Despite some surface similarities, Charles Peirce’s philosophy of mathematics, pragmaticism, is incompatible with both mathematical structuralism and fictionalism. Pragmaticism has to do with experimentation and observation concerning the forms of relations in diagrammatic and iconic representations ofmathematical entities. It does not presuppose mathematical foundations although it has these representations as its objects of study. But these objects do have a reality which structuralism and fictionalism deny.
The following two review papers have a common origin. Pietarinen’s book Signs of Logic and Stjernfelt’s book Diagrammatology were both published in the same Synthese Library Series being published by Springer. The two books also share the common topic of diagrammatic reasoning in Charles Peirce’s work. Beginning in a conference Applying Peirce held in Helsinki in conjunction with the World Congress of Semiotics in June 2007, two authors have commented upon these books under the headline of Synthese Library Book (...) Session on several occasions, including the Aarhus meeting on Signs and Meaning held in February 2008, the Diagrammatology and Diagram Praxis workshop in Lisboa in March 2009, and the Peirce and Early Analytic Philosophy symposium in Helsinki in June 2009. Therefore, these two review papers form a continuing discussion on the contributions Peirce’s diagrammatic epistemology and logic will have to a broad range of issues at the intersections of philosophy, logic, cognitive sciences and beyond. (shrink)
This special issue of Synthese on Peirce’s Logic and Philosophy of Language collects papers by Rocco Gangle & Gianluca Caterina, Chuangshen He, Risto Hilpinen, Matthew Moore, Charles S. Peirce, Ahti-Veikko Pietarinen and Frederik Stjernfelt.Charles Sanders Peirce was a scientist, philosopher, mathematician and semiotician, as well as one of the undisputed giants in the founding of modern logic. He advanced virtually endless areas in exact sciences. He worked throughout his long career as a scientist, logician, philosopher, mathematician, and meaning analyst. (...) As an advocate of developing and applying new methods and theories to improve logical analysis, his innovations included algebraic methods, quantification theory, semantics and pragmatics of communication, ethics and philosophy of notation, as well as comprehensive systems of diagrammatic logics which he termed existential graphs. Peirce held an exceptionally wide conception of logic, conceived as semeiotic, which he to .. (shrink)
We examine Charles S. Peirce's mature views on the logic of science, especially as contained in his later and still mostly unpublished writings. We focus on two main issues. The first concerns Peirce's late conception of retroduction. Peirce conceived inquiry as performed in three stages, which correspond to three classes of inferences: abduction or retroduction, deduction, and induction. The question of the logical form of retroduction, of its logical justification, and of its methodology stands out as the three major threads (...) in his later writings. The other issue concerns the second stage of scientific inquiry, deduction. According to Peirce's later formulation, deduction is divided not only into two kinds but also into two sub-stages: logical analysis and mathematical reasoning, where the latter is either corollarial or theorematic. Save for the inductive stage, which we do not address here, these points cover the essentials of Peirce's latest thinking on the l.. (shrink)
The pragmatic logic of assertions shows a connection between ignorance and decidability. In it, we can express pragmatic factual ignorance and first-order ignorance as well as some of their variants. We also show how some pragmatic versions of second-order ignorance and of Rumsfeld-ignorance may be formulated. A specific variant of second-order ignorance is particularly relevant. This indicates a strong pragmatic version of ignorance of ignorance, irreducible to any previous form of ignorance, which defines limits to what can justifiably be asserted (...) about higher-order ignorance. Finally, we relate the justified assertion of second-order ignorance with scientific assertions. (shrink)
The theory of existential graphs, which Peirce ultimately divided into four quadrants , is a rich method of analysis in the philosophy of logic. Its $$\upbeta $$ β -part boasts a diagrammatic theory of quantification, which by 1902 Peirce had used in the logical analysis of natural-language expressions such as complex donkey-type anaphora, quantificational patterns describing new mathematical concepts, and cognitive information processing. In the $$\upbeta $$ β -quadrant, he came close to inventing independence-friendly logic, the idea of which he (...) found indispensable in fulfilling the tasks –. (shrink)
We present a dynamic approach to Peirce’s original construal of abductive logic as a logic of conjecture making, and provide a new decidable, contraction-free and cut-free proof system for the dynamic logic of abductive inferences with neighborhood semantics. Our formulation of the dynamic logic of abduction follows the philosophical and scientific track that led Peirce to his late, post-1903 characterization of abductive conclusions as investigands, namely invitations to investigate propositions conjectured at the level of pre-beliefs.
