Australasian Journal of Philosophy 90 (4):761 - 777 (2012)

Authors
Kai Wehmeier
University of California, Irvine
Abstract
Identity, we're told, is the binary relation that every object bears to itself, and to itself only. But how can a relation be binary if it never relates two objects? This puzzled Russell and led Wittgenstein to declare that identity is not a relation between objects. The now standard view is that Wittgenstein's position is untenable, and that worries regarding the relational status of identity are the result of confusion. I argue that the rejection of identity as a binary relation is perfectly tenable. To this end, I outline and defend a logical framework that is not committed to an objectual identity relation but is nevertheless expressively equivalent to first-order logic with identity. After it has thus been shown that there is no indispensability argument for objectual identity, I argue that we have good reasons for doubting the existence of such a relation, and rebut a number of attempts at discrediting these reasons.
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DOI 10.1080/00048402.2011.627927
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References found in this work BETA

Word and Object.Willard Van Orman Quine - 1960 - Les Etudes Philosophiques 17 (2):278-279.
Naming and Necessity.Saul Kripke - 1981 - Philosophy 56 (217):431-433.

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Citations of this work BETA

Is Identity Really so Fundamental?Décio Krause & Jonas R. Becker Arenhart - 2019 - Foundations of Science 24 (1):51-71.
Supervenience, Dependence, Disjunction.Lloyd Humberstone - forthcoming - Logic and Logical Philosophy:1.
The Things We Do with Identity.Alexis Burgess - 2018 - Mind 127 (505):105-128.

View all 14 citations / Add more citations

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