International Workshop on Logic, Rationality and Interaction

Logic, Rationality, and Interaction pp 143-155

Informational Dynamics of ‘Might’ Assertions

Conference paper

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-662-48561-3_12

Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9394)
Cite this paper as:
Hawke P., Steinert-Threlkeld S. (2015) Informational Dynamics of ‘Might’ Assertions. In: van der Hoek W., Holliday W., Wang W. (eds) Logic, Rationality, and Interaction. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol 9394. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg


We investigate, in a logical setting, the proposal that assertion primarily functions to express and coordinate doxastic states and that ‘might’ fundamentally expresses lack of belief. We provide a formal model of an agent’s doxastic state and precise assertability conditions for an associated formal language. We thereby prove that an arbitrary assertion (including a complex of ‘might’ and ‘factual’ claims) always succeeds in expressing a well-defined doxastic state. We then propose a fully general and intuitive doxastic update operation as a model of an agent coming to accept an arbitrary assertion. We provide reduction axioms for some novel update operations related to this proposal.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyStanford UniversityStandfordUSA

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