Logical, Semantic and Cultural Paradoxes

Argumentation 17 (1):65-86 (2003)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

The property common to three kinds of paradoxes (logical, semantic, and cultural) is the underlying presence of an exclusive disjunction: even when it is put to a check by the paradox, it is still invoked at the level of implicit discourse. Hence the argumentative strength of paradoxical propositions is derived. Logical paradoxes (insolubilia) always involve two contradictory, mutually exclusive, truths. One truth is always perceived to the detriment of the other, in accordance with a succession which is endlessly repetitive. A check is put on the principle of the excluded middle by the logical paradoxes, because self-reference leads to an endlessly repeating circle, out of which no resolution is conceivable. Logical paradoxes are to be compared with the `objective ambiguity' prevalent in oracles (Gallet, 1990). Semantic paradoxes are contextually-determined occurrences, whose resolution at the metalinguistic level is made possible by the discovery of a middle term. They express a wilful ambiguity, in which the interlocutor is invited to take an active part in the construction of sense, since what must be found is the unexpected sense thanks to which A and not-A can be asserted simultaneously. Cultural paradoxes play about doxa (`common sense') and openly challenge common opinion because of their character as inopinata (`unexpected'). My aim is to show that even cultural paradoxes hide sometimes a flaw of argumentation similar to logical or semantic paradox; they too imply an exclusive disjunction leading to the disappearance of the middle terms. Finally, basing myself on the theory of topoi (Anscombre and Ducrot, 1983), a tentative resolution of the cultural paradoxes will be suggested

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 91,088

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Definability and the Structure of Logical Paradoxes.Haixia Zhong - 2012 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 90 (4):779 - 788.
Paradoxes of intensionality.Dustin Tucker & Richmond H. Thomason - 2011 - Review of Symbolic Logic 4 (3):394-411.
Liars and heaps: new essays on paradox.J. C. Beall (ed.) - 2003 - New York: Oxford University Press.
The liar paradox and the inclosure schema.Emil Badici - 2008 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 86 (4):583 – 596.
Logical paradoxes.Barry Hartley Slater - 2001 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Definition Inclosed: A Reply to Zhong.Graham Priest - 2012 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 90 (4):789 - 795.
Meinong, Defective Objects, and (Psycho-)Logical Paradox.William J. Rapaport - 1982 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 18 (1):17-39.
What the liar taught Achilles.Gary Mar & Paul St Denis - 1999 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 28 (1):29-46.

Analytics

Added to PP
2010-09-11

Downloads
72 (#212,724)

6 months
3 (#550,572)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?