Indexical Realism by Inter-Agentic Reference

Journal of Philosophical Ideas (Seoul National University):3-33 (2017)
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Abstract

I happen to believe that though human experiences are to be characterized as pluralistic they are all rooted in the one reality. I would assume the thesis of pluralism but how could I maintain my belief in the realism? There are various discussions in favor of realism but they appear to stay within a particular paradigm so to be called “internal realism”. In this paper I would try to justify my belief in the reality by discussing a special use of indexicals. I will argue for my indexical realism by advancing the thesis that indexicals can be used as an inter-agentic referential term. Three arguments for the thesis will be presented. The first argument derives from a revision of Kaplan-Kvart’s notion of exportation. Their notions of exportation of singular terms can be analyzed as intra-agentic exportation in the context of a single speaker and theirs may be revised so as to be an inter-agentic exportation in the context of two speakers who use the same indexicals. The second is an argument from the notion of causation which is specifically characterized in the context of inter-theoretic reference. I will argue that any two theories may each say “this” in order to refer what is beyond its own theory. Two theories address themselves to ‘this’ same thing though what ‘this’ represents in each theory turn out to be different objects all together. The third argument is an argument which is based on a possibility of natural reference. Reference is used to be taken mostly as a 3-place predicate: Abe refers an object oi with an expression ej. The traditional notion of reference is constructive and anthropocentric. But I would argue that natural reference is a reference that we humans come to recognize among denumerably many objects in natural states: at a moment mi in a natural state there is a referential relation among objects o1, o2, o3, . . , oj, o j+1, . . which interact to each other as agents of information processors. Natural reference is an original reference which is naturally given and to which humans are passive as we derivatively refer it by using ‘this’.

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