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Solving Frege's Puzzle

Journal of Philosophy 109 (1-2):132-174 (2012)

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  1. Why moods change: their appropriateness and connection to beliefs.Tatyana A. Kostochka - 2021 - Synthese 198 (12):11399-11420.
    There are many more philosophical discussions of emotions than of moods. One key reason for this is that emotions are said to have a robust connection to beliefs while moods are said to lack that connection. I argue that this view, though prevalent, is incorrect. It is motivated by examples that are not representative of how moods typically change. Indeed, once we examine the notion of belief-responsiveness and look at a wider range of examples, we can see that moods are (...)
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  • Private Investigators and Public Speakers.Alexander Sandgren - forthcoming - Journal of the American Philosophical Association.
    Near the end of 'Naming the Colours', Lewis (1997) makes an interesting claim about the relationship between linguistic and mental content; we are typically unable to read the content of a belief off the content of a sentence used to express that belief or vice versa. I call this view autonomism. I motivate and defend autonomism and discuss its importance in the philosophy of mind and language. In a nutshell, I argue that the different theoretical roles that mental and linguistic (...)
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  • Conceptual Role Semantics and Rationality.Bradley Rives - 2018 - Acta Analytica 33 (2):271-289.
    Conceptual role semanticists argue that concepts are individuated in terms of their roles in cognition. Some prominent conceptual role semanticists argue for the further claim that concepts are individuated in terms of their rational roles in cognition. This further claim places substantive normative constraints on concept-constitutive roles. I argue that conceptual role semanticists can and should resist the claim that conceptual roles must be specified in inherently normative terms.
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  • Name-Bearing, Reference, and Circularity.Aidan Gray - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 171 (2):207-231.
    Proponents of the predicate view of names explain the reference of an occurrence of a name N by invoking the property of bearing N. They avoid the charge that this view involves a vicious circularity by claiming that bearing N is not itself to be understood in terms of the reference of actual or possible occurrences of N. I argue that this approach is fundamentally mistaken. The phenomenon of ‘reference transfer’ shows that an individual can come to bear a name (...)
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  • The Edenic Theory of Reference.Elmar Unnsteinsson - 2019 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 62 (3):276-308.
    I argue for a theory of the optimal function of the speech act of referring, called the edenic theory. First, the act of singular reference is defined directly in terms of Gricean communicative intentions. Second, I propose a doxastic constraint on the optimal performance of such acts, stating, roughly, that the speaker must not have any relevant false beliefs about the identity or distinctness of the intended object. In uttering a singular term on an occasion, on this theory, one represents (...)
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  • Frege Puzzles and Mental Files.Henry Clarke - 2018 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 96 (2):351-366.
    This paper proposes a novel conception of mental files, aimed at addressing Frege puzzles. Classical Frege puzzles involve ignorance and discovery of identity. These may be addressed by accounting for a more basic way for identity to figure in thought—the treatment of beliefs by the believer as being about the same thing. This manifests itself in rational inferences that presuppose the identity of what the beliefs are about. Mental files help to provide a functional characterization of a mind capable of (...)
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  • The Mill-Frege Theory of Proper Names.Manuel García-Carpintero - 2018 - Mind 127 (508):1107-1168.
    This paper argues for a version of metalinguistic descriptivism, the Mill-Frege view, comparing it to a currently popular alternative, predicativism. The Mill-Frege view combines tenets of Fregean views with features of the theory of direct reference. According to it, proper names have metalinguistic senses, known by competent speakers on the basis of their competence, which figure in ancillary presuppositions. In support of the view the paper argues that the name-bearing relation—which predicativists cite to account for the properties that they take (...)
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  • Teleosemantics and the Hard Problem of Content.Stephen Francis Mann & Ross Pain - 2021 - Philosophical Psychology 34.
    Hutto and Myin claim that teleosemantics cannot account for mental content. In their view, teleosemantics accounts for a poorer kind of relation between cognitive states and the world but lacks the theoretical tools to account for a richer kind. We show that their objection imposes two criteria on theories of content: a truth-evaluable criterion and an intensionality criterion. For the objection to go through, teleosemantics must be subject to both these criteria and must fail to satisfy them. We argue that (...)
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  • Cognitive Significance.Aidan Gray - 2021 - In Stephen Biggs & Heimir Geirsson (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Linguistic Reference. New York, NY, USA:
    Frege's Puzzle is a founding problem in analytic philosophy. It lies at the intersection of central topics in the philosophy of language and mind: the theory of reference, the nature of propositional attitudes, the nature of semantic theorizing, the relation between semantics and pragmatics, etc. This chapter is an overview of the puzzle and of the space of contemporary approaches to it.
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  • The Motivating Role of Truth in Reasoning: A Defence of Object-Dependent Fregean Senses.Johan Gersel - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-14.
    Intuitively, when all goes well, we adopt beliefs based on inference because we realize that their truth is established by the truth of the involved premises. If this intuitive picture of our successful reasoning is correct, then it must be possible that our reasoning is motivated by our sensitivity to the soundness of the involved inference. This paper argues that such a view of ideal reasoning can only be upheld if we accept the minority view that the proper inferential role (...)
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  • Indistinguishable Senses.Aidan Gray - 2020 - Noûs 54 (1):78-104.
    Fregeanism and Relationism are competing families of solutions to Frege’s Puzzle, and