Rationality and Believing the Impossible

Ruth Barcan Marcus

in Modalities

Published in print August 1995 | ISBN: 9780195096576
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199833412 | DOI:
 Rationality and Believing the Impossible

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This paper defends the view that one cannot believe an impossibility. It examines Kripke's puzzle about belief, and argues that assent to a sentence that is false in all possible circumstances does not carry over into belief. This is shown to have consequences for theories about epistemological attitudes and rationality.

Keywords: assenting; belief; believing; Berkeley; disquotation principle; impossibility; Kripke's puzzle; rationality

Chapter.  8419 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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