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Conditional ReasoningThe Unruly Syntactics, Semantics, Thematics, and Pragmatics of "If"$
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Raymond Nickerson

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780190202996

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190202996.001.0001

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Counterfactual Thinking 1

Counterfactual Thinking 1

Chapter:
(p.133) 7 Counterfactual Thinking 1
Source:
Conditional Reasoning
Author(s):

Raymond S. Nickerson

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190202996.003.0007

Counterfactuals are widely recognized as a special type of conditional, to be distinguished primarily from indicative conditionals. Counterfactual thinking typically involves thinking about what might (could) have been. This chapter deals with the nature of such thinking and identifies a variety of factors that prompt it. It considers the use of counterfactual thinking in historical research, and reviews literature on the concept of possible alternative worlds.

Keywords:   alternative worlds, counterfactuals, history, negations

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