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The Perception of Time in Intuitionistic Arithmetic (Vincent Peluce)

The Logic and Metaphysics Workshop will meet on May 20th from 4:15-6:15 in room 7314 of the CUNY Graduate Center for a talk by Vincent Peluce (CUNY).

Title: The Perception of Time in Intuitionistic Arithmetic

AbstractIn L.E.J. Brouwer’s first act of intuitionism, the subject’s perception of time is put forth as the foundation on which arithmetic will be built. According to Brouwer, proper intuitionistic arithmetic, as with the rest of intuitionistic mathematics, is not tied to any particular formal system. When we try to axiomatically approximate an intuitionistic arithmetical system, we are faced with the problem of incorporating the subject and their perception into the axiom system itself. We discuss some unsatisfactory responses to this problem and then offer a solution.

Composition as Identity: A New Approach (Martina Botti)

The Logic and Metaphysics Workshop will meet on May 13th from 4:15-6:15 in room 7314 of the CUNY Graduate Center for a talk by Martina Botti (Columbia).

Title: Composition as Identity: A New Approach

AbstractI argue that the debate on composition as identity – the thesis that any composite object is identical to its parts – is deadlocked because both the defenders and the detractors of the claim have so far defended and criticized respectively something that is not composition as identity. After having made clear how composition as identity should properly be understood, I will set forth a new strategy to defend it. 

No Metaphysical Disagreement Without Logical Incompatibility (Daniel Durante)

The Logic and Metaphysics Workshop will meet on May 6th from 4:15-6:15 in room 7314 of the CUNY Graduate Center for a talk by Daniel Durante (Natal).

Title: No Metaphysical Disagreement Without Logical Incompatibility

Abstract: The purpose of this talk is to defend the logical incompatibility of the opposing views as a criterion for characterizing disagreements as genuinely metaphysical. That is, I intend to argue that a specific dispute is a metaphysical disagreement only when the conflicting views are governed by different logics. If correct, this criterion would not only help to separate merely verbal from genuine metaphysical debates, but it also would ground an argument against deflationism, guaranteeing the substantiality and relevance of metaphysics. I intend to clarify the criterion, to present its basic foundations and commitments, to give some logical and metaphysical motivations for its adoption and some examples of its application.

A Mechanistic Conception of Metaphysical Grounding (Tommy Kivatinos)

The Logic and Metaphysics Workshop will meet on April 29th from 4:15-6:15 in room 7314 of the CUNY Graduate Center for a talk by Tommy Kivatinos (CUNY).

Title: A Mechanistic Conception of Metaphysical Grounding

Abstract: A dominant theoretical framework in philosophy of science employs the notion of mechanistic dependence to elucidate how higher-level, less fundamental phenomena depend upon and arise out of lower-level, more fundamental phenomena. To elucidate the same thing, literature in metaphysics employs the notion of grounding. As I argue, regardless of whether the notion of mechanistic dependence or the notion of grounding is used to theoretically portray how higher-level phenomena arise out of lower-level phenomena, what is captured by such portrayals is the same. Thus, these notions pick out the same features of the world. With this as my basis, I identify the notion of grounding with the notion of mechanistic dependence, and thus, construct a mechanistic conception of grounding. Since mechanistic dependence is understood in terms of mechanisms, my conception frames grounding in terms of mechanisms. Moreover, the contemporary notion of mechanisms is shaped by how mechanisms are represented via the mechanistic models and mechanistic explanations provided by science. Thus, because my conception grounding identifies grounding with mechanistic dependence and thereby frames grounding in terms of mechanisms, this conception suggests that the notion of grounding is to be tailored to and constrained by the mechanistic models and mechanistic explanations provided by science. This leads the mechanistic conception of grounding to reject a wide variety of conventional claims about grounding, and thus, to offer a treatment of grounding that is highly revisionary. To reinforce the plausibility of the mechanistic conception of grounding, I discuss how grounding and mechanistic dependence are associated with explanation. Whereas mechanistic dependence is associated with mechanistic explanation, grounding is associated with grounding explanation. For each kind of explanation, some higher-level phenomenon P is explained by appeal to some low-level phenomenon that Parises out of. As I argue, these forms of explanation can be plausibly identified. This greatly supports the mechanistic conception of grounding. For if grounding explanations employ the notion of grounding and mechanistic explanations employ the notion of mechanistic explanation, and these forms of explanation can be identified, this suggests that these explanations employ the same notion. And, just as the notions of grounding and mechanistic dependence capture the same connection between higher-level and lower-level phenomena, grounding explanation and mechanistic explanation do so as well. Finally, to argue that the mechanistic conception is to be preferred to standard conceptions, I argue that my conception offers a powerful defense of grounding from recent criticisms.

Structural Counterfactuals and the Importation Problem (Jenn McDonald)

The Logic and Metaphysics Workshop will meet on April 15th from 4:15-6:15 in room 7314 of the CUNY Graduate Center for a talk by Jenn McDonald (CUNY).

