Stockholm university

Anandi Hattiangadi

About me

Anandi Hattiangadi is Professor of Philosophy at Stockholm University. She received a BA in Philosophy from York University, Toronto,  and a Ph.D from the Department of History and Philosophy of Science and Trinity College, University of Cambridge. In 2000, she took up a Research Fellowship at Trinity College, University of Cambridge, and from 2005 to 2013, she was University Lecturer at the Philosophy Faculty and Tutorial Fellow in Philosophy at St Hilda’s College, both at the University of Oxford.

Hattiangadi specializes in the philosophy of mind and language, and has research interests in the philosophy of logic, the philosophy of cognitive science, epistemology, metaphysics, metaethics, and cultural evolution. Her monograph, Oughts and Thoughts: Rule Following and the Normativity of Content responds to Kripke's (1982) argument for skepticism about meaning and content. She has published extensively on the normativity of meaning and content; the nature and normativity of belief; reductive accounts of meaning and intentionality; the metaphysics of time, and moral supervenience. She is currently working on a monograph provisionally entitled Aboutness First: In Defence of the Fundamentality of Intentionality. Here, she argues that intentionality does not metaphysically supervene on the non-intentional, but is only contingently grounded in it. 

Hattiangadi has recently completed a 3-year project funded by Riksbankens Jubileumsfond (P17-0487:1) on the Foundations of Epistemic Normativity. She is currently participating in a project funded by the Marcus and Marianne Wallenberg Foundation on Cultural Evolution in Digital Societies (Magnus Enquist PI,  2021.0039). And she is currently managing the project funded by the Swedish Research Council, Beyond Reductionism: Contingent Grounding and the Mind-Body Problem (2022-01827).



I regularly teach undergraduate courses in philosophy of mind, metaphysics and meta-ethics. I am happy to accept PhD students in any of these areas. 


Hattiangadi specializes in the philosophy of mind and language, and has research interests in the philosophy of psychology, epistemology, metaphysics, meta-ethics, and philosophy of science. 



Research projects


A selection from Stockholm University publication database

  • Radical interpretation and decision theory

    2021. Anandi Hattiangadi, H. Orri Stefánsson. Synthese


    This paper takes issue with an influential interpretationist argument for physicalism about intentionality based on the possibility of radical interpretation. The interpretationist defends the physicalist thesis that the intentional truths supervene on the physical truths by arguing that it is possible for a radical interpreter, who knows all of the physical truths, to work out the intentional truths about what an arbitrary agent believes, desires, and means without recourse to any further empirical information. One of the most compelling arguments for the possibility of radical interpretation, associated most closely with David Lewis and Donald Davidson, gives a central role to decision theoretic representation theorems, which demonstrate that if an agent's preferences satisfy certain constraints, it is possible to deduce probability and utility functions that represent her beliefs and desires. We argue that an interpretationist who wants to rely on existing representation theorems in defence of the possibility of radical interpretation faces a trilemma, each horn of which is incompatible with the possibility of radical interpretation.

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  • Radical Interpretation and The Aggregation Problem

    2020. Anandi Hattiangadi. Philosophy and phenomenological research 101 (2), 283-303


    This paper takes issue with Lewis' influential argument for the supervenience of the semantic on the non-semantic based on the possibility of radical interpretation. Radical interpretation is possible only if an ideal being, who is omniscient about the non-semantic truths, can deduce the semantic truths a priori. The radical interpreter appeals to a set of criteria of interpretation choice, such as most notably some kind of Principle of Charity. It is argued in this paper that the radical interpreter faces an insoluble aggregation problem: the radical interpreter must jointly apply several criteria for evaluating interpretations in order to determine which interpretation is best overall. First, the situation of the radical interpreter is formally modeled using the machinery of social choice theory. Second, it is argued that either Arrow's impossibility theorem or a variant of it applies to the situation of the radical interpreter. The upshot is that radical interpretation is impossible, and Lewis' argument for semantic supervenience fails.

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  • No, one should not believe all truths

    2019. Anandi Hattiangadi. Inquiry 62 (9-10), 1091-1103


    In a recent paper, Alexander Greenberg defends a truth norm of belief according to which if one has some doxastic attitude towards p, one ought to believe that p if and only if p is true (DA). He responds, in particular, to the 'blindspot' objection to truth norms such as DA: in the face of true blindspots, such as it is raining and nobody believes that it is raining, truth norms such as DA are unsatisfiable; they entail that one ought to believe p, but if one does believe p, they entail that it is not the case that one ought to believe p. In this paper, it is argued that Greenberg's response to the blindspot objection is unsatisfactory.

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  • Moral Supervenience

    2018. Anandi Hattiangadi. Canadian journal of philosophy 48 (3-4), 592-615


    It is widely held, even among nonnaturalists, that the moral supervenes on the natural. This is to say that for any two metaphysically possible worlds w and w′, and for any entities x in w and y in w′, any isomorphism between x and y that preserves the natural properties preserves the moral properties. In this paper, I put forward a conceivability argument against moral supervenience, assuming non-naturalism. First, I argue that though utilitarianism may be true, and the trolley driver is permitted to kill the one to save the five, there is a conceivable scenario that is just like our world in all natural respects, yet at which deontology is true, and the trolly driver is not permitted to kill the one to save the five. I then argue that in the special case of morality, it is possible to infer from the conceivability of such a scenario to its possibility. It follows that supervenience is false.

