The 4th Seoul Philosophy Graduate Conference

March 11, 2016 - March 12, 2016
Graduate Student Division, Korean Society for Analytic Philosophy

Building 7, Room 315
Seoul National University, Gwanak-ro1
Gwanak-gu, Seoul 151-742
South Korea

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  • The Pluralisms Global Research Network

Keynote speakers:

Kris McDaniel
Syracuse University


Jiwon Kim
Korea University

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Day 1 3/11 Friday
10:30-10:40 Refreshments

10:40-10:50 Opening remarks

10:50-11:50  Jisoo Seo (Yonsei University) "A Critical Evaluation on Armstrong's Non-mereological Composition of States of Affairs"

11:50-12:50 lunch

12:50-1:50 Benjamin Marschall (St. Andrews & Stirling) "Frege versus Kaplan on Indexicals"

1:50-2:00 break

2:00-3:00 Chanwoo Lee (Seoul National University) "Learning event as an Internalistic Epistemic Justifier"

3:00-3:20 break

3:20-4:20 Seungrak Choi (Korea University) "Priest's Challenge, Super-validity and dialetheism"

4:20-4:30 break

4:30-6:00 Kris McDaniel (Syracuse) "Being and Almost Nothingness"

Day 2 3/12 Saturday  

10:30-10:50 refreshments

10:50-11:50 Antonella Foligno (University of Urbino) "Incongruent Counterparts and the Nature of Space"

11:50-12:50 lunch

12:50-1:50 Sungsoo Park (SKKU) "Two-dimensional Semantics and Bearerless names: A Fregean Approach"

1:50-2:00 break

2:00-3:00 Jiwon Kim (Korea University) "Axiological Significance of Blame: Blame as an Indicator of Values"

3:00-3:20 break

3:20-4:20 Xiaoxing Zhang (Paris-Sorbonne University) "Paradox of the Diffusiveness of Power"

4:20-4:30 break

4:30-6:00 Kris McDaniel (Syracuse) "The Being of Persons."      

Speaker: Jisoo Seo (Yonsei University)

Title: "A Critical Evaluation on Armstrong's Non-mereological Composition of States of Affairs" 

Abstract: Armstrong, in his book A World of State of Affairs (1997), argues that a state of affairs(SOA) is the sum of particulars and universals. Moreover, it is a special kind of composition, namely, "non-mereological composition". The reason behind this is that SOAs seem to disobey extensionality rule, a key axiom of mereological composition; it appears so that two different SOAs are composed of the same components. In this paper, I critically evaluate Armstrong's account on SOAs being non-mereological compositions. First of all, I present a counterexample in which the SOA in question cannot be a non-mereological sum. Second, I show that states of affairs indeed obey the extensionality rule by analyzing an example given by Armstrong. Then, I analyze the reason why SOAs “seem” to disobey the extensionality rule. The confusion was made by Armstrong’s own way of formalizing SOAs. Also, I try to give an account as to why such illusiveness occurs. In the conclusion of the paper, I argue that Armstrong’ argument that SOAs are non-mereological compositions lead to a dilemma that is detrimental.  

Speaker: Benjamin Marschall (St. Andrews & Stirling)   

Title: "Frege versus Kaplan on Indexicals"

Abstract: What is the correct semantics of indexicals like ‘I’, ‘here’ and ‘now’? According to Kaplan’s influential treatment of these expressions, they refer only relative to a context of utterance. The Kaplanian theory is now the standard view. But there is an alternative: Frege’s position on indexicals is taken to be that indexical expressions alone don’t refer at all. It is so-called hybrid proper names which do the referring, and they are objects composed of both an expression and some non-linguistic constituent. Is this just a notational variant of Kaplan, or are there reasons to prefer the unorthodox Fregean view? Two recent papers by Textor (2007, 2015) argue that the Fregean theory is superior to the Kaplanian theory. I will critically examine Textor’s argument, and show that one crucial step he makes is not sufficiently motivated. His argument relies on an important assumption about what can be part of the context of an utterance as opposed to being part of the utterance itself, which I dub (C-U). I show that Textor’s case for (C-U) is weak, and that a Kaplanian has no reason to accept it. Nevertheless, the defense of Kaplan involves major modifications of the classical Kaplanian theory, and so Textor’s argument does provide some important insights about indexicals.  

Speaker: Chanwoo Lee (SNU)

Title: Learning event as an Internalistic Epistemic Justifier

Abstract:If you believe that all ravens are black and come upon a black raven, the encounter seems to rationally strengthen, or justify, the belief you have. Such belief-updating events, which I shall call “learning”, are events that justify a preexisting belief. They are distinguished from evidences in that they are events, not states, and that they need not be concurrent with the belief they justify.  My aim is to demonstrate that learning events conform to internalist conception of epistemic justification, which can further be divided into learning mentalism and learning accessibilism.     First, I will argue that learning accords with mentalism, the conception that a justifier needs to be a mental state or event of an epistemic agent, by showing that learning events are individuated internally (or individualistically); the epistemic bearing of learning does not transcend the cognitive capacity of its agent in the context, so learning as an epistemic event solely supervenes on the agent.   Second, I will show that learning is aptly explained by accessibilism, the conception that a justifier needs to be internally accessible by a subject. I will start from distinguishing the type of mental states to which epistemic justification can be genuinely attributed, and will argue that learning events applicable to such states should be accessible. It will be implemented by providing a thought experiment inspired by Daniel Dennett, in which a learning event takes place yet it goes unnoticed by the agent.    It will be argued that this internalist consequence is possibly supported by process reliabilism, contrary to the received view that it is a tout court externalist account. Lastly, it will be revealed that the consequence suggests an alternative internalist picture, which retains the strengths of a more conventional internalist account yet resolves some recalcitrant counterexamples, e.g. preservative memory.  

