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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

"Some like Witters...": Grice on the "followers of [Witters]"


Interesting reference by Grice to the

"followers of Wittgenstein"

in WoW:374:

""A few years after the apperance
of [Strawson's] "An [sic] introduction to logical theory"
I was devoting much attention to what might
be loosely called the distinction betweeen
logical and pragmatic inferences. In the first
instance this was prompted as part of an attempt
to rebuff objections,


[G. A. Paul?],

to the project of using "phenomenal"
verbs, like "look" and "see", to elucidate
problems in the philosophy of perception,
particularly that of explaining the
problematic notion of sense-data, which seemed
to me to rest on a blurring of
the logical/pragmatic distinction."


Grice is referring to WoW:6, where again, the reference is

"those sympathetic to [Witters]"

whom he had referred to in the previous paragraph.

On p. 6, Grice refers to his own "Causal Theory":

"Another example which occurred to me (as to others
BEFORE ME [check] is that the old idea
of perceiving a material object involves having
(sensing) a sense-datum (or sense-data) might
be made vialble by our rejecting the supposition
that sense-datum statements report the properties of
entities of a special class, whose existence needs
to be demonstrated by some form of the Argument
from Illusion".

Grice goes on there to expand on those "sympathetic
to Wittgenstein."


Again, when discussing the First Strand (WoW:342), while 'Witters' is not referred to, there is a nice expansion on whom Grice is thinking about, in the empiricist tradition: Ayer and Paul, or "Paul and Ayer" as Grice prefers.

I have discussed all this elsewhere, etc.

Note that the actual reference to Witters's "Philosophical Investigations" concerns

"seeing ... as", rather.

And so on.


Monday, March 19, 2012

Grice and Barcan on Modalities


Barcan's "Modalities" is a collection of papers covering much ground and spanning from 1961 to 1990.

Many of the papers deal with logical, semantic, metaphysical, and epistemological issues in intensional logic, and in particular, modalities.

Some important themes that run through these papers are

extensionality, the
necessity of identity, the
directly referential conception of proper names as “tags,”
substitutional quantification, and
possibilia and
possible worlds.

What emerges from them is a robust defense of quantified modal logic in the light of a host of objections, particularly from Quine.

The volume includes two papers on belief, which have consequences for epistemic logic and more widely for theories of rationality.

The volume includes two essays on ethical issues, which have consequences for deontic logic and practical reasoning.

Finally, the volume inclues two essays on historical figures, Spinoza and Russell, dealing with the ontological proof of God's existence, and the nature of particularity, identity, and individuation, respectively


deontic logic,
Ruth Barcan Marcus,
modal logic,
moral dilemmas,
philosophy of logic,
proper names,
quantified modal logic,
substitutional quantification,

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 1995

Print ISBN-13: 9780195096576

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003



Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Ruth Barcan Marcus, Author
Yale University
Author Webpage

Subject(s) in Oxford Scholarship Online



Essay 1:

"Modalities and Intensional Languages"

Appendix 1A: Discussion

Appendix 1B: Smullyan on Modality and Description

Essay 2:

"Iterated Deontic Modalities"

Essay 3:

"Essentialism in Modal Logic"

Essay 4:

"Essential Attribution"

Appendix 4A: Strict Implication, Deducibility, and the Deduction Theorem

Essay 5:

"Quantification and Ontology"

Essay 6:

"Classes, Collections, Assortments, and Individuals"

Essay 7:

"Does the Principle of Substitutivity Rest on a Mistake?"

Essay 8:

"Nominalism and the Substitutional Quantifier"

Essay 9:

"Moral Dilemmas and Consistency"

Essay 10:

"Rationality and Believing the Impossible"

Essay 11:

"Spinoza and the Ontological Proof"

Essay 12:

"On Some Post‐1920s Views of Russell on Particularity, Identity, and Individuation"

Essay 13:

"Possibilia and Possible Worlds"

Essay 14:

"A Backward Look at Quine's Animadversions on Modalities"

Essay 15:

"Some Revisionary Proposals About Belief and Believing"

Grice and Barcan


Grice wrote:

Heidegger is the greatest living philosopher.

Barcan Marcus signed against Derrida getting a DPhil Cantab, along with:

Barry Smith
(Editor, The Monist)

Hans Albert (University of Mannheim),
David M. Armstrong (Sydney),
Keith Campbell (Sydney),
Richard Glauser (Neuchâtel),
Rudolf Haller (Graz),
Massimo Mugnai (Florence),
Kevin Mulligan (Geneva),
Lorenzo Peña (Madrid),
Willard van Orman Quine (Harvard),
Wolfgang Röd (Innsbruck),
Karl Schuhmann (Utrecht),
Daniel Schulthess (Neuchâtel),
Peter Simons (Salzburg),
René Thom (Burs-sur-Yvette),
Dallas Willard (Los Angeles),
Jan Wolenski (Cracow)

Ruth Charlotte Barcan Marcus (1921-2012) and Herbert Paul Felton Grice (1913-1988)



Ruth Charlotte Barcan Marcus and Herbert Paul Felton Grice


Modality, Morality and Belief:
Essays in Honor of Ruth Barcan Marcus [Hardcover]
Walter Sinnott-Armstrong (Editor), Diana Raffman (Editor), Nicholas Asher (Editor)

Sample searches in this book:
perspectival appropriateness
conniving mode
mediate essence

Modality, morality and belief are among the most controversial topics in philosophy today, and few philosophers have shaped these debates as deeply as Ruth Charlotte Barcan Marcus and Herbert Paul Felton Grice.

Inspired by her work, a distinguished group of philosophers explore these issues, refine and sharpen arguments and develop new positions on such topics as possible worlds, moral dilemmas, essentialism, and the explanation of actions by beliefs.

Together, this collection honors one of the most rigorous and iconoclastic of philosophical pioneers.
Show More
Show Less


Editorial Reviews

"In an intersting and wide-ranging discussion, Parsons surveys various explanations and justifications provided by mathematicians and philosophers, concluding that ontological features do not play an essential role in the development of ZF, and need not be taken to be part of the literal truth about sets." Philip Bricker, Journal of Symbolic Logic

Book Description

Modality, morality and belief are among the most controversial topics in philosophy today, and few philosophers have shaped these debates as deeply as Ruth Barcan Marcus. Inspired by her work, a distinguished group of philosophers explore these issues, refine and sharpen arguments and develop new positions on such topics as possible worlds, moral dilemmas, essentialism, and the explantion of actions by beliefs. This state of the art collection honors one of the most rigorous and iconoclastic of philosophical pioneers.

Product Details
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Cambridge University Press; First Edition edition (January 27, 1995)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0521440823
ISBN-13: 978-0521440820
Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 6.3 x 1.1 inches

Herbert Paul Grice and Ruth Charlotte Barcan -- on modalities and implicatures


Modalities: Philosophical Essays
Ruth Barcan Marcus (Author)

Based on her earlier ground-breaking axiomatization of quantified modal logic, the papers collected here by the distinguished philosopher Ruth Charlotte Barcan Marcus (b. in the Bronx) cover much ground in the development of her thought, spanning from 1961 to 1990.

The first essay here
introduces themes initially
viewed as iconoclastic, such
as the necessity of identity

--- cfr. the Grice-Myro theory of relative identity, after Geach.

-- , the directly referential role of proper names as "tags", the Barcan Formula about the interplay of possibility and existence, and alternative interpretations of quantification.

Ruth Charlotte Barcan Marcus also addresses the putative puzzles about substitutivity and about essentialism.

The collection also includes influential essays on moral conflict, on belief and rationality, and on some historical figures.

Many of her views have been incorporated into current theories, while others remain part of a continuing debate.

"The essays collected here are enduring contributions that have deeply affected the course of twentieth-century philosophy. Reading them together reminds one forcefully of the ingenuity, power, and unity of thought of a most philosophical logician, and a most logical philosopher."
--Review of Metaphysics

"Collects most of Ruth Charlotte Barcan Marcus's profoundly influential attempts to illuminate the formal structure and metaphysical underpinnings of model discourse....Provides an extraordinary feast of reason and imagination; it is deeply provocative and contains some of the most influential philosophy of this century."--
Journal of Philosophy

"Ruth Charlotte Barcan Marcus's ideas on identity an naming that are so carefully presented in the essays of Modalities have become part of the fabric of contemporary philosophy. Her theory of belief is exciting and potentially just as important....Modalities unquestionably belongs on the bookshelf of every philosopher."
--British Journal for the Philosophy of Science

"[An] admirable book....Ruth Charlotte Barcan Marcus's contributions to philosophical logic, which have been relatively neglected, are impressive; and I hope the publication of this book will help give her work the recognition it deserves."--International Journal of Philosophical Studies

"I enthusiastically recommend this book to those interested in either contemporary or historical issues related to Ruth Charlotte Barcan Marcus's work....An interesting and relevant collection."--The Philosophical Review

About the Author
Ruth Charlotte Barcan Marcus was at Yale University.

