Tristan Haze's philosophy page


I currently teach at The University of Sydney and have been working on modality and the philosophy of language.

My email address is 'tristan haze' without the space, then '@', then 'gmail', then a dot, then 'com'.

Publications
(For those which are not open-access, final drafts are available at PhilPapers.)

Carnap’s result about classical proof-theories not ruling out non-normal valuations of propositional logic formulae has seen renewed philosophical interest in recent years. In this note I contribute some considerations which may be helpful in its philosophical assessment. I suggest a vantage point from which to see the way in which classical proof-theories do, at least to a considerable extent, encode the meanings of the connectives (not by determining a range of admissible valuations, but in their own way), and I demonstrate a kind of converse to Carnap’s result.

How May the Propositional Calculus Represent? [Forthcoming in the South American Journal of Logic]
This paper is a conceptual study in the philosophy of logic. The question considered is 'How may formulae of the propositional calculus be brought into a representational relation to the world?'. Four approaches are distinguished: (1) the denotational approach, (2) the abbreviational approach, (3) the truth-conditional approach, and (4) the modelling approach. (2) and (3) are very familiar, so I do not discuss them. (1), which is now largely obsolete, led to some interesting twists and turns in early analytic philosophy which will come as news to many contemporary readers, so I discuss it in some detail. The modelling approach is, to the best of my knowledge, newly introduced here. I am not presenting it as a rival to the other approaches, but as a philosophically interesting possibility.

Propositions, Meaning and Names [Forthcoming in Philosophical Forum]
The object of this paper is to sketch an approach to propositions, meaning and names. The key ingredients are a Twin-Earth-inspired distinction between internal and external meaning, and a middle-Wittgenstein-inspired conception of internal meaning as role in language system. The focus here is not on working out all the details, but on outlining the approach and showing how it offers a promising solution to the problem of the meaning of proper names. This is a plea for a neglected way of thinking about these topics.

There is an important and fairly straightforward link between necessity and apriority which can shed light on our knowledge of the former, but initially plausible attempts to spell out what it is fall victim to counterexamples. Casullo (2003) discusses one such proposal, argues - following Anderson (1993) - that it fails, and suggests an alternative. In this paper, I argue that Casullo’s alternative also fails, before making a suggestion for which I can find no counterexamples and which, notably, handles some recent examples due to Kipper and Strohminger & Yli-Vakkuri.

This paper is about the meaning and function of identity statements involving proper names. There are two prominent views on this topic, according to which identity statements ascribe a relation: the object-view, on which identity statements ascribe a relation borne by all objects to themselves, and the name-view, on which an identity statement 'a is b' says that the names 'a' and 'b' codesignate. The object- and name-views may seem to exhaust the field. I make a case for treating identity statements as sui generis instead of attempting to explain them by means of the idea that they ascribe a relation. My contention is that once we do this, no analysis is required. I do not wish to insist that we stop saying that identity statements ascribe a relation. The point is that there is a fundamental disanalogy between identity statements and other two-termed statements which we overlook to our peril. This will be seen to parallel the more recognized disanalogy between existence statements and other one-termed statements. One way of registering the fundamental disanalogy is to say that identity statements are not relational, but this is not essential. Following my negative arguments in section 2, I employ some simple diagrammatical models in section 3 to exhibit the fundamental disanalogy. In a final section I respond to some possible objections which may be raised against this kind of approach.

In a recent paper, Breckenridge and Magidor argue for an interesting and counterintuitive account of instantial reasoning. According to this account, in arguments such as one beginning with 'There is some x such that x is mortal. Let O be such an x. ...', the 'O' refers to a particular object, although we cannot know which. I give and defend a simple counterexample involving the notion of an unreferred-to object.

'It is widely agreed that contraposition, strengthening the antecedent and hypothetical syllogism fail for subjunctive conditionals', write Brogaard and Salerno in (2008: Counterfactuals and context, Analysis 68.1, 39–46). In that article they argue that the putative counterexamples to these principles are actually no threat, on the grounds that they involve a certain kind of illicit contextual shift. Here I argue that this particular kind of contextual shift, if it is properly so called, is not generally illicit, and that therefore the counterexamples shouldn't be blocked with the kind of blanket restriction Brogaard and Salerno advocate. The idea that the reasoning patterns in question can be vindicated given restrictions still seems promising; the purpose of this note is to show that the simple restriction proposed by Brogaard and Salerno isn't the right way of going.

I present two counterexamples to the recently back-in-favour truth-tracking account of knowledge: one involving a true belief resting on a counterfactually robust delusion, one involving a true belief acquired alongside a bunch of false beliefs. These counterexamples carry over to a recent modification of the theory due to Briggs and Nolan (2012), and seem invulnerable to a recent defence of the theory against known counterexamples, by Adams and Clarke (2005).
Here I defend two counterexamples to Nozick’s truth-tracking theory of knowledge from an attack on them by Adams and Clarke. With respect to the first counterexample, Adams and Clarke make the error of judging that my belief counts as knowledge. More demonstrably, with respect to the second counterexample they make the error of thinking that, on Nozick’s method-relativized theory, the method M in question in any given case must be generally reliable.

,
Thomas Hofweber's well-known ontological project crucially involves inferring negative existential statements from statements of non-reference, i.e. statements that say that some term or terms do not refer. Here, after explaining the context of this move, I aim to show that it is fallacious, and that this vitiates Hofweber's ontological project.

Honours thesis

PhD thesis


Blogs
Sprachlogik - a philosophy blog featuring short articles, with a focus on logic and language. Running since Feb 2011.
Tristan Haze - mostly drawings at the moment.

Music
weebly analytics
Subpages (1): Active philosophy blogs