Combining Philosophers

All the ideas for Baron,S/Miller,K, Michael Dummett and A.J. Ayer

expand these ideas     |    start again     |     specify just one area for these philosophers


252 ideas

1. Philosophy / D. Nature of Philosophy / 3. Philosophy Defined
Philosophy is a department of logic [Ayer]
1. Philosophy / D. Nature of Philosophy / 5. Aims of Philosophy / a. Philosophy as worldly
Philosophy aims to understand the world, through ordinary experience and science [Dummett]
1. Philosophy / D. Nature of Philosophy / 5. Aims of Philosophy / e. Philosophy as reason
Philosophers should abandon speculation, as philosophy is wholly critical [Ayer]
1. Philosophy / E. Nature of Metaphysics / 7. Against Metaphysics
Humeans rejected the a priori synthetic, and so rejected even Kantian metaphysics [Ayer, by Macdonald,C]
1. Philosophy / F. Analytic Philosophy / 4. Conceptual Analysis
To explain a concept, we need its purpose, not just its rules of usage [Dummett]
1. Philosophy / F. Analytic Philosophy / 7. Limitations of Analysis
Critics say analysis can only show the parts, and not their distinctive configuration [Ayer]
1. Philosophy / G. Scientific Philosophy / 3. Scientism
Philosophy deals with the questions that scientists do not wish to handle [Ayer]
2. Reason / A. Nature of Reason / 5. Objectivity
What matters in mathematics is its objectivity, not the existence of the objects [Dummett]
2. Reason / D. Definition / 7. Contextual Definition
A contextual definition permits the elimination of the expression by a substitution [Dummett]
2. Reason / E. Argument / 3. Analogy
You can't infer that because you have a hidden birth-mark, everybody else does [Ayer]
2. Reason / E. Argument / 6. Conclusive Proof
A successful proof requires recognition of truth at every step [Dummett]
2. Reason / F. Fallacies / 1. Fallacy
Induction assumes some uniformity in nature, or that in some respects the future is like the past [Ayer]
2. Reason / F. Fallacies / 2. Infinite Regress
Vicious regresses force you to another level; non-vicious imply another level [Baron/Miller]
3. Truth / A. Truth Problems / 1. Truth
It is part of the concept of truth that we aim at making true statements [Dummett]
3. Truth / A. Truth Problems / 2. Defining Truth
We must be able to specify truths in a precise language, like winning moves in a game [Dummett]
3. Truth / F. Semantic Truth / 2. Semantic Truth
Tarski's truth is like rules for winning games, without saying what 'winning' means [Dummett, by Davidson]
Truth is part of semantics, since valid inference preserves truth [Dummett]
3. Truth / H. Deflationary Truth / 2. Deflationary Truth
We cannot analyse the concept of 'truth', because it is simply a mark that a sentence is asserted [Ayer]
4. Formal Logic / A. Syllogistic Logic / 3. Term Logic
Logic would be more natural if negation only referred to predicates [Dummett]
4. Formal Logic / B. Propositional Logic PL / 3. Truth Tables
Truth-tables are dubious in some cases, and may be a bad way to explain connective meaning [Dummett]
4. Formal Logic / D. Modal Logic ML / 1. Modal Logic
It was realised that possible worlds covered all modal logics, if they had a structure [Dummett]
4. Formal Logic / D. Modal Logic ML / 3. Modal Logic Systems / a. Systems of modal logic
Relative possibility one way may be impossible coming back, so it isn't symmetrical [Dummett]
If something is only possible relative to another possibility, the possibility relation is not transitive [Dummett]
4. Formal Logic / D. Modal Logic ML / 3. Modal Logic Systems / d. System T
If possibilitiy is relative, that might make accessibility non-transitive, and T the correct system [Dummett]
4. Formal Logic / D. Modal Logic ML / 3. Modal Logic Systems / g. System S4
In S4 the actual world has a special place [Dummett]
4. Formal Logic / E. Nonclassical Logics / 2. Intuitionist Logic
Dummett says classical logic rests on meaning as truth, while intuitionist logic rests on assertability [Dummett, by Kitcher]
Mathematical statements and entities that result from an infinite process must lack a truth-value [Dummett]
4. Formal Logic / F. Set Theory ST / 2. Mechanics of Set Theory / c. Basic theorems of ST
The ordered pairs <x,y> can be reduced to the class of sets of the form {{x},{x,y}} [Dummett]
