36 found

Year:

  1.  26
    Wither Semantics!1.Jeffrey C. King - 2018 - Noûs 52 (4):772-795.
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  2. The Good, the Bad, and the Transitivity of Better Than.Jacob M. Nebel - 2018 - Noûs 52 (4):874-899.
    The Rachels–Temkin spectrum arguments against the transitivity of better than involve good or bad experiences, lives, or outcomes that vary along multiple dimensions—e.g., duration and intensity of pleasure or pain. This paper presents variations on these arguments involving combinations of good and bad experiences, which have even more radical implications than the violation of transitivity. These variations force opponents of transitivity to conclude that something good is worse than something that isn’t good, on pain of rejecting the good altogether. That (...)
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  3.  30
    Situations and Responsiveness to Reasons.Carolina Sartorio - 2018 - Noûs 52 (4):796-807.
    Some classical studies in social psychology suggest that we are more sensitive to situational factors, and less responsive to reasons, than we normally recognize we are. In recent years, moral responsibility theorists have examined the question whether those studies represent a serious threat to our moral responsibility. A common response to the “situationist threat” has been to defend the reasons-responsiveness of ordinary human agents by appeal to a theory of reasons-responsiveness that appeals to patterns of counterfactual scenarios or possible worlds. (...)
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  4. Tense and Relativity.Andrew Bacon - 2018 - Noûs 52 (3):667-696.
    Those inclined to positions in the philosophy of time that take tense seriously have typically assumed that not all regions of space-time are equal: one special region of space-time corresponds to what is presently happening. When combined with assumptions from modern physics this has the unsettling consequence that the shape of this favored region distinguishes people in certain places or people traveling at certain velocities. In this paper I shall attempt to avoid this result by developing a tensed picture of (...)
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  5. Epistemic Normativity and Cognitive Agency.Matthew Chrisman - 2018 - Noûs 52 (3):508-529.
    On the assumption that genuinely normative demands concern things connected in some way to our agency, i.e. what we exercise in doing things with or for reasons, epistemologists face an important question: are there genuine epistemic norms governing belief, and if so where in the vicinity of belief are we to find the requisite cognitive agency? Extant accounts of cognitive agency tend to focus on belief itself or the event of belief-formation to answer this question, to the exclusion of the (...)
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  6.  62
    Killing Innocent People.Tyler Doggett - 2018 - Noûs 52 (3):645-666.
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  7. The Province of Human Agency.Anton Ford - 2018 - Noûs 52 (3):697-720.
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  8. Counterpossibles in Science: The Case of Relative Computability.Matthias Jenny - 2018 - Noûs 52 (3):530-560.
    I develop a theory of counterfactuals about relative computability, i.e. counterfactuals such as 'If the validity problem were algorithmically decidable, then the halting problem would also be algorithmically decidable,' which is true, and 'If the validity problem were algorithmically decidable, then arithmetical truth would also be algorithmically decidable,' which is false. These counterfactuals are counterpossibles, i.e. they have metaphysically impossible antecedents. They thus pose a challenge to the orthodoxy about counterfactuals, which would treat them as uniformly true. What’s more, I (...)
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  9. Imagining Experiences.Peter Langland‐Hassan - 2018 - Noûs 52 (3):561-586.
    It is often held that in imagining experiences we exploit a special imagistic way of representing mentality—one that enables us to think about mental states in terms of what it is like to have them. According to some, when this way of thinking about the mind is paired with more objective means, an explanatory gap between the phenomenal and physical features of mental states arises. This paper advances a view along those lines, but with a twist. What many take for (...)
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  10.  58
    Counterfactual Discourse in Context.Karen S. Lewis - 2018 - Noûs 52 (3):481-507.
    The classic Lewis-Stalnaker semantics for counterfactuals captures that Sobel sequences are consistent sequences, for example: a.If Sophie had gone to the parade, she would have seen Pedro dance. b.But if Sophie had gone to the parade and been stuck behind someone tall, she would not have seen Pedro dance. But reverse a sequence like this one and it no longer sounds so good, which is surprising on the classic semantics. This observation motivated Kai von Fintel and Thony Gillies to propose (...)
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  11. Against Fundamentality‐Based Metaphysics.Martin A. Lipman - 2018 - Noûs 52 (3):587-610.
