David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Mind and Language 24 (4):433-444 (2009)
A strictly Millian approach to proper names is defended, i.e. one in which expressions when used properly ('onymically') refer directly, i.e. without the semantic intermediaryship of the words that appear to comprise them. The approach may appear self-evident for names which appear to have no component parts (in current English) but less so for others. Two modes of reference are distinguished for potentially ambiguous expressions such as The Long Island . A consequence of this distinction is to allow a speculative neurolinguistics of proper ('onymic') and semantic ('non-onymic') reference. A further consequence is that translation of onymically referring expressions is impossible (since they have no semantic content), and some apparently self-evident objections to this view are met by insisting on a distinction between a proper name as a referring expression and its etymology. The nature of the linguistic mechanism(s) by which an expression becomes proper (i.e. loses sense) shows that etymological opacity is a precondition for the survival of words in certain proper names, furnishing evidence for reference without sense. The process of becoming proper amounts to abrogation of sense for the purpose of reference, which is precisely the requirement for a systematic defence of Mill.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
John Stuart Mill (1843). A System of Logic, Ratiocinative and Inductive. University of Toronto Press.
D. Sperber & D. Wilson (1995). Relevance. Blackwell.
Citations of this work BETA
Eduardo García-Ramírez & Marilyn Shatz (2011). On Problems with Descriptivism: Psychological Assumptions and Empirical Evidence. Mind and Language 26 (1):53-77.
Similar books and articles
Mark Textor (2010). Proper Names and Practices: On Reference Without Referents. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 81 (1):105-118.
David S. Schwarz (1978). Causality, Referring, and Proper Names. Linguistics and Philosophy 2 (2):225 - 233.
Ralph Clark (2011). Perspectival Direct Reference for Proper Names. Philosophia 39 (2):251-265.
Frederick Kroon (2004). Millian Descriptivism. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 82 (4):553 – 576.
Mark Textor (2007). Frege's Theory of Hybrid Proper Names Developed and Defended. Mind 116 (464):947-982.
Michael McKinsey (2010). Understanding Proper Names. Linguistics and Philosophy 33 (4):325-354.
Carlo Semenza (2009). The Neuropsychology of Proper Names. Mind and Language 24 (4):347-369.
Mark Sainsbury (2005). Reference Without Referents. Clarendon Press.
Added to index2009-08-27
Total downloads31 ( #55,268 of 1,099,003 )
Recent downloads (6 months)5 ( #58,097 of 1,099,003 )
How can I increase my downloads?