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Journal of Philosophical Research

Volume 17, 1992

Richard DeWitt
Pages 93-118

Remarks on the Current Status of the Sorites Paradox

The past twenty or so years have seen the sorites paradox receive a good deal of philosophical air-time. Yet, in what is surely a sign of a good puzzle, no consensus has emerged. It is perhaps a good time to stop and take stock of the current status of the sorites paradox. My main contention is that the proposals offered to date as ways of blocking the paradox are seriously deficient, and hence there is, at present, no acceptable solution to the sorites. In the final section I argue that, although vagueness is the source of the threat to modus ponens engendered by the sorites, it is also vagueness that protects modus ponens from clear counterexample.

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