David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jonathan Jenkins Ichikawa
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophical Review 117 (4):525-554 (2008)
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 variables, refer rigidly in the latter merely intensional contexts, but may vary their reference in hyperintensional contexts. This conforms to the intuition that the content of attitude ascriptions encapsulates referential uncertainty. Furthermore, names in hyperintensional contexts are ambiguous between de re* and de dicto* interpretations. This fact is used to account for asymmetric mistaken identity attributions (for example, Biron thinks Katherine is Rosaline, but he doesn’t think Rosaline is Katherine). -/- The variable theory compares favourably with its alternatives, including Millianism and descriptivism. Millians cannot account for the behaviour of names in hyperintensional contexts, while descriptivists cannot generate a necessary contrast between intensional and hyperintensional contexts. No other theory can capture the facts pertaining to the existentially bound use of names.
|Keywords||hyperintensionality concealed questions proper names attitude reports|
|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
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Bryan Pickel & Brian Rabern (forthcoming). Does Semantic Relationism Solve Frege's Puzzle? Journal of Philosophical Logic.
Paolo Santorio (2013). Descriptions as Variables. Philosophical Studies 164 (1):41-59.
Brian Rabern (2013). Monsters in Kaplan's Logic of Demonstratives. Philosophical Studies 164 (2):393-404.
Brian Rabern (2012). Against the Identification of Assertoric Content with Compositional Value. Synthese 189 (1):75-96.
Similar books and articles
Arthur C. Danto (2004). In Memoriam: Robert Denoon Cumming. Journal of Philosophy 101 (11):607 - 608.
Robert Cumming (1955). Descartes' Provisional Morality. Review of Metaphysics 9 (2):207 - 235.
Sam Cumming, Names. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Robert Cumming (1955). Existence and Communication. Ethics 65 (2):79-101.
Robert Denoon Cumming (1991). Phenomenology and Deconstruction. University of Chicago Press.
Nancy Holland (1982). Two as an Odd Number. Philosophy Research Archives 8:383-392.
Melinda A. Roberts (2011). The Asymmetry: A Solution. Theoria 77 (4):333-367.
Guy Fletcher (2010). Brown and Moore's Value Invariabilism Vs Dancy's Variabilism. Philosophical Quarterly 60 (238):162-168.
Gianfranco Pellegrino (2006). Particularism and Individuation: Disappearing, Not Varying, Features. [REVIEW] Acta Analytica 21 (2):54-70.
Guy Fletcher (2009). Rejecting Well-Being Invariabilism. Philosophical Papers 38 (1):21-34.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads166 ( #23,221 of 1,934,966 )
Recent downloads (6 months)11 ( #48,491 of 1,934,966 )
How can I increase my downloads?