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Putting Logic in its Place – Formal Constraints on Rational Belief - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Putting Logic in its Place: Formal Constraints on Rational Belief

David Christensen


Are rational beliefs constrained by formal logic? This book argues that if beliefs are seen in a binary way (either one believes a proposition or one doesn't), then the standard constraints of ’deductive cogency’ (i.e. deductive consistency and deductive closure) are incompatible with epistemic rationality. If, however, beliefs are seen as graded, or coming in degrees, a probabilistic constraint (based on standard logic) is imposed by ideal rationality. This constraint, probabilistic coherence, explains both the appeal of the standard deductive constraints and the power of deductive arguments. ... More

Keywords: belief, deductive cogency, degrees of belief, epistemic, idealization, logic, preferences, probabilistic coherence, probability, rationality

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2004 Print ISBN-13: 9780199263257
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2005 DOI:10.1093/0199263256.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

David Christensen, author
Department of Philosophy, University of Vermont