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A New Solution to Moore's Paradox



Moore's paradox pits our intuitions about semantic oddnessagainst the concept of truth-functional consistency. Most solutions tothe problem proceed by explaining away our intuitions. But``consistency'' is a theory-laden concept, having different contours indifferent semantic theories. Truth-functional consistency is appropriateonly if the semantic theory we are using identifies meaning withtruth-conditions. I argue that such a framework is not appropriate whenit comes to analzying epistemic modality. I show that a theory whichaccounts for a wide variety of semantic data about epistemic modals(Update Semantics) buys us a solution to Moore's paradox as a corollary.It turns out that Moorean propositions, when looked at through the lenseof an appropriate semantic theory, are inconsistent after all.



Philosophical StudiesSpringer Journals

Published: Sep 1, 2001

DOI: 10.1023/A:1010361708803

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