7 found
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  1. Indiscernibility and the Grounds of Identity.Samuel Z. Elgin - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies:1-23.
    I provide a theory of the metaphysical foundations of identity: an account what grounds facts of the form a=b. In particular, I defend the claim that indiscernibility grounds identity. This is typically rejected because it is viciously circular; plausible assumptions about the logic of ground entail that the fact that a=b partially grounds itself. The theory I defend is immune to this circularity.
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  2.  63
    The Semantic Foundations of Philosophical Analysis.Samuel Z. Elgin - 2023 - Review of Symbolic Logic 16 (2):603-623.
    I provide an analysis of sentences of the form ‘To be F is to be G’ in terms of exact truth-maker semantics—an approach that identifies the meanings of sentences with the states of the world directly responsible for their truth-values. Roughly, I argue that these sentences hold just in case that which makes something F also makes it G. This approach is hyperintensional and possesses desirable logical and modal features. In particular, these sentences are reflexive, transitive, and symmetric, and if (...)
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  3.  35
    Knowledge is closed under analytic content.Samuel Z. Elgin - 2021 - Synthese 199 (1-2):5339-5353.
    I am concerned with epistemic closure—the phenomenon in which some knowledge requires other knowledge. In particular, I defend a version of the closure principle in terms of analyticity; if an agent S knows that p is true and that q is an analytic part of p, then S knows that q. After targeting the relevant notion of analyticity, I argue that this principle accommodates intuitive cases and possesses the theoretical resources to avoid the preface paradox.
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  4.  66
    Physicalism and the Identity of Identity Theories.Samuel Z. Elgin - 2020 - Erkenntnis 87 (1):161-180.
    It is often said that there are two varieties of identity theory. Type-identity theorists interpret physicalism as the claim that every property is identical to a physical property, while token-identity theorists interpret it as the claim that every particular is identical to a physical particular. The aim of this paper is to undermine the distinction between the two. Drawing on recent work connecting generalized identity to truth-maker semantics, I demonstrate that these interpretations are logically equivalent. I then argue that each (...)
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  5.  25
    Physicalism and the Identity of Identity Theories.Samuel Z. Elgin - 2020 - Erkenntnis 87 (1):161-180.
    It is often said that there are two varieties of identity theory. Type-identity theorists interpret physicalism as the claim that every property is identical to a physical property, while token-identity theorists interpret it as the claim that every particular is identical to a physical particular. The aim of this paper is to undermine the distinction between the two. Drawing on recent work connecting generalized identity to truth-maker semantics, I demonstrate that these interpretations are logically equivalent. I then argue that each (...)
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  6.  63
    Merely partial definition and the analysis of knowledge.Samuel Z. Elgin - 2018 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 7):1481-1505.
    Two families of positions dominate debates over a metaphysically reductive analysis of knowledge. Traditionalism holds that knowledge has a complete, uniquely identifying analysis, while knowledge-first epistemology contends that knowledge is primitive—admitting of no reductive analysis whatsoever. Drawing on recent work in metaphysics, I argue that these alternatives fail to exhaust the available possibilities. Knowledge may have a merely partial analysis: a real definition that distinguishes it from some, but not all other things. I demonstrate that this position is attractive; it (...)
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  7.  64
    Counterfactual Logic and the Necessity of Mathematics.Samuel Z. Elgin - 2020 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 50 (1):97-115.
    This paper is concerned with counterfactual logic and its implications for the modal status of mathematical claims. It is most directly a response to an ambitious program by Yli-Vakkuri and Hawthorne, who seek to establish that mathematics is committed to its own necessity. I demonstrate that their assumptions collapse the counterfactual conditional into the material conditional. This collapse entails the success of counterfactual strengthening, which is controversial within counterfactual logic, and which has counterexamples within pure and applied mathematics. I close (...)
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