• The Inconsistency Theory of Truth
    Dissertation, Princeton University. 1999.
    This dissertation uses the Liar paradox to motivate an account of the concept of truth that I call the "inconsistency theory of truth." The Liar paradox is the puzzle that arises when we consider such sentences, known as Liar sentences, that say of themselves that they are not true: whatever truth value we attribute to such a sentence, we seem to be immediately driven to the conclusion that it has the opposite truth value. Examining this puzzle reveals that its source is the following principle,…Read more
  •  115
    Disquotation, Conditionals, and the Liar
    Polish Journal of Philosophy 3 (1): 5-21. 2009.
    In this paper I respond to Jacquette’s criticisms, in (Jacquette, 2008), of my (Barker, 2008). In so doing, I argue that the Liar paradox is in fact a problem about the disquotational schema, and that nothing in Jacquette’s paper undermines this diagnosis
  •  94
    Satan, Saint Peter and Saint Petersburg: Decision theory and discontinuity at infinity
    with Paul Bartha and Alan Hájek
    Synthese 191 (4): 629-660. 2014.
    We examine a distinctive kind of problem for decision theory, involving what we call discontinuity at infinity. Roughly, it arises when an infinite sequence of choices, each apparently sanctioned by plausible principles, converges to a ‘limit choice’ whose utility is much lower than the limit approached by the utilities of the choices in the sequence. We give examples of this phenomenon, focusing on Arntzenius et al.’s Satan’s apple, and give a general characterization of it. In these examples, …Read more
  •  17
    Undeniably Paradoxical: Reply to Jacquette
    Polish Journal of Philosophy 2 (1): 137-142. 2008.
    Jacquette’s proposed solution to the Liar paradox—namely, that the paradox can be defused by declaring Liar sentences to be false—is criticized. Specifically, it is argued that the proposed solution rests on misidentifying the condition that a sentence needs to satisfy in order to count as a Liar sentence. If Jacquette’s condition is used, then the resulting “Liar” sentences are indeed straightforwardly false; however, a genuine paradox remains if a more standard formulation is employed.