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Stephan Krämer: "Negation by Limitation"

Philosophie Philosophie II Forschungsseminar


Institut für Philosophie

Seniorprofessur für Theoretische Philosophie

Im Rahmen des Forschungskolloquiums laden wir ein zum Vortrag von

Dr. Stephan Krämer (University of Hamburg)
Negation by Limitation
Dienstag, 29.11.2022 18:30 – 20:00 Uhr                                              

Abstract: The treatment of negation within truthmaker semantics is much less straightforward than that of conjunction and disjunction. The standard account uses a bilateral conception of content, separately specifying both a set of truthmakers and a set of falsemakers for each proposition, thereby significantly increasing the complexity  of the semantics. Alternative, unilateral accounts make the logic of negation less simple and attractive, for example by invalidating the identity of P to not-not-P. In my talk, I try to see if we can do better. Specifically, I propose a novel truthmaker account of negation, employing what I call limitation-states. When some state s is part of another state t, I postulate a limitation-state to the effect that as far as parts of t are concerned, at most s (and any part of s) obtains. One might regard such a state as obtained from a corresponding totality state – as far as parts of t are concerned, s obtains, and that’s all – by subtracting the condition that the smaller state s obtains. The basic idea for the account of negation I propose is that a state s makes true not-P iff: for some part t of the subject matter of P, t does not contain a truthmaker of P, and s is the state that as far as the subject matter of P is concerned, at most t obtains. I show that under certain natural assumptions, the resulting account validates the De Morgan laws and the identity of P to not-not-P.

Speaker: Stephan Krämer is a lecturer in philosophy at the University of Hamburg, and currently the principal investigator in an Emmy Noether research group on the topic of relevance. Much of his recent work has focused on developing and investigating different applications of the framework of truthmaker semantics, for example to the study of grounding, evidential relevance, and belief revision. Recent publications include “Mighty Belief Revision” (Journal of Philosophical Logic 51, 1175-1213 (2022)), “Singular Troubles with Singleton Socrates” (Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 103(1), pp. 40-56 (2021)), “The Whole Truth” (forthcoming in Kit Fine: Outstanding Contributions to Logic, ed. by F. Faroldi und F. van de Putte), and “Ground-Theoretic Equivalence” (Synthese 198, pp. 1643-1683 (2021)).



29.11.2022, 18:30 Uhr - 20:00 Uhr