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How It All Relates : Exploring the Space of Value Comparisons

Andersson, Henrik LU (2017)
Abstract (Swedish)
Avhandlingen fokuserar på ojämförbarhet med avseende på värde. Jag avser att förklara varför det ibland kan vara svårt att jämföra vissa objekt. I min avhandling argumenterar jag för att det är språklig vaghet som ger upphov till ojämförbarhet. Jag diskuterar även andra saker så som: huruvida "bättre än" en transitiv relation, om det finns mer relationer än "bättre än", "sämre än" och "lika bra", samt strukturen på våra värderelationer.
Abstract
This thesis explores whether the three standard value relations, “better than”, “worse than” and “equally as good”, exhaust the possibilities in which things can relate with respect to their value. Or more precisely, whether there are examples in which one of these relations is not instantiated. There are cases in which it is not obvious that one of these relations does obtain; these are referred to as “hard cases of comparison”. These hard cases of comparison become interesting, since if it not the case that the standard three value relations obtains in these cases then the three standard relations do not exhaust the possibility of instantiated value relations. It is argued that for some of the hard cases of comparison, the standard... (More)
This thesis explores whether the three standard value relations, “better than”, “worse than” and “equally as good”, exhaust the possibilities in which things can relate with respect to their value. Or more precisely, whether there are examples in which one of these relations is not instantiated. There are cases in which it is not obvious that one of these relations does obtain; these are referred to as “hard cases of comparison”. These hard cases of comparison become interesting, since if it not the case that the standard three value relations obtains in these cases then the three standard relations do not exhaust the possibility of instantiated value relations. It is argued that for some of the hard cases of comparison, the standard relations determinately obtain. For some it is indeterminate, due to vagueness, which of the three relations obtains, but it is determinate that one of them obtains. Thereafter it is argued that the influential Collapsing Argument fails in ruling out other accounts of the hard cases of comparison. Since one cannot depend on the Collapsing Argument in order to conclude that all items are related by the standard three relations, the investigation continues. It is argued that none of the hard cases of comparison are cases of incomparability. Furthermore, none of them are cases of a fourth basic positive value relation such as “parity”. Consequently, for all the hard cases of comparison one of the standard value relations holds, although sometimes we do not know which one and sometimes it is indeterminate which one holds. This means that there is no reason to assume that one of the standard three value relations does not hold between items we are comparing. This is followed by a brief discussion about the normative consequences of this result. The thesis ends with four different appendices in which related topics are discussed. (Less)
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author
supervisor
opponent
  • professor Carlson, Erik, Uppsala universitet
organization
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
värderelationer, vaghet, paritet, ojämförbarhet, värdejämförelser, svåra jämförelser, transitivitet, kollapsprincipen, Value relations, vagueness, parity, incomparability, incommensurability, indeterminacy, value comparisons, hard cases of comparison, transitivity, the collapsing principle
pages
212 pages
publisher
Lund University (Media-Tryck)
defense location
B336, LUX, Helgonavägen 3, Lund
defense date
2017-03-25 10:15
ISBN
978-91-88473-32-5
978-91-88473-31-8
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
9bec2211-a868-49f3-bac0-c6659cce0279
date added to LUP
2017-02-15 13:00:26
date last changed
2017-02-16 16:23:40
@phdthesis{9bec2211-a868-49f3-bac0-c6659cce0279,
  abstract     = {This thesis explores whether the three standard value relations, “better than”, “worse than” and “equally as good”, exhaust the possibilities in which things can relate with respect to their value. Or more precisely, whether there are examples in which one of these relations is not instantiated. There are cases in which it is not obvious that one of these relations does obtain; these are referred to as “hard cases of comparison”. These hard cases of comparison become interesting, since if it not the case that the standard three value relations obtains in these cases then the three standard relations do not exhaust the possibility of instantiated value relations. It is argued that for some of the hard cases of comparison, the standard relations determinately obtain. For some it is indeterminate, due to vagueness, which of the three relations obtains, but it is determinate that one of them obtains. Thereafter it is argued that the influential Collapsing Argument fails in ruling out other accounts of the hard cases of comparison. Since one cannot depend on the Collapsing Argument in order to conclude that all items are related by the standard three relations, the investigation continues. It is argued that none of the hard cases of comparison are cases of incomparability. Furthermore, none of them are cases of a fourth basic positive value relation such as “parity”. Consequently, for all the hard cases of comparison one of the standard value relations holds, although sometimes we do not know which one and sometimes it is indeterminate which one holds. This means that there is no reason to assume that one of the standard three value relations does not hold between items we are comparing. This is followed by a brief discussion about the normative consequences of this result. The thesis ends with four different appendices in which related topics are discussed.},
  author       = {Andersson, Henrik},
  isbn         = {978-91-88473-32-5},
  keyword      = {värderelationer, vaghet, paritet, ojämförbarhet, värdejämförelser, svåra jämförelser, transitivitet, kollapsprincipen,Value relations, vagueness, parity, incomparability, incommensurability, indeterminacy, value comparisons, hard cases of comparison, transitivity, the collapsing principle},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {03},
  pages        = {212},
  publisher    = {Lund University (Media-Tryck)},
  school       = {Lund University},
  title        = {How It All Relates : Exploring the Space of Value Comparisons},
  year         = {2017},
}