Niko Kolodny and John MacFarlane claim that a situation involving some trapped miners involves a deontic paradox the resolution of which requires rejecting the logical law of modus ponens. I show that the appearance of paradox results from confusion and that the miners case supplies no cogent reason for impugning modus ponens.
Havstad (2022) argues that the argument from inductive risk for the claim that non-epistemic values have a legitimate role to play in the internal stages of science is deductively valid. She also defends its premises and thus soundness. This is, as far as we are aware, the best reconstruction of the argument from inductive risk in the existing literature. However, there is a small flaw in this reconstruction of the argument from inductive risk which appears to render the argument invalid. (...) This flaw is superficial, and a small amendment to it rescues the claim of validity. (shrink)
There has been a recent surge of work on deontic modality within philosophy of language. This work has put the deontic logic tradition in contact with natural language semantics, resulting in significant increase in sophistication on both ends. This chapter surveys the main motivations, achievements, and prospects of this work.
Deontic logic is devoted to the study of logical properties of normative predicates such as permission, obligation and prohibition. Since it is usual to apply these predicates to actions, many deontic logicians have proposed formalisms where actions and action combinators are present. Some standard action combinators are action conjunction, choice between actions and not doing a given action. These combinators resemble boolean operators, and therefore the theory of boolean algebra offers a well-known athematical framework to study the properties of the (...) classic deontic operators when applied to actions. In his seminal work, Segerberg uses constructions coming from boolean algebras to formalize the usual deontic notions. Segerberg’s work provided the initial step to understand logical properties of deontic operators when they are applied to actions. In the last years, other authors have proposed related logics. In this chapter we introduce Segerberg’s work, study related formalisms and investigate further challenges in this area. (shrink)
Cognitivists about practical reason hold that we can explain why certain wide-scope requirements of practical rationality are true by appealing to certain epistemic requirements. Extant discussions of cognitivism focus solely on two claims. The first is the claim that intentions involve beliefs. The second is that whenever your intentions are incoherent in certain ways, you will be epistemically irrational. Even if the cognitivist successfully defends these claims, she still needs to show that they entail certain practical requirements. That is, she (...) has to show that the epistemic requirements explain the practical requirements. In this paper I argue that it is not plausible that the epistemic requirements explain the practical requirements. This shows that the cognitivists' project will fail even if we grant their controversial views about the relationship between the practical and epistemic. (shrink)
In this paper, we axiomatize the deontic logic in Fusco 2015, which uses a Stalnaker-inspired account of diagonal acceptance and a two-dimensional account of disjunction to treat Ross’s Paradox and the Puzzle of Free Choice Permission. On this account, disjunction-involving validities are a priori rather than necessary. We show how to axiomatize two-dimensional disjunction so that the introduction/elimination rules for boolean disjunction can be viewed as one-dimensional projections of more general two-dimensional rules. These completeness results help make explicit the restrictions (...) Fusco’s account must place on free-choice inferences. They are also of independent interest, as they raise difficult questions about how to ‘lift’ a Kripke frame for a one- dimensional modal logic into two dimensions. (shrink)
Though there have been productive interactions between moral philosophers and deontic logicians, there has also been a tradition of neglecting the insights that the fields can offer one another. The most sustained interactions between moral philosophers and deontic logicians have notbeen systematic but instead have been scattered across a number of distinct and often unrelated topics. This chapter primarily focuses on three topics. First, we discuss the “actualism/possibilism” debate which, very roughly, concerns the relevance of what one will do at (...) some future time to what one ought to do at present (§2). This topic is also used to introduce various modal deontic logics. Second we discuss the particularism debate which, very roughly, concerns whether there can be any systematic general theory of what we ought to do (§3). This topic is also used to introduce various non-modal deontic logics. Third, we discuss collective action problems which concern the connection between the obligations of individuals and the behavior and obligations of groups of individuals (§4).This topic is also used to discuss formal systems that allow us to study the relationship between individuals and groups. The chapter also contains a general discussion of the relation between ethical theory and deontic logic (§1) and a brief consideration of other miscellaneous topics (§5). (shrink)
G3-style sequent calculi for the logics in the cube of non-normal modal logics and for their deontic extensions are studied. For each calculus we prove that weakening and contraction are height-preserving admissible, and we give a syntactic proof of the admissibility of cut. This implies that the subformula property holds and that derivability can be decided by a terminating proof search whose complexity is in Pspace. These calculi are shown to be equivalent to the axiomatic ones and, therefore, they are (...) sound and complete with respect to neighbourhood semantics. Finally, a Maehara-style proof of Craig’s interpolation theorem for most of the logics considered is given. (shrink)
Dylemat i paradoksy wymienione w tytule długo stanowiły dla logiki zagadkę. Do ich rozwiązania okazało się konieczne dokonanie pewnych rozstrzygnięć filozoficznych. Artykuł podaje te rozstrzygnięcia i omawia sposoby rozwiązania każdego z problemów.
