Download PDF by Melvin Joseph Adler: A Pragmatic Logic for Commands

By Melvin Joseph Adler

ISBN-10: 902722501X

ISBN-13: 9789027225016

The aim of this essay is to either talk about instructions as a species of speech act and to debate instructions in the broader framework of ways they're used and reacted to.

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Once we think of hypothetical imperatives in this way, they do not in essence differ from other commands with ex­ ecution-preconditions. Hypothetical imperatives qua commands are to be treated as commands with execution-preconditions: the antecedent act­ ing as execution precondition, and the consequent as the command's mooted action. 53 2. 1 Goals Much time and effort has been spent arguing the issue of the ex54 istence or non-existence of imperative inference. , Chellas 1969), I will not pursue this issue.

G. ) are actions. 3. Refraining from doing something, and in particular, doing nothing may be considered to be an action. 4. Some, but not all, actions have a well defined negation. 5. The phrase 'contradictory actions' makes sense. 6. Phrases such as 'the temporal realization of an action', 'to real­ ize an action', and '(the addressee) X realizes (the action) A' 32 A PRAGMATIC LOGIC FOR COMMANDS make sense. 7. The notions involved in defining (and the algebraic operations of) sub-action, meet and join of actions (symbolized ≤ ,  , and v , respectively) are all understood and well defined.

3) Stephen, buy a jug of milk sometime today ! (4) , lie down and rest for an hour ! (5) Don, go home as soon as possible ! (6) Open the door ! (7) Tom, next time you go to London buy a winter coat ! Example (1) is straightforward: here 'John'≡X 1 , 'during the next six days (from now)'≡T 1 , 'it rains in the daytime'≡K 1 , and 'close this window'≡ A 1 . Its formalization would be (1') (X1, K1, T1, A 1 ) The problem lies with the other examples which do not explicitly state all of the details that one would expect, given the definition of a command; for instance, (6) lacks an explicitly stated time interval over which the command is in force.

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A Pragmatic Logic for Commands by Melvin Joseph Adler


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