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  1. Derek Ball & Bryan Pickel (2013). One Dogma of Millianism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 86 (1):70-92.
    Millians about proper names typically claim that it is knowable apriori that Hesperus is Phosphorus. We argue that they should claim instead that it is knowable only aposteriori that Hesperus is Hesperus, since the Kripke-Putnam epistemic arguments against descriptivism are special cases of Quinean arguments that nothing is knowable apriori, and Millians have no resources to resist the more general Quinean arguments.
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  2. Arvid Båve (2008). A Pragmatic Defense of Millianism. Philosophical Studies 138 (2):271 - 289.
    A new kind of defense of the Millian theory of names is given, which explains intuitive counter-examples as depending on pragmatic effects of the relevant sentences, by direct application of Grice’s and Sperber and Wilson’s Relevance Theory and uncontroversial assumptions. I begin by arguing that synonyms are always intersubstitutable, despite Mates’ considerations, and then apply the method to names. Then, a fairly large sample of cases concerning names are dealt with in related ways. It is argued that the method, as (...)
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  3. David Braun (2006). Kripke's Revenge. [REVIEW] Philosophical Studies 128 (3):669 - 682.
    Millianism says that the semantic content of a name (or indexical) is simply its referent. This thesis arises within a general, powerful research program, the propositionalist approach to semantics, which sets as a goal for philosophical semantics an assignment of entities – semantic contents – to bits of language, culminating in the assignment of propositions to sentences. Communication, linguistic competence, truth conditions, and other semantic phenomena are ultimately explained in terms of semantic contents.
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  4. Richard Brown (2009). Terminating Ambiguity: The Perplexing Case of 'The'. In Richard Brown Kevin S. Decker (ed.), Terminator and Philosophy.
    Maybe they should never have called the first movie The Terminator. After all, there’s more than one Terminator. That may seem like a picky point, but, believe it or not, philosophers have long been obsessed with trying to determine the meaning of the word “the.†Indeed, much controversy swirls around this seemingly innocuous definite article. Specifically, the controversy focuses on whether or not definite descriptions are ambiguous.
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  5. Ray Buchanan (2014). Names, Descriptions, and Assertion. In Zsu-Wei Hung (ed.), Communicative Action. Springer. 03-15.
    According to Millian Descriptivism, while the semantic content of a linguistically simple proper name is just its referent, we often use sentences containing such expressions “to make assertions…that are, in part, descriptive” (Soames 2008). Against this view, I show, following Ted Sider and David Braun (2006), that simple sentences containing names are never used to assert descriptively enriched propositions. In addition, I offer a diagnosis as to where the argument for Millian Descriptivism goes wrong. Once we appreciate the distinctive way (...)
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  6. Alexis Burgess (2013). Metalinguistic Descriptivism for Millians. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 91 (3):443-457.
    Metalinguistic descriptivism is the view that proper names are semantically equivalent to descriptions featuring their own quotations (e.g., ?Socrates? means ?the bearer of ?Socrates??). The present paper shows that Millians can actually accept an inferential version of this equivalence thesis without running afoul of the modal argument. Indeed, they should: for it preserves the explanatory virtues of more familiar forms of descriptivism while avoiding objections (old and new) to Kent Bach's nominal description theory. We can make significant progress on Frege's (...)
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  7. James D. Carney (1980). The Hesperus and Phosphorus Puzzle. Mind 89 (356):577-581.
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  8. Sean Crawford (2004). Pure Russellianism. Philosophical Papers 33 (2):171-202.
    Abstract According to Russellianism, the content of a Russellian thought, in which a person ascribes a monadic property to an object, can be represented as an ordered couple of the object and the property. A consequence of this is that it is not possible for a person to believe that a is F and not to believe b is F, when a=b. Many critics of Russellianism suppose that this is possible and thus that Russellianism is false. Several arguments for this (...)
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  9. Sean Crawford (2004). A Solution for Russellians to a Puzzle About Belief. Analysis 64 (3):223-29.
