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Robert Williams
University of Leeds
Robert Gooding-Williams
Columbia University
  1. Indeterminacy and Triviality.Paolo Santorio & Robert Williams - manuscript
    Suppose that you're certain that a certain sentence, e.g. "Frida is tall", lacks a determinate truth value. What cognitive attitude should you take towards it—reject it, suspend judgment, or what else? We show that, by adopting a seemingly plausible principle connecting credence in A and Determinately A, we can prove a very implausible answer to this question: i.e., all indeterminate claims should be assigned credence zero. The result is striking similar to so-called triviality results in the literature on modals and (...)
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  2. Commitment Problems in the Naive Theory of Belief.Robert Williams - forthcoming - In Dirk Kindermann, Peter van Elswyk & Andy Egan (eds.), Unstructured Content. Oxford University Press.
  3. Multiple Actualities and Ontically Vague Identity.Robert Williams - 2008 - Philosophical Quarterly 58 (230):134-154.
    Although the Evans argument against vague identity has been much discussed, proposah for blocking it have not so far satisfied general conditions which any solution ought to meet. Moreover, the relation between ontically vague identity and ontic vagueness more generally has not yet been satisfactorily addressed. I advocate a way of resisting the Evans argument which satisfies the conditions. To show how this approach can vindicate particular cases of ontically vague identity, I develop a framework for describing ontic vagueness in (...)
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  4.  37
    Women on Corporate Boards of Directors and Their Influence on Corporate Philanthropy.Robert J. Williams - 2003 - Journal of Business Ethics 42 (1):1 - 10.
    This study examined the relationship between the proportion of women serving on firms' boards of directors and the extent to which these same firms engaged in charitable giving activities. Using a sample of 185 Fortune 500 firms for the 1991-1994 time period, the results provide strong support for the notion that firms having a higher proportion of women serving on their boards do engage in charitable giving to a greater extent than firms having a lower proportion of women serving on (...)
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  5. An Argument for Conjunction Conditionalization.Lee Walters & Robert Williams - 2013 - Review of Symbolic Logic 6 (4):573-588.
    Are counterfactuals with true antecedents and consequents automatically true? That is, is Conjunction Conditionalization: if (X & Y), then (X > Y) valid? Stalnaker and Lewis think so, but many others disagree. We note here that the extant arguments for Conjunction Conditionalization are unpersuasive, before presenting a family of more compelling arguments. These arguments rely on some standard theorems of the logic of counterfactuals as well as a plausible and popular semantic claim about certain semifactuals. Denying Conjunction Conditionalization, then, requires (...)
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  6.  76
    Corporate Philanthropy, Criminal Activity, and Firm Reputation: Is There a Link? [REVIEW]Robert J. Williams & J. Douglas Barrett - 2000 - Journal of Business Ethics 26 (4):341 - 350.
    This study examined the influence of corporate giving programs on the link between certain categories of corporate crime and corporate reputation. Specifically, firms that violate EPA and OSHA regulations should, to some extent, experience a decline in their reputations, while firms that contribute to charitable causes should see their reputations enhanced. The results of this study support both of these contentions. Further, the results suggest that corporate giving significantly moderates the link between the number of EPA and OSHA violations committed (...)
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  7. Hegel’s Ethics of Recognition.Robert R. Williams - 1997 - University of California Press.
    In this significant contribution to Hegel scholarship, Robert Williams develops the most comprehensive account to date of Hegel's concept of recognition. Fichte introduced the concept of recognition as a presupposition of both Rousseau's social contract and Kant's ethics. Williams shows that Hegel appropriated the concept of recognition as the general pattern of his concept of ethical life, breaking with natural law theory yet incorporating the Aristotelian view that rights and virtues are possible only within a certain kind of community. He (...)
     
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  8. Chances, Counterfactuals, and Similarity.Robert Williams - 2008 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 77 (2):385-420.
    John Hawthorne in a recent paper takes issue with Lewisian accounts of counterfactuals, when relevant laws of nature are chancy. I respond to his arguments on behalf of the Lewisian, and conclude that while some can be rebutted, the case against the original Lewisian account is strong.I develop a neo-Lewisian account of what makes for closeness of worlds. I argue that my revised version avoids Hawthorne’s challenges. I argue that this is closer to the spirit of Lewis’s first (non-chancy) proposal (...)
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  9. Probability and Nonclassical Logic.Robert Williams - 2016 - In Alan Hajek & Christopher Hitchcock (eds.), The oxford handbook of probability and philosophy. Oxford university press.
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  10.  36
    Recognition: Fichte and Hegel on the Other.Robert R. WILLIAMS - 1992 - State University of New York Press.
    Investigates the concept of recognition (anerkennen) under which term the German idealists discussed the Other, intersubjectivity, the interhuman.
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  11. Words by Convention.Gail Leckie & Robert Williams - 2019 - In David Sosa & Ernie Lepore (eds.), Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Language Volume 1. Oxford, UK: OUP.
    Existing metasemantic projects presuppose that word- (or sentence-) types are part of the non-semantic base. We propose a new strategy: an endogenous account of word types, that is, one where word types are fixed as part of the metasemantics. On this view, it is the conventions of truthfulness and trust that ground not only the meaning of the words (meaning by convention) but also what the word type is of each particular token utterance (words by convention). The same treatment extends (...)
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  12. Vagueness.Robert Williams - 2012 - In Delia Fara & Gillian Russell (eds.), Routledge Companion to the Philosophy of Language. Routledge.
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  13. An Argument for the Many.Robert Williams - 2006 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 106 (1):411-419.
    If one believes that vagueness is an exclusively representational phenomenon, one faces the problem of the many. In the vicinity of Kilimanjaro, there are many many ‘mountain candidates’ all, apparently, with more-or-less equal claim to be mountains. David Lewis has defended a radical claim: that all the billions of mountain candidates are mountains. This paper argues that the supervaluationist about vagueness should adopt Lewis’ proposal, on pain of losing their best explanation of the seductiveness of the sorites.
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  14. Hegel’s Ethics of Recognition.Robert R. Williams - 1997 - University of California Press.
    In this significant contribution to Hegel scholarship, Robert Williams develops the most comprehensive account to date of Hegel's concept of recognition. Fichte introduced the concept of recognition as a presupposition of both Rousseau's social contract and Kant's ethics. Williams shows that Hegel appropriated the concept of recognition as the general pattern of his concept of ethical life, breaking with natural law theory yet incorporating the Aristotelian view that rights and virtues are possible only within a certain kind of community. He (...)
     
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  15.  36
    Tragedy, Recognition, and the Death of God: Studies in Hegel and Nietzsche.Robert R. Williams - 2012 - Oxford University Press.
    Robert R. Williams offers a bold new account of divergences and convergences in the work of Hegel and Nietzsche. He explores four themes - the philosophy of tragedy; recognition and community; critique of Kant; and the death of God - and explicates both thinkers' critiques of traditional theology and metaphysics.
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  16.  45
    The Impact of Banality, Risky Shift and Escalating Commitment on Ethical Decision Making.Robert W. Armstrong, Robert J. Williams & J. Douglas Barrett - 2004 - Journal of Business Ethics 53 (4):365-370.
    This paper posits that organizational variables are the factors that lead to the moral decline of companies like Enron and Worldcom. The individuals involved created environments within the organizations that precipitated a spiral of unethical decision-making. It is proposed that at the executive level, it is the organizational factors associated with power and decision-making that have the critical influence on moral and ethical behavior. The study has used variables that were deemed to be surrogate measures of the ethical violations (OSHA (...)
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  17. Counterfactual Triviality: A Lewis-Impossibility Argument for Counterfactuals.Robert Williams - 2012 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 85 (3):648-670.
    I formulate a counterfactual version of the notorious 'Ramsey Test'. Whereas the Ramsey Test for indicative conditionals links credence in indicatives to conditional credences, the counterfactual version links credence in counterfactuals to expected conditional chance. I outline two forms: a Ramsey Identity on which the probability of the conditional should be identical to the corresponding conditional probabihty/expectation of chance; and a Ramsey Bound on which credence in the conditional should never exceed the latter.Even in the weaker, bound, form, the counterfactual (...)
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  18. Angst, Indeterminacy and Conflicting Values.Robert Williams - 2016 - Ratio 29 (4):412-433.
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  19. Review : The Concept of Recognition in Hegel's Jena Philosophy: A Review of Ludwig Siep's Anerkennung Als Prinzip der Praktischen. [REVIEW]Robert Williams - 1982 - Philosophy and Social Criticism 9 (1):100-113.
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  20. What Does the Modularity of Morals Have to Do With Ethics? Four Moral Sprouts Plus or Minus a Few.Owen Flanagan & Robert Anthony Williams - 2010 - Topics in Cognitive Science 2 (3):430-453.
    Flanagan (1991) was the first contemporary philosopher to suggest that a modularity of morals hypothesis (MMH) was worth consideration by cognitive science. There is now a serious empirically informed proposal that moral competence is best explained in terms of moral modules-evolutionarily ancient, fast-acting, automatic reactions to particular sociomoral experiences (Haidt & Joseph, 2007). MMH fleshes out an idea nascent in Aristotle, Mencius, and Darwin. We discuss the evidence for MMH, specifically an ancient version, “Mencian Moral Modularity,” which claims four innate (...)
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  21.  66
    Suppositions, Revisions and Decisions.Daniel Y. Elstein & Robert Williams - manuscript
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  22. Working Parts: Reply to Mellor.Robert Williams - 2008 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 62:81-106.
    Two kinds of explanation might be put forward. The first goes like this: the necessary connection between the location of a whole and the location of its parts holds because the location of the whole is nothing but the collective location of its parts. The second style of explanation goes like this: the connection holds because what it is for a material whole to have something as a part, is (perhaps among other things) for the whole to contain the part.
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  23.  64
    Davidson on Reference.Robert Williams - 2013 - In Ernie LePore & Kurt Ludwig (eds.), Blackwell Companion to Donald Davidson. Blackwell.
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  24.  50
    A Non-Pragmatic Dominance Argument for Conditionalization.Robert Williams - manuscript
    In this paper, I provide an accuracy-based argument for conditionalization (via reflection) that does not rely on norms of maximizing expected accuracy. -/- (This is a draft of a paper that I wrote in 2013. It stalled for no very good reason. I still believe the content is right).
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  25.  6
    The Inseparability of Love and Anguish.Robert R. Williams - 2013 - In Angelica Nuzzo (ed.), Hegel on Religion and Politics. State University of New York Press. pp. 133.
  26. Aristotelian Indeterminacy and the Open Future.Robert Williams - manuscript
    I explore the thesis that the future is open, in the sense that future contingents are neither true nor false. The paper is divided into three sections. In the first, I survey how the thesis arises on a variety of contemporary views on the metaphysics of time. In the second, I explore the consequences for rational belief of the ‘Aristotelian’ view that indeterminacy is characterized by truth-value gaps. In the third, I outline one line of defence for the Aristotelian against (...)
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  27.  43
    Classical Indeterminacy.Robert Williams - manuscript
    This is an old draft of a paper that seeks to find the minimum cognitive/practical role for indeterminacy that we get if we assume a fully classical logic and semantics, but reject epistemicism. The ambition is to connect that classical setting to the framework for rational belief and decision I described in "Decision Making under Indeterminacy".
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  28.  49
    Logical Norms, Accuracy and Degree of Belief.Robert Williams - 2015 - In Colin R. Caret & Ole Thomassen Hjortland (eds.), Foundations of Logical Consequence. Oxford University Press.
