The Logic of Conceivability

Talk by Margot Strohminger (Oxford)

Margot Strohminger on belief in conditionals: LoC seminar: Wed, March 20, 2019, 10 am-12am in  Oude Turfmarkt 141-143.

Location:  Faculty room 
Time: 10am-12am
Title: Offline Belief and Belief in Conditionals

Abstract: It seems that we often evaluate conditionals in the imagination. Roughly, we perform a ‘thought experiment’ by imagining a scenario in which the antecedent of the conditional holds and then consider whether the consequent holds in it, too. In this talk I propose a theory that aims to make this rough idea more precise. Central to the theory is the assumption that there are mental states that simulate beliefs, which I call ‘offline beliefs’. The resulting theory can accommodate differences in the evaluation of indicative and counterfactual conditionals. It also produces a richer understanding of the simulation of belief, which until now has been examined largely within the context of folk psychology and pretend play.