Philosophy Index

Jaakko Hintikka

Jaakko Hintikka (1929– ) is a Finnish logician and philosopher, and professor of philosophy at Boston University.

Epistemic Logic

Hintikka presented a method of doing epistemic logic, a contextual logic meant to symbolize sentences about knowledge and belief. In his 1962 book Knowledge and Belief, he provides new operators which closely resemble those of modal logic:

  • Ka := a knows that…
  • Pa := It is possible, for all a knows, that…
  • Ba := a believes that…
  • Ca := It is compatible with everything a knows that…

Selected Works

  • Knowledge and Belief: An Introduction to the Logic of the Two Notions (1962)
  • Models for Modalities (1969)
  • The Logic of Epistemology and the Epistemology of Logic (1989)
  • The Philosophy of Mathematics Revisted (1996)


Name: Jaakko Hintikka
Born: January 12, 1929
Degrees: Ph.D. (University of Helsinki)
Awards: Wihuri International Prize (1976)
Rolf Schock Prize (2005)