Philosophical Devices: Proofs, Probabilities, Possibilities, and Sets

Paperback | October 10, 2012

byDavid Papineau

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This book is designed to explain the technical ideas that are taken for granted in much contemporary philosophical writing. Notions like 'denumerability', 'modal scope distinction', 'Bayesian conditionalization', and 'logical completeness' are usually only elucidated deep within difficultspecialist texts. By offering simple explanations that by-pass much irrelevant and boring detail, Philosophical Devices is able to cover a wealth of material that is normally only available to specialists. The book contains four sections, each of three chapters. The first section is about sets and numbers, starting with the membership relation and ending with the generalized continuum hypothesis. The second is about analyticity, a prioricity, and necessity. The third is about probability, outliningthe difference between objective and subjective probability and exploring aspects of conditionalization and correlation. The fourth deals with metalogic, focusing on the contrast between syntax and semantics, and finishing with a sketch of Godel's theorem. Philosophical Devices will be useful for university students who have got past the foothills of philosophy and are starting to read more widely, but it does not assume any prior expertise. All the issues discussed are intrinsically interesting, and often downright fascinating. It can be read withpleasure and profit by anybody who is curious about the technical infrastructure of contemporary philosophy.

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This book is designed to explain the technical ideas that are taken for granted in much contemporary philosophical writing. Notions like 'denumerability', 'modal scope distinction', 'Bayesian conditionalization', and 'logical completeness' are usually only elucidated deep within difficultspecialist texts. By offering simple explanation...

David Papineau was educated in Trinidad, England, and South Africa. He has a BSc in mathematics from the University of KwaZulu-Natal and a BA and PhD in philosophy from Cambridge. He has lectured at Reading University, Macquarie University, Birkbeck College London, and Cambridge University. Since 1990 he has been Professor of Philosop...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:160 pages, 7.99 × 5.31 × 0.68 inPublished:October 10, 2012Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199651736

ISBN - 13:9780199651733

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Table of Contents

PrefaceIntroductionPart I: Sets and Numbers1. Naive Sets and Russell's Paradox2. Infinite Sets3. Orders of InfinityPart II: Analyticity, a prioricity, and necessity4. Kinds of Truths5. Possible Worlds6. Naming and NecessityPart III: The Nature and Uses of Probability7. Kinds of Probability8. Constraints on Credence9. Correlations and CausesPart IV: Logics and Theories10. Syntax and Semantics11. Soundness and Completeness12. Theories and Godel's Theorem