We recently argued that formal objections to the normative error theory generalize to other error theories that have the same form. Since many of these other error theories are very plausible, we concluded that such objections overgeneralize. Christine Tiefensee and Gregory Wheeler disagree: they grant that formal objections generalize quite far, but deny that they overgeneralize, since they take the commitments behind these objections to be more plausible than any error theory. We argue that formal objections do overgeneralize, for two (...) reasons. The first concerns how we should adjudicate conflicts between formal and substantive commitments. The second concerns an overlooked tension between formal objections and non-error-theoretic views. Our discussion shows that the commitments behind formal objections should be regarded as much more contentious than is often assumed. (shrink)
Dual-role approaches to reasons say, roughly, that reasons can relate to actions in two fundamentally different ways: they can either require conformity, or justify an action without requiring that it be taken. This paper develops a formal dual-role approach, combining ideas from defeasible logic and practical philosophy. It then uses the approach to shed light on the phenomenon of supererogation and resolve a well-known puzzle about supererogation, namely, Horton’s All or Nothing Problem.
I attempt to provide a general account of deontic context, equally applicable within and an intensional and a hyperintensional framework; I compare Rothschild's and Yablo's accounts of the semantics for deontic logic, deontic updating and denotic duality with my own accounts; and I conclude with some general remarks on negation.
One family of maximizing act consequentialist theories are actualist direct theories. Indeed, historically there are at least three different forms of actualist direct consequentialism (due to Bentham, Moore, and contemporary consequentialists). This paper is about the logical differences between these three actualist direct theories and the differences between actualist direct theories and their competitors. Three main points emerge. First, the sharpest separation between actualist direct theories and their competitors concerns the so-called inheritance principle. Second, there are a myriad of other (...) logical differences among actualist direct theories. Third, one theory (Moore's theory) stands out among actualist direct theories because it entails a variety of logical principles. This fact may count in favor of that theory. (shrink)
This paper investigates inquisitive extensions of normal modal logic with an existential modal operator taken as primitive. The semantics of the existential modality is generalized to apply to questions, as well as statements. When the generalized existential modality is applied to a question, the result is a statement that roughly expresses that each way of resolving the question is consistent with the available information. I study the resulting logic both from a semantic and from a proof-theoretic point of view. I (...) argue that it can be used for reasoning about a general notion of ignorance, and for reasoning about choice-offering permissions and obligations. The main technical results are sound and complete axiomatizations, both for the class of all Kripke frames, and for any class of frames corresponding to a canonical normal modal logic. (shrink)
In this work, we provide an extensive analysis of Hohfeld’s theory of normative relations, focusing in particular on diagrammatic structures. Our contribution is threefold. First, we specify an extensional formal language to represent the main notions in the two families of normative relations identified by Hohfeld (i.e. the deontic and the potestative family). Our primary focus is on the part of the theory concerning potestative relations. In this regard, we assign a key role to the concept of ability, which is (...) treated as a primitive notion and used to formulate three fine-grained definitions of power (outcome-centered, change-centered and force-centered). Second, on the basis of these definitions we build Aristotelian diagrams of opposition for deontic and potestative relations, improving, extending and systematizing previous proposals formulated in the literature. Third, we present a model-theoretic interpretation and a logic programming (ASP) implementation of the proposed framework, elaborating on the procedural dimension of normative reasoning. (shrink)
Consider three cases: -/- Turn: A trolley is about to kill five innocent strangers. You can turn the trolley onto me, saving the five and killing me. -/- Hurl: A trolley is about to kill five innocent strangers. You can hurl me at the trolley, saving the five and paralyzing me. -/- TurnHurl: A trolley is about to kill five innocent strangers. You can turn the trolley onto me, saving the five and killing me. You can instead hurl me at (...) the trolley, saving the five and paralyzing me. -/- Most find the following four claims intuitively plausible: -/- (1) It is permissible to turn the trolley onto me in Turn. (2) It is impermissible to hurl me at the trolley in Hurl. (3) It is impermissible to turn the trolley onto me in TurnHurl. (4) It is permissible to hurl me at the trolley in TurnHurl. -/- But how does turning go from permissible to impermissible, and hurling from impermissible to permissible, when both alternatives are available? I argue that such “secondary permissibility” claims are explained by contrastive consent. Even if I do not consent to being harmed, it is likely I’ll consent to being hurled at the trolley rather than being turned onto. (shrink)
