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Philosophy and Model Theory$
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Tim Button and Sean Walsh

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198790396

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198790396.001.0001

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Categoricity and the sets

Categoricity and the sets

(p.171) 8 Categoricity and the sets
Philosophy and Model Theory

Tim Button

Sean Walsh

Oxford University Press

In this chapter, the focus shifts from numbers to sets. Again, no first-order set theory can hope to get anywhere near categoricity, but Zermelo famously proved the quasi-categoricity of second-order set theory. As in the previous chapter, we must ask who is entitled to invoke full second-order logic. That question is as subtle as before, and raises the same problem for moderate modelists. However, the quasi-categorical nature of Zermelo's Theorem gives rise to some specific questions concerning the aims of axiomatic set theories. Given the status of Zermelo's Theorem in the philosophy of set theory, we include a stand-alone proof of this theorem. We also prove a similar quasi-categoricity for Scott-Potter set theory, a theory which axiomatises the idea of an arbitrary stage of the iterative hierarchy.

Keywords:   Transitive models, Zermelo’s Quasi-Categoricity Theorem, The Iterative Conception, Martin, Scott-Potter Set Theory, Isaacson

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