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Online Workshop Series: Sebastian Sunday Grève, "Beyond Belief"


The Online Workshop Series, organised by Boya Postdoctoral Fellow Liu Chang(, is a bi-weekly event, where philosophers meet online to discuss their works in progress. It aims at promoting collaboration between colleagues, given the difficulty of in-person meetings during the pandemic. For each session, the speaker's work-in-progress will be sent to the participants in advance. During the meeting, the speaker will give a brief summary of the manuscript and have a dialogue with the commentator. Then a Q&A session follows. The Online Workshop Series has provided many participants with helpful feedback.


The first session of the Online Workshop Series took place on July 14th. Professor Sebastian Sunday Grève shared a manuscript entitled "Beyond Belief". A formal comment was prepared by Professor Julius Schoenherr. In his paper, Professor Sunday argues that existing theories of paradox struggle to account for cases of paradox ranging from the barber paradox and the paradox of omnipotence to liar and sorites paradoxes, pairs of paradox such as that of the geocentric and heliocentric paradoxes as well as visual and auditory paradoxes including the Penrose triangle and the Shepard tone. To solve these and other issues, Professor Sunday proposes a new theory of the essence of paradox, according to which something is a paradox if and only if it is beyond belief. In addition, he offers an account of the analysis of paradoxical objects including their logical form. At the start of the meeting, Professor Sunday briefly explained the theory, its advantages and possible objections and replies. The following discussion of the paper largely focussed on a small number of objections to the theory which Professor Sunday also treats in his paper, especially ones concerning inclusivity and subjectivity, that is, the questions of whether the new theory admits too many things as paradoxes or, perhaps, on grounds that are too subjective. The discussion was very fruitful for everyone, and the participants look forward to seeing Professor Sunday's manuscript in print.