4. Formal Logic / F. Set Theory ST / 4. Axioms for Sets / a. Axioms for sets
ZF set theory has variables which range over sets, 'equals' and 'member', and extensionality [Dummett]
The main alternative to ZF is one which includes looser classes as well as sets [Dummett]
4. Formal Logic / F. Set Theory ST / 4. Axioms for Sets / j. Axiom of Choice IX
To associate a cardinal with each set, we need the Axiom of Choice to find a representative [Dummett]
5. Theory of Logic / A. Overview of Logic / 1. Overview of Logic
Deduction is justified by the semantics of its metalanguage [Dummett, by Hanna]
5. Theory of Logic / A. Overview of Logic / 6. Classical Logic
In classical logic, logical truths are valid formulas; in higher-order logics they are purely logical [Dummett]
5. Theory of Logic / B. Logical Consequence / 2. Types of Consequence
Syntactic consequence is positive, for validity; semantic version is negative, with counterexamples [Dummett]
5. Theory of Logic / D. Assumptions for Logic / 1. Bivalence
Language can violate bivalence because of non-referring terms or ill-defined predicates [Dummett]
Undecidable statements result from quantifying over infinites, subjunctive conditionals, and the past tense [Dummett]
5. Theory of Logic / D. Assumptions for Logic / 2. Excluded Middle
Intuitionists reject excluded middle, not for a third value, but for possibility of proof [Dummett]
Anti-realism needs an intuitionist logic with no law of excluded middle [Dummett, by Miller,A]
The law of excluded middle is the logical reflection of the principle of bivalence [Dummett]
5. Theory of Logic / E. Structures of Logic / 2. Logical Connectives / c. not
Natural language 'not' doesn't apply to sentences [Dummett]
Classical negation is circular, if it relies on knowing negation-conditions from truth-conditions [Dummett]
5. Theory of Logic / F. Referring in Logic / 1. Naming / b. Names as descriptive
Ancient names like 'Obadiah' depend on tradition, not on where the name originated [Dummett]
5. Theory of Logic / G. Quantification / 1. Quantification
Classical quantification is an infinite conjunction or disjunction - but you may not know all the instances [Dummett]
5. Theory of Logic / G. Quantification / 5. Second-Order Quantification
First-order logic concerns objects; second-order adds properties, kinds, relations and functions [Dummett]
5. Theory of Logic / I. Semantics of Logic / 1. Semantics of Logic
Beth trees show semantics for intuitionistic logic, in terms of how truth has been established [Dummett]
In standard views you could replace 'true' and 'false' with mere 0 and 1 [Dummett]
Classical two-valued semantics implies that meaning is grasped through truth-conditions [Dummett]
5. Theory of Logic / I. Semantics of Logic / 3. Logical Truth
Logical truths and inference are characterized either syntactically or semantically [Dummett]
5. Theory of Logic / K. Features of Logics / 4. Completeness
Soundness and completeness proofs test the theory of meaning, rather than the logic theory [Dummett]
5. Theory of Logic / L. Paradox / 6. Paradoxes in Language / b. The Heap paradox ('Sorites')
Surely there is no exact single grain that brings a heap into existence [Dummett]
5. Theory of Logic / L. Paradox / 7. Paradoxes of Time
A traveller takes a copy of a picture into the past, gives it the artist, who then creates the original! [Baron/Miller]
6. Mathematics / A. Nature of Mathematics / 3. Nature of Numbers / b. Types of number
A prime number is one which is measured by a unit alone [Dummett]
6. Mathematics / A. Nature of Mathematics / 3. Nature of Numbers / c. Priority of numbers
Addition of quantities is prior to ordering, as shown in cyclic domains like angles [Dummett]
Ordinals seem more basic than cardinals, since we count objects in sequence [Dummett]
6. Mathematics / A. Nature of Mathematics / 4. Using Numbers / a. Units
A number is a multitude composed of units [Dummett]
6. Mathematics / A. Nature of Mathematics / 4. Using Numbers / e. Counting by correlation
We understand 'there are as many nuts as apples' as easily by pairing them as by counting them [Dummett]
6. Mathematics / A. Nature of Mathematics / 5. The Infinite / c. Potential infinite
Platonists ruin infinity, which is precisely a growing structure which is never completed [Dummett]