    Metaphysical views typically draw some distinction between reality and appearance, endorsing realism about some subject matters and antirealism about others. There are different conceptions of how best to construe antirealist theories. A simple view has it that we are antirealists about a subject matter when we believe that this subject matter fails to obtain. This paper discusses an alternative view, which I will call the fundamentality-based conception of antirealism. We are antirealists in this sense when we think that the relevant (...)
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  12. Stereotypes, Prejudice, and the Taxonomy of the Implicit Social Mind.Alex Madva & Michael Brownstein - 2018 - Noûs 52 (3):611-644.
    How do cognition and affect interact to produce action? Research in intergroup psychology illuminates this question by investigating the relationship between stereotypes and prejudices about social groups. Yet it is now clear that many social attitudes are implicit. This raises the question: how does the distinction between cognition and affect apply to implicit mental states? An influential view—roughly analogous to a Humean theory of action—is that “implicit stereotypes” and “implicit prejudices” constitute two separate constructs, reflecting different mental processes and neural (...)
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  13.  63
    Resolving Peer Disagreements Through Imprecise Probabilities.Lee Elkin & Gregory Wheeler - 2018 - Noûs 52 (2):260-278.
    Two compelling principles, the Reasonable Range Principle and the Preservation of Irrelevant Evidence Principle, are necessary conditions that any response to peer disagreements ought to abide by. The Reasonable Range Principle maintains that a resolution to a peer disagreement should not fall outside the range of views expressed by the peers in their dispute, whereas the Preservation of Irrelevant Evidence Principle maintains that a resolution strategy should be able to preserve unanimous judgments of evidential irrelevance among the peers. No standard (...)
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  14.  68
    The Population Ethics of Belief: In Search of an Epistemic Theory X.Richard Pettigrew - 2018 - Noûs 52 (2):336-372.
    Consider Phoebe and Daphne. Phoebe has credences in 1 million propositions. Daphne, on the other hand, has credences in all of these propositions, but she's also got credences in 999 million other propositions. Phoebe's credences are all very accurate. Each of Daphne's credences, in contrast, are not very accurate at all; each is a little more accurate than it is inaccurate, but not by much. Whose doxastic state is better, Phoebe's or Daphne's? It is clear that this question is analogous (...)
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  15. Wouldn't It Be Nice? Moral Rules and Distant Worlds.Abelard Podgorski - 2018 - Noûs 52 (2):279-294.
    Traditional rule consequentialism faces a problem sometimes called the ideal world objection—the worry that by looking only at the consequences in worlds where rules are universally adhered to, the theory fails to account for problems that arise because adherence to rules in the real world is inevitably imperfect. In response, recent theorists have defended sophisticated versions of rule consequentialism which are sensitive to the consequences in worlds with less utopian levels of adherence. In this paper, I argue that these attempts (...)
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  16. A Puzzle About Knowing Conditionals.Daniel Rothschild & Levi Spectre - 2018 - Noûs 52 (2):473-478.
    We present a puzzle about knowledge, probability and conditionals. We show that in certain cases some basic and plausible principles governing our reasoning come into conflict. In particular, we show that there is a simple argument that a person may be in a position to know a conditional the consequent of which has a low probability conditional on its antecedent, contra Adams’ Thesis. We suggest that the puzzle motivates a very strong restriction on the inference of a conditional from a (...)
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  17.  51
    Unicorn Atheism.Roy Sorensen - 2018 - Noûs 52 (2):373-388.
    Kripshe treats ‘god’ as an empty natural kind term such as ‘unicorn’. She applies Saul Kripke's fresh views about empty natural kinds to ‘god’. Metaphysically, says Kripshe, there are no possible worlds in which there are gods. Gods could not have existed, given that they do not actually exist and never did. Epistemologically, godlessness is an a posteriori discovery. Kripshe dismisses the gods in the same breath that she dismisses mermaids. Semantically, the perspective Kripshe finds most perspicacious, no counterfactual situation (...)
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  18.  49
    Introspection and Necessity.Daniel Stoljar - 2018 - Noûs 52 (2):389-410.
    What is the connection between being in a conscious mental state and believing that you yourself are currently in that state? On the one hand, it is natural to think that this connection is, or involves, a necessary connection of some sort. On the other hand, it is hard to know what the nature of this necessary connection is. For there are plausible arguments according to which this connection is not metaphysically necessary, not rationally necessary, and not merely naturally necessary. (...)
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  19. Transparency and the KK Principle.Nilanjan Das & Bernhard Salow - 2018 - Noûs 52 (1):3-23.
    An important question in epistemology is whether the KK principle is true, i.e., whether an agent who knows that p is also thereby in a position to know that she knows that p. We explain how a “transparency” account of self-knowledge, which maintains that we learn about our attitudes towards a proposition by reflecting not on ourselves but rather on that very proposition, supports an affirmative answer. In particular, we show that such an account allows us to reconcile a version (...)
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  20.  99
    The Metaphysics of Super‐Substantivalism.Dennis Lehmkuhl - 2018 - Noûs 52 (1):24-46.
    Recent decades have seen a revived interest in super-substantivalism, the idea that spacetime is the only fundamental substance and matter some kind of aspect, property or consequence of spacetime structure. However, the metaphysical debate so far has misidentified a particular variant of super-substantivalism with the position per se. I distinguish between a super-substantival core commitment and different ways of fleshing it out. I then investigate how general relativity and alternative spacetime theories square with the different variants of super-substantivalism.
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  21.  50
    Epistemicism, Distribution, and the Argument From Vagueness.Ofra Magidor - 2018 - Noûs 52 (1):144-170.
    This paper consists of two parts. The first concerns the logic of vagueness. The second concerns a prominent debate in metaphysics. One of the most widely accepted principles governing the ‘definitely’ operator is the principle of Distribution: if ‘p’ and ‘if p then q’ are both definite, then so is ‘q’. I argue however, that epistemicists about vagueness should reject this principle. The discussion also helps to shed light on the elusive question of what, on this framework, it takes for (...)
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  22. Imprecise Probabilities and Unstable Betting Behaviour.Anna Mahtani - 2018 - Noûs 52 (1):69-87.
    Many have argued that a rational agent's attitude towards a proposition may be better represented by a probability range than by a single number. I show that in such cases an agent will have unstable betting behaviour, and so will behave in an unpredictable way. I use this point to argue against a range of responses to the ‘two bets’ argument for sharp probabilities.
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  23. The Zombies Among Us.Eric T. Olson - 2018 - Noûs 52 (1):216-226.
    Philosophers disagree about whether there could be “zombies”: beings physically identical to normal human people but lacking consciousness. Establishing their possibility would refute physicalism. But it is seldom noted that the popular “constitution view” of human people implies that our bodies actually are zombies. This would contradict several widely held views in the philosophy of mind.
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  24.  90
    The Pragmatic Encroachment Debate.Blake Roeber - 2018 - Noûs 52 (1):171-195.
    Does knowledge depend in any interesting way on our practical interests? This is the central question in the pragmatic encroachment debate. Pragmatists defend the affirmative answer to this question while purists defend the negative answer. The literature contains two kinds of arguments for pragmatism: principle-based arguments and case-based arguments. Principle-based arguments derive pragmatism from principles that connect knowledge to practical interests. Case-based arguments rely on intuitions about cases that differ with respect to practical interests. I argue that there are insurmountable (...)
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  25.  12
    The Pragmatic Encroachment Debate.Blake Roeber - 2018 - Noûs 52 (1):171-195.
    Does knowledge depend in any interesting way on our practical interests? This is the central question in the pragmatic encroachment debate. Pragmatists defend the affirmative answer to this question while purists defend the negative answer. The literature contains two kinds of arguments for pragmatism: principle-based arguments and case-based arguments. Principle-based arguments derive pragmatism from principles that connect knowledge to practical interests. Case-based arguments rely on intuitions about cases that differ with respect to practical interests. I argue that there are insurmountable (...)
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  26.  60
    Self‐Differing, Aspects, and Leibniz's Law.Donald L. M. Baxter - 2018 - Noûs 52:900-920.
    I argue that an individual has aspects numerically identical with it and each other that nonetheless qualitatively differ from it and each other. This discernibility of identicals does not violate Leibniz's Law, however, which concerns only individuals and is silent about their aspects. They are not in its domain of quantification. To argue that there are aspects I will appeal to the internal conflicts of conscious beings. I do not mean to imply that aspects are confined to such cases, but (...)
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  27. The Necessity of Mathematics.Juhani Yli‐Vakkuri & John Hawthorne - 2018 - Noûs 52.
    Some have argued for a division of epistemic labor in which mathematicians supply truths and philosophers supply their necessity. We argue that this is wrong: mathematics is committed to its own necessity. Counterfactuals play a starring role.
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  28.  74
    Maximalism and the Structure of Acts.Campbell Brown - 2018 - Noûs (4):752-771.
