Proper Names, Contingency A Priori and Necessity A Posteriori

History and Philosophy of Logic 32 (2):119 - 138 (2011)

Abstract

After a brief review of the notions of necessity and a priority, this paper scrutinizes Kripke's arguments for supposedly contingent a priori propositions and necessary a posteriori propositions involving proper names, and reaches a negative conclusion, i.e. there are no such propositions, or at least the propositions Kripke gives as examples are not such propositions. All of us, including Kripke himself, still have to face the old question raised by Hume, i.e. how can we justify the necessity and universality of general statements on the basis of sensory or empirical evidence?

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