Biscuit Conditionals and Prohibited ‘Then’

Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 6 (2):84-92 (2017)
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It is generally agreed that there are two kinds of indicative conditionals that do not contain conditional 'then.' There are hypothetical conditionals such as 'If Mary has done the groceries, there is beer in the fridge' and there are biscuit conditionals such as 'If you are thirsty, there is beer in the fridge.' There is also broad consensus that we cannot find an analogous distinction between hypothetical and biscuit conditionals within indicative conditionals that do feature 'then.' Conditionals containing 'then,' it is assumed, are uniformly read as hypothetical conditionals. In this article, I shall argue that there are biscuit conditionals featuring 'then.' This result, I take it, is not only interesting on its own. It also puts pressure on the popular view that conditional 'then' triggers the presupposition that in some situations in which the conditional's antecedent is not true, its consequent is not true either.



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Julia Zakkou
Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf

References found in this work

Subjunctive biscuit and stand-off conditionals.Eric Swanson - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 163 (3):637-648.
On the contribution of conditionalthen.Sabine Iatridou - 1993 - Natural Language Semantics 2 (3):171-199.
Nonconditional Conditionals.Michael L. Geis & William G. Lycan - 1993 - Philosophical Topics 21 (2):35-56.

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