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“Nonmonotonic” does not mean “probabilistic”

  • Keith Stenning (a1) and Michiel van Lambalgen (a2)


Oaksford & Chater (O&C) advocate Bayesian probability as a way to deal formally with the pervasive nonmonotonicity of common sense reasoning. We show that some forms of nonmonotonicity cannot be treated by Bayesian methods.



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Antoniou, G. (1997) Nonmonotonic reasoning. MIT Press.
Byrne, R. M. J. (1989) Suppressing valid inferences with conditionals. Cognition 31:6183.
Oaksford, M. & Chater, N. (2007) Bayesian rationality: The probabilistic approach to human reasoning. Oxford University Press.
Stenning, K. & van Lambalgen, M. (2005) Semantic interpretation as reasoning in non-monotonic logic: The real meaning of the suppression task. Cognitive Science 29(6):919–60.
Stenning, K. & van Lambalgen, M. (2008a) Human reasoning and cognitive science. MIT Press.
Stenning, K. & van Lambalgen, M. (2008b) Logic in a noisy world. In: Cognition and conditionals: Probability and logic in human thought, eds. Oaksford, M. & Chater, N.. Oxford University Press.
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Behavioral and Brain Sciences
  • ISSN: 0140-525X
  • EISSN: 1469-1825
  • URL: /core/journals/behavioral-and-brain-sciences
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