Product Details
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA (June 29, 1995)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0195096576
ISBN-13: 978-0195096576
Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 0.6 inches

Ruth Charlotte Barcan and Herbert Paul Grice -- Disimplicated


"Now imagine, if you will, the following blatantly fictional situation. Suppose that Kripke was not in fact the author of the New Theory of Reference. A woman named "Marcus"--let's call her "Ruth [Charlotte] Barcan Marcus" for greater verisimilitude--whose warm body can still be seen tracing out mysterious trajectories through the campus of Yale University, actually did the work in question. The young Kripke went to a talk she gave in 1962 containing the key ideas; almost a decade later, he presented a greatly elaborated version of them without crediting Marcus. Thereafter they were attributed to Kripke."

And so on.

Ruth Charlotte Barcan and Herbert Paul Grice



Sunday, March 18, 2012

The Barcan Formula, Disimplicated


The Journal of symbolic logic: Volume 46 Church, Association for Symbolic Logic, Cooper Harold Langford - 1981 - Snippet view
Karttunen and Peters's hypothesis is that presuppositions (or rather conventional implicatures) of a contained clause are ... The logics studied do not include the Barcan formula Vx GA -» QVxA as a theorem, but do include its converse.

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The Philosopher's index: Volume 40, Part 1 H. Lineback, Bowling Green State University. Philosophy Documentation Center, Bowling Green State University - 2007 - No preview

Gamut, L. T. F.: Logic, Language, and Meaning, Volume 1 T. F. Gamut - 1991 - 296 pages - Preview

Although the two volumes of Logic, Language, and Meaning can be used independently of one another, together they provide a comprehensive overview of modern logic as it is used as a tool in the analysis of natural language.

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Meaning and grammar: an introduction to semantics - Page 560 Chierchia, Sally McConnell-Ginet - 2000 - 573 pages - Preview

539-540 structure of propositions and, 266, 517 Bound variables. See Variable binding But and conversational implicature, 352- 353, 544 (n. 6) Can. See Modals Carnap, R., 66-67, 325, 448-449 Carnap-Barcan formula. 275 Carston. R..

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Knowledge Representation: Design Issues Skuce, John F. Sowa, American Association for Artificial Intelligence - 1988 - 85 pages - No preview

2150 A.D.

No cover image Alexander - 1976 - 350 pages - No preview

Reference Without Referents M. Sainsbury - 2007 - 288 pages - Preview

The alternative position for which the book argues is firmly non-descriptivist, though it also does not require a referent.

Infallibility: the crossroads of doctrine Chirico - 1977 - 349 pages - Snippet view

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The Speculative Turn: Continental Materialism and Realism Bryant, Nick Srnicek, Graham Harman - 2011 - 440 pages - Full view

As indicated by the title The Speculative Turn, the new currents of continental philosophy depart from the text-centered hermeneutic models of the past and engage in daring speculations about the nature of reality itself.

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Possible Worlds Girle - 2003 - 224 pages - No preview

CHAPTER , Introduction 1.1 What might have been Possible worlds - the very phrase can set the speculative imagination alight. Leibniz suggested that this world was the best of all possible worlds. The suggestion has enraged some, ...

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Modeling and using context: third international and ...: Volume 3 Akman - 2001 - 472 pages - Preview

This book constitutes the reviewed proceedings of the Third International Conference on Modeling and Using Context, CONTEXT 2001, held in Dundee, UK in July 2001.The 30 full papers and 15 short papers presented were carefully reviewed, ...

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Philosophical Perspectives Volume 17, Language and Philosophical Linguistics, contains over 20 articles from leading philosophers of language and linguists.Philosophical Perspectives Volume 17, Language and Philosophical Linguistics, ...

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Type-logical semantics Carpenter - 1997 - 575 pages - Preview

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Logic and lexicon: the semantics of the indefinite Pinkal - 1995 - 377 pages - Preview

The book is an extended edition of a German monograph and is addressed to advanced students and researchers in theoretical and computational linguistics, logic, philosophy of language, and NL- oriented AI. Although it makes extensive use of ...

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Truth and Meaning: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Language Allen Taylor - 1998 - 399 pages - Preview

Since the book is neither single-mindedly philosophical, nor single-mindedly technical, it is an accessible introduction to the philosophical foundations of semantics, and will provide the ideal basis for a first course in the philosophy of ...

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Jacques Derrida: Volume 2 Norris, David Roden - 2003 - 1664 pages - Snippet view

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The Barcan Formula, Disimplicated


Philosophical logic › ... › History & Surveys › Modern -
A-state Adams test alethic assert axioms Barcan formula Becker Brouwer's ... conclusion conjunction conventional implicature counterfactual countervalid ...