Speaker: Seungrak Choi (Korea University)

Title: "Priest’s Challenge, Super-validity and Inconsistency."

Abstract: Pluralism on logical consequence is the view that logical consequence varies across discourses (or structures). The opposite view is monism. Graham Priest attacks pluralism with the argument that there cannot be both correct accounts of reasoning. We shall call his argument ‘Priest’s challenge’. While restricting our discussion in mathematical discourses, we argue that Priest’s challenge is legitimate only if his definition of validity is correct. He proposes that an inference is valid if and only if it preserves the truth-value from its premises to the conclusion in all (mathematical) structures. This definition raises a scope problem of all structures. After investigating his dialetheism which is the view that there exists a true contradiction and its supporting argument from Gödel’s theorem, we indicate that he begs the question of validity, as he admits that an inference from a paradoxical self-referential sentence to its negation is sound and so is valid. In addition, since the inference is not truth-preserving in all mathematical structures, he faces a dilemma to adhere logical monism or dialetheism.  

Speaker: Antonella Foligno (University of Urbino) 

Title:"Incongruent Counterparts and the Nature of Space"

Abstract: This paper provides a novel reconstruction of the infamous incongruent counterparts argument which traces back to Kant. Arguing that, according to relationalism, spatial difference between incongruent counterparts boils down to: i) spatial distances between objects and ii) spatial angles between objects, it follows that the difference in handedness should depend on spatial distances between parts of the hands and spatial angles between those parts. So, there is no difference in spatial relations between parts of the right and left hands that could account for their difference in handedness. The first negative conclusion C1 says that relationalism cannot provide a satisfactory account of the difference in handedness. But, we can go further in the argumentation. According both to substantivalism – and to Kant – there is ‘something’ that grounds the difference in handedness. This ‘something’ is the universal space, which provides the only ground to account for the difference among right and left handed object. C2: Universal space exists. Lastly, the paper develops two possible responses on behalf of the relationalist that undermine substantivalism. The first argument is a classic Tu Quoque: suppose there is something valid in conclusion C1, substantivalist has a compelling point only insofar as is allowed to appeal to an independent existing space. By considering the spatial regions at which left and right hand are respectively located, it seems reasonable to assume that whatever account can be provided in terms of regions of space should be provided in terms of parts of material objects. The second argument is the one called “Ideology vs Ontology”: the argument for C1 argues that relationalism is committed to reduce all spatial relations to distances and angles. But why should it be so? If substantivalists are allowed to augment their  Ontology why should relationalist be denied to augment their own ideology? It concludes by asserting whether a purely geometrical argument could ever suffice to vindicate a particular metaphysics of space over another.  

Speaker: Sungsoo Park (SungKyunKwan University)

Title:"Two-dimensional Semantics and Bearerless Names: A Fregean Approach"

Abstract: David Chalmers' two-dimensional semantics is one of the theories that can preserve the Fregean intuition that other than the referent, there is another semantic property in an expression. However, two-dimensionalism also faces its own problems. One such problem is involved with sentences that include bearerless names. In this paper, I will argue that this obstacle can be surmounted, adopting a Fregean approach. If successful, my argument will provide additional support for two-dimensionalism with respect to its theoretical benefits.  

Speaker: Jiwon Kim (Korea University) 

Title: "Axiological Significance of Blame: Blame as an Indicator of Values"

Abstract: Phenomenon of blame occurs in our everyday life. Commonly, blame has been interpreted as carrying morally significant value due to its evaluating function – namely, judging of the subject of blame as wrong. My paper aims to address the issue of when and how the phenomenon of blame occurs in non-moral and immoral domain as well, not only restricted to a moral domain.  Scanlonian account, which assumes the concept of ideal mutual relationship as the foundational notion, commits an error of aggregating independent relationships into one. The Contractualist relationship epistemically presumes the element of ideal, mutual recognition, which makes a relationship metaphysically existent, independent from the actual participants. By considering a single occurrence of impairment as pervasive among all relationships in question, Scanlon wrongly transform the unilateral feature of relationships into something aggregated.  I will suggest axiological account of blame, asserting that the phenomenon of blame indicates the values that the blamer regard as worth keeping with respect to others. I assert that a blamer judges that X is blameworthy when the blamer’s value system does not correspond with X. A blamer blames X when the degree of non-correspondence in the value system steps over the blamer's threshold. The blamer’s threshold indicates values that is regarded as worth keeping. Such an account will be able to explain how and when the values of agents are expressed, contributing to the value-debates in the field of moral phenomenology.  

Speaker: Xiaoxing Zhang (Paris-Sorbonne University) 

Title: "Paradox of the diffusiveness of power"

Abstract: In spite of the controversy over basic act, theorists of agency normally agree that complex performances are based on comparatively simple ones. To the extent that we can attribute powers to agents over various tasks, it is also plausible to suppose that our powers over complex tasks are based on powers over the simple. Chisholm once formulated this idea in terms of the principle of diffusiveness of power. In the present paper, however, we will show that the principle which articulates this intuitive idea is incompatible with the assumption that we can sometimes do otherwise.  

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February 27, 2016, 4:00am KST

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