The following two articles comprise two sets of Charles Peirce’s manuscripts, “Recent Developments of Existential Graphs and their Consequences for Logic” (MS 498, MS 499, MS 490 & S-36, 1906) and “Assurance through Reasoning” (MS 669 & MS 670, 1911), written for the National Academy of Sciences meetings in 1906 and 1911. The papers are deposited at Houghton Library, Harvard University. Only some parts of MS 470 have been published before, and in somewhat defective form. Although “Assurance” follows “Recent Developments” (...) chronologically, given the expository style of the former it is recommended to be read before “Recent Developments”. As the title indicates, in the latter Peirce goes on to describe his latest discoveries concerning the method and the logic of existential graphs. The transcription reproduces all significant deletions that appear in the original sheets. Editorial comments and additions are given in brackets. [Alt.:] means the beginning of an alternative sequence. [Del. (shrink)
This paper presents an enrichment of the Gabbay–Woods schema of Peirce’s 1903 logical form of abduction with illocutionary acts, drawing from logic for pragmatics and its resources to model justified assertions. It analyses the enriched schema and puts it into the perspective of Peirce’s logic and philosophy.
This paper compares Peirce’s and Hintikka’s logical philosophies and identifies a cross-section of similarities in their thoughts in the areas of action-first epistemology, pragmaticist meaning, philosophy of science, and philosophy of logic and mathematics.
This paper examines the contemporary philosophical and cognitive relevance of Charles Peirce's diagrammatic logic of existential graphs (EGs), the ?moving pictures of thought?. The first part brings to the fore some hitherto unknown details about the reception of EGs in the early 1900s that took place amidst the emergence of modern conceptions of symbolic logic. In the second part, philosophical aspects of EGs and their contributions to contemporary logical theory are pointed out, including the relationship between iconic logic and images, (...) the problem of the meaning of logical constants, the cognitive economy of iconic logic, the failure of the Frege?Russell thesis, and the failure of the Language of Thought hypothesis. (shrink)
This paper explores the intertwining of uncertainty and values. We consider an important but underexplored field of fundamental uncertainty and values in decision-making. Some proposed methodologies to deal with fundamental uncertainty have included potential surprise theory, scenario planning and hypothetical retrospection. We focus on the principle of uncertainty transduction in hypothetical retrospection as an illustrative case of how values interact with fundamental uncertainty. We show that while uncertainty transduction appears intuitive in decision contexts it nevertheless fails in important ranges of (...) strategic game-theoretic cases. The methodological reasons behind the failure are then examined. (shrink)
We describe Peirce’s 1903 system of modal gamma graphs, its transformation rules of inference, and the interpretation of the broken-cut modal operator. We show that Peirce proposed the normality rule in his gamma system. We then show how various normal modal logics arise from Peirce’s assumptions concerning the broken-cut notation. By developing an algebraic semantics we establish the completeness of fifteen modal logics of gamma graphs. We show that, besides logical necessity and possibility, Peirce proposed an epistemic interpretation of the (...) broken-cut modality, and that he was led to analyze constructions of knowledge in the style of epistemic logic. (shrink)
Clinical equipoise has been proposed as an ethical principle relating uncertainty and moral leeway in clinical research. Although CE has traditionally been indicated as a necessary condition for a morally justified introduction of a new RCT, questions related to the interpretation of this principle remain woefully open. Recent proposals to rehabilitate CE have divided the bioethical community on its ethical merits. This paper presents a new argument that brings out the epistemological difficulties we encounter in justifying CE as a principle (...) to connect uncertainty and moral leeway in clinical ethics. The argument proposes, first, that the methodology of hypothetical retrospection is applicable to the RCT design and that it can accommodate uncertainty. As currently understood, however, HR should give up its reliance on the assumption of uncertainty transduction, because the latter assumes the principle of indifference, which does not accommodate uncertainty in the right way. The same principle is then seen to distort also the received interpretations of CE. (shrink)
Peirce believed that his pragmaticism can be conclusively proven. Beginning in 1903, he drafted several attempts, ending by 1908 with a semeiotic proof. Around 1905, he exposes the proof using the theory of Existential Graphs . This paper modernizes the semantics Peirce proposed for EGs in terms of game-theoretic semantics . Peirce's 1905 proof is then reconstructed in three parts, by relating pragmaticism to the GTS conception of meaning, showing that Peirce's proof is an argument for a relational structure of (...) the meaning of intellectual signs that our interpretative and strategic practices give rise to, and bringing out the key links between EGs and pragmaticism. (shrink)
Are knowledge and belief pivotal in science, as contemporary epistemology and philosophy of science nearly universally take them to be? I defend the view that scientists are not primarily concerned with knowing and that the methods of arriving at scientific hypotheses, models and scenarios do not commit us having stable beliefs about them. Instead, what drives scientific discovery is ignorance that scientists can cleverly exploit. Not an absence or negation of knowledge, ignorance concerns fundamental uncertainty, and is brought out by (...) retroductive inferences, which are roughly characterised as reasoning from effects to causes. I argue that recent discoveries in sciences that coped with under-structured problem spaces testify the prevalence of retroductive logic in scientific discovery and its progress. This puts paid to the need of finding epistemic justification or confirmation to retroductive methodologies. A scientist, never frightened of unknown unknowns, strives to advance the forefront of uncertainty, not that of belief or knowledge. Far from rendering science irrational, I conclude that catering well for the right conditions in which to cultivate ignorance is a key to how fertile retroductive inferences arise. (shrink)
Charles Peirce's theory of proper names is intimately connected to a number of central topics in contemporary philosophy of language and logic. Several papers have appeared in the past in which Peirce's theory of names has been attested to be a precursor of the causal-historical theory of reference.2 The causal-historical theory in turn has customarily been pigeonholed as the 'new' theories of reference that have been emerging since the 1950s (Devitt 1981; Donellan 1966; Kripke 1980; Marcus 1950; Putnam 1973). Among (...) those who have seen Peirce as such a precursor of the new theory of reference are DiLeo (1997), Hilpinen (1995), Maddalena (2006), Pape (1987), and Thibaud (1987). Related recent publications on the .. (shrink)
Charles S. Peirce’s pragmatist theory of logic teaches us to take the context of utterances as an indispensable logical notion without which there is no meaning. This is not a spat against compositionality per se , since it is possible to posit extra arguments to the meaning function that composes complex meaning. However, that method would be inappropriate for a realistic notion of the meaning of assertions. To accomplish a realistic notion of meaning (as opposed e.g. to algebraic meaning), Sperber (...) and Wilson’s Relevance Theory (RT) may be applied in the spirit of Peirce’s Pragmatic Maxim (PM): the weighing of information depends on (i) the practical consequences of accommodating the chosen piece of information introduced in communication, and (ii) what will ensue in actually using that piece in further cycles of discourse. Peirce’s unpublished papers suggest a relevance-like approach to meaning. Contextual features influenced his logic of Existential Graphs (EG). Arguments are presented pro and con the view in which EGs endorse non-compositionality of meaning. (shrink)
Charles Peirce’s alpha system \ is reformulated into a deep inference system where the rules are given in terms of deep graphical structures and each rule has its symmetrical rule in the system. The proof analysis of \ is given in terms of two embedding theorems: the system \ and Brünnler’s deep inference system for classical propositional logic can be embedded into each other; and the system \ and Gentzen sequent calculus \ can be embedded into each other.