Individual Concepts in Modal Predicate Logic -
The standard way to provide a semantics where the Barcan formula does not ...... According to Grice, sentence (88) has the implicature that the woman under dis ...



The derivations of the temporal converse Barcan formula and the ..... Here B is called a conversational implicature of A if from the fact that A is asserted plus the ...

Model Theory for Modal Logic. Kripke Models ... -

presuppositions (or rather conventional implicatures) of a contained clause are ... The logics studied do not include the Barcan formula Vx WA -O lVxA as a ...

[PDF] -

Barcan, fórmula de Ver FÓRMULA DE BARCAN. barra de Sheffer base da indução Ver INDUÇÃO MATEMÁTICA. básica, proposição Ver PROPOSIÇÃO ...

the ideas for Richard Dedekind, Theodore Sider and Herbert B ... - 13723, System B is needed to prove the Barcan Formula - Theodore Sider .... from the fact that it was said, is 'conversational implicature' - Herbert B. Enderton ...

Teaching - Wylie Breckenridge -
... Class 30: Gricean Implicature; Class 31: Examples of Gricean Implicature ... Williamson on the Barcan Formula · Stalnaker on Possible Worlds · Varieties of ...

The Barcan Formula -- Disimplicated


In quantified modal logic, the Barcan formula and the converse Barcan formula (more accurately, schemata rather than formulae)

(i) syntactically state principles or interchange between quantifiers and modalities;

(ii) semantically state a relation between domains of possible worlds.

The formulae were introduced as axioms by Ruth Barcan Marcus, in the first extensions of modal propositional logic to include quantification.

Related formulas include the Buridan formula, and the converse Buridan formula.

In English, the Barcan formula reads:

"If everything is necessarily F, then it is necessary that everything is F."

The Barcan formula has generated some controversy because it implies that all objects which exist in every possible world (accessible to the actual world) exist in the actual world, i.e. that domains cannot grow when one moves to accessible worlds.

This thesis is sometimes known as Actualism -- i.e. that there are no merely possible individuals.

There is some debate as to the informal interpretation of the Barcan formula and its converse.

If a frame is based on a symmetric accessibility relation, then the Barcan formula will be valid in the frame if, and only if, the converse Barcan formula is valid in the frame.

It states that domains cannot shrink as one moves to accessible worlds, i.e. that individuals cannot cease to be possible.

The converse Barcan formula is taken to be more plausible than the Barcan formula.


Journal of Symbolic Logic (1946),11 and (1947), 12 under Ruth C. Barcan

"Barcan both ways", by Melvin Fitting
Contingent Objects and the Barcan Formula by H. Reina

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Categories: Logic stubs
Modal logic

Barcan Marcus Disimplicated: ∀x □Fx ⊃ □∀xFx


Consider the Barcan formula:

∀x□Fx ⊃ □∀xFx

In the construction of any system -- call it the Barcan Marcus system -- we have

"+, *"


"-, *"

i.e. introduction and elimination rules for each operator. "Rule" is too strong a word for Geary, so perhaps "guidelines" may do.
In the case of the Barcan formula, formulated by Palma above, the same applies.
I was suggesting that
the introduction and elimination 'rules' (alla Gentzen) for this or that operator (Barcan Marcus's field: quantified modalities) may bring in unwanted implicatures, and that most metaphysical (or ontological, better?) puzzles that some logicians (alla Quine) have identified may get a proper implicature-based explanation. Or not.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Tweeting Grice

There was a recent essay on how to quote tweets.


This may relate:

"pls" or "plz"?

From online source:

"Wait...people spell things wrong on Twitter? Since when?
For the record, is the official character-shortening version of 'please' 'pls' or 'plz'?"




"It's "plz". People didn't start saying "pls" until 2 years ago but "plz" has been around since the 90's.

Mar 12, 2012 07:13 AM

"Pls" comes from British and "plz" comes from American slang. So "pls" is correct!"

And so on.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Marcus Dick and Paul Grice


"Marcus Dick came to UEA in October 1963 as Professor of Philosophy, and I was one of his first students", a member to the Grice club wrote.

"He was one of the most interesting men I ever met," this Grice club member goes on, "and one of the kindest too - although clearly a tortured soul in some respects. I continued to see him after I graduated, and was devastated when he died."


Dick was possibly the first alphabetically ordered member of Austin´s "kindergartens"


"Marcus William Dick was a fellow and senior tutor at Balliol College, Oxford. There is a memorial plaque on a wall there with his name on it. He would move on to then newly minted University of East Anglia where he was appointed a full Professor of Philosophy."

--- By that time, he was an Austinian no more. Other monsters at UEA/Norwich include Grice, (Godfrey Russell), and M. Hollis. In the English Dept, A. N. Wilson and M. Bradbury were also good.

