Hybrid-Logical Reasoning in the Smarties and Sally-Anne Tasks

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The main aim of the present paper is to use a proof system for hybrid modal logic to formalize what are called false-belief tasks in cognitive psychology, thereby investigating the interplay between cognition and logical reasoning about belief. We consider two different versions of the Smarties task, involving respectively a shift of perspective to another person and to another time. Our formalizations disclose that despite this difference, the two versions of the Smarties task have exactly the same underlying logical structure. We also consider the Sally-Anne task, having a more complicated logical structure, presupposing a “principle of inertia” saying that a belief is preserved over time, unless there is belief to the contrary.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Logic, Language and Information
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)415-439
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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