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The Rules of Thought$
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Jonathan Jenkins Ichikawa and Benjamin W. Jarvis

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199661800

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199661800.001.0001

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The Sociability of a Fregean Theory

The Sociability of a Fregean Theory

Chapter:
(p.108) 4 The Sociability of a Fregean Theory
Source:
The Rules of Thought
Author(s):

Jonathan Jenkins Ichikawa

Benjamin W. Jarvis

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199661800.003.0005

This chapter argues that a Fregean theory that individuates propositions finely by their conclusive rational relations faces no objections from social anti-individualism, communicative exchange, or the semantics of propositional attitude ascriptions. Social anti-individualism says that a subject's mental contents are partly determined by the linguistic community. So long as rational abilities are also partly determined socially, a subject's mental contents can be partly determined socially even if propositions are individuated by rational relations. Individuating propositions finely may appear to cause problems for communicative exchange and propositional attitude ascriptions; it may appear to increase the difficulties of coordinating contents said or ascribed with contents heard or thought. However, it is shown that a theory that individuates propositions more finely has all of the resources of a theory that individuates propositions more coarsely; hence, the former cannot be at a disadvantage to the latter.

Keywords:   mental content, social anti-individualism, communication, propositional attitude ascriptions, rationality

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