"Dick´s early education he received at Winchester College. While still at Oxford, he was associated with A.N. Prior."

--- This was a South-African.
Very witty by the title of all his essays in his posthumous collection on tense logic with the Clarendon Press.

"In 1956, Dick helped Prior organize the first Logical Colloquium held in Britain, in Oxford in 1956."

"“A small ad hoc committee was formed, and Marcus Dick arranged for a lecture room at Balliol.”"

"We actually have a interesting little detail available to us on that event; on July 15, 1956, at 10:30 in the morning, he chaired a session,
C.A. Meredith: Theory of Deduction in Combinatory Logic."
"To my surprise, Dick was actually quoted in
public, albeit from memory, as recently as this
year in a January "Daily Mirror" column."

"In the quote, Marcus Dick displays a bit of academic arrogance;"
--- He does not! YOU display a bit of inverse snobbery!

"Brodhurst spoke to Marcus Dick, then senior tutor at Balliol, and an old Wykehamist."

"“Tiger Pataudi, oh yes, the cricketer,” sniffed Marcus Dick, “quite brainless I should think, and my dear old boy, there are thousands wanting to read History.”"


"There is some of publishing history on Marcus Dick. In 1952, he revised the 5th edition of "Oxford, As it was yesterday & as it is today" by Christopher Hobhouse."

--- MY KIND OF READING! But give me Zuleika Dobson anyday! Or Tom Hughes at Oxford, even!

"And in 1956, he provided the text for "A Portrait of Oxford." A selection of photographs by A. F. Kersting."

--- My kind of coffetable reading. Oxford can have some fascinating little corners, etc, and photographed in the early morning or sun set, it can look pretty gloious. The Meadows, The Cherwell, The Isis, Parson´s Pleasure. Lots of acquatic views (Magdalen Bridge) out of which you can get a few impressionistic snapshots. Etc.

"I could find no publishing history for his wife, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist."

"It’s impossible to tell from this distance, and with only little bits of information floating around on the web, the what-and-why of anything; these are only tiny glimpses into a life though the lens of technology that didn’t exist when that life ended."

"Marcus Dick died in 1971 when Cressida was eleven."

"His date of birth isn’t listed in this peerage report, only the year of his death."

"Even that omission is somewhat revealing–like the Wikipedia entry on Cressida, someone has taken care to make sure the maternal side of Cressida’s family is well-represented here, but not her father’s side."

"There was heart-break before his death."

"Cressida’s parents had officially split up three years before that, divorcing in 1968, when she was only eight."

"It was upon seeing that little bit of info about the divorce that my mind suddenly turned on the 1951 film, "The Browning Version", based on the play, the story of a life-battered gentle scholar suffering various indignities, including an unfaithful wife."

"Not that I’m suggesting I have any clue as to why the Dicks, two scholars, divorced."

"I often think of that film when English scholars are mentioned."

"My guess is that the split was a long time in coming, as these things don’t happen overnight."

"Marcus Dick had taken the position of Professor of Philosophy University of East Anglia sometime after 1963."

"Dick is mentioned several times in "The History of the University of East Anglia, Norwich" by M. Sanderson, but not all the references in the book are available online."

"Dick is referred to as one of the original scholars, though."

"Norwich is about 170 miles–or three hours drive–away from then Dick family home in Oxford."

"In Cecilia Dick’s obituary we see she was promoted from lecturer to Ordinary Fellow in 1965 and a year later appointed Domestic Bursar."

"The promotion and extra duties no doubt provided extra income."

"That would have been right around the time husband Marcus was heading off to East Anglia."

"It was also a year after her own father (and Cressida’s maternal grandfather) Wing Commander Denis Alfred Jex Buxton, died at age 69."

"Husband Marcus, the logician, was probably no wing commander."

"Cecilia would herself die at the age of 68."

"Her mother would die in 1970, a year before Marcus, though I can’t tell how old she was when she passed away."

"1970 and 1971, losing your grandmother and then your father, those would have been a tough two years for young Cressida."

"Did Cressida idealize her dead father?"

"First of all, it should be remarked that Cressida attended the college where her father once taught, Balliol, in 1979."

"In 2002, on November 21, Cressida gave a speech to Balliol alumni."

""In a most moving part of the speech, she spoke of her late father, who had been a Fellow and Tutor at Balliol for a number of years.""

"Cressida Dick was born on October 16, 1960."

"So let me end with another quote, from Chaucer, the lament of Cressida’s namesake."

""Alas, of me until the world’s end shall be wrote no good song."