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  • The normativity of MEANING and the hard problem of intentionality

    2018. Anandi Hattiangadi. Inquiry 61 (7), 742-754


    This note addresses two of Gibbard's central contentions in Meaning and Normativity: first, that the concept of meaning is normative, and second, that an expressivist account of semantic concepts and statements can shed light on the hard problem of intentionality, the problem of explaining intentionality in naturalistic terms.

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  • The limits of expressivism

    2015. Anandi Hattiangadi. Meaning without representation, 224-244


    In his recent book, Meaning and Normativity, Allan Gibbard argues at length that the concept of meaning is normative, and that his own brand of expressivism can be applied in the semantic and intentional domain. In this paper, I  argue that the extension of expressivism to semantic discourse is unprofitable and—worse still—in a certain sense self-undermining. It is unprofitable because it sheds no light on the problem of intentionality; undermines itself because many of the sentences that make up the expressivist’s theory are semantic sentences, and if these are understood to express non-cognitive attitudes of some kind, the expressivist’s explanations are spurious.

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  • The open future, bivalence and assertion

    2014. Corine Besson, Anandi Hattiangadi. Philosophical Studies 167 (2), 251--271


    It is highly now intuitive that the future is open and the past is closed now—whereas it is unsettled whether there will be a fourth world war, it is settled that there was a first. Recently, it has become increasingly popular to claim that the intuitive openness of the future implies that contingent statements about the future, such as ‘There will be a sea battle tomorrow,’ are non-bivalent (neither true nor false). In this paper, we argue that the non-bivalence of future contingents is at odds with our pre-theoretic intuitions about the openness of the future. These intuitions are revealed by our pragmatic judgments concerning the correctness and incorrectness of assertions of future contingents. We argue that the pragmatic data together with a plausible account of assertion shows that in many cases we take future contingents to be true (or to be false), though we take the future to be open in relevant respects. It follows that appeals to intuition to support the non-bivalence of future contingents are untenable. Intuition favours bivalence.

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  • Non-Reductive Realism, Primitivism, and the Reduction Argument

    2019. Anandi Hattiangadi. Journal of Moral Philosophy 16 (6), 697-706


    In Unbelievable Errors, Bart Streumer defends the error theory by rejecting all competitors to it. My aim here is to defend one brand of realism from Streumer's objections: primitivim. The primitivist holds that there exist sui generis normative properties that do not supervene on any descriptive properties. It is argued that Streumer's objections to primitivism can be met.

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  • The Rules of Thought By Jonathan Jenkins Ichikawa and Benjamin W. Jarvis Oxford University Press,  2013

    2016. Anandi Hattiangadi. Analysis 76 (3), 393-397


    The Rules of Thought , by Jonathan Jenkins Ichikawa and Benjamin Jarvis (henceforth IJ), is a dense and ambitious book whose principal aim is to defend the view that philosophical inquiry is a priori inquiry into essential natures. The book covers a broad range of philosophical issues spanning the philosophy of mind and language, the epistemology of metaphysical modality and the philosophy of philosophy. It will be of considerable interest to many, since there is something in it for just about everyone. That said, the authors do not do as much as one might like to make their views accessible to the uninitiated or convincing to the unconverted.

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  • The love of truth

    2010. Anandi Hattiangadi. Studies in history and philosophy of science 41 (4), 422-432


    It is frequently said that belief aims at truth, in an explicitly normative sense—that is, that one ought to believe the proposition that p if, and only if, p is true. This truth norm is frequently invoked to explain why we should seek evidential justification in our beliefs, or why we should try to be rational in our belief formation—it is because we ought to believe the truth that we ought to follow the evidence in belief revision. In this paper, I argue that this view is untenable. The truth norm clashes with plausible evidential norms in a wide range of cases, such as when we have excellent but misleading evidence for a falsehood or no evidence for a truth. I will consider various ways to resolve this conflict and argue that none of them work. However, I will ultimately attempt to vindicate the love of truth, by arguing that knowledge is the proper epistemic goal. The upshot is that we should not aim merely to believe the truth; we should aim to know it.

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  • Can truth relativism account for the indeterminacy of future contingents?

    2022. Corine Besson, Anandi Hattiangadi. Synthese 200 (3)


    John MacFarlane has recently argued that his brand of truth relativism provides the best solution to the puzzle of future contingents: assertions about the future that express propositions that are metaphysically neither necessary nor impossible. In this paper, we show that even if we grant all of the metaphysical, semantic and pragmatic assumptions in terms of which MacFarlane sets and aims to solve the puzzle, his truth relativism is not apt to solve the problem of future contingents. We argue that the theory fails to vindicate the intuition that future contingent propositions are neither true nor false, leaving the theory open to a charge of Reductio. We show that these problems cannot be answered while preserving the core tenets of truth relativism.

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