Terminating Ambiguity: The Perplexing Case of 'The'

In Richard Brown Kevin S. Decker (ed.), Terminator and Philosophy: I'll Be Back, Therefore I Am (2009)

Abstract

Maybe they should never have called the first movie The Terminator. After all, there’s more than one Terminator. That may seem like a picky point, but, believe it or not, philosophers have long been obsessed with trying to determine the meaning of the word “the.†Indeed, much controversy swirls around this seemingly innocuous definite article. Specifically, the controversy focuses on whether or not definite descriptions are ambiguous.

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Richard Brown
LaGuardia Community College (CUNY)

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