Synthese 195 (1):197-223 (2018)

Authors
Rachel Goodman
University of Illinois, Chicago
Abstract
A thesis I call the name-based singular thought thesis is part of orthodoxy in contemporary philosophy of mind and language: it holds that taking part in communication involving a proper name puts one in a position to entertain singular thoughts about the name’s referent. I argue, first, that proponents of the NBT thesis have failed to explain the phenomenon of name-based singular thoughts, leaving it mysterious how name-use enables singular thoughts. Second, by outlining the reasoning that makes the NBT thesis seem compelling and showing how it can be resisted, I argue that giving up the NBT thesis is not a cost, but rather a benefit. I do this by providing an expanded conception of understanding for communication involving names, which sheds light on the nature of communication involving names and the structure of name-using practices.
Keywords Singular thought  Proper names  Causal theory of names  Testimonial acquaintance
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s11229-016-1202-1
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
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

The Varieties of Reference.Gareth Evans - 1982 - 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.
Literal Meaning.François Recanati - 2002 - Cambridge University Press.
Reference and Consciousness.J. Campbell - 2002 - Oxford University Press.

View all 61 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Cognitivism, Significance and Singular Thought.Rachel Goodman - 2016 - Philosophical Quarterly 66 (263):236-260.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The Significance of Names.Robin Jeshion - 2009 - Mind and Language 24 (4):370-403.
Proper Names and Necessary Properties.Michael Corrado - 1973 - Philosophical Studies 24 (2):112 - 118.
Fixing Reference.Imogen Dickie - 2015 - Oxford University Press.
Direct Reference and Singular Propositions.Matthew Davidson - 2000 - American Philosophical Quarterly 37 (3):285-300.
Aristotle on Singular Thought.Mika Perälä - 2015 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 53 (3):349-375.
Understanding Proper Names.Michael McKinsey - 2010 - Linguistics and Philosophy 33 (4):325-354.
Against the Mental Files Conception of Singular Thought.Rachel Goodman - 2016 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 7 (2):437-461.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2016-09-13

Total views
171 ( #59,582 of 2,439,095 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
19 ( #37,602 of 2,439,095 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes