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Ben Caplan [44]Bryan Caplan [11]B. Caplan [3]
  1. The Way Things Were.Ben Caplan & David Sanson - 2010 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 81 (1):24-39.
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  2. A New Defence of the Modal Existence Requirement.Ben Caplan - 2007 - Synthese 154 (2):335-343.
    In this paper, I defend the claim that an object can have a property only if it exists from two arguments, both of which turn on how to understand Plantinga’s notion of the α-transform of a property.
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  3. Presentism and Truthmaking.Ben Caplan & David Sanson - 2011 - Philosophy Compass 6 (3):196-208.
    Three plausible views—Presentism, Truthmaking, and Independence—form an inconsistent triad. By Presentism, all being is present being. By Truthmaking, all truth supervenes on, and is explained in terms of, being. By Independence, some past truths do not supervene on, or are not explained in terms of, present being. We survey and assess some responses to this.
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  4. Defending Musical Perdurantism.Ben Caplan & Carl Matheson - 2006 - British Journal of Aesthetics 46 (1):59-69.
    If musical works are abstract objects, which cannot enter into causal relations, then how can we refer to musical works or know anything about them? Worse, how can any of our musical experiences be experiences of musical works? It would be nice to be able to sidestep these questions altogether. One way to do that would be to take musical works to be concrete objects. In this paper, we defend a theory according to which musical works are concrete objects. In (...)
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  5. Can a Musical Work Be Created?Ben Caplan & Carl Matheson - 2004 - British Journal of Aesthetics 44 (2):113-134.
    Can a musical work be created? Some say ‘no’. But, we argue, there is no handbook of universally accepted metaphysical truths that they can use to justify their answer. Others say ‘yes’. They have to find abstract objects that can plausibly be identified with musical works, show that abstract objects of this sort can be created, and show that such abstract objects can persist. But, we argue, none of the standard views about what a musical work is allows musical works (...)
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  6. Millian Descriptivism.Ben Caplan - 2007 - Philosophical Studies 133 (2):181-198.
    In this paper, I argue against Millian Descriptivism: that is, the view that, although sentences that contain names express singular propositions, when they use those sentences speakers communicate descriptive propositions. More precisely, I argue that Millian Descriptivism fares no better (or worse) than Fregean Descriptivism: that is, the view that sentences express descriptive propositions. This is bad news for Millian Descriptivists who think that Fregean Descriptivism is dead.
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  7. Fusions and Ordinary Physical Objects.Ben Caplan & Bob Bright - 2005 - Philosophical Studies 125 (1):61-83.
    In “Tropes and Ordinary Physical Objects”, Kris McDaniel argues that ordinary physical objects are fusions of monadic and polyadic tropes. McDaniel calls his view “TOPO”—for “Theory of Ordinary Physical Objects”. He argues that we should accept TOPO because of the philosophical work that it allows us to do. Among other things, TOPO is supposed to allow endurantists to reply to Mark Heller’s argument for perdurantism. But, we argue in this paper, TOPO does not help endurantists do that; indeed, we argue (...)
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  8. Creatures of Fiction, Myth, and Imagination.Ben Caplan - 2004 - American Philosophical Quarterly 41 (4):331-337.
    In the nineteenth century, astronomers thought that a planet between Mercury and the Sun was causing perturbations in the orbit of Mercury, and they introduced ‘Vulcan’ as a name for such a planet. But they were wrong: there was, and is, no intra-Mercurial planet. Still, these astronomers went around saying things like (2) Vulcan is a planet between Mercury and the Sun. Some philosophers think that, when nineteenth-century astronomers were theorizing about an intra-Mercurial planet, they created a hypothetical planet.
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  9. Putting Things in Contexts.Ben Caplan - 2003 - Philosophical Review 112 (2):191-214.
    Thanks to David Kaplan (1989a, 1989b), we all know how to handle indexicals like ‘I’. ‘I’ doesn’t refer to an object simpliciter; rather, it refers to an object only relative to a context. In particular, relative to a context C, ‘I’ refers to the agent of C. Since different contexts can have different agents, ‘I’ can refer to different objects relative to different contexts. For example, relative to a context cwhose agent is Gottlob Frege, ‘I’ refers to Frege; relative to (...)
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  10. Defending 'Defending Musical Perdurantism'.Ben Caplan & Carl Matheson - 2008 - British Journal of Aesthetics 48 (1):80-85.
    British Journal of Aesthetics (forthcoming Jan. 2008).
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  11. Against Widescopism.Ben Caplan - 2005 - Philosophical Studies 125 (2):167-190.
