Changing the modal context
2008 (English)In: Theoria, ISSN 0040-5825, E-ISSN 1755-2567, Vol. 74, no 4, 331-351 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Conditionals that contain a modality in the consequent give rise to a particular semantic phenomenon whereby the antecedent of the conditional blocks possibilities when interpreting the modality in the consequent. This explains the puzzling logical behaviour of constructions like "If you don't buy a lottery ticket, you can't win", "If you eat that poison, it is unlikely that you will survive the day" and "If you kill Harry, you ought to kill him gently". In this paper it is argued that a semantic version of the Ramsey Test provides a key in the analysis of such constructions. The logic for this semantics is axiomatized and some examples are studied, among them a well-known puzzle for contrary-to-duty obligations.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 74, no 4, 331-351 p.
Conditionals, Contrary-to-duty paradox, Gentle murder paradox, Ramsey test
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-87504DOI: 10.1111/j.1755-2567.2008.00028.xScopusID: 2-s2.0-77949385744OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-87504DiVA: diva2:501711
QC 201202152012-02-142012-02-142012-02-15Bibliographically approved