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Showing posts from March, 2010

A historical remark on the nominal description theory

I haven't been posting in a while, being swamped with teaching duties and so on. Right now, I'm looking at M. Morris's An Introduction to the Philosophy of Language, which in those respects that currently interest me contains, I think, more material than, say, Miller's or Lycan's textbooks (having said that, these books on the other hand have other virtues). On pp 86ff Morris is talking about what he calls a simple nominal description theory, according to which a name n connotes the description `the object called n' (or something to that effect). This, of course, seems to violate Kripke's non-circularity restriction; yet, it has been interestingly developed by K. Bach (Thought and Reference). Anyway, my point is rather short and historical - although this view hasn't been associated with anyone in the Frege-Russell period, this sort of approach has been around for a while, and I'm quite positive that at least Lesniewski hold that view. Here'…