  10. Samuel Cumming (2008). Variabilism. Philosophical Review 117 (4):525-554.
    Variabilism is the view that proper names (like pronouns) are semantically represented as variables. Referential names, like referential pronouns, are assigned their referents by a contextual variable assignment (Kaplan 1989). The reference parameter (like the world of evaluation) may also be shifted by operators in the representation language. Indeed verbs that create hyperintensional contexts, like ‘think’, are treated as operators that simultaneously shift the world and assignment parameters. By contrast, metaphysical modal operators shift the world of assessment only. Names, being (...)
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  11. Delia Graff Fara (forthcoming). Names Are Predicates. Philosophical Review.
    Tyler Burge convinced us that names are predicates in at least some of their occurrences: -/- There are relatively few Alfreds in Princeton. -/- Names, when predicates, satisfy the being-called condition: schematically, a name "N" is true of a thing just in case that thing is called N. This paper defends the unified view that names are predicates in all of their occurrences. I follow Clarence Sloat, Paul Elbourne, and Ora Matushansky in saying that when a name seems to occur (...)
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  12. G. W. Fitch (1981). Names and the 'de Re — de Dicto' Distinction. Philosophical Studies 39 (1):25 - 34.
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  13. Jesse Fitts (2014). Chalmers on the Objects of Credence. Philosophical Studies 170 (2):343-358.
    Chalmers (Mind 120(479): 587–636, 2011a) presents an argument against “referentialism” (and for his own view) that employs Bayesianism. He aims to make progress in a debate over the objects of belief, which seems to be at a standstill between referentialists and non-referentialists. Chalmers’ argument, in sketch, is that Bayesianism is incompatible with referentialism, and natural attempts to salvage the theory, Chalmers contends, requires giving up referentialism. Given the power and success of Bayesianism, the incompatibility is prima facie evidence against referentialism. (...)
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  14. Bryan Frances (2002). A Test for Theories of Belief Ascription. Analysis 62 (2):116–125.
    These days the two most popular approaches to belief ascription are Millianism and Contextualism. The former approach is inconsistent with the existence of ordinary Frege cases, such as Lois believing that Superman flies while failing to believe that Clark Kent flies. The Millian holds that the only truth-conditionally relevant aspect of a proper name is its referent or extension. Contextualism, as I will define it for the purposes of this essay, includes all theories according to which ascriptions of the form (...)
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  15. Bryan Frances (1999). Contradictory Belief and Epistemic Closure Principles. Mind and Language 14 (2):203–226.
    Kripke’s puzzle has puts pressure on the intuitive idea that one can believe that Superman can fly without believing that Clark Kent can fly. If this idea is wrong then many theories of belief and belief ascription are built from faulty data. I argue that part of the proper analysis of Kripke’s puzzle refutes the closure principles that show up in many important arguments in epistemology, e.g., if S is rational and knows that P and that P entails Q, then (...)
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  16. Stavroula Glezakos (2009). Public Proper Names, Idiolectal Identifying Descriptions. Linguistics and Philosophy 32 (3):317-326.
    Direct reference theorists tell us that proper names have no semantic value other than their bearers, and that the connection between name and bearer is unmediated by descriptions or descriptive information. And yet, these theorists also acknowledge that we produce our name-containing utterances with descriptions on our minds. After arguing that direct reference proponents have failed to give descriptions their due, I show that appeal to speaker-associated descriptions is required if the direct reference portrayal of speakers wielding and referring with (...)
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  17. Peter J. Graham (1999). Defending Millianism. Mind 108 (431):555-561.
    Millianism is the view that all there is to the meaning of a name is its bearer. In a recent paper Bryan Frances seeks to undercut the traditional argument against Millianism as well as offer a new argument in favor of Millianism. I argue that both endeavors fail.
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  18. Mitchell S. Green (2007). Direct Reference Empty Names and Implicature. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 37 (3):419-37.
    Angle Grinder Man removes wheel locks from cars in London.1 He is something of a folk hero, saving drivers from enormous parking and towing fi nes, and has succeeded thus far in eluding the authorities. In spite of his cape and lamé tights, he is no fi ction; he’s a real person. By contrast, Pegasus, Zeus and the like are fi ctions. None of them is real. In fact, not only is each of them different from the others, all differ (...)
