96 (2):201 - 254.
    The view that plural reference is reference to a set is examined in light of George Boolos's treatment of second-order quantification as plural quantification in English. I argue that monadic second-order logic does not, in Boolos's treatment, reflect the behavior of plural quantifiers under negation and claim that any sentence that properly translates a second-order formula, in accordance with his treatment, has a first-order formulation. Support for this turns on the use of certain partitive constructions to assign values to variables (...)
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  • Too Many Omissions, Too Much Causation?Björn Petersson - 2019 - In Tobias Hansson Wahlberg & Robin Stenwall (eds.), Maurinian Truths : Essays in Honour of Anna-Sofia Maurin on her 50th Birthday.
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  • What is Field's Epistemological Objection to Platonism?Ylwa Sjölin Wirling - 2019 - In Robin Stenwall & Tobias Hansson Wahlberg (eds.), Maurinian Truths : Essays in Honour of Anna-Sofia Maurin on her 50th Birthday. pp. 123-133.
    This paper concerns an epistemological objection against mathematical platonism, due to Hartry Field.The argument poses an explanatory challenge – the challenge to explain the reliability of our mathematical beliefs – which the platonist, it’s argued, cannot meet. Is the objection compelling? Philosophers disagree, but they also disagree on (and are sometimes very unclear about) how the objection should be understood. Here I distinguish some options, and highlight some gaps that need to be filled in on the potentially most compelling version (...)
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  • Quantification and Paradox.Edward Ferrier - 2018 - Dissertation, University of Massachusetts Amherst
    I argue that absolutism, the view that absolutely unrestricted quantification is possible, is to blame for both the paradoxes that arise in naive set theory and variants of these paradoxes that arise in plural logic and in semantics. The solution is restrictivism, the view that absolutely unrestricted quantification is not possible. -/- It is generally thought that absolutism is true and that restrictivism is not only false, but inexpressible. As a result, the paradoxes are blamed, not on illicit quantification, but (...)
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  • When Does ‘Everything’ Mean Everything ?AgustÍ Rayo - 2003 - Analysis 63 (2):100-106.
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  • Two Mereological Arguments Against the Possibility of an Omniscient Being.Joshua T. Spencer - 2006 - Philo 9 (1):62-72.
    In this paper I present two new arguments against the possibility of an omniscient being. My new arguments invoke considerations of cardinality and resemble several arguments originally presented by Patrick Grim. Like Grim, I give reasons to believe that there must be more objects in the universe than there are beliefs. However, my arguments will rely on certain mereological claims, namely that Classical Extensional Mereology is necessarily true of the part-whole relation. My first argument is an instance of a problem (...)
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  • Quantifiers and Temporal Ontology.Theodore Sider - 2006 - Mind 115 (457):75-97.
    Eternalists say that non-present entities (for instance dinosaurs) exist; presentists say that they do not. But some sceptics deny that this debate is genuine, claiming that presentists simply represent eternalists' quantifiers over non-present entities in different notation. This scepticism may be refuted on purely logical grounds: one of the leading candidate ‘presentist quantifiers’ over non-present things has the inferential role of a quantifier. The dispute over whether non-present objects exist is as genuine and non-verbal as the dispute over whether there (...)
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  • From Plurals to Superplurals: In Defence of Higher-Level Plural Logic.Berta Grimau Roca - 2018 - Dissertation, University of Glasgow
    Plural Logic is an extension of First-Order Logic with plural terms and quantifiers. When its plural terms are interpreted as denoting more than one object at once, Plural Logic is usually taken to be ontologically innocent: plural quantifiers do not require a domain of their own, but range plurally over the first-order domain of quantification. Given that Plural Logic is equi-interpretable with Monadic Second-Order Logic, it gives us its expressive power at the low ontological cost of a first-order language. This (...)
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  • Variable, Structure, and Restricted Generality.S. Gandon - 2013 - Philosophia Mathematica 21 (2):200-219.
    From 1905–1908 onward, Russell thought that his new ‘substitutional theory’ provided him with the right framework to resolve the set-theoretic paradoxes. Even if he did not finally retain this resolution, the substitutional strategy was instrumental in the development of his thought. The aim of this paper is not historical, however. It is to show that Russell's substitutional insight can shed new light on current issues in philosophy of mathematics. After having briefly expounded Russell's key notion of a ‘structured variable’, I (...)
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  • A Theory of Particular Sets.Paul Blain Levy - manuscript
    ZFC has sentences that quantify over all sets or all ordinals, without restriction. Some have argued that sentences of this kind lack a determinate meaning. We propose a set theory called TOPS, using Natural Deduction, that avoids this problem by speaking only about particular sets.
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  • Fragmented Truth.Andy Demfree Yu - 2016 - Dissertation, University of Oxford
    This thesis comprises three main chapters—each comprising one relatively standalone paper. The unifying theme is fragmentalism about truth, which is the view that the predicate “true” either expresses distinct concepts or expresses distinct properties. -/- In Chapter 1, I provide a formal development of alethic pluralism. Pluralism is the view that there are distinct truth properties associated with distinct domains of subject matter, where a truth property satisfies certain truth-characterizing principles. On behalf of pluralists, I propose an account of logic (...)
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  • Introduction.Agustin Rayo & Gabriel Uzquiano - 2006 - In Agustin Rayo & Gabriel Uzquiano (eds.), Absolute Generality. Oxford University Press.
    Whether or not we achieve absolute generality in philosophical inquiry, most philosophers would agree that ordinary inquiry is rarely, if ever, absolutely general. Even if the quantifiers involved in an ordinary assertion are not explicitly restricted, we generally take the assertion’s domain of discourse to be implicitly restricted by context.1 Suppose someone asserts (2) while waiting for a plane to take off.
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  • A Completeness Theorem for Unrestricted First- Order Languages.Agustin Rayo & Timothy Williamson - 2003 - In Jc Beall (ed.), Liars and Heaps. Oxford University Press.
    Here is an account of logical consequence inspired by Bolzano and Tarski. Logical validity is a property of arguments. An argument is a pair of a set of interpreted sentences (the premises) and an interpreted sentence (the conclusion). Whether an argument is logically valid depends only on its logical form. The logical form of an argument is fixed by the syntax of its constituent sentences, the meanings of their logical constituents and the syntactic differences between their non-logical constituents, treated as (...)
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  • Rumfitt on the Logic of Set Theory.Øystein Linnebo - 2019 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 62 (7):826-841.
    ABSTRACTAccording to a famous argument by Dummett, the concept of set is indefinitely extensible, and the logic appropriate for reasoning about the instances of any such concept is intuitionistic, not classical. But Dummett's argument is widely regarded as obscure. This note explains how the final chapter of Rumfitt's important new book advances our understanding of Dummett's argument, but it also points out some problems and unanswered questions. Finally, Rumfitt's reconstruction of Dummett's argument is contrasted with my own preferred alternative.
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  • Generality, Extensibility, and Paradox.J. P. Studd - 2017 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 117 (1):81-101.
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  • Quantification and Realism.Michael Glanzberg - 2004 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 69 (3):541-572.
    This paper argues for the thesis that, roughly put, it is impossible to talk about absolutely everything. To put the thesis more precisely, there is a particular sense in which, as a matter of semantics, quantifiers always range over domains that are in principle extensible, and so cannot count as really being ‘absolutely everything’. The paper presents an argument for this thesis, and considers some important objections to the argument and to the formulation of the thesis. The paper also offers (...)
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