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The Role of Perception in Demonstrative Reference
Siegel defends "Limited Intentionism", a theory of what secures the semantic reference of uses of bare demonstratives ("this", "that" and their plurals). According to Limited Intentionism, demonstrative reference is fixed by perceptually anchored intentions on the part of the speaker.
|Susanna Siegel||PDF (140kb)|
Do Demonstratives Have Senses?
Frege held that referring expressions in general, and demonstratives and indexicals in particular, contribute more than just their reference to what is expressed by utterances of sentences containing them. Heck first attempts to get clear about what the essence of the Fregean view is, arguing that it rests upon a certain conception of linguistic communication that is ultimately indefensible. On the other hand, however, he argues that understanding a demonstrative (or indexical) utterance requires one to think of the object denoted in an appropriate way. This fact makes it difficult to reconcile the view that referring expressions are "directly referential" with any view that seeks (as Grice's does) to ground meaning in facts about communication.
|Richard G., Jr. Heck||PDF (191kb)|
Thoroughly Modern McTaggart: Or, What McTaggart Would Have Said if He Had Read the General Theory of Relativity
The philosophical literature on time and change is fixated on the issue of whether the B-series account of change is adequate or whether real change requires Becoming of either the property-based variety of McTaggart's A-series or the non-property-based form embodied in C. D. Broad's idea of the piling up of successive layers of existence. For present purposes it is assumed that the B-series suffices to ground real change. But then it is noted that modern science in the guise of Einstein's general theory poses a threat to real change by implying that none of the genuine physical magnitudes countenanced by the theory changes its value with time. The aims of this paper are to explain how this seemingly paradoxical conclusion arises and to assess the merits and demerits of possible reactions to it.
|John Earman||PDF (582kb)|
Thoroughly Muddled McTaggart: Or, How to Abuse Gauge Freedom to Create Metaphysical Monostrosities
It has long been a commonplace that there is a problem understanding the role of time when one tries to quantize the General Theory of Relativity (GTR). In his "Thoroughly Modern McTaggart" (Philosophers' Imprint Vol 2, No. 3), John Earman presents several arguments to the conclusion that there is a problem understanding change and the passage of time in the unadorned GTR, quite apart from quantization. His Young McTaggart argues that according to the GTR, no physical magnitude ever changes. A close consideration of Young McTaggart's arguments show that they turn on either a bad choice of formalism or an unwarranted interpretation of the implications of the formalism. This suggests that the problems that arise in quantization may be founded in similar shortcomings.
|Tim Maudlin||PDF (201kb)|
Theories of Truth and Convention T
Partly due to the influence of Tarski's work, it is commonly assumed that any good theory of truth implies biconditionals of the sort mentioned in Convention T: instances of the T-Schema "s is true in L if and only if p" where the sentence substituted for "p" is equivalent in meaning to s. I argue that we must take care to distinguish the claim that implying such instances is sufficient for adequacy in an account of truth from the claim that doing so is necessary. The claim that doing so is sufficient is a common component of deflationary theories of truth, while the claim that it is necessary, though often assumed, must be denied by proponents of rival inflationary theories of truth. I discuss the clarification of the debate between these views of truth that results from distinguishing the necessity and the sufficiency claims, and examine the prospects for its resolution.
|Douglas Patterson||PDF (640kb)|