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  29.  6
    Introduction.Robert R. Williams - 2001 - Proceedings of the Hegel Society of America 15:1-20.
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  30. Vagueness, Conditionals and Probability.Robert Williams - 2009 - Erkenntnis 70 (2):151 - 171.
    This paper explores the interaction of well-motivated (if controversial) principles governing the probability conditionals, with accounts of what it is for a sentence to be indefinite. The conclusion can be played in a variety of ways. It could be regarded as a new reason to be suspicious of the intuitive data about the probability of conditionals; or, holding fixed the data, it could be used to give traction on the philosophical analysis of a contentious notion—indefiniteness. The paper outlines the various (...)
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  31.  72
    Hegel and Nietzsche: Recognition and Master/Slave.Robert R. Williams - 2001 - Philosophy Today 45 (9999):164-179.
  32. Gavagai Again.Robert Williams - 2008 - Synthese 164 (2):235 - 259.
    Quine (1960, "Word and object". Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, ch. 2) claims that there are a variety of equally good schemes for translating or interpreting ordinary talk. 'Rabbit' might be taken to divide its reference over rabbits, over temporal slices of rabbits, or undetached parts of rabbits, without significantly affecting which sentences get classified as true and which as false. This is the basis of his famous 'argument from below' to the conclusion that there can be no fact of the (...)
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  33.  9
    Hegel on Socrates and Irony.Robert R. Williams - 2003 - Proceedings of the Hegel Society of America 16:67-86.
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  34.  57
    The Relationship of Critical Thinking to Success in College.Robert L. Williams & Stephen L. Worth - 2001 - Inquiry: Critical Thinking Across the Disciplines 21 (1):5-16.
    The definition, assessment, predictive validity, demographic correlates, and promotion of critical thinking at the college level are addressed in this article. Although the definitions of critical thinking vary substantially, a common theme is the linkage of conclusions to relevant evidence. Assessment measures range from quasi-standardized instruments to informal class assessment and include both generic and subject-specific formats. Although critical thinking potentially serves both as a predictor of college success and as a criterion of suceess, its greater utility may be as (...)
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  35. On Sider on Naturalness.Robert Williams - manuscript
  36.  12
    Hegel and Nietzsche: Recognition and Master/Slave.Robert R. Williams - 2001 - Philosophy Today 45 (Supplement):164-179.
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  37.  63
    Hegel’s True Infinity As Panentheism: Reply to Robert Wallace.Robert R. Williams - 2010 - The Owl of Minerva 42 (1/2):137-152.
    Hegel’s True Infinite is “well known” but there is little consensus concerning its meaning. The true infinite is introduced in Hegel’s deconstruction of traditional conceptions of quality, determinacy and reality as wholly positive and from which negation, limitation and determinacy are excluded. Everything is other than and unrelated to everything else. These assumptions yield the stubborn category of finitude as an absolute limit, and of God as abstract unknowable Beyond. But Hegel claims that every attempt to separate the infinite from (...)
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  38.  59
    Sartre’s Strange Appropriation of Hegel.Robert R. Williams - 1991 - The Owl of Minerva 23 (1):5-14.
    Alfred Schutz identified two different approaches to the problem of intersubjectivity. The first is the transcendental, which maintains the primacy of subjectivity, and identifies the problem of the other as a transcendental problem. For example, in Husserl’s phenomenological idealism, all meaning is relative to a transcendental constituting subject. Hence the “problem of intersubjectivity” is to show how the other comes to be constituted, comes to be meant as a sense. The difficulty with such an approach is that if the other (...)
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  39.  93
    Overcoming the Kantian Frame: Tragedy, Recognition, and the Death of God.Robert Williams - 2013 - The Owl of Minerva 45 (1/2):85-100.
