ArgLab • Permanent Seminar

Relativizing Faultless Disagreement: Faultlessness as Perspective Relative

José Ramón Torices Vidal (University of Granada)

IFILNOVA’s Value Research Seminar heartily invites everyone to an online talk by José Ramón Torices Vidal (University of Granada).


Disagreements have played a pivotal role in discussions about the nature of perspectival expressions (see e.g., Kölbel 2004a; Lasersohn 2005; Field 2009; MacFarlane 2014; Zeman 2017). Perspectival expressions are expressions that introduce a new parameter to the truth-conditions of the statements in which they appear, i.e., they introduce a perspective or standard. This article argues, against the common non-relativized understanding of faultless disagreement, that “being faultless,” as applied to disagreement, is a perspectival expression. Consequently, on the one hand, the same instance of disagreement can be and not be faultless at the same time for different agents and, on the other hand, it can be and not be faultless for the same agent in different contexts. It is examined what consequences this way of understanding faultless disagreement has for rival theories—indexical contextualism, non-indexical contextualism, and assessor-relativism. We argue that all these theories face the same problem: they overgeneralize cases of faultless disagreement. It is concluded that “faultlessness” is not a semantic feature of perspectival expressions. To evaluate a disagreement as faultless requires paying attention to extralinguistic aspects. Thus, arguments based on the existence of faultless disagreements neither favours nor disfavours any of these theories.

Everybody is welcome to join!

For online participation, please use the following link.

This event is organized by Pedro Abreu and Erich Rast. The purpose of this seminar series is to give researchers a platform to discuss ongoing work and problems — open to all traditions and topics, though currently with a focus on values, evaluative language, and the nature of disagreement. For administrative inquiries, please contact Pedro Abreu or Erich Rast. More information here. If you are interested in giving a talk at the larger ArgLab Colloquium series, please contact Dima Mohammed.