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  19. Ilhan Inan (2011). Unanswerable Questions for Millians. Philosophical Studies 154 (2):279-83.
    I argue that Millianism has the very odd consequence that there are simple direct questions that Millians can grasp, but they cannot answer them in the positive or the negative, or in some other way, nor could they say that they do not know the answer.
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  20. Robin Jeshion (2001). Donnellan on Neptune. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 63 (1):111-135.
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  21. John Justice (2002). Mill-Frege Compatibalism. Journal of Philosophical Research 27:567-576.
    It is generally accepted that Mill’s classification of names as nonconnotative terms is incompatible with Frege’s thesis that names have senses. However, Milldescribed the senses of nonconnotative terms—without being aware that he was doing so. These are the senses for names that were sought in vain by Frege. When Mill’s and Frege’s doctrines are understood as complementary, they constitute a fully satisfactory theory of names.
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  22. Jerrold J. Katz (2001). The End of Millianism: Multiple Bearers, Improper Names, and Compositional Meaning. Journal of Philosophy 98 (3):137-166.
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  23. Richard Brown Kevin S. Decker (ed.) (2009). Terminator and Philosophy.
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  24. Frederick Kroon (2004). Millian Descriptivism. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 82 (4):553 – 576.
    Mill is a detractor of the view that proper names have meanings, defending in its place the view that names are nothing more than (meaningless) marks. Because of this, Mill is often regarded as someone who anticipated the theory of direct reference for names: the view that the only contribution a name makes to propositions expressed through its use is the name's referent. In this paper I argue that the association is unfair. With some gentle interpretation, Mill can be portrayed (...)
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  25. Genoveva Marti (2009). Against Semantic Multi-Culturalism. Analysis 69 (1):42-48.
    E. Machery, R. Mallon, S. Nichols and S. Stich, have argued that there is empirical evidence against Kripke’s claim that names are not descriptive. Their argument is based on an experiment that compares the intuitions about proper name use of a group of English speakers in Hong Kong with those of a group of non-Chinese American students. The results of the experiment suggest that in some cultures speakers use names descriptively. I argue that such a conclusion is incorrect, for the (...)
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  26. Ari Maunu (2002). Natural Kind Terms Are Similar to Proper Names in Being World-Independent. Philosophical Writings 19:51-68.
    According to the New Theory of Reference, proper names (and indexicals) and natural kind terms are semantically similar to each other but crucially different from definite descriptions and “ordinary” predicates, respectively. New Theorists say that a name, unlike a definite description, is a directly referential nondescriptional rigid designator, which refers “without a mediation of the content” and is not functional (i.e. lacks a Carnapian intension). Natural kind terms, such as ‘horse’ and ‘water’, are held to have similar distinctions, in contrast (...)
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  27. Ari Maunu (2002). A Problem with De Re Belief Ascriptions, with a Consequence to Substitutivity. Philosophia 29 (1-4):411-421.
    It is shown that the coherence of de re belief ascriptions is doubtful in view of certain plausible principles. Subsequently, it is argued, the standard argument against substitutivity in de dicto ascriptions loses some of its power. Also, some possible reactions to these results are considered.
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  28. Michael McGlone (2009). Understanding Kripke's Puzzles About Belief. Philosophy Compass 4 (3):487-514.
    In his famous 1979 article 'A Puzzle About Belief' Saul Kripke presents two puzzles regarding belief attribution, and he uses them to cast doubt on classical substitution arguments against the Millian view that a proper name has a 'denotation' (or reference) but no 'connotation' (or sense). In this article, I present Kripke's puzzles in what I take to be their most revealing form, discuss their relevance to the abovementioned arguments, briefly survey the ways in which philosophers have responded to these (...)
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  29. Friederike Moltmann, Proper Names, Sortals, and the Mass-Count Distinction.
