Monthly Archives: April 2018

Thoughts on Kearns Possible Worlds and Modality

I found the section on Epistemic modality to be of particular interest because of its relation to the deflationist definition of truth. During the take home exam, I thought a lot, as all of us did, about what it means for something to be true. Under the deflationist theory of truth, the definition holds no meaning because we have no divine insight into what is actually true. To them, the words true and truth are simply conveniences to convey a perception of truth. Epistemic modality differs from logical modality in a similar way to how deflationist truth theory differs from coherence theory. This form of modality expresses what may be possible or necessary, given what is known. Epistemic modality does not guarantee that the contained proposition is true, only that it logically follows what is understood to be true. This fits into possible worlds the same way: if there exists a world where the inhabitants have reason to believe a possibility or necessity. I find it hard to conceptualize other worlds in the concrete way that the reading demands, but am trying.