David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Grazer Philosophische Studien 25:447-459 (1985)
In this paper, the author analyzes critically some of the ideas found in Karel Lambert's recent book, Meinong and the Principle of Independence (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1983). Lambert attempts to forge a link between the ideas of Meinong and the free logicians. The link comes in the form of a principle which, Lambert says, these philosophers adopt, namely, Mally's Principle of Independence, which Mally himself later abandoned. Instead of following Mally and attempting to formulate the principle in the material mode as the claim that an object can have properties without having any sort of being, Lambert formulates the principle in the formal mode, as (something equivalent to) the rejection of the traditional constraint on the principle of predication. The principle of predication is that a formula of the form Fa' is true iff the general term F' is true of the object denoted by the object term a'. The traditional constraint on this predication principle is that for the sentence Fa' to be true, not only must the object term have a denotation, but it must also denote an object that has being. According to Lambert, the free logicians violate this constraint by suggesting that Fa' can be true even if the object term has no denotation, whereas Meinong violates this constraint by proposing Fa' can be true even when the object term denotes an object that has no being. Lambert then tries to `vindicate' the Principle of Independence, thereby justifying both the work of the free logicians and Meinong.
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