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Conversation and conditionals

Williams, J.R.G. (2008) Conversation and conditionals. Philosophical Studies, 138 (2). pp. 211-223. ISSN 1573-0883

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I outline and motivate a way of implementing a closest world theory of indicatives, appealing to Stalnaker’s framework of open conversational possibilities. Stalnakerian conversational dynamics helps us resolve two outstanding puzzles for a such a theory of indicative conditionals. The first puzzle—concerning so-called ‘reverse Sobel sequences’—can be resolved by conversation dynamics in a theory-neutral way: the explanation works as much for Lewisian counterfactuals as for the account of indicatives developed here. Resolving the second puzzle, by contrast, relies on the interplay between the particular theory of indicative conditionals developed here and Stalnakerian dynamics. The upshot is an attractive resolution of the so-called Gibbard phenomenon” for indicative conditionals.

Item Type: Article
Copyright, Publisher and Additional Information: © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2006. This is an author produced version of a paper accepted for publication in Philosophical Studies. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy.
Institution: The University of Leeds
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Arts (Leeds) > School of Humanities (Leeds) > School of Philosophy (Leeds)
The University of Leeds > Faculty of Arts (Leeds) > School of Philosophy, Religion and History of Science (Leeds) > School of Philosophy (Leeds)
Depositing User: Leeds Philosophy Department
Date Deposited: 31 Oct 2007 16:37
Last Modified: 08 Feb 2013 17:05
Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11098-006-9032-5
Status: Published
Publisher: Springer
Refereed: Yes
Identification Number: 10.1007/s11098-006-9032-5
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/3356

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