[FOM] Theories of truth
Harvey Friedman
friedman at math.ohio-state.edu
Fri Sep 6 00:02:21 EDT 2002
I am at least aware of an enormous literature on the liar's paradox
by philosophers, before, but particularly after Saul Kripke's "theory
of truth". The idea is to make interesting/natural definitions by
transfinite induction that determine the truth and falsity of many
self referential assertions, but leave some undecided as to truth
value. For instance, "this sentence is true" would be decided as
true, but "this sentence is false" would have an undetermined truth
value. This is normally done in for the language L of Peano
arithmetic with a unary predicate symbol T(n) added. Syntactically,
there are no issues with regard to L. The question is: which
sentences of L are to be true, which are to be false, and which
undetermined? The interpretation of T(n) is to be "n is the Godel
number of a sentence of L that is true".
Many people on this list know this literature better than I do and
could provide a nice set of references.
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