Some have suggested that images can be arguments. Images can certainly bolster the acceptability of individual premises. We worry, though, that the static nature of images prevents them from ever playing a genuinely argumentative role. To show this, we call attention to a dilemma. The conclusion of a visual argument will either be explicit or implicit. If a visual argument includes its conclusion, then that conclusion must be demarcated from the premise or otherwise the argument will beg the question. If (...) a visual argument does not include its conclusion, then the premises on display must license that specific conclusion and not its opposite, in accordance with some demonstrable rationale. We show how major examples from the literature fail to escape this dilemma. Drawing inspiration from the graphical logic of C. S. Peirce, we suggest instead that images can be manipulated in a way that overcomes the dilemma. Diagrammatic reasoning can take one stepwise from an initial visual layout to a conclusion—thereby providing a principled rationale that bars opposite conclusions—and the visual inscription of this correct conclusion can come afterward in time—thereby distinguishing the conclusion from the premises. Even though this practical application of Peirce’s logical ideas to informal contexts requires that one make adjustments, we believe it points to a dynamic conception of visual argumentation that will prove more fertile in the long run. (shrink)
A century ago, Charles S. Peirce proposed a logical approach to modalities that came close to possible-worlds semantics. This paper investigates his views on modalities through his diagrammatic logic of Existential Graphs (EGs). The contribution of the gamma part of EGs to the study of modalities is examined. Some ramifications of Peirce’s remarks are presented and placed into a contemporary perspective. An appendix is included that provides a transcription with commentary of Peirce’s unpublished manuscript on modality from 1901.
I argue that many of the pragmatic notions that are commonly attributed to 1-1. P. Grice, or are reported to be inspired by his work on pragmatics, such as assertion, conventional implicature, cooperation, common ground, common knowledge, presuppositions and conversational strategies, have their origins in C. S. Peirce's theory of signs and his pragmatic logic and philosophy. Both Grice and Peirce rooted their theories in normative rationality, anti-psychologism and the relevance of assertions. With respect to the post-Gricean era of pragmatics, (...) theories of relevance may be seen to have been geared, albeit unconsciously, upon Peirce's pragmatic agenda. (shrink)
We propose a reconstruction of the constellation of problems and philosophical positions on the nature and number of the primitives of logic in four authors of the nineteenth century logical scene: Peano, Padoa, Frege and Peirce. We argue that the proposed reconstruction forces us to recognize that it is in at least four different senses that a notation can be said to be simpler than another, and we trace the origins of these four senses in the writings of these authors. (...) We conclude that Frege, and even more so Peirce, developed new notations not to make drawing logical conclusions easier but in order to answer the needs of logical analysis. (shrink)
Peirce and Frege both distinguished between the propositional content of an assertion and the assertion of a propositional content, but with different notational means. We present a modification of Peirce’s graphical method of logic that can be used to reason about assertions in a manner similar to Peirce’s original method. We propose a new system of Assertive Graphs, which unlike the tradition that follows Frege involves no ad hoc sign of assertion. We show that axioms of intuitionistic logic can be (...) derived from AGs, and argue that AGs analyse and represent assertions and illocutionary content in a way which is motivated both by its logical properties and its historical connection with the ideas that led to the development of the graphical method. (shrink)
We study partiality in propositional logics containing formulas with either undefined or over-defined truth-values. Undefined values are created by adding a four-place connective W termed transjunction to complete models which, together with the usual Boolean connectives is shown to be functionally complete for all partial functions. Transjunction is seen to be motivated from a game-theoretic perspective, emerging from a two-stage extensive form semantic game of imperfect information between two players. This game-theoretic approach yields an interpretation where partiality is generated as (...) a property of non-determinacy of games. Over-defined values are produced by adding a weak, contradictory negation or, alternatively, by relaxing the assumption that games are strictly competitive. In general, particular forms of extensive imperfect information games give rise to a generalised propositional logic where various forms of informational dependencies and independencies of connectives can be studied. (shrink)
A century ago, Charles S. Peirce proposed a logical approach to modalities that came close to possible-worlds semantics. This paper investigates his views on modalities through his diagrammatic logic of Existential Graphs. The contribution of the GAMMA part of EGs to the study of modalities is examined. Some ramifications of Peirce's remarks are presented and placed into a contemporary perspective. An appendix is included that provides a transcription with commentary of Peirce's unpublished manuscript on modality from 1901.
