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Jean-Yves Béziau

What is a Possible World?


ISBN: 978-3-88405-505-2

Price: €4.50 (including 19 % tax)


Abstract to Contribution

Jean-Yves Beziau pursues the popularization of the notion of possible worlds in contemporary analytic philosophy after Kripke. Beziau investigates the connection between the technical notion of possible worlds of mathematical modal logic and its philosophical background. For this, he examines, first, the concept of world conceived as sets of propositions, in particular by Wittgenstein, and its dependence on language. Second, he analyzes the notion of possibility and Kripke’s novel contribution to traditional modal semantics in the relation of accessibility. Finally, he shows how possible worlds are used for explaining the difference between proper names and definite descriptions, why this distinction is fundamental for essentialism, and how the notion of accessibility, as soon as we interpret possible worlds as mathematical structures, can be useful for mathematical purposes.

Authors Biography

Jean-Yves Beziau begins his paper exactly where Burkhardt’s ends, pursuing the popularization of the notion of possible worlds in contemporary analytic philosophy after Kripke. Beziau investigates the connection between the technical notion of possible worlds of mathematical modal logic and its philosophical background. For this, he examines, first, the concept of world conceived as sets of propositions, in particular by Wittgenstein, and its dependence on language. Second, he analyzes the notion of possibility and Kripke’s novel contribution to traditional modal semantics in the relation of accessibility. Finally, he shows how possible worlds are used for explaining the difference between proper names and definite descriptions, why this distinction is fundamental for essentialism, and how the notion of accessibility, as soon as we interpret possible worlds as mathematical structures, can be useful for mathematical purposes.


 





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