In common treatments of deontic logic, the obligatory is what is true in all deontically ideal possible worlds. In this article, I offer a new semantics for Standard Deontic Logic with Leibnizian intensions rather than possible worlds. Even though the new semantics furnishes models that resemble Venn diagrams, the semantics captures the strong soundness and completeness of Standard Deontic Logic. Since, unlike possible worlds, many Leibnizian intensions are not maximally consistent entities, we can amend the semantics to invalidate the inference (...) rule which ensures that all tautologies are obligatory. I sketch this amended semantics to show how it invalidates the rule in a new way. (shrink)
In this paper, I set out some basic elements of a deontic logic with an implementation appropriate for handling conflicting legal obligations for purposes of programming autonomous machine agents. Kantian justice demands that the prescriptive system of enforceable public laws be consistent, yet statutes or case holdings may often describe legal obligations that contradict; moreover, even fundamental constitutional rights may come into conflict. I argue that a deontic logic of the law should not try to work around such conflicts but, (...) instead, identify and expose them so that the rights and duties that generate inconsistencies in public law can be explicitly qualified and the conflicts resolved. I then argue that a credulous, non-monotonic deontic logic can describe inconsistent legal obligations while meeting Kant’s demand for consistency in the prescriptive system of public law. Finally, I propose an implementation of this logic via a modified form of “answer set programming,” which I demonstrate with some simple examples. (shrink)
The concept of hypodox is dual to the concept of paradox. Whereas a paradox is incompatibly overdetermined, a hypodox is underdetermined. Indeed, many particular paradoxes have dual hypodoxes. So, naively the dual of Russell’s Paradox is whether the set of all sets that are members of themselves is self-membered. The dual of the Liar Paradox is the Truth-teller, and a hypodoxical dual of the Heterological paradox is whether ‘autological’ is autological. I provide some analysis of the duality and I search (...) for modal hypodoxes as duals to known paradoxes. I also try to continue this search further by mapping the relations between some paradoxes and hypodoxes in duality squares. This investigation increases the known extension of the concept of hypodox, and the duality relation between paradoxes and hypodoxes assists in finding some of these. (shrink)
In this paper, we axiomatize the deontic logic in Fusco (2015), which uses a Stalnaker-inspired account of diagonal acceptance and a two-dimensional account of disjunction to treat Ross’s Paradox and the Puzzle of Free Choice Permission. On this account, disjunction-involving validities are a priori rather than necessary. We show how to axiomatize two-dimensional disjunction so that the introduction/elimination rules for boolean disjunction can be viewed as one-dimensional projections of more general two-dimensional rules. These completeness results help make explicit the restrictions (...) Fusco’s account must place on free-choice inferences. They are also of independent interest, as they raise difficult questions about how to “lift” a Kripke frame for a one-dimensional modal logic into two dimensions. (shrink)
We introduce a multimodal framework of deontic action logic which encodes the interaction between two fundamental procedures in normative reasoning: conceptual classification and deontic classification. The expressive power of the framework is noteworthy, since it combines insights from agency logic and dynamic logic, allowing for a representation of many kinds of normative conflicts. We provide a semantic characterization for three axiomatic systems of increasing strength, showing how our approach can be modularly extended in order to get different levels of analysis (...) of normative reasoning. Finally, we discuss ways in which the framework can be used to capture other formalisms proposed in the literature, as well as to model searching problems in Artificial Intelligence. (shrink)
There are plenty of classic paradoxes about conditional obligations, like the duty to be gentle if one is to murder, and about “supererogatory” deeds beyond the call of duty. But little has been said about the intersection of these topics. We develop the first general account of conditional supererogation, with the power to solve familiar puzzles as well as several that we introduce. Our account, moreover, flows from two familiar ideas: that conditionals restrict quantification and that supererogation emerges from a (...) clash between justifying and requiring reasons. (shrink)
In this thesis, I develop and investigate various novel semantic frameworks for deontic logic. Deontic logic concerns the logical aspects of normative reasoning. In particular, it concerns reasoning about what is required, allowed and forbidden. I focus on two main issues: free-choice reasoning and the role of norms in deontic logic. -/- Free-choice reasoning concerns permissions and obligations that offer choices between different actions. Such permissions and obligations are typically expressed by a disjunctive clause in the scope of a deontic (...) operator. For instance, the sentence "Jane may take an apple or a pear" intuitively offers Jane a choice between two permitted courses of action: she may take an apple, and she may take a pear. In the first part of the thesis, I develop semantic frameworks for deontic logic that account for free-choice reasoning. I show that the resulting logics avoid problems that arise for other logical accounts of free-choice reasoning. The main technical contributions are completeness results for axiomatizations of the different logics. -/- Semantic frameworks for deontic logic typically only talk about norms implicitly. In the second part of the thesis, I clarify the role of norms in deontic logic. I develop a formal model of normative systems where norms are represented explicitly. The model takes into account both the hierarchical structure of normative systems, and the function of norms to regulate agent behavior. I show how the model can be used to clarify issues in the study of normative systems. I also develop a norm-based semantics for deontic action logic based on the model. (shrink)
In the present work we provide a logical analysis of normatively determined and non-determined propositions. The normative status of these propositions depends on their relation with another proposition, here named reference proposition. Using a formal language that includes a monadic operator of obligation, we define eight dyadic operators that represent various notions of “being normatively (non-)determined”; then, we group them into two families, each forming an Aristotelian square of opposition. Finally, we show how the two resulting squares can be combined (...) to form an Aristotelian cube of opposition. (shrink)
This paper introduces two new paradoxes for standard deontic logic (SDL). They are importantly related to, but distinct from Ross' paradox. These two new paradoxes for SDL are the simple weakening paradox and the complex weakening paradox. Both of these paradoxes arise in virtue of the underlaying logic of SDL and are consequences of the fact that SDL incorporates the principle known as weakening. These two paradoxes then show that SDL has counter-intuitive implications related to disjunctive obligations that arise in (...) virtue of deontic weakening and in virtue of decisions concerning how to discharge such disjunctive obligations. The main result here is then that theorem T1 is a problematic component of SDL that needs to be addressed. (shrink)
This short paper offers a skeptical solution to Åqvist's paradox of epistemic obligation. The solution is based on the contention that in SDL/KDT logics the externalist features of knowledge, about which we cannot have obligations, are obscured.
Inheritance is the principle that deontic `ought' is closed under entailment. This paper is about a tension that arises in connection with Inheritance. More specifically, it is about two observations that pull in opposite directions. One of them raises questions about the validity of Inheritance, while the other appears to provide strong support for it. We argue that existing approaches to deontic modals fail to provide us with an adequate resolution of this tension. In response, we develop a positive analysis, (...) and show that this proposal provides a satisfying account of our intuitions. (shrink)
The article offers an overview of the deontic theory developed by the philosophical school of Mīmāṃsā, which is, and has been since the last centuries BCE, the main source of normative concepts in Sanskrit thought. Thus, the Mīmāṃsā deontics is interesting for any historian of philosophy and constitutes a thought-provoking occasion to rethink deontic concepts, taking advantage of centuries of systematic reflections on these topics. Some comparison with notions currently used in Euro-American normative theories and metaethical principles is offered in (...) order to show possible points of contact and deep divergences. In more detail, after an introduction explaining the methodology and aims of our work, we discuss how Mīmāṃsā authors distinguished and defined some fundamental deontic concepts, such as different types of prescriptions and prohibitions. We then discuss how Mīmāṃsā authors approached the problem of conflicts among commands without jeopardising the validity of the normative text issuing them. In the second part of the article we introduce our formal apparatus, which is construed around the main taxonomic and conceptual distinctions used in the first part. Our formal rendering captures the most important features of the Mīmāṃsā theory and can thus serve as a concise and rigorous presentation of it for scholars working in deontic logic. (shrink)
We provide a fine-grained analysis of notions of regret and responsibility (such as agent-regret and individual responsibility) in terms of a language of multimodal logic. This language undergoes a detailed semantic analysis via two sorts of models: (i) relating models, which are equipped with a relation of propositional pertinence, and (ii) synonymy models, which are equipped with a relation of propositional synonymy. We specify a class of strictly relating models and show that each synonymy model can be transformed into an (...) equivalent strictly relating model. Moreover, we define an axiomatic system that captures the notion of validity in the class of all strictly relating models. (shrink)
The present article provides a taxonomic analysis of bimodal logics of normative ideality and normative awfulness, two notions whose meaning is here explained in terms of the moral values pursued by a given community. Furthermore, the article addresses the traditional problem of a reduction among deontic concepts: we explore the possibility of defining other relevant normative notions, such as obligation, explicit permission and Hohfeldian relations, in terms of ideality and awfulness. Some proposals in this respect, which have been formulated in (...) the literature over the years, are here improved and discussed with reference to the various logics that we will introduce. (shrink)
