Art as Certifiably Good or Bad: A Defence by Modal Logic

Cultura 8 (2):39-50 (2011)
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Connections of beauty to science, whereby scientific truth informs truth about art, is denied by a Humean-Kantian-positivist tradition. Its denial of even scientifictheories being known to be true proceeds pari passu with denying any known truth in the less rigorous sciences such as aesthetics that, for Aristotle, studiesbeauty’s cause. Related to causation is a modern problem of “knowing we know”: knowledge in science presupposes a causal principle whose truth is not known when expressed as a truth-functional conditional. But by conditionals that are modal, among other things, this and other knotty epistemological problems may be resolved – resulting axiologically in claims about art that may be as certifiably true as the truths in biology, psychology and medicine that inform those claims.



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Robert Trundle
University of Colorado, Boulder (PhD)

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