‘Intuitive’, ‘Intuitively’, ‘Intuition’, and ‘Seem’ in English

Herman Cappelen

in Philosophy without Intuitions

Published in print March 2012 | ISBN: 9780199644865
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191739026 | DOI:
‘Intuitive’, ‘Intuitively’, ‘Intuition’, and ‘Seem’ in English

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This chapter considers the meaning of ‘intuitive’, ‘seem’ and their cognates in English. There is extensive discussion of hedging, the role of ‘seem’ as a generic evidential, and the context sensitivity of ‘intuitive’ and ‘intuitively’. In particular it is argued that when ‘intuitively’ or ‘it seems (to me)’ is used to modify propositions, it functions as a hedge rather than also serving to denote a certain class of mental states (intuitions or seemings) pace George Bealer. The upshot is that the claim that philosophers rely on intuitions as evidence is false if ‘intuitions’ is treated as having its standard meaning in English rather than as a technical term in philosophy.

Keywords: intuition; seeming; ‘seem’; ‘intuitive’; hedge; hedging; context sensitivity; generic evidential

Chapter.  7502 words. 

Subjects: Metaphysics

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