Identity and cardinality: Geach and Frege

Philosophical Review 93 (4):553-567 (1984)
P. T. Geach, notoriously, holds the Relative Identity Thesis, according to which a meaningful judgment of identity is always, implicitly or explicitly, relative to some general term. ‘The same’ is a fragmentary expression, and has no significance unless we say or mean ‘the same X’, where ‘X’ represents a general term (what Frege calls a Begriffswort or Begriffsausdruck). (P. T. Geach, Mental Acts (London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1957), p. 69. I maintain that it makes no sense to judge whether things are ‘the same’, or remain ‘the same’, unless we add or understand some general term - ‘the same F’. (P. T. Geach, Reference and Generality, third Edition (Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 1980), pp. 63f. I am arguing for the thesis that identity is relative. When one says ‘x is identical with y’, this, I hold, is an incomplete expression; it is short for ‘x is the same A as y’, where ‘A’ represents some count noun understood from the context of utterance - or else, it is just a vague expression of a half-formed thought. (P. T. Geach, ‘Identity,’ Review of Metaphysics 21 (1967-8), p. 3.) One of the ways Geach seeks to support this is by tying it to the well nigh universally admired Fregean thesis about cardinality
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.2307/2184827
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 29,492
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Composition as Identity: Part 2.Meg Wallace - 2011 - Philosophy Compass 6 (11):817-827.
Cardinality and Identity.Massimiliano Carrara & Elisabetta Sacchi - 2007 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 36 (5):539-556.

View all 6 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Ascriptivism.P. T. Geach - 1960 - Philosophical Review 69 (2):221-225.
Geach on Generalization.Charles Sayward - 2002 - Dialogue 41 (02):221-.
What is the Frege-Geach Problem?Mark Schroeder - 2008 - Philosophy Compass 3 (4):703-720.
Quasi-Realism, Negation and the Frege-Geach Problem.Nicholas Unwin - 1999 - Philosophical Quarterly 50 (196):337-352.
The Frege‐Geach Point.Paul Horwich - 2005 - Philosophical Issues 15 (1):78–93.
Geach and Relative Identity [with Rejoinder and Reply].Fred Feldman & P. T. Geach - 1969 - Review of Metaphysics 22 (3):547 - 561.
Added to PP index

Total downloads
141 ( #34,363 of 2,180,620 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #155,056 of 2,180,620 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature

There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums