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Zhuhai Philosophy Forum XIII:An Analysis of Pascal’s Wager Argument

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Zhuhai Philosophy Forum XIIIAn Analysis of Pascal’s Wager Argument

 

Organizer: Department of Philosophy (Zhuhai)Sun Yat-sen University

Topic: An Analysis of Pascal’s Wager Argument

Speaker: Winfried Löffler (Professor, University Innsbruck)

Moderator: Pao-Shen Ho (Research Fellow, Sun Yat-sen University)

Time: Dec. 13th, 15:00pm

Venue: R106, No.13 Administrative Building of Department of Philosophy (Zhuhai), SYSU

Abstract: Blaise Pascal’s (1623-1662) famous “Wager Argument” (Pensées, Fragment 233) has a dubious reputation. Not only is the text hard to understand, many people also suspect a problematic idea behind it: they see it as a purely tactical strategy in the absence of theoretical reasons. Now Pascal is also one of the founders of modern probability theory and of the “theory of rational decision”; and I will show that an analysis by the means of decision theory give the text a clear meaning. And there is a surprising result, which goes against the usual interpretation: the analysis shows that the argument works only in combination with theoretical reasons. And even more, there are indications that Pascal himself had the same idea.

 

 

珠海哲学论坛第十三讲:帕斯卡尔赌徒论证的分析

 

主办:中山大学哲学系(珠海)

主题:帕斯卡尔赌徒论证的分析

主讲Winfried Löffler(奥地利因斯布鲁克大学教授)

主持:何宝申(中山大学哲学系(珠海)研究员)

时间20171213日下午15:00

地点中山大学珠海校区海滨红楼13号哲学系(珠海)行政办公楼106

摘要十七世纪哲学家帕斯卡尔在《沉思录》提出的赌徒论证向来备受争议,不仅文本本身不易理解,而且许多学者质疑该论证的合理性,认为它仅是实用主义的权宜之计,但缺少理论理性的支持。然而帕斯卡尔也是近代概率理论和“理性决策论”的奠基者之一。我将指出,决策论分析不仅能够更清楚地解释赌徒论证的原意,而且还推翻了该论证的主流诠释。根据决策论的分析,赌徒论证必须结合理论理性才能成立。此外,《沉思录》文本证据也显示这是帕斯卡尔的本意。

 

主讲人简介:

 

WINFRIED LÖFFLER, born 1965, holds two doctorates in Law and Philosophy and a Master in Theology. He is currently Associated Professor of Philosophy at the University of Innsbruck. Focuses of research and teaching: Logic, Philosophy of Science, Philosophy of Religion, Thought of Bernard Bolzano (1781-1848). Books: Introduction to Logic (German: Einführung in die Logik), Stuttgart 2008; Introduction to the Philosophy of Religion (German: Einführung in die Religionsphilosophie), Darmstadt 2nd edition 2013); more than 10 edited books and more than 100 scholarly papers in journals, handbooks and collected volumes. Recent Chinese publication: Two Kinds of 'Christian Philosophy', in: Modern Philosophy 142 (2015), 68-75. Prof. Löffler served as General Secretary and Vice-President of the Austrian Society for Philosophy and for many years as a President of the Austrian Society for Philosophy of Religion; he was scientific organizer of the well-known International Ludwig Wittgenstein Symposia at Kirchberg 2003 and 2011.

Prof. Löffler is Co-Editor of the book series Beiträge zur Bolzano-Forschung, Associate Editor of the Journal European Journal for Philosophy of Religion and member of the Advisory Boards of the Journals Acta Analytica, Meinong-Studien, Philosophisches Jahrbuch, Metaphysica , and.

He served as referee for the Journals Erkenntnis, Synthese, Grazer Philosophische Studien, Acta Analytica, Theologie und Philosophie, Philosophisches Jahrbuch, Metaphysica, European Journal for Philosophy of Religion, Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie, Disputatio Philosophica, Obnovljeni Život, Conceptus, and numerous collected volumes.