In normative reasoning one typically refers to intervals of time across which norms are intended to hold, as well as to alternative possibilities representing hypothetical developments of a given scenario. Thus, deontic modalities are naturally intertwined with temporal and metaphysical ones. Furthermore, contemporary debates in philosophy suggest that a proper understanding of fundamental ethical principles, such as the Ought-Implies-Can thesis, requires a simultaneous analysis of these three families of concepts. In the present article we propose a general formal framework which (...) allows for fine-grained multimodal reasoning in the normative domain. We provide an axiomatization for a novel system of propositional logic encoding the way in which possibilities and norms arising from different sources change over intervals of time. The usefulness of our framework is illustrated by analysing an ancient and particularly challenging `cold case', the Paradox of the Court. (shrink)
Obligations can be affected by knowledge. Several approaches exist to formalize knowledge-based obligations, but no formalism has been developed yet to capture the dynamic interaction between knowledge and obligations. We introduce the dynamic extension of an existing logic for knowledge-based obligations here. We motivate the logic by analyzing several scenarios and by showing how it can capture in an original manner several fundamental deontic notions such as absolute, prima facie and all-things-considered obligations. Finally, in the dynamic epistemic logic tradition, we (...) provide reduction axioms for the dynamic operator of the new logic. (shrink)
Conflicts between legal norms are common in reality. In many legislations, legal conflicts between norms are resolved by applying ordered principles. This work presents a formalization of the conflict resolution mechanism and introduces action legal logic (ALL) to reason about the normative consequences of possibly conflicting legal systems. The semantics of ALL is explicitly based on legal systems consisting of norms and ordered principles. Legal systems specify the legal status of transitions in transition systems and the language of ALL describes (...) the legal status of paths in transition systems. The formalization is used to study abstract revisions of legal systems. The expressivity of ALL is studied and its completeness is proved. (shrink)
It's natural to think that the principles expressed by the statements "Promises ought to be kept" and "We ought to help those in need" are defeasible. But how are we to make sense of this defeasibility? On one proposal, moral principles have hedges or built-in unless clauses specifying the conditions under which the principle doesn't apply. On another, such principles are contributory and, thus, do not specify which actions ought to be carried out, but only what counts in favor or (...) against them. Drawing on a defeasible logic framework, this paper sets up three models: one model for each proposal, as well as a third model capturing a mixed view on principles that combines them. It then explores the structural connections between the three models and establishes some equivalence results, suggesting that the seemingly different views captured by the models are closer than standardly thought. (shrink)
This volume contains the proceedings of DEON2020/2021, the 15th International Conference on Deontic Logic and Normative Systems that was organized by the Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy at LMU Munich (Germany) on 21st-24th July, 2021. The biennial DEON conferences are designed to promote interdisciplinary cooperation amongst scholars interested in linking the formal-logical study of normative concepts, normative language and normative systems with computer science, artificial intelligence, linguistics, philosophy, organization theory, and law.
We generalize intuitionistic tense logics to the multi-modal case by placing grammar logics on an intuitionistic footing. We provide axiomatizations for a class of base intuitionistic grammar logics as well as provide axiomatizations for extensions with combinations of seriality axioms and what we call "intuitionistic path axioms". We show that each axiomatization is sound and complete with completeness being shown via a typical canonical model construction.
We analyze some normative relations as instances of a general schema of relations among a finite number of parties; in this schema parties can play various roles grouped into two main conceptual layers, called 'subject position' and 'object position'. Relying on the theoretical apparatus introduced, we develop a new symbolic representation for normative reasoning which constitutes an alternative to approaches available in the literature. Our contribution includes a semantic characterization for a series of logical systems built over the proposed framework.
This paper introduces deontic logic based on inquisitive semantics. A semantics for action formulas is introduced where each action formula is associated with a set of alternatives. Deontic operators are then interpreted as quantifying over all alternatives associated with the action formulas within their scope. It is shown how this construction provides solutions to problems related to free choice permissions and obligations, including issues concerning Hurford disjunctions. The main technical result is a complete axiomatization of the logic.
In this work we provide an analysis of some issues arising with geometrical representations of a family of deontic and potestative relations that can be classified as Hohfeldian modalities, traditionally illustrated on two diagrams, the Hohfeldian squares. Our main target is the lack of symmetry to be found in various formal accounts by drawing analogies with the square of opposition for alethic modalities. We argue that one should rather rely on an analogy with the alethic hexagon of opposition and exploit (...) the notions of contingency and absoluteness in order to restore the symmetry of Hohfeldian modalities in accordance to the diagrams presented by Hohfeld. Interestingly, the investigation unveils three potestative squares defined at different levels of granularity (force, outcome and change) and allows us to further elaborate on the connections between deontic and potestative relations. (shrink)