Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
First Committee Member
Howard Pospesel, Committee Chair
Over the past two decades a number of logical systems have been developed for intensional conditionals. The task of this dissertation is to defend one of these systems as best representing the conditionals of ordinary discourse. In the opening chapter, I discuss various theories of conditionality: the cotenability accounts of Goodman, Chisholm, and Slote; the similarity accounts of Stalnaker and Lewis; and the nomic accounts of Jackson, Nute, and Bennett. In the second chapter, I develop an analysis of conditionals within the framework of a theory of tense and compare my analysis with those of Jackson, Nute, Bennett, Thomason and Gupta, and McCall. The analysis is fully general and treats both indicative and subjunctive or counterfactual conditionals. The third chapter is a fairly comprehensive overview of conditional logic. I present the main systems, explore some of their formal features, develop a model theory in the tradition of possible-worlds semantics, and provide soundness and completeness results for about two dozen different systems. In the fourth and final chapter, I focus upon one system--sometimes called VW--and argue for its descriptive adequacy. The discussion of this chapter centers around those principles which serve to distinguish VW from other systems.
Fink, Charles Kedric, "Conditionals" (1988). Dissertations from ProQuest. 2662.