Singular thoughts and singular propositions

Philosophical Studies 154 (2):205 - 222 (2011)
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Abstract

A singular thought about an object o is one that is directly about o in a characteristic way—grasp of that thought requires having some special epistemic relation to the object o, and the thought is ontologically dependent on o. One account of the nature of singular thought exploits a Russellian Structured Account of Propositions, according to which contents are represented by means of structured n-tuples of objects, properties, and functions. A proposition is singular, according to this framework, if and only if it contains an object as a constituent. One advantage of the framework of Russellian Structured propositions is that it promises to provide a metaphysical basis for the notion of a singular thought about an object, grounding it in terms of constituency. In this paper, we argue that the attempt to ground the peculiar features of singular thoughts in terms of metaphysical constituency fails, and draw some consequences of our discussion for other debates

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Author Profiles

Josh Armstrong
University of California, Los Angeles
Jason Stanley
Yale University

Citations of this work

Singular Thought.Tim Crane & Jody Azzouni - 2011 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 85 (1):21-43.
What is a Singular Proposition?Ephraim N. Glick - 2018 - Mind 127 (508):1027-1067.
Thisnesses, Propositions, and Truth.David Ingram - 2018 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 99 (3):442-463.

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The Varieties of Reference.Gareth Evans - 1982 - Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Demonstratives: An Essay on the Semantics, Logic, Metaphysics and Epistemology of Demonstratives and Other Indexicals.David Kaplan - 1989 - In Joseph Almog, John Perry & Howard Wettstein (eds.), Themes From Kaplan. Oxford University Press. pp. 481-563.
Knowledge and Practical Interests.Jason Stanley - 2005 - Oxford University Press.

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