6. Mathematics / B. Foundations for Mathematics / 4. Axioms for Number / g. Incompleteness of Arithmetic
Intuitionists find the Incompleteness Theorem unsurprising, since proof is intuitive, not formal [Dummett]
6. Mathematics / B. Foundations for Mathematics / 7. Mathematical Structuralism / e. Structuralism critique
The identity of a number may be fixed by something outside structure - by counting [Dummett]
Numbers aren't fixed by position in a structure; it won't tell you whether to start with 0 or 1 [Dummett]
The number 4 has different positions in the naturals and the wholes, with the same structure [Dummett]
6. Mathematics / C. Sources of Mathematics / 6. Logicism / a. Early logicism
Maths and logic are true universally because they are analytic or tautological [Ayer]
6. Mathematics / C. Sources of Mathematics / 6. Logicism / d. Logicism critique
Set theory isn't part of logic, and why reduce to something more complex? [Dummett]
6. Mathematics / C. Sources of Mathematics / 10. Constructivism / a. Constructivism
For intuitionists it is constructed proofs (which take time) which make statements true [Dummett]
6. Mathematics / C. Sources of Mathematics / 10. Constructivism / b. Intuitionism
Intuitionism says that totality of numbers is only potential, but is still determinate [Dummett]
Intuitionists rely on the proof of mathematical statements, not their truth [Dummett]
7. Existence / A. Nature of Existence / 1. Nature of Existence
Positivists regard ontology as either meaningless or stipulated [Ayer, by Robinson,H]
7. Existence / B. Change in Existence / 1. Nature of Change
A 'Cambridge Change' is like saying 'the landscape changes as you travel east' [Dummett]
7. Existence / C. Structure of Existence / 1. Grounding / a. Nature of grounding
Grounding is intended as a relation that fits dependences between things [Baron/Miller]
7. Existence / C. Structure of Existence / 7. Abstract/Concrete / a. Abstract/concrete
Ostension is possible for concreta; abstracta can only be referred to via other objects [Dummett, by Hale]
The concrete/abstract distinction seems crude: in which category is the Mistral? [Dummett]
We don't need a sharp concrete/abstract distinction [Dummett]
The distinction of concrete/abstract, or actual/non-actual, is a scale, not a dichotomy [Dummett]
We can't say that light is concrete but radio waves abstract [Dummett]
7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 1. Realism
Dummett saw realism as acceptance of bivalence, rather than of mind-independent entities [Dummett, by Potter]
Realism is just the application of two-valued semantics to sentences [Dummett]
Metaphysical realists are committed to all unambiguous statements being true or not true [Dummett]
Philosophers should not presume reality, but only invoke it when language requires it [Dummett]
7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 3. Anti-realism
For anti-realists there are no natural distinctions between objects [Dummett, by Benardete,JA]
We can't make sense of a world not apprehended by a mind [Dummett]
I no longer think what a statement about the past says is just what can justify it [Dummett]
7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 7. Facts / b. Types of fact
Since 'no bird here' and 'no squirrel here' seem the same, we must talk of 'atomic' facts [Dummett]
7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 7. Facts / c. Facts and truths
We know we can state facts, with true statements [Dummett]
7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 9. Vagueness / b. Vagueness of reality
To say reality itself is vague is not properly intelligible [Dummett]
7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 9. Vagueness / d. Vagueness as linguistic
'That is red or orange' might be considered true, even though 'that is red' and 'that is orange' were not [Dummett]
7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 10. Ontological Commitment / a. Ontological commitment
The context principle for names rules out a special philosophical sense for 'existence' [Dummett]
The objects we recognise the world as containing depends on the structure of our language [Dummett]
7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 10. Ontological Commitment / b. Commitment of quantifiers
It is currently held that quantifying over something implies belief in its existence [Ayer]
8. Modes of Existence / D. Universals / 1. Universals
We can understand universals by studying predication [Dummett]
8. Modes of Existence / E. Nominalism / 1. Nominalism / a. Nominalism
'Nominalism' used to mean denial of universals, but now means denial of abstract objects [Dummett]
Nominalism assumes unmediated mental contact with objects [Dummett]
9. Objects / A. Existence of Objects / 1. Physical Objects
Concrete objects such as sounds and smells may not be possible objects of ostension [Dummett]
9. Objects / A. Existence of Objects / 2. Abstract Objects / a. Nature of abstracta
Abstract objects may not cause changes, but they can be the subject of change [Dummett]
The existence of abstract objects is a pseudo-problem [Dummett]
9. Objects / A. Existence of Objects / 2. Abstract Objects / b. Need for abstracta
If we can intuitively apprehend abstract objects, this makes them observable and causally active [Dummett]
9. Objects / A. Existence of Objects / 2. Abstract Objects / c. Modern abstracta
Abstract objects nowadays are those which are objective but not actual [Dummett]
Abstract objects must have names that fall within the range of some functional expression [Dummett]
It is absurd to deny the Equator, on the grounds that it lacks causal powers [Dummett]
'We've crossed the Equator' has truth-conditions, so accept the Equator - and it's an object [Dummett]
9. Objects / A. Existence of Objects / 2. Abstract Objects / d. Problems with abstracta
If a genuine singular term needs a criterion of identity, we must exclude abstract nouns [Dummett, by Hale]
Abstract objects can never be confronted, and need verbal phrases for reference [Dummett]
Abstract objects need the context principle, since they can't be encountered directly [Dummett]
9. Objects / A. Existence of Objects / 3. Objects in Thought
There is a modern philosophical notion of 'object', first introduced by Frege [Dummett]
9. Objects / D. Essence of Objects / 3. Individual Essences
We see properties necessary for a kind (in the definition), but not for an individual [Ayer]
9. Objects / E. Objects over Time / 2. Objects that Change
How does a changing object retain identity or have incompatible properties over time? [Baron/Miller]
9. Objects / F. Identity among Objects / 2. Defining Identity
Content is replaceable if identical, so replaceability can't define identity [Dummett, by Dummett]
Frege introduced criteria for identity, but thought defining identity was circular [Dummett]
10. Modality / E. Possible worlds / 1. Possible Worlds / a. Possible worlds
Possible worlds aren't how the world might be, but how a world might be, given some possibility [Dummett]
10. Modality / E. Possible worlds / 1. Possible Worlds / c. Possible worlds realism
If possible worlds have no structure (S5) they are equal, and it is hard to deny them reality [Dummett]
11. Knowledge Aims / B. Certain Knowledge / 1. Certainty
Only tautologies can be certain; other propositions can only be probable [Ayer]
11. Knowledge Aims / B. Certain Knowledge / 5. Cogito Critique
To say 'I am not thinking' must be false, but it might have been true, so it isn't self-contradictory [Ayer]
Knowing I exist reveals nothing at all about my nature [Ayer]
'I know I exist' has no counterevidence, so it may be meaningless [Ayer]
11. Knowledge Aims / C. Knowing Reality / 2. Phenomenalism
Modern phenomenalism holds that objects are logical constructions out of sense-data [Ayer]
Logical positivists could never give the sense-data equivalent of 'there is a table next door' [Robinson,H on Ayer]
Material things are constructions from actual and possible occurrences of sense-contents [Ayer]
No one has defended translational phenomenalism since Ayer in 1940 [Ayer, by Kim]
The existence of a universe without sentience or intelligence is an unintelligible fantasy [Dummett]
12. Knowledge Sources / A. A Priori Knowledge / 4. A Priori as Necessities
We could verify 'a thing can't be in two places at once' by destroying one of the things [Ierubino on Ayer]
12. Knowledge Sources / A. A Priori Knowledge / 5. A Priori Synthetic
Whether geometry can be applied to reality is an empirical question outside of geometry [Ayer]
12. Knowledge Sources / A. A Priori Knowledge / 7. A Priori from Convention
By changing definitions we could make 'a thing can't be in two places at once' a contradiction [Ayer]
12. Knowledge Sources / A. A Priori Knowledge / 8. A Priori as Analytic
To say that a proposition is true a priori is to say that it is a tautology [Ayer]
12. Knowledge Sources / B. Perception / 4. Sense Data / a. Sense-data theory
Positivists prefer sense-data to objects, because the vocabulary covers both illusions and perceptions [Ayer, by Robinson,H]
The concept of sense-data allows us to discuss appearances without worrying about reality [Ayer]
12. Knowledge Sources / B. Perception / 7. Causal Perception
Causal and representative theories of perception are wrong as they refer to unobservables [Ayer]
12. Knowledge Sources / C. Rationalism / 1. Rationalism
The main claim of rationalism is that thought is an independent source of knowledge [Ayer]
12. Knowledge Sources / D. Empiricism / 1. Empiricism
Empiricism lacked a decent account of the a priori, until Ayer said it was entirely analytic [O'Grady on Ayer]
All propositions (especially 'metaphysics') must begin with the senses [Ayer]
My empiricism logically distinguishes analytic and synthetic propositions, and metaphysical verbiage [Ayer]
12. Knowledge Sources / D. Empiricism / 4. Pro-Empiricism
It is further sense-experience which informs us of the mistakes that arise out of sense-experience [Ayer]
12. Knowledge Sources / D. Empiricism / 5. Empiricism Critique
Empiricism, it is said, cannot account for our knowledge of necessary truths [Ayer]
Empirical and a priori knowledge are not distinct, but are extremes of a sliding scale [Dummett]
13. Knowledge Criteria / B. Internal Justification / 4. Foundationalism / c. Empirical foundations
Basic propositions refer to a single experience, are incorrigible, and conclusively verifiable [Ayer]
14. Science / A. Basis of Science / 6. Falsification
We only discard a hypothesis after one failure if it appears likely to keep on failing [Ayer]
14. Science / C. Induction / 2. Aims of Induction
The induction problem is to prove generalisations about the future based on the past [Ayer]
Induction passes from particular facts to other particulars, or to general laws, non-deductively [Ayer]
14. Science / C. Induction / 3. Limits of Induction
We can't use the uniformity of nature to prove induction, as that would be circular [Ayer]
14. Science / D. Explanation / 2. Types of Explanation / a. Types of explanation
An explanation is often a deduction, but that may well beg the question [Dummett]
15. Nature of Minds / A. Nature of Mind / 4. Other Minds / b. Scepticism of other minds
Other minds are 'metaphysical' objects, because I can never observe their experiences [Ayer]
Maybe induction could never prove the existence of something unobservable [Ayer]
15. Nature of Minds / A. Nature of Mind / 4. Other Minds / c. Knowing other minds
A conscious object is by definition one that behaves in a certain way, so behaviour proves consciousness [Ayer]
The argument from analogy fails, so the best account of other minds is behaviouristic [Ayer]
The theory of other minds has no rival [Ayer]
Originally I combined a mentalistic view of introspection with a behaviouristic view of other minds [Ayer]
Physicalism undercuts the other mind problem, by equating experience with 'public' brain events [Ayer]
16. Persons / B. Nature of the Self / 1. Self and Consciousness
Consciousness must involve a subject, and only bodies identify subjects [Ayer]
16. Persons / B. Nature of the Self / 5. Self as Associations
If the self is meaningful, it must be constructed from sense-experiences [Ayer]
Qualia must be united by a subject, because they lead to concepts and judgements [Ayer]
Is something an 'experience' because it relates to other experiences, or because it relates to a subject? [Ayer]
16. Persons / B. Nature of the Self / 7. Self and Body / a. Self needs body
Bodily identity and memory work together to establish personal identity [Ayer]
Two experiences belong to one self if their contents belong with one body [Ayer]
Empiricists can define personal identity as bodily identity, which consists of sense-contents [Ayer]
People own conscious states because they are causally related to the identifying body [Ayer]
16. Persons / C. Self-Awareness / 2. Knowing the Self
Self-consciousness is not basic, because experiences are not instrinsically marked with ownership [Ayer]
