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Vagueness and Thought$
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Andrew Bacon

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198712060

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198712060.001.0001

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Probabilism, Assertion, and Higher-Order Vagueness

Probabilism, Assertion, and Higher-Order Vagueness

(p.124) 7 Probabilism, Assertion, and Higher-Order Vagueness
Vagueness and Thought

Andrew Bacon

Oxford University Press

Hartry Field has recently suggested that a non-standard probability calculus better represents our beliefs about vague matters. His theory has two notable features: (i) that your attitude to P when you are certain that P is higher-order borderline ought to be the same as your attitude when you are certain that P is simply borderline, and (ii) that when you are certain that P is borderline you should have no credence in P and no credence in ~. This chapter rejects both elements of this view and advocates instead for the view that when you are in possession of all the possible evidence, and it is borderline whether P is borderline, it is borderline whether you should believe P. Secondly, it argues for probabilism: the view that your credences ought to conform to the probability calculus. To get a handle on these issues, the chapter looks at Dutch book arguments and comparative axiomatizations of probability theory.

Keywords:   probabilism, higher-order vagueness, Field’s probability calculus, assertion, Dutch book arguments, comparative probability

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