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Nondescriptive Meaning and ReferenceAn Ideational Semantics$
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Wayne A. Davis

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780199261659

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2006

DOI: 10.1093/0199261652.001.0001

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Defenses of Millianism

Defenses of Millianism

Chapter:
(p.264) 11 Defenses of Millianism
Source:
Nondescriptive Meaning and Reference
Author(s):

Wayne A. Davis (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0199261652.003.0011

This chapter reviews efforts to explain away the problems with Millian theories, and shows that they are unsuccessful. Soames’s solution to Russell’s problem (existence failures) either adopts a radical modal realism or uses an intentional sense of reference. Some attempts to rebut Frege’s problem (substitutivity failures) ignore opaque interpretations. Kripke took the argument against substitutivity to depend on strong disquotation principles, and presented a puzzle to show that they are problematic. But weaker disquotation principles are available, and substitutivity arguments can be presented without relying on disquotation principles. Gricean attempts to explain away substitutivity failures in terms of metalinguistic or mode implicatures do not help with Russell’s problem or Fine terms, and are unsatisfactory even for Frege’s problem.

Keywords:   existence failures, substitutivity failures, disquotation principles, Kripke’s puzzle, Gricean defenses, metalinguistic implicatures, mode implicatures, triadic relation theory, Soames’s descriptive assertion theory

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