Harmony and Modality

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


It is argued that the meaning of the modal connectives must be given inferentially, by the rules for the assertion of formulae containing them, and not semantically by reference to possible worlds. Further, harmony confers transparency on the inferentialist account of meaning, when the introduction-rule specifies both necessary and sufficient conditions for assertion, and the elimination-rule does no more than exhibit the consequences of the meaning so conferred. Hence, harmony is not to be identified with normalization, since the standard modal natural deduction rules, though normalizable, are not in this sense harmonious. Harmonious rules for modality have lately been formulated, using labelled deductive systems.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDialogues, Logics and Other Strong Things: Essays in Honour of Shahid Rahman, ed. C. Dégremont, L. Kieff and H. Rückert
PublisherCollege Publications
ISBN (Print)978-1-904987-13-0
Publication statusPublished - 2008


  • Inferentialism
  • meaning
  • logic
  • labelled deductive systems.


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