David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Kant said that existence is not a predicate and Russell agreed, arguing that a sentence such as ‘The king of France exists’, which seems to attribute existence to the king of France, really has a logical form that is not reflected in the surface structure of the sentence at all. While the surface form of the sentence consists of a subject and a predicate, the underlying logical form, according to Russell, is the formula given in. This formula obviously has no subjectpredicate form and in fact has no single constituent that corresponds to the verb phrase ‘exists’ in the surface sentence. ∃x∀y The importance of Russell’s analysis becomes clear when we consider ‘The king of France does not exist’. If this sentence would attribute non-existence to the king it should entail that there is someone who does not exist, just as ‘Mary doesn’t like bananas’ entails that there is someone who doesn’t like bananas. Thus the idea that all sentences have subject-predicate form has led some philosophers to the view that there are objects that lack existence. This embarrassing position can be avoided once Russell’s analysis is accepted: if ‘The king of France does not exist’ is formalised as the negation of formula, no unwanted consequences follow
|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
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
J. William Forgie (2008). How is the Question 'is Existence a Predicate?' Relevant to the Ontological Argument? International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 64 (3):117 - 133.
Bertrand Russell (2005). On Denoting. Mind 114 (456):873 - 887.
Bertrand Russell (1905). On Denoting. Mind 14 (56):479-493.
Stephen K. McLeod (2011). First-Order Logic and Some Existential Sentences. Disputatio 4 (31):255-270.
Philip Percival (2011). Predicate Abstraction, the Limits of Quantification, and the Modality of Existence. Philosophical Studies 156 (3):389-416.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads61 ( #67,894 of 1,792,083 )
Recent downloads (6 months)9 ( #90,592 of 1,792,083 )
How can I increase my downloads?