Chapter

Backward Subjunctive Conditionals

Jonathan Bennett

in A Philosophical Guide to Conditionals

Published in print April 2003 | ISBN: 9780199258871
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191597046 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0199258872.003.0018
Backward Subjunctive Conditionals

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Criticism of a popular argument for refusing to allow backward subjunctives conditionals, i.e. ones whose consequent pertains to a time earlier than that of the antecedent; and of accounts of such conditionals by Jackson and Davis. A tenable account of them is found to be nested within Lewis's analysis of forward subjunctives. Discussion of related issues concerning Lewis's notion of counterparts and of non‐historical conditionals (’If it were a ruby, it would be red’).

Keywords: backward causation; backward subjunctive conditionals; conditionals; counterpart; Jackson; Lewis; subjunctive conditionals

Chapter.  6469 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Language

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