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Dispositional modality

Mumford, Stephen and Anjum, Rani Lill (2011) Dispositional modality. Lebenswelt und Wissenschaft. pp. 380-394.

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Abstract

There has been much discussion of powers or real dispositions in the past decade , but there remains an issue that has been inadequately treated. This concerns the precise modal value that comes with dispositionality. We contend in this paper that dispositionality involves a non-alethic, sui generis, irreducible modality. Dispositions only tend towards their manifestations; they do not necessitate them. Tendency is, of course, a dispositional term itself, so this last statement offers little by way of illumination. But given our thesis on the irreducible nature of dispositionality, we maintain that it cannot be explicated correctly in non-dispositional terms. Nevertheless, we all have experience of dispositionality at work, through the exercise or our own powers and the action of other powers upon us. The notion of dispositionality that we acquire is one that involves a modality stronger than pure contingency but weaker than necessity. The recognition of this distinct modal value for dispositionality is one of the biggest oversights in the growing literature in the area. Yet it is there for all to see in even the most mundane example.


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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Mumford, Stephenstephen.mumford@nottingham.ac.uk
Anjum, Rani Lillrani.anjum@umb.no
Keywords: Modality, causation, dispositions, tendency
Subjects: General Issues > Causation
Depositing User: Dr. Rani Lill Anjum
Date Deposited: 25 Sep 2013 12:47
Last Modified: 25 Sep 2013 12:47
Item ID: 10013
Journal or Publication Title: Lebenswelt und Wissenschaft
Publisher: Felix Meiner Verlag
Official URL: http://www.meiner.de/product_info.php?products_id=...
Subjects: General Issues > Causation
Date: 2011
Page Range: pp. 380-394
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/10013

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