    This paper reviews the role of sortals in the syntax and semantics of proper names and the related question of a mass-count distinction among proper names. The paper argues that sortals play a significant role with proper names and that that role matches individuating or ‘sortal’ classifiers in languages lacking a mass-count distinction. Proper names do not themselves classify as count, but may classify as mass or rather number-neutral. This also holds for other expressions or uses of expressions that lack (...)
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  30. Gilbert Plumer (1993). A Here-Now Theory of Indexicality. Journal of Philosophical Research 18:193-211.
    This paper attempts to define indexicality so as to semantically distinguish indexicals from proper names and definite descriptions. The widely-accepted approach that says that indexical reference is distinctive in being dependent on context of use is criticized. A reductive approach is proposed and defended that takes an indexical to be (roughly) an expression that either is or is equivalent to ‘here’ or ‘now’, or is such that a tokening of it refers by relating something to the place and/or time that (...)
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  31. Gilbert Plumer (1989). Mustn't Whatever is Referred to Exist? Southern Journal of Philosophy 27 (4):511-528.
    Some hold that proper names and indexicals are “Kaplan rigid”: they designate their designata even in worlds where the designata don’t exist. An argument they give for this is based on the analogy between time and modality. It is shown how this argument gains forcefulness at the expense of carefulness. Then the argument is criticized as forming a part of an inconsistent philosophical framework, the one with which David Kaplan and others operate. An alternative account of a certain class of (...)
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  32. Gilbert Plumer (1988). Kaplan Rigidity, Time, and Modality. Logique Et Analyse 31 (123-124):329-335.
    Joseph Almog says concerning “a certain locus where Quine doesn’t exist…qua evaluation locus, we take to it [singular] propositions involving Quine [as a constituent] which we have generated in our generation locus.” This seems to be either murder, or worse, self-contradiction. It presumes that certain designators designate their designata even at loci where the designata do not exist, i.e., the designators have “Kaplan rigidity.” Against this view, this paper argues that negative existentials such as “Quine does not exist” are true (...)
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  33. Ian Proops (2004). Wittgenstein on the Substance of the World. European Journal of Philosophy 12 (1):106–126.
    The *Tractatus* contains an argument that there are simple, necessarily existent objects, which, being simple, are suited to be the referents of the names occuring in the final analysis of propositions. The argument is perplexing in its own right, but also for its invocation of the notion of "substance". I argue that if one locates Wittgenstein's conception of substance in the Kantian tradition to which his talk of "substance" alludes, what emerges is an argument that is very nearly--but not quite--cogent.
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  34. Mark Sainsbury (2005). Reference Without Referents. Clarendon Press.
    Reference is a central topic in philosophy of language, and has been the main focus of discussion about how language relates to the world. R. M. Sainsbury sets out a new approach to the concept, which promises to bring to an end some long-standing debates in semantic theory. Lucid and accessible, and written with a minimum of technicality, Sainsbury's book also includes a useful historical survey. It will be of interest to those working in logic, mind, and metaphysics as well (...)
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  35. Nathan Salmon (1991). How Not to Become a Millian Heir. Philosophical Studies 62 (2):165 - 177.
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  36. Nathan Salmon (1990). A Millian Heir Rejects the Wages of Sinn. In C. A. Anderson & J. Owens (eds.), Propositional Attitudes: The Role of Content in Logic, Language, and Mind. Csli Publications. 215-247.
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  37. Heidi Savage, Descriptive Names and Shifty Characters: A Context-Sensitive Account.
    Standard rigid designator accounts of a name’s meaning have trouble accommodating what I will call a descriptive name’s “shifty” character -- its tendency to shift its referent over time in response to a discovery that the conventional referent of that name does not satisfy the description with which that name was introduced. I offer a variant of Kripke’s historical semantic theory of how names function, a variant that can accommodate the character of descriptive names while maintaining rigidity for proper names. (...)
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  38. Theodore Sider (1995). Three Problems for Richard's Theory of Belief Ascription. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 25 (4):487 - 513.
