Experimental philosophical logic and unrestricted human reasoning

Research output: Other Conference ContributionsPresentation


Analytic philosophers have long studied and used logical tools to model human reasoning in its restricted application to certain domains of phenomena, or as engaging with certain concepts of direct philosophical interest. However, in the last century philosophy dedicated virtually no attention to the study of human reasoning, that is, human reasoning as actually performed and discernible when abstracting away from context and isolating away all a-rational disruptive factors. We argue that the question of unrestricted human reasoning is an interesting albeit currently neglected philosophical topic, and that it can and should be tackled experimentally as part of the positive program of experimental philosophy. In particular, we show that this question requires the kind of empirical testing of hypotheses against phenomena which is performed within the positive program. We outline an experimental design that starts addressing this question in the last section. Such an investigation has its place within the boundaries of philosophy due to its intimate connections with topics in philosophical logic. Furthermore, human reasoning should probably play a central role in ongoing debates within the philosophy of logic, such as the debate between monists and pluralists. This investigation should aim to complement ongoing research in the field of the psychology of reasoning, bringing those results back to the philosophical table.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2022
EventWorld Logic Day / Inceptiones et Receptiones 2022 : On the Trace of Logic, Reason, and Math -
Duration: 10 Jan 202215 Jan 2022


ConferenceWorld Logic Day / Inceptiones et Receptiones 2022 : On the Trace of Logic, Reason, and Math
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