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Neil Barton
University of Vienna
  1.  13
    On Forms of Justification in Set Theory.Neil Barton, Claudio Ternullo & Giorgio Venturi - unknown
    In the contemporary philosophy of set theory, discussion of new axioms that purport to resolve independence necessitates an explanation of how they come to be justified. Ordinarily, justification is divided into two broad kinds: intrinsic justification relates to how `intuitively plausible' an axiom is, whereas extrinsic justification supports an axiom by identifying certain `desirable' consequences. This paper puts pressure on how this distinction is formulated and construed. In particular, we argue that the distinction as often presented is neither well-demarcated nor (...)
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  2.  9
    Inner-Model Reflection Principles.Neil Barton, Andrés Eduardo Caicedo, Gunter Fuchs, Joel David Hamkins, Jonas Reitz & Ralf Schindler - forthcoming - Studia Logica:1-23.
    We introduce and consider the inner-model reflection principle, which asserts that whenever a statement \\) in the first-order language of set theory is true in the set-theoretic universe V, then it is also true in a proper inner model \. A stronger principle, the ground-model reflection principle, asserts that any such \\) true in V is also true in some non-trivial ground model of the universe with respect to set forcing. These principles each express a form of width reflection in (...)
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  3.  18
    Absence Perception and the Philosophy of Zero.Neil Barton - forthcoming - Synthese:1-28.
    Zero provides a challenge for philosophers of mathematics with realist inclinations. On the one hand it is a bona fide cardinal number, yet on the other it is linked to ideas of nothingness and non-being. This paper provides an analysis of the epistemology and metaphysics of zero. We develop several constraints and then argue that a satisfactory account of zero can be obtained by integrating an account of numbers as properties of collections, work on the philosophy of absences, and recent (...)
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  4.  14
    Independence and Ignorance: How Agnotology Informs Set-Theoretic Pluralism.Neil Barton - unknown
    Much of the discussion of set-theoretic independence, and whether or not we could legitimately expand our foundational theory, concerns how we could possibly come to know the truth value of independent sentences. This paper pursues a slightly different tack, examining how we are ignorant of issues surrounding their truth. We argue that a study of how we are ignorant reveals a need for an understanding of set-theoretic explanation and motivates a pluralism concerning the adoption of foundational theory.
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  5.  9
    Large Cardinals and the Iterative Conception of Set.Neil Barton - unknown
    The independence phenomenon in set theory, while pervasive, can be partially addressed through the use of large cardinal axioms. One idea sometimes alluded to is that maximality considerations speak in favour of large cardinal axioms consistent with ZFC, since it appears to be `possible' to continue the hierarchy far enough to generate the relevant transfinite number. In this paper, we argue against this idea based on a priority of subset formation under the iterative conception. In particular, we argue that there (...)
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  6.  8
    Forcing and the Universe of Sets: Must We Lose Insight?Neil Barton - unknown
    A central area of current philosophical debate in the foundations of mathematics concerns whether or not there is a single, maximal, universe of set theory. Universists maintain that there is such a universe, while Multiversists argue that there are many universes, no one of which is ontologically privileged. Often forcing constructions that add subsets to models are cited as evidence in favour of the latter. This paper informs this debate by analysing ways the Universist might interpret this discourse that seems (...)
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  7.  7
    Set Theory and Structures.Neil Barton & Sy-David Friedman - unknown
    Set-theoretic and category-theoretic foundations represent different perspectives on mathematical subject matter. In particular, category-theoretic language focusses on properties that can be determined up to isomorphism within a category, whereas set theory admits of properties determined by the internal structure of the membership relation. Various objections have been raised against this aspect of set theory in the category-theoretic literature. In this article, we advocate a methodological pluralism concerning the two foundational languages, and provide a theory that fruitfully interrelates a `structural' perspective (...)
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  8.  31
    Richness and Reflection.Neil Barton - 2016 - Philosophia Mathematica 24 (3):330-359.
    A pervasive thought in contemporary philosophy of mathematics is that in order to justify reflection principles, one must hold universism: the view that there is a single universe of pure sets. I challenge this kind of reasoning by contrasting universism with a Zermelian form of multiversism. I argue that if extant justifications of reflection principles using notions of richness are acceptable for the universist, then the Zermelian can use similar justifications. However, I note that for some forms of richness argument, (...)
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  9.  22
    Multiversism and Concepts of Set: How Much Relativism is Acceptable?Neil Barton - 2016 - In Francesca Boccuni & Andrea Sereni (eds.), Objectivity, Realism, and Proof. FilMat Studies in the Philosophy of Mathematics. Springer. pp. 189-209.
    Multiverse Views in set theory advocate the claim that there are many universes of sets, no-one of which is canonical, and have risen to prominence over the last few years. One motivating factor is that such positions are often argued to account very elegantly for technical practice. While there is much discussion of the technical aspects of these views, in this paper I analyse a radical form of Multiversism on largely philosophical grounds. Of particular importance will be an account of (...)
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  10.  13
    Maximality and Ontology: How Axiom Content Varies Across Philosophical Frameworks.Neil Barton & Sy-David Friedman - 2017 - Synthese:1-27.
    Discussion of new axioms for set theory has often focused on conceptions of maximality, and how these might relate to the iterative conception of set. This paper provides critical appraisal of how certain maximality axioms behave on different conceptions of ontology concerning the iterative conception. In particular, we argue that forms of multiversism and actualism face complementary problems. The latter view is unable to use maximality axioms that make use of extensions, where the former has to contend with the existence (...)
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  11.  20
    Pluralism in Mathematics: A New Position in Philosophy of Mathematics. By Michèle Friend. Logic, Epistemology and the Unity of Science, Springer, 2014. £60. ISBN 978-94-007-7058-4. [REVIEW]Neil Barton - 2015 - Philosophy 90 (4):685-691.