The Department of Philosophy congratulates Professor Khaled El-Rouayheb on winning the 2020 Rogers Prize for his article “The liar paradox in fifteenth-century Shiraz: the exchange between Ṣadr al-Dīn al-Dashtakī and Jalāl al-Dīn al-Dawānī.”
The Rogers Prize is awarded annually by the British Society for the History of Philosophy to the best article published in its journal that year. El-Rouayheb’s article discusses the “bitter and extended dispute” between “Two rival scholars from Shiraz in Persia, Dawānī (d. 1502) and Dashtakī (d. 1498)” over the liar paradox:
Their debate on this point marked the most extensive scrutiny of the paradox in Arabic until that time. Dashtakī’s solution was to deny that the statement ‘What I say is false’ is true or false, on the ground that there is one statement and one application of the falsity predicate. Given that – ex hypothesi – there is no other statement, there is no basis for a reiteration of the truth or falsity predicate and describing the statement itself as true or false. Dawānī’s solution was to deny that ‘What I say is false’ is a statement at all, and he argued that it is instead akin to a performative utterance such as ‘I hereby sell you this’.
Khaled El-Rouayheb is the James Richard Jewett Professor of Islamic Intellectual History and Chair of the Department of Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations. You can read more about the 2020 Rogers Prize here.