16. Persons / C. Self-Awareness / 3. Limits of Introspection
We identify experiences by their owners, so we can't define owners by their experiences [Ayer]
16. Persons / D. Continuity of the Self / 2. Mental Continuity / a. Memory is Self
Memory is the best proposal as what unites bundles of experiences [Ayer]
Not all exerience can be remembered, as this would produce an infinite regress [Ayer]
16. Persons / D. Continuity of the Self / 2. Mental Continuity / c. Inadequacy of mental continuity
Temporal gaps in the consciousness of a spirit could not be bridged by memories [Ayer]
16. Persons / D. Continuity of the Self / 6. Body sustains Self
Personal identity can't just be relations of experiences, because the body is needed to identify them [Ayer]
17. Mind and Body / A. Mind-Body Dualism / 8. Dualism of Mind Critique
The supposed 'gulf' between mind and matter is based on the senseless concept of 'substances' [Ayer]
17. Mind and Body / E. Mind as Physical / 1. Physical Mind
Why shouldn't we say brain depends on mind? Better explanation! [Ayer]
18. Thought / A. Modes of Thought / 1. Thought
The theories of meaning and understanding are the only routes to an account of thought [Dummett]
A theory of thought will include propositional attitudes as well as propositions [Dummett]
18. Thought / D. Concepts / 3. Ontology of Concepts / c. Fregean concepts
Concepts only have a 'functional character', because they map to truth values, not objects [Dummett, by Davidson]
18. Thought / D. Concepts / 4. Structure of Concepts / i. Conceptual priority
An argument for conceptual priority is greater simplicity in explanation [Dummett]
Maybe a concept is 'prior' to another if it can be defined without the second concept [Dummett]
18. Thought / E. Abstraction / 1. Abstract Thought
Abstract terms are acceptable as long as we know how they function linguistically [Dummett]
You can't infer a dog's abstract concepts from its behaviour [Dummett]
18. Thought / E. Abstraction / 7. Abstracta by Equivalence
Since abstract objects cannot be picked out, we must rely on identity statements [Dummett]
There is no reason why abstraction by equivalence classes should be called 'logical' [Dummett, by Tait]
We arrive at the concept 'suicide' by comparing 'Cato killed Cato' with 'Brutus killed Brutus' [Dummett]
18. Thought / E. Abstraction / 8. Abstractionism Critique
To abstract from spoons (to get the same number as the forks), the spoons must be indistinguishable too [Dummett]
To 'abstract from' is a logical process, as opposed to the old mental view [Dummett]
19. Language / A. Nature of Meaning / 4. Meaning as Truth-Conditions
Stating a sentence's truth-conditions is just paraphrasing the sentence [Dummett]
If a sentence is effectively undecidable, we can never know its truth conditions [Dummett]
To know the truth-conditions of a sentence, you must already know the meaning [Dummett]
19. Language / A. Nature of Meaning / 5. Meaning as Verification
A sentence is factually significant to someone if they know how to verify its proposition [Ayer]
Factual propositions imply (in conjunction with a few other premises) possible experiences [Ayer]
Tautologies and empirical hypotheses form the entire class of significant propositions [Ayer]
A statement is meaningful if observation statements can be deduced from it [Ayer]
Verification is not an individual but a collective activity [Dummett]
Directly verifiable statements must entail at least one new observation statement [Ayer]
The principle of verification is not an empirical hypothesis, but a definition [Ayer]
A justificationist theory of meaning leads to the rejection of classical logic [Dummett]
Verificationism could be realist, if we imagined the verification by a superhuman power [Dummett]
If truths about the past depend on memories and current evidence, the past will change [Dummett]
19. Language / A. Nature of Meaning / 6. Meaning as Use
Meaning as use puts use beyond criticism, and needs a holistic view of language [Dummett]
We could only guess the meanings of 'true' and 'false' when sentences were used [Dummett]
19. Language / A. Nature of Meaning / 7. Meaning Holism / a. Sentence meaning
Sentences are the primary semantic units, because they can say something [Dummett]
19. Language / A. Nature of Meaning / 10. Denial of Meanings
Holism is not a theory of meaning; it is the denial that a theory of meaning is possible [Dummett]
19. Language / B. Reference / 3. Direct Reference / b. Causal reference
A realistic view of reference is possible for concrete objects, but not for abstract objects [Dummett, by Hale]
The causal theory of reference can't distinguish just hearing a name from knowing its use [Dummett]
19. Language / C. Assigning Meanings / 5. Fregean Semantics
Fregean semantics assumes a domain articulated into individual objects [Dummett]
19. Language / C. Assigning Meanings / 6. Truth-Conditions Semantics
Truth-condition theorists must argue use can only be described by appeal to conditions of truth [Dummett]
The truth-conditions theory must get agreement on a conception of truth [Dummett]
19. Language / D. Propositions / 1. Propositions
Sentences only express propositions if they are meaningful; otherwise they are 'statements' [Ayer]
We can't distinguish a proposition from its content [Dummett]
19. Language / D. Propositions / 6. Propositions Critique
Talk of propositions is just shorthand for talking about equivalent sentences [Ayer]
22. Metaethics / C. Ethics Foundations / 1. Nature of Ethics / b. Defining ethics
Some people think there are ethical facts, but of a 'queer' sort [Ayer]
A right attitude is just an attitude one is prepared to stand by [Ayer]
22. Metaethics / C. Ethics Foundations / 1. Nature of Ethics / d. Ethical theory
Moral theories are all meta-ethical, and are neutral as regards actual conduct [Ayer]
Moral judgements cannot be the logical consequence of a moral philosophy [Ayer]
22. Metaethics / C. Ethics Foundations / 2. Source of Ethics / c. Ethical intuitionism
Moral intuition is worthless if there is no criterion to decide between intuitions [Ayer]
I would describe intuitions of good as feelings of approval [Ayer]
22. Metaethics / C. Ethics Foundations / 2. Source of Ethics / h. Expressivism
To say an act is wrong makes no further statement about it, but merely expresses disapproval [Ayer]
Approval of historical or fictional murders gives us leave to imitate them [Ayer]
Moral judgements are not expressions, but are elements in a behaviour pattern [Ayer]
22. Metaethics / C. Ethics Foundations / 2. Source of Ethics / i. Prescriptivism
Moral approval and disapproval concerns classes of actions, rather than particular actions [Ayer]
23. Ethics / C. Virtue Theory / 1. Virtue Theory / d. Virtue theory critique
To explain generosity in a person, you must understand a generous action [Dummett]
26. Natural Theory / B. Natural Kinds / 7. Critique of Kinds
Generalised talk of 'natural kinds' is unfortunate, as they vary too much [Dummett]
26. Natural Theory / C. Causation / 1. Causation
Modern accounts of causation involve either processes or counterfactuals [Baron/Miller]
26. Natural Theory / C. Causation / 4. Naturalised causation
The main process theory of causation says it is transference of mass, energy, momentum or charge [Baron/Miller]
If causes are processes, what is causation by omission? (Distinguish legal from scientific causes?) [Baron/Miller]
26. Natural Theory / C. Causation / 9. General Causation / c. Counterfactual causation
The counterfactual theory of causation handles the problem no matter what causes actually are [Baron/Miller]
Counterfactual theories struggle with pre-emption by a causal back-up system [Baron/Miller]
26. Natural Theory / C. Causation / 9. General Causation / d. Causal necessity
The attribution of necessity to causation is either primitive animism, or confusion with logical necessity [Ayer]
27. Natural Reality / A. Classical Physics / 2. Thermodynamics / d. Entropy
There is no second 'law' of thermodynamics; it just reflects probabilities of certain microstates [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / C. Space / 3. Points in Space
Why should the limit of measurement be points, not intervals? [Dummett]
27. Natural Reality / C. Space / 6. Space-Time
In relativity space and time depend on one's motion, but spacetime gives an invariant metric [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 1. Nature of Time / d. Time as measure
Time is the measure of change, so we can't speak of time before all change [Dummett]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 1. Nature of Time / f. Eternalism
