Counting Objects
Parsons (Terence)
Source: Parsons - Indeterminate Identity, 2000, Chapter 8
Paper - Abstract

Paper StatisticsBooks / Papers Citing this PaperNotes Citing this PaperColour-ConventionsDisclaimer


Analytic TOC1

  1. If we try to count objects in the face of indeterminacy, we sometimes get no determinate answer; this is due to indeterminacy of predication (producing indeterminacy regarding which objects are supposed to be counted), or indeterminacy of identity (producing indeterminacy regarding whether an object has already been counted), or both.
  2. Familiar formulas are given for making cardinality claims; e.g. "there are at least two φ's" is written as '∃x∃y (¬x = y & φx & φy)'.
  3. It is shown how to get the "right" answers; e.g. that in the ship case it is true that there are at least two ships, false that there are more than three, and indeterminate whether there are exactly two (or exactly three).
  4. Sometimes a question can be formulated in two ways: either austerely, or with a determinacy connective ('!') added; these formulations correspond to two natural "right" answers.
  5. Super-resolutional readings also explain certain of our intuitions.



In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1: Taken from "Parsons (Terence) - Indeterminate Identity: Analytical Table of Contents".


Text Colour Conventions (see disclaimer)

  1. Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2019
  2. Mauve: Text by correspondent(s) or other author(s); © the author(s)



© Theo Todman, June 2007 - Oct 2019. Please address any comments on this page to theo@theotodman.com. File output:
Website Maintenance Dashboard
Return to Top of this Page Return to Theo Todman's Philosophy Page Return to Theo Todman's Home Page