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The Hardness of the Iconic Must: Can Peirce’s Existential Graphs Assist Modal Epistemology?

Legg, Catherine (2012) The Hardness of the Iconic Must: Can Peirce’s Existential Graphs Assist Modal Epistemology? Philosophia Mathematica, 20 (1). pp. 1-24. ISSN 0031-8019

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Abstract

Charles Peirce’s diagrammatic logic — the Existential Graphs — is presented as a tool for illuminating how we know necessity, in answer to Benacerraf’s famous challenge that most ‘semantics for mathematics’ do not ‘fit an acceptable epistemology’. It is suggested that necessary reasoning is in essence a recognition that a certain structure has the particular structure that it has. This means that, contra Hume and his contemporary heirs, necessity is observable. One just needs to pay attention, not merely to individual things but to how those things are related in larger structures, such that certain aspects of these relations force certain other aspects to be a certain way.


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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Legg, Catherinec.legg@deakin.edu.au0000-0002-0231-5415
Keywords: necessity, epistemology, Peirce, Benacerraf, Hume, existential graphs, iconicity
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Mathematics > Epistemology
Depositing User: Dr Catherine Legg
Date Deposited: 13 Oct 2021 18:44
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2021 18:44
Item ID: 19684
Journal or Publication Title: Philosophia Mathematica
Publisher: OUP
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1093/phimat/nkr005
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Mathematics > Epistemology
Date: 2012
Page Range: pp. 1-24
Volume: 20
Number: 1
ISSN: 0031-8019
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/19684

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