Proper nouns


Authors
Samuel John Cumming
Rutgers University - New Brunswick (PhD)
Abstract
This dissertation is an experiment: what happens if we treat proper names as anaphoric expressions on a par with pronouns? The first thing to notice is that a name's `antecedent' can occur in a discourse prior to the one containing the name. An individual may be introduced and tagged with a name in one context, and then retrieved using the name in a later context. To allow for discourse-crossing anaphora, in addition to the usual cross-sentential anaphora, a revision of discourse semantics is in order. Essentially, we must countenance discourse referents that span contexts, and think of contexts, not as islands, but as nodes connected to each other by the discourse referents they share. Discourse semantics gives rise to a new notion of content determined by discourse reference rather than pure reference. In a space of contexts structured by shared discourse referents, discourse content becomes transmissable. For a piece of content may be sent from one context to another whenever the discourse referents bundled up in the content are held in common by the two contexts. The final step is to treat the cognitive state of an agent as just another kind of context, and so a potential recipient of discourse content. Discourse content is more fine-grained than traditional `singular' content, and so is a better fit for our pretheoretic intuitions about communication and attitude reporting. This is illustrated by applying the theory to Frege's puzzle, a puzzle of Loar's about communication, Kripke's puzzle about belief, Geach's intentional identity and new breed of `mixed' de re-de dicto sentence.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 47,149
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

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.
The Meaning of 'Meaning'.Hillary Putnam - 1975 - Minnesota Studies in the Philosophy of Science 7:131-193.

View all 85 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Variabilism.Sam Cumming - 2008 - Philosophical Review 117 (4):525-554.
Definiteness Projection.Matthew Mandelkern & Daniel Rothschild - 2019 - Natural Language Semantics:1-33.
Descriptions Which Have Grown Capital Letters.Brian Rabern - 2015 - Mind and Language 30 (3):292-319.
Singular Thoughts and de Re Attitude Reports.James Openshaw - 2018 - Mind and Language 33 (4):415-437.

View all 10 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Anaphoric Presuppositions and Zero Anaphora.Kjell Johan Saeboe - 1996 - Linguistics and Philosophy 19 (2):187 - 209.
The Puzzle of Free Indirect Discourse.Yael Sharvit - 2008 - Linguistics and Philosophy 31 (3):353-395.
Game Theory and Discourse Anaphora.Robin Clark & Prashant Parikh - 2007 - Journal of Logic, Language and Information 16 (3):265-282.
Structured Contexts and Anaphoric Dependencies.Julie Hunter - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 168 (1):35-58.
Domain of Discourse.Christopher Gauker - 1997 - Mind 106 (421):1-32.
Referent Ontology and Centering in Discourse.A. Maes - 1997 - Journal of Semantics 14 (3):207-235.
Quotation and Unquotation in Free Indirect Discourse.Emar Maier - 2015 - Mind and Language 30 (3):345-373.
Truth Conditional Discourse Semantics for Parentheticals.N. Asher - 2000 - Journal of Semantics 17 (1):31-50.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2014-12-18

Total views
24 ( #394,102 of 2,289,312 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
4 ( #309,713 of 2,289,312 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature