Tuesday, April 29, 2014

SPR 2014 Lectures Series (No.5): Conditionals and Deliberations

About the theme

Backtracking conditionals are conditionals at least partially evaluated on the basis of preconditions or backtracking grounds of their antecedents. Inasmuch as backtracking conditionals seem to be excluded by causal and practical deliberation, it is fairly controversial that backtracking conditionals are distinct from non- backtracking conditionals. We propose a subversive thesis: all conditionals, whether counterfactual or indicative, are backtracking conditionals. On the basis of this thesis, the failure of the various attempts to establish the distinction between backtracking and non-backtracking conditionals is explained. The distinction is better characterized using a fine-grained distinction between two modes of backtracking. These modes of backtracking are further employed to resolve some puzzles about the relations between conditionals and deliberations.

About the speaker

Prof. Wang, Linton I-Chi, is an associate professor of philosophy at National Chung-Cheng University whose research is mainly in Logic, and in Philosophy of Language.

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