    Suppose we believe that a property F is coextensive with moral permissibility. F may be, for example, the property of having the best consequences, if we are Consequentialists, or that of conforming to a universalisable maxim, if we are Kantians, and so on. This may raise the following problem. It is plausible that permissibility is “closed under implication”: any act that is implied by a permissible act must itself be permissible. Yet, in some cases, F might not be closed under (...)
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  29.  32
    Autonomy of Theories: An Explanatory Problem.Robert W. Batterman - 2018 - Noûs:858-873.
    This paper aims to draw attention to an explanatory problem posed by the existence of multiply realized or universal behavior exhibited by certain physical systems. The problem is to explain how it is possible that systems radically distinct at lower-scales can nevertheless exhibit identical or nearly identical behavior at upper-scales. Theoretically this is reflected by the fact that continuum theories such as fluid mechanics are spectacularly successful at predicting, describing, and explaining fluid behaviors despite the fact that they do not (...)
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  30. Fifty Million Elvis Fans Can't Be Wrong.Gordon Belot - 2018 - Noûs:946-981.
    This essay revisits some classic problems in the philosophy of space and time concerning the counting of possibilities. I argue that we should think that two Newtonian worlds can differ only as to when or where things happen and that general relativistic worlds can differ in something like the same way—the first of these theses being quaintly heterodox, the second baldly heretical, according to the mores of contemporary philosophy of physics.
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  31.  81
    Nominalist Realism.Nicholas K. Jones - 2018 - Noûs:0-1.
    This paper explores the impact of quantification into predicate position on the metaphysics of properties, arguing that two familiar debates about properties are fundamentally altered by recasting them in a second-order setting. Two theories of properties are outlined, differing over whether the existence of properties is expressed using first-order or second-order quantifiers. It is argued that the second-order theory: provides good reason to regard debate about the locations of properties as contentless; resolves debate about whether properties are particulars or universals (...)
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  32.  19
    Two Paradoxes of Common Knowledge: Coordinated Attack and Electronic Mail.Harvey Lederman - 2018 - Noûs:921-945.
    The coordinated attack scenario and the electronic mail game are two paradoxes of common knowledge. In simple mathematical models of these scenarios, the agents represented by the models can coordinate only if they have common knowledge that they will. As a result, the models predict that the agents will not coordinate in situations where it would be rational to coordinate. I argue that we should resolve this conflict between the models and facts about what it would be rational to do (...)
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  33. Believing for Practical Reasons.Susanna Rinard - 2018 - Noûs.
    Some prominent evidentialists argue that practical considerations cannot be normative reasons for belief because they can’t be motivating reasons for belief. Existing pragmatist responses turn out to depend on the assumption that it’s possible to believe in the absence of evidence. The evidentialist may deny this, at which point the debate ends in an impasse. I propose a new strategy for the pragmatist. This involves conceding that belief in the absence of evidence is impossible. We then argue that evidence can (...)
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  34. Perceptual Consciousness as a Mental Activity.Susanna Schellenberg - 2018 - Noûs:1-50.
    I argue that perceptual consciousness is constituted by a mental activity. The mental activity in question is the activity of employing perceptual capacities, such as discriminatory, selective capacities. This is a radical view, but I hope to make it plausible. In arguing for this mental activist view, I reject orthodox views on which perceptual consciousness is analyzed in terms of peculiar entities, such as, phenomenal properties, external mind-independent properties, propositions, sense-data, qualia, or intentional objects.
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  35. Metaphysical Causation.Alastair Wilson - 2018 - Noûs:723-751.
    There is a systematic and suggestive analogy between grounding and causation. In my view, this analogy is no coincidence. Grounding and causation are alike because grounding is a type of causation: metaphysical causation. In this paper I defend the identification of grounding with metaphysical causation, drawing on the causation literature to explore systematic connections between grounding and metaphysical dependence counterfactuals, and I outline a non-reductive counterfactual theory of grounding along interventionist lines.
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  36.  35
    Epistemic/Non‐Epistemic Dependence.Nick Zangwill - 2018 - Noûs:836-857.
    I foreground the principle of epistemic dependence. I isolate that relation and distinguish it from other relations and note what it does and does not entail. In particular, I distinguish between dependence and necessitation. This has many interesting consequences. On the negative side, many standard arguments in epistemology are subverted. More positively, once we are liberated from the necessary and sufficient conditions project, many fruitful paths for future epistemological investigation open up. I argue that that not being defeated does not (...)
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