The phrase “so-called …” and the correct use of language without knowing the conditions for correct use

Consider the phrase in the title in this paragraph: “each has a thumb, followed in order by four fingers: the index (or forefinger), the middle, the third, and the so-called little finger.” (Swartz, Beyond Experience, pp. 204-205) What are the conditions for its correct use? (Correct use is how it is commonly used by fluent…

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Norman Swartz on the omniword “thing”

From Beyond Experience, p. 157: “The term “ things ” here is meant in a very broad, inclusive sense. On this interpretation,  “ things ” will include, of course, the most familiar things of all, namely physical objects, but will include as well all sorts of nonphysical things, e.g. minds (if indeed they are nonphysical),…

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“This Here Hand Is My Hand, I Think”

“Participants in a recent psychological study will probably never a look at mannequins – or their own bodies – in quite the same way again. Before the study, they knew their ar ms belonged to them and synthetic ones didn ’t, simply because seeing is believing. Now they ’re not so sure. Researchers at Car…

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Similarity between PWS and predicate logic

It seems to me that the formulas: 1. ◊P 2. (∃x)(Fx) and: 3. □P 4. (∀x)(Fx) are quite similar, if we translate the modal propositional ones into PWS. Here is the result: 1*. (∃w)(Pw) 3*. (∀w)(Pw) Translated into a formal-ish english language, they should be read as: 1*. There exists a possible world, w, such…

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The Myth of Morality and interpretation

Joyce does a rather strange interpretation in The Myth of Morality p. 121. He writes: However, I doubt we even need concede that much. These “conditional reasons” are very shady customers. Take what seems to be a straightforward one mentioned above: one’s reason to save a drowning child if one exists. There are two readings:…

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Pyrrho on higher level inductions

I once thought of a bridge scenario. It went like this: There is a bridge. Someone, a man, wants to find out whether it will break down in the future. So he keeps driving his car over it. It doesn’t break. So he rents a larger car which weighs more, but still the bridge does…

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