Tolerance effect in categorisation with vague predicates
Vagueness is understood as the problem of associating imprecise application criteria with ordinary predicates such as ‘bald’ or ‘blue’. It is often construed as due to one’s tolerance to a minute difference in forming a verdict on the application of a vague predicate. This paper reports an experiment conducted to test the effect of tolerance, using as paradigm categorisation tasks performed with respect to transitional series, e.g., a series of tomatoes from red to orange. The findings suggest a negative effect of tolerance on categorisation with vague predicates. The implication of the findings for certain commonly-held assumptions about tolerance is discussed.
Keywords: tolerance, vagueness, Categorisation, observational predicates
Published online: 21 July 2014