It is of common use in modern Venn diagrams to mark a compartment with a cross to express its non-emptiness. Modern scholars seem to derive this convention from Charles S. Peirce, with the assumption that it was unknown to John Venn. This paper demonstrates that Venn actually introduced several methods to represent existentials but felt uneasy with them. The resistance to formalize existentials was not limited to diagrammatic systems, as George Boole and his followers also failed to provide a satisfactory (...) symbolic representation for them. This difficulty points out issues that are inherent to the very nature of existentials. This paper assesses the various methods designed for the representation of existential statements with Venn diagrams. First, Venn’s own attempts are discussed and compared with other solutions proposed by his contemporaries and successors, notably Lewis Carroll and Peirce. Since disjunctives hold an important role in an effective representation of existentials, their representation is also discussed. Finally, recent methods for the diagrammatic representation of existing individuals, rather than mere existence, are surveyed. (shrink)
This paper addresses the theoretical notion of a game as it arisesacross scientific inquiries, exploring its uses as a technical andformal asset in logic and science versus an explanatory mechanism. Whilegames comprise a widely used method in a broad intellectual realm(including, but not limited to, philosophy, logic, mathematics,cognitive science, artificial intelligence, computation, linguistics,physics, economics), each discipline advocates its own methodology and aunified understanding is lacking. In the first part of this paper, anumber of game theories in formal studies are critically (...) surveyed. Inthe second part, the doctrine of games as explanations for logic isassessed, and the relevance of a conceptual analysis of games tocognition discussed. It is suggested that the notion of evolution playsa part in the game-theoretic concept of meaning. (shrink)
It is well-known that by 1882, Peirce, influenced by Cayley’s, Clifford’s and Sylvester’s works on algebraic invariants and by the chemical analogy, had already achieved something like a diagrammatic treatment of quantificational logic of relatives. The details of that discovery and its implications to some wider issues in logical theory merit further investigation, however. This paper provides a reconstruction of the genesis of Peirce’s logical graphs from the early 1880s until 1896, covering the period of time during which he already (...) was acquainted with the works of his Johns Hopkins colleagues on the mathematical theory of graphs and was reaching the very first forms of his theory and method of... (shrink)
I argue that many of the pragmatic notions that are commonly attributed to H. P. Grice, or are reported to be inspired by his work on pragmatics, such as assertion, conventional implicature, cooperation, common ground, common knowledge, presuppositions and conversational strategies, have their origins in C. S. Peirce's theory of signs and his pragmatic logic and philosophy. Both Grice and Peirce rooted their theories in normative rationality, anti-psychologism and the relevance of assertions. With respect to the post-Gricean era of pragmatics, (...) theories of relevance may be seen to have been geared, albeit unconsciously, upon Peirce's pragmatic agenda. (shrink)
Scientific evidence and scientific values under risk and uncertainty are strictly connected from the point of view of Peirce’s pragmaticism. In addition, economy and statistics play a key role in both choosing and testing hypotheses. Hence we may show also the connection between the methodology of the economy of research and statistical frequentism, both originating from pragmaticism. The connection is drawn by the regulative principles of synechism, tychism and uberty. These principles are values that have both epistemic and non-epistemic dimension. (...) They concern both the decisions to test a hypothesis as well as inductive risk. The validity of this result stems from the values cost–benefit analysis imposes on scientific inquiry. Values associated with the economy of research are important not only in the pre-test phases of generating hypotheses but also when hypotheses are effectively tested. Peirce took these economic considerations to leave room for an interpretation of probability which is not only a frequentist and propensity-theoretic but also a conceptualist one referring to degrees of belief. We show that this leeway nonetheless agrees with the theory of the economy of scientific methods. (shrink)
In this commentary, I reply to the fourteen papers published in the Sign Systems Studies special issue on Peirce’s Theory of Signs, with a view on connecting some of their central themes and theses and in putting some of the key points in those papers into a wider perspective of Peirce’s logic and philosophy.