6,281 research outputs found

    Truth : a concept unlike any other

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    This paper explores the nature of the concept of truth. It does not offer an analysis or definition of truth, or an account of how it relates to other concepts. Instead, it explores what sort of concept truth is by considering what sorts of thoughts it enables us to think. My conclusion is that truth is a part of each and every propositional thought. The concept of truth is therefore best thought of as the ability to token propositional thoughts. I explore what implications this view has for existing accounts of concepts, and argue that truth is a concept unlike any other

    The Role of Truth in Psychological Science

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    In a recent paper, Haig and Borsboom explore the relevance of the theory of truth for psychological science. Although they conclude that correspondence theories of truth are best suited to offer the resources for making sense of scientific practice, they leave open the possibility that other theories might accomplish those same ends. I argue that deflationary theories of truth, which deny that there is any substantive property that unifies the class of truths, makes equally good sense of scientific practice as the correspondence theory, but at lesser theoretical cost. I also argue that the considerations Haig and Borsboom draw on are better thought of as issues relevant to realism, and thus separate from the theory of truth. I conclude that while they are correct to engage questions about what makes true the various claims that arise in psychological research, they may do so without saddling themselves with a correspondence theory

    Upright posture and the meaning of meronymy: A synthesis of metaphoric and analytic accounts

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    Cross-linguistic strategies for mapping lexical and spatial relations from body partonym systems to external object meronymies (as in English ‘table leg’, ‘mountain face’) have attracted substantial research and debate over the past three decades. Due to the systematic mappings, lexical productivity and geometric complexities of body-based meronymies found in many Mesoamerican languages, the region has become focal for these discussions, prominently including contrastive accounts of the phenomenon in Zapotec and Tzeltal, leading researchers to question whether such systems should be explained as global metaphorical mappings from bodily source to target holonym or as vector mappings of shape and axis generated “algorithmically”. I propose a synthesis of these accounts in this paper by drawing on the species-specific cognitive affordances of human upright posture grounded in the reorganization of the anatomical planes, with a special emphasis on antisymmetrical relations that emerge between arm-leg and face-groin antinomies cross-culturally. Whereas Levinson argues that the internal geometry of objects “stripped of their bodily associations” (1994: 821) is sufficient to account for Tzeltal meronymy, making metaphorical explanations entirely unnecessary, I propose a more powerful, elegant explanation of Tzeltal meronymic mapping that affirms both the geometric-analytic and the global-metaphorical nature of Tzeltal meaning construal. I do this by demonstrating that the “algorithm” in question arises from the phenomenology of movement and correlative body memories—an experiential ground which generates a culturally selected pair of inverse contrastive paradigm sets with marked and unmarked membership emerging antithetically relative to the transverse anatomical plane. These relations are then selected diagrammatically for the classification of object orientations according to systematic geometric iconicities. Results not only serve to clarify the case in question but also point to the relatively untapped potential that upright posture holds for theorizing the emergence of human cognition, highlighting in the process the nature, origins and theoretical validity of markedness and double scope conceptual integration

    The Facts about Truthmaking: An Argument for Truthmaker Necessitarianism

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    Truthmaker necessitarianism is the view that an object is a truthmaker for a truth-bearer only if it is impossible for the object to exist and the truth-bearer be false. While this thesis is widely regarded as truthmaking "orthodoxy", it is rarely explicitly defended. In this paper I offer an argument in favor of necessitarianism that raises the question of what the truthmakers are for the truths about truthmaking. The supposed advantages of non-necessitarianism dissolve once we take these truths into account

    QCD corrections to inclusive ΔS=1,2\Delta S=1,2 transitions

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    The talk summarises a calculation of the two-point functions for ΔS=1\Delta S=1 current-current and QCD-penguin operators, as well as for the ΔS=2\Delta S=2 operator, at the next-to-leading order. The size of the gluonic corrections to current-current operators is large, providing a qualitative understanding of the observed enhancement in ΔI=1/2\Delta I=1/2 transitions. In the ΔS=2\Delta S=2 sector the QCD corrections are quite moderate (20%\approx -20\%). This work has been done in collaboration with Antonio Pich.Comment: 3 pages, Invited talk presented at ``QCD'94'', Montpellier, France, July 7 - 13, 1994, hep-ph/yymmnn

    Realism and Theories of Truth

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    The topic of truth has long been thought to be connected to scientific realism and its opposition. In this essay, I discuss the various ways that truth might be related to realism. First, I consider how truth might be of use when defining scientific realism and its opposition. Second, I consider whether various stances regarding realism require specific stances on the nature of truth. I survey "neutralist" views that argue that one's stance on realism is independent of one's view on truth, and partisan positions that claim that one's attitude on realism is, in part, determined by one's theory of truth. Though partisan views have been popular, and defended by seminal figures such as Thomas Kuhn, Richard Rorty, Hilary Putnam, and Arthur Fine, I raise a number of objections for them

    We don’t need no explanation

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    Explanation has played myriad roles in truthmaker theory. The notion of explanation is sometimes thought to give content to the very idea of truthmaking, and is sometimes used as a weapon to undermine the entire point of truthmaker theory. I argue that the notion of explanation is dialectically useless in truthmaker theory: while it’s true that truthmaking offers a form of explanation, this claim is theoretically unilluminating, and leaves truthmaker theorists vulnerable to various kinds of attack. I advocate an alternative approach to truthmaker theory that downplays the role of explanation, and show how it releases the enterprise from a variety of problematic commitments that have troubled truthmaker theorists. The “ontology-first” approach to truthmaking that I advocate not only restores the initial impulse behind truthmaking, but also has a number of theoretical advantages. Most prominently, it dodges the infamous problem of negative existentials, and lessens truthmaker theory’s dependence on contentious intuitive judgments about both explanation and truthmaking
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