    This paper has three sections. 1) For Hegel, the true infinite is the fundamental concept of philosophy. The true infinite challenges current non-metaphysical interpretations of Hegel, as it challenged Kant’s restriction of cognition to finitude and attack on metaphysics. The consciousness of limit implies a transcendence of limit, and an infinite opposed to the finite shows itself to be finite. 2) Hegel accepts Kant’s approach to the God-question through practical reason, but rejects Kant’s postulates as incoherent. The content of the (...)
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  40. The Displacement of Recognition by Coercion in Fichte's Grundlage des Naturrechts'.Robert R. Williams - 2002 - In Daniel Breazeale & Tom Rockmore (eds.), New Essays on Fichte's Later Jena Wissenschaftslehre. Northwestern University Press.
     
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  41.  14
    The Inseparability of Love and Anguish.Robert R. Williams - 2013 - Proceedings of the Hegel Society of America 21:133-156.
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  42. Ricoeur on Recognition.Robert R. Williams - 2008 - European Journal of Philosophy 16 (3):467-473.
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  43.  42
    Discernment in the Realm of Shadows: Absolute Knowing and Otherness.Robert R. Williams - 1995 - The Owl of Minerva 26 (2):133-148.
    I wish to thank Prof. Houlgate for his thoughtful article, especially in view of his agreement with so much of the argument of Recognition. I welcome his concurrence with many of my theses: that there is an account of intersubjectivity in German idealism, that reason is social, that love is the most important form of reciprocal recognition, and that Hegel does not reduce the other to the same. His analysis of both Fichte and Hegel is sophisticated and perceptive. Before responding (...)
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  44. Vagueness and Degrees of Truth, by Nicholas J. J. Smith. [REVIEW]Robert Williams - 2011 - Mind 120 (480):1297-1305.
  45.  65
    Ricoeur on Recognition.Robert R. Williams - 2008 - European Journal of Philosophy 16 (3):467-473.
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  46.  41
    Knowledge and Critical Thinking as Course Predictors and Outcomes.Robert L. Williams, Renee Oliver & Jessica L. Allin - 2003 - Inquiry: Critical Thinking Across the Disciplines 22 (4):57-63.
    Pre- and postmeasures of course knowledge correlated more strongly and consistently with course performance variables than did pre- and postmeasures of generic critical thinking. In addition, the total sample improved significantly on course knowledge from the pre- to the postassessment but changed minimally on critical thinking. The extent and pattern of change in critical thinking differed somewhat for students making high and low grades in the course. High-grade students achieved significantly more favorable changes on both critical thinking and course knowledge (...)
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  47. Metaphysical Indeterminacy, Supervenience, and Emergence.Robert Williams - manuscript
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  48.  85
    Hegel’s Critique of Kant.Robert R. Williams - 2006 - The Owl of Minerva 38 (1/2):9-34.
    This essay examines Hegel’s critique of Kant’s concept of critical philosophy, set forth principally in his Phenomenology of Spirit and Encyclopedia. In the former Hegel presents a hermeneutical critique of Kant, to wit, the concept of critique presupposes a concept of knowledge construed as an instrument. On this assumption the “instrument” of knowledge is supposed to be examined apart from and in advance of its application. But Hegel objects that the underlying conception of knowledge as an instrument undermines the cognitive (...)
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  49.  59
    Reviews. [REVIEW]Kurt Marko, R. C. Elwood, Fred Seddon, John D. Windhausen, Timothy E. O'Connor & Robert C. Williams - 1989 - Studies in East European Thought 37 (4):227-229.
  50.  80
    Hegel’s Concept of The True Infinite.Robert R. Williams - 2010 - The Owl of Minerva 42 (1/2):89-122.
    According to Hegel, the true infinite is the fundamental concept of philosophy. Yet despite this fact, there is absence of consensus concerning its meaning and significance. The true infinite challenges the currently dominant non-metaphysical interpretations of Hegel, as it challenged the dominance of the Kantian framework in its own day, specifically Kant’s attack on theology and his treatment of theology as a postulate of moralit y. Kant admits that the God-postulate has only subjective necessity and validity, and is an expression (...)
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