El Instituto de Investigaciones Filosóficas, UNAM
El proyecto Conacyt 166502 "Aspectos Filosóficos de la Modalidad"
invitan a la
Universidad de Harvard
"A definition of normality for generics"
Jueves 18 de abril, 2013, 17hrs.
Sala "Fernando Salmerón",IIFs
This paper offers a new theory of generic sentences such as ravens are black, tigers have stripes, and sea-turtles are long-lived. It integrates metaphysical and semantic resources in order to offer a comprehensive and theoretically attractive account. The metaphysical core consists of a theory of what it takes for a property to be characteristic for a kind, e.g., what it takes for blackness to be characteristic for the kind Corvus. This metaphysical theory on its own could be used to account for many, but not all, generics. The slack is taken up by integrating the theory of characteristic properties with a compositional semantic theory. Once this is done, we can draw on independently established semantic resources to leverage the metaphysics into a more nearly adequate account of generics.