    Some contemporary Russellians, defenders of the view that the semantic content of a proper name, demonstrative or indexical is simply its referent, are prepared to accept that view’s most infamous apparent consequence: that coreferential names, demonstratives, indexicals, etc. are intersubstitutable salva veritate, even in intentional contexts. Nathan Salmon and Scott Soames argue that our recalcitrant intuitions with respect to the famous apparent counterexamples are not semantic intuitions, but rather pragmatic intuitions. Strictly and literally speaking, Lois Lane believes, and even knows (...)
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  39. Theodore Sider & David Braun (2006). Review: Kripke's Revenge. [REVIEW] Philosophical Studies 128 (3):669 - 682.
    Millianism says that the semantic content of a name (or indexical) is simply its referent. This thesis arises within a general, powerful research program, the propositionalist approach to semantics, which sets as a goal for philosophical semantics an assignment of entities — semantic contents — to bits of language, culminating in the assignment of propositions to sentences. Communication, linguistic competence, truth conditions, and other semantic phenomena are ultimately explained in terms of semantic contents. Over 100 years ago Frege (1952/1892) pointed (...)
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  40. David Sosa (1996). The Import of the Puzzle About Belief. Philosophical Review 105 (3):373-402.
    Relocating Kripke's puzzle about belief, this paper investigates i) in what the puzzle consists, exactly; ii) the method used in its construction; and iii) relations between meaning and rationality. Essential to Kripke's puzzle is a normative notion of contradictory belief. Different positions about the meaning of names yield different views of what constitutes the attribution of contradictory belief; and Kripke's puzzle unwittingly _imports a Millian assumption. Accordingly, the puzzle about belief is not independent of positions about the meaning of names.
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  41. Jeff Speaks (2011). Frege's Puzzle and Descriptive Enrichment. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 83 (2):267-282.
  42. Jeff Speaks (2010). Millian Descriptivism Defended. Philosophical Studies 149 (2):201 - 208.
    I reply to the argument of Caplan (Philos Stud 133:181–198, 2007 ) against the conjunction of Millianism with the view that utterances of sentences involving names often pragmatically convey descriptively enriched propositions.
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  43. Chris Tillman (2005). A Millian Propositional Guise for One Puzzling English Gal. Analysis 65 (287):251–258.
  44. Lee Walters (2011). Braun Defended. The Reasoner 5 (8):124-125.
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  45. Howard Wettstein (1986). Has Semantics Rested on a Mistake? Journal of Philosophy 83 (4):185-209.
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  46. Howard K. Wettstein (1991). Has Semantics Rested on a Mistake?: And Other Essays. Stanford University Press.
    The nature of reference, or the relation of a word to the object to which it refers, has been perhaps the dominant concern of twentieth-century analytic philosophy. Extremely influential arguments by Gottlob Frege around the turn of the century convinced the large majority of philosophers that the meaning of a word must be distinguished from its referent, the former only providing some kind of direction for reaching the latter. In the last twenty years, this Fregean orthodoxy has been vigorously challenged (...)
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  47. Zsófia Zvolenszky (2012). Searle on Analyticity, Necessity, and Proper Names. Organon F 19 (2):109-136.
    My aim is to show that once we appreciate how Searle (1958) fills in the details of his account of proper names – which I will dub the presuppositional view – and how we might supplement it further, we are in for a twofold discovery. First, Searle’s account is crucially unlike the so-called cluster-of-descriptions view, which many philosophers take Searle to have held. Second, the presuppositional view he did hold is interesting, plausible, and worthy of serious reconsideration. The idea that (...)
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  48. Zsófia Zvolenszky (2008). Naming and Uncertainty: The Historical-Chain Theory Revised. Proceedings of the XXVth Varna International Philosophical School:132-141.
  49. Zsófia Zvolenszky (2007). Naming with Necessity (Part of the Dissertation Portfolio Modality, Names and Descriptions). Dissertation, New York University
    In “Naming with Necessity”, it is argued that Kripke’s thesis that proper names are rigid designators is best seen as being motivated by an individual-driven picture of modality, which has two parts. First, inherent in proper-name usage is the expectation that names refer to modally robust individuals: individuals that can sustain modal predications like ‘is necessarily human’. Second, these modally robust individuals are the fundamental building blocks on the basis of which possible worlds should be conceived in a modal semantics (...)
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