Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

Who’s afraid of the predicate theory of names?

Predelli, Stefano

Authors



Abstract

This essay is devoted to an analysis of the semantic significance of a fashionable view of proper names, the Predicate Theory of names (PT), typically developed in the direction of the Metalinguistic Theory of names (MT). According to MT, ‘syntactic evidence supports the conclusion that a name such as ‘Kennedy’ is analyzable in terms of the predicate (general term) ‘individual named ‘Kennedy’’. This analysis is in turn alleged to support a descriptivist treatment of proper names in designative position, presumably in contrast with theories of names as ‘directly referring rigid designators’. The main aim of this essay is that of questioning the significance of PT and MT as theories of designation: even granting for the argument’s sake that names are analyzable as (metalinguistic) predicates, their designative occurrences may be interpreted in consonance with the dictates of Direct Reference—indeed, in consonance with the radically anti-descriptivist version of Direct Reference I call Millianism.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Aug 1, 2015
Journal Linguistics and Philosophy
Print ISSN 0165-0157
Electronic ISSN 0165-0157
Publisher Springer Verlag
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 38
Issue 4
APA6 Citation Predelli, S. (2015). Who’s afraid of the predicate theory of names?. Linguistics and Philosophy, 38(4), https://doi.org/10.1007/s10988-015-9177-9
DOI https://doi.org/10.1007/s10988-015-9177-9
Keywords Names ; Descriptivism ; Millianism ; Direct Reference
Publisher URL http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10988-015-9177-9
Copyright Statement Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0
Additional Information The final publication is available at Springer via http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10988-015-9177-9

Files

Predicate Theory of Names Final.pdf (209 Kb)
PDF

Copyright Statement
Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0





You might also like



Downloadable Citations

;