Maybe past (which affects us) and future (which we can affect) are both real [Dummett]
The block universe theory says entities of all times exist, and time is the B-series [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 1. Nature of Time / g. Growing block
How can we know this is the present moment, if other times are real? [Baron/Miller]
If we are actually in the past then we shouldn't experience time passing [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 1. Nature of Time / h. Presentism
If Presentism is correct, we cannot even say that the present changes [Dummett]
Erzatz Presentism allows the existence of other times, with only the present 'actualised' [Baron/Miller]
How do presentists explain relations between things existing at different times? [Baron/Miller]
Presentism needs endurantism, because other theories imply most of the object doesn't exist [Baron/Miller]
How can presentists move to the next future moment, if that doesn't exist? [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 1. Nature of Time / i. Denying time
Most of the sciences depend on the concept of time [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 2. Passage of Time / a. Experience of time
For abstractionists past times might still exist, althought their objects don't [Baron/Miller]
The error theory of time's passage says it is either a misdescription or a false inference [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 2. Passage of Time / b. Rate of time
It is meaningless to measure the rate of time using time itself, and without a rate there is no flow [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 2. Passage of Time / d. Time series
The C-series rejects A and B, and just sees times as order by betweenness, without direction [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 2. Passage of Time / e. Tensed (A) series
The A-series has to treat being past, present or future as properties [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 2. Passage of Time / f. Tenseless (B) series
The B-series can have a direction, as long as it does not arise from temporal flow [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 2. Passage of Time / g. Time's arrow
Static theories cannot account for time's obvious asymmetry, so time must be dynamic [Baron/Miller]
The direction of time is either primitive, or reducible to something else [Baron/Miller]
The kaon does not seem to be time-reversal invariant, unlike the rest of nature [Baron/Miller]
Maybe the past is just the direction of decreasing entropy [Baron/Miller]
We could explain time's direction by causation: past is the direction of causes, future of effects [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 2. Passage of Time / h. Change in time
Static time theory presents change as one property at t1, and a different property at t2 [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 2. Passage of Time / j. Time travel
If a time traveller kills his youthful grandfather, he both exists and fails to exist [Baron/Miller]
Presentism means there no existing past for a time traveller to visit [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 2. Passage of Time / k. Temporal truths
The present cannot exist alone as a mere boundary; past and future truths are rendered meaningless [Dummett]
The past (unlike the future) is fixed, along with truths about it, by the existence of past objects [Baron/Miller]
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 3. Parts of Time / e. Present moment
The moving spotlight says entities can have properties of being present, past or future [Baron/Miller]
The present moment is a matter of existence, not of acquiring a property [Baron/Miller]
28. God / A. Divine Nature / 4. Divine Contradictions
A person with non-empirical attributes is unintelligible. [Ayer]
28. God / B. Proving God / 2. Proofs of Reason / b. Ontological Proof critique
When we ascribe an attribute to a thing, we covertly assert that it exists [Ayer]
28. God / C. Attitudes to God / 5. Atheism
If theism is non-sensical, then so is atheism. [Ayer]
29. Religion / D. Religious Issues / 1. Religious Commitment / c. Religious Verification
The 'truths' expressed by theists are not literally significant [Ayer]