Title: Structural Counterfactuals and the Importation Problem

Abstract: Structural causal models lend themselves to an analysis of counterfactuals – a structural semantics of counterfactuals. The basic idea is that a causal model allows for the clear and precise evaluation of any counterfactual encoded by it. Many argue that a structural semantics is superior to a more traditional similarity semantics, in part due to the latter’s independence from any notion of similarity(Galles & Pearl, 1998; Gallow, 2016; Hiddleston, 2005; Hitchcock, 2018; Pearl, 2000; Starr, 2019). I argue, though, that this is too quick. A similarity semantics employs the notion of similarity to answer what Priest (2018) calls the importation problem– the question of what information is to be held fixed in a counterfactual evaluation. I argue that where similarity semantics relies on an unarticulated notion of similarity, a structural semantics relies on an unarticulated notion of aptness. The superiority of structural semantics depends on its ability to deliver on a principled guide to determining which model(s) is apt. In this talk I go some way towards providing this guide.

 

What does it mean that Contradiction is the Norm of Truth? (Elena Ficara)

The Logic and Metaphysics Workshop will meet on April 1st from 4:15-6:15 in room 7314 of the CUNY Graduate Center for a talk by Elena Ficara (Paderborn).

Title: What does it mean that Contradiction is the Norm of Truth?

Abstract: In my talk I argue for the thesis CT: contradiction is the norm of truth, and ask about its relevance for contemporary philosophical logic. I first present three positions in the history of philosophy that have advocated some versions of CT, namely Plato’s idea of the “dialectical gymnastics” in the Parmenides (Plato, Parmenides 136 B-E), Aristotle’s notion of dialectics in the Topics (Aristotle, Topics I, 2-3) and Metaphysics (Aristotle, Met III 1, 995 a 24-29), and Hegel’s contradictio est regula veri (Hegel Werke 2, 533), then derive from them some answers to the questions:

What is meant by “contradiction” in CT?

What is meant by “truth” in CT?

What is meant by “norm” in CT?

I will show that to examine the meaning of CT in historical perspective is useful to understand the seeds of genuine glut theories.

 

Classical Logic and the Strict Tolerant Hierarchy (Chris Scambler)

The Logic and Metaphysics Workshop will meet on April 8th from 4:15-6:15 in room 7314 of the CUNY Graduate Center for a talk by Chris Scambler (NYU).

Title: Classical Logic and the Strict Tolerant Hierarchy

AbstractIn this talk I will do three things. First: I will present the central results from Barrio, Pailos and Szmuc’s recent paper “A hierarchy of classical and paraconsistent logics” (forthcoming in the JPL) along with some generalizations derived by observing certain symmetries; second, I will discuss the relation between the strict tolerant logics and classical logic, K3 and LP; third, I will try to convey the exact state of uncertainty about the philosophical significance of the foregoing I find myself in on the day.

Inferences First (Romina Padró)

The Logic and Metaphysics Workshop will meet on March 18th from 4:15-6:15 in room 7314 of the CUNY Graduate Center for a talk by Romina Padró (CUNY).

Title: Inferences First

AbstractTwo ways of giving an epistemic justification of basic logical principles will be introduced, intuition-based accounts and concept or meaning constitution-based accounts. We will briefly consider different versions of these views and argue that they face parallel dilemmas. While ‘robust’ accounts are subject to what I call the ‘adoption problem,’ ‘weak’ accounts fail to ground our basic inferential dispositions. Either way, intuitions and meaning-constituting rules turn out to be irrelevant. A more general moral for the epistemology of logic and its priorities will be drawn from the discussion.

Deep Structure (Jeremy Goodman)

The Logic and Metaphysics Workshop will meet on March 11th from 4:15-6:15 in room 7314 of the CUNY Graduate Center for a talk by Jeremy Goodman (USC).

Title: Deep Structure

AbstractRussell proved over a century ago that a naive conception of structured propositions is inconsistent. Hodes (2015), Dorr (2016), and Goodman (2017) have recently reformulated Russell’s argument in the language of higher-order logic, and concluded from it that distinctions in reality cannot always reflect all the syntactic structure of the language in which we draw those distinctions. But they also float the idea that such distinctions might nevertheless have sentence-like structure, so long as this structure fails to neatly correspond to the syntactic structure of the sentences we use to draw those distinction. Perhaps, that is, the popular metaphor of facts being like sentences written in God’s “book of the world” is tenable after all. In this talk I’ll give a way of making this metaphor precise, and prove a new limitative result showing that, given natural assumptions, it too is inconsistent. 

A Theory of the Conditional (Kit Fine)

The Logic and Metaphysics Workshop will meet on March 25th from 4:15-6:15 in room 7314 of the CUNY Graduate Center for a talk by Kit Fine (NYU).

Title: A Theory of the Conditional

Abstract: I provide a truth-maker semantics for the conditional and consider the application to imperative and deontic conditionals.

Note: the title/topic of this talk was changed on March 14th, 2019.