    Descriptivists say that every name is synonymous with some definite description, and Descriptivists who are Widescopers say that the definite description that a name is synonymous with must take wide scope with respect to modal adverbs such as “necessarily”. In this paper, I argue against Widescopism. Widescopers should be Super Widescopers: that is, they should say that the definite description that a name is synonymous with must take wide scope with respect to complementizers such as “that”. Super Widescopers should be (...)
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  12.  53
    Against a Defense of Fictional Realism.B. Caplan & C. Muller - 2014 - Philosophical Quarterly 64 (255):211-224.
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  13.  70
    Benacerraf's Revenge.Ben Caplan & Chris Tillman - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 166 (S1):111-129.
    In a series of recent publications, Jeffrey King (The nature and structure of content, 2007; Proc Aristot Soc 109(3):257–277, 2009; Philos Stud, 2012) argues for a view on which propositions are facts. He also argues against views on which propositions are set-theoretical objects, in part because such views face Benacerraf problems. In this paper, we argue that, when it comes to Benacerraf problems, King’s view doesn’t fare any better than its set-theoretical rivals do. Finally, we argue that his view faces (...)
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  14.  97
    Constitutive Essence and Partial Grounding.Eileen S. Nutting, Ben Caplan & Chris Tillman - 2018 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 61 (2):137-161.
    Kit Fine and Gideon Rosen propose to define constitutive essence in terms of ground-theoretic notions and some form of consequential essence. But we think that the Fine–Rosen proposal is a mistake. On the Fine–Rosen proposal, constitutive essence ends up including properties that, on the central notion of essence, are necessary but not essential. This is because consequential essence is closed under logical consequence, and the ability of logical consequence to add properties to an object’s consequential essence outstrips the ability of (...)
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  15. Works of Music: An Essay in Ontology.Ben Caplan - 2007 - British Journal of Aesthetics 47 (4):445-446.
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  16.  53
    Soames’s New Conception of Propositions.Ben Caplan - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (9):2533-2549.
    In this paper, I argue that, when it comes to explaining what can be described as “representational” properties of propositions, Soames’s new conception of propositions—on which the proposition that Seattle is sunny is the act of predicating the property being sunny of Seattle and to entertain that proposition is to perform that act—does not have an advantage over traditional ones.
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  17. Why So Tense About the Copula?Ben Caplan - 2005 - Mind 114 (455):703 - 708.
  18. Ontological Superpluralism.Ben Caplan - 2011 - Philosophical Perspectives 25 (1):79-114.
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  19. Quotation and Demonstration.Ben Caplan - 2002 - Philosophical Studies 111 (1):69-80.
    In "Demonstratives or Demonstrations", Marga Reimer argues that quotation marks are demonstrations and that expressions enclosed with them are demonstratives. In this paper, I argue against her view. There are two objections. The first objection is that Reimer''s view has unattractive consequences: there is more ambiguity, there are more demonstratives, and there are more English expressions than we thought. The second objection is that, unlike other ambiguous expressions, some expressions that are ambiguous on Reimer''s view can''t be disambiguated by using (...)
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  20.  86
    Not the Optimistic Type.Ben Caplan, Chris Tillman, Brian McLean & Adam Murray - 2013 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 43 (5):575-589.
    (2013). Not the optimistic type. Canadian Journal of Philosophy: Vol. 43, Essays on the Nature of Propositions, pp. 575-589.
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  21.  25
    Serial Fiction, Continued.B. Caplan - 2014 - British Journal of Aesthetics 54 (1):65-76.
    In ‘Truth, Relativism, and Serial Fiction’, Andrew McGonigal presents new data that a theory of truth in fiction should account for, and argues that the data is best accounted for by his relativist view. I argue against McGonigal’s relativist view and in favour of a more metaphysical view. The key feature of this view is that it is one on which the content of a work of fiction can change over time. Along the way I also argue against Ross Cameron’s (...)
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  22.  65
    What's Puzzling Gottlob Frege?Mike Thau & Ben Caplan - 2001 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 31 (2):159-200.
  23. Descriptivism, Scope, and Apparently Empty Names.Andrew Cullison & Ben Caplan - 2011 - Philosophical Studies 156 (2):283-288.
  24.  85
    On the Content of Experience.Timothy Schroeder & Ben Caplan - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 75 (3):590–611.
    The intentionalist about consciousness holds that the qualitative character of experience.
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  25.  76
    The Extraordinary Impossibility of Sherlock Holmes.Ben Caplan - 2016 - Res Philosophica 93 (2):1-21.
    In an addendum to Naming and Necessity, Saul Kripke argues against his earlier view that Sherlock Holmes is a possible person. In this paper, I suggest a nonstandard interpretation of the addendum. A key feature of this non-standard interpretation is that it attempts to make sense of why Kripke would be rejecting the view that Sherlock Holmes is a possible person without asserting that it is not the case that Sherlock Holmes is a possible person.
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  26.  40
    Have the Experts Been Weighed, Measured, and Found Wanting?Bryan Caplan - 2007 - Critical Review 19 (1):81-91.
    ABSTRACT Tetlock's Expert Political Judgment is a creative, careful, and mostly convincing study of the predictive accuracy of political experts. My only major complaints are that Tetlock (1) understates the predictive accuracy of experts, and (2) does too little to discourage demagogues from misinterpreting his work as a vindication of the wisdom of the average citizen. Experts have much to learn from Tetlock's epistemological audit, but there is still ample evidence that, compared to laymen, experts are very good.
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  27. Fine Individuation.Carl Matheson & Ben Caplan - 2007 - British Journal of Aesthetics 47 (2):113-137.
    Jerrold Levinson argues that musical works are individuated by their context of origin. But one could just as well argue that musical works are individuated by their context of reception. Moderate contextualism, according to which musical works are individuated by context of origin but not by context of reception, thus appears to be an unstable position. And, although a more thoroughgoing contextualism, according to which musical works are individuated both by context of origin and by context of reception, faces a (...)
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  28.  42
    Is Socialism Really “Impossible”?Bryan Caplan - 2004 - Critical Review 16 (1):33-52.
    Abstract In the 1920s, Austrian?school economists began to argue that in a fully socialized economy, free of competitively generated prices, central planners would have no way to calculate which methods of production would be the most economical. They claimed that this ?economic calculation problem? showed that socialism is ?impossible.? Although many believe that the Austrian position was later vindicated by the collapse of the Soviet bloc, the Austrian school's own methodology disallows such a conclusion. And historical evidence suggests that poor (...)
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  29. On Sense and Direct Reference.Ben Caplan - 2006 - Philosophy Compass 1 (2):171-185.
  30. Modality, Individuation, and the Ontology of Art.Carl Matheson & Ben Caplan - 2008 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 38 (4):491-517.
    In 1988, Michael Nyman composed the score for Peter Greenaway’s film Drowning by Numbers (or did something that we would ordinarily think of as composing that score). We can think of Nyman’s compositional activity as a “generative performance” and of the sound structure that Nyman indicated (or of some other abstract object that is appropriately related to that sound structure) as the product generated by that performance (ix).1 According to one view, Nyman’s score for Drowning by the Numbers—the musical work—is (...)
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  31.  26
    Majorities Against Utility: Implications of the Failure of the Miracle of Aggregation.Bryan Caplan - 2009 - Social Philosophy and Policy 26 (1):198-211.
    A surprising conclusion of modern political economy is that democracies with highly ignorant voters can still deliver very good results as long as voters' errors balance each other out. This result is known as the Miracle of Aggregation. This paper begins by reviewing a large body of evidence against this Miracle. Empirically, voters' errors tend to be systematic; they compound rather than cancel. Furthermore, since most citizens vote for the policies they believe are best for society, systematic errors lead voters (...)
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  32.  12
    Counting Again.David Sanson, Ben Caplan & Cathleen Muller - 2017 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 94 (1-2):69-82.
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  33. Empty Names.Ben Caplan - 2002 - Dissertation, UCLA
    In my dissertation (UCLA 2002), I argue that, by appropriating Fregean resources, Millians can solve the problems that empty names pose. As a result, the debate between Millians and Fregeans should be understood, not as a debate about whether there are senses, but rather as a debate about where there are senses.
     
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  34. Mereological Myths.Ben Caplan & Kris McDaniel - manuscript
     
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  35. What’s Puzzling Gottlob Frege?Mike Thau & Ben Caplan - 2001 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 31 (2):159-200.
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  36.  27
    Roundtable 1: Public Ignorance: Rational, Irrational, or Inevitable?Scott Althaus, Bryan Caplan, Jeffrey Friedman, Ilya Somin & Nassim Nicholas Taleb - 2008 - Critical Review 20 (4):423-444.
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  37.  20
    Review of Trenton Merricks, Truth and Ontology[REVIEW]Ben Caplan - 2008 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2008 (2).
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  38.  5
    Reply to My Critics.Bryan Caplan - 2008 - Critical Review 20 (3):377-413.
    This symposium’s objections to my book fall into two main categories: philosophical and empirical. The philosophical objections are largely sophistical. If we took them seriously, they would invalidate far more than my book: We would also have to give up social science and common sense. The empirical objections, in contrast, are often thoughtful and important. The most notable: Kiewiet and Mattozzi’s vigorous defense of the American public’s free‐trade credentials, and Wittman’s doubts about the magnitude of the belief gap between economists (...)
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  39.  60
    Networks, Anarcho-Capitalism, and the Paradox of Cooperation.Bryan Caplan - unknown
    JEL Classifications: L13, K42, L15 Keywords: anarcho-capitalism, networks, collusion Abstract: There is a tension between libertarians' optimism about private supply of public goods and their skeptical of the viability of voluntary collusion. (Cowen 1992; Cowen and Sutter 1999) Playing off this asymmetry, Cowen (1992) advances the novel argument that the "free market in defense services" favored by anarcho-capitalists is a network industry where collusion is especially feasible. The current article dissolves Cowen's asymmetry, showing that he fails to distinguish between self-enforcing (...)
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  40.  27
    Anarchist Theory FAQ.Bryan Caplan - unknown
    I heartily accept the motto, - "That government is best which governs least;" and I should like to see it acted up to more rapidly and systematically. Carried out, it finally amounts to this, which I also believe, - "That government is best which governs not at all;" and when men are prepared for it, that will be the kind of government which they will have.
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  41.  15
    The Editors of Philosophy and Phenomenological Research Thank the Members of the Editorial Board and the Following Scholars, Who Have Served as Referees During the Period of October 2006 Through July 2007. [REVIEW]Melissa Barry, John Bishop, Benjamin Bradley, Sarah Buss, Ben Caplan, Erik Carlson, John Carriero, Peter Carruthers, C. A. J. Coady & Marian David - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 75 (3).
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  42.  21
    Toward a New Consensus on the Economics of Socialism: Rejoinder to My Critics.Bryan Caplan - 2005 - Critical Review 17 (1-2):203-220.
    Abstract This has been an unusually productive exchange. My critics largely accept my main theoretical claims about economic calculation and socialism. They have also started to do what advocates of the Misesian view should have been doing for decades: offer empirical evidence that that the calculation problem is serious. While I continue to believe that incentive problems explain most of the failures of socialism, I am slightly less confident than I was before. Fortunately, there are many unexploited sources of information (...)
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  43.  28
    Review of Stefano Predelli, Contexts: Meaning, Truth, and the Use of Language[REVIEW]Ben Caplan - 2006 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2006 (11).
  44.  3
    Privatizing the Adjudication of Disputes.Edward P. Stringham & Bryan Caplan - 2008 - Theoretical Inquiries in Law 9 (2):503-528.
    Must the state handle the adjudication of disputes? Researchers of different perspectives, from heterodox scholars of law who advocate legal pluralism to libertarian economists who advocate the privatization of law, have increasingly questioned the idea that the state is, or should be, the only source of law. Both groups point out that government law has problems and that non-state alternatives exist. This Article discusses some problems with the public judicial system and several for-profit alternatives. Public courts lack both incentives to (...)
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  45.  7
    Terms and Truth: Reference Direct and Anaphoric.Ben Caplan - 2004 - Dialogue 43 (3):617-619.
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  46.  6
    Terms and Truth: Reference Direct and Anaphoric Alan Berger Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2002, Xvii + 234 Pp. [REVIEW]Ben Caplan - 2004 - Dialogue 43 (3):617-619.
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  47.  10
    Review of Alan Berger, Terms and Truth: Reference Direct and Anaphoric[REVIEW]Ben Caplan - 2004 - Dialogue 43 (3):617-619.
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  48. Review of Terms and Truth. [REVIEW]Ben Caplan - unknown
    Alan Berger’s Terms and Truth covers various expressionsparticularly names and anaphoric pronouns, but also demonstratives and general termsas they occur in various linguistic contexts, including identity sentences, belief ascriptions, and negative existentials. A central thesis of Berger’s book is that all of these expressions are rigid designators. (So I assume that Berger would say, contrary to what the subtitle might suggest, that anaphoric reference is direct reference.).
     
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  49.  9
    Review of Julian Dodd, Works of Music: An Essay in Ontology[REVIEW]Ben Caplan - 2007 - British Journal of Aesthetics 47 (4):445-446.
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  50.  8
    Review of Jerrold Katz, Sense, Reference, and Philosophy[REVIEW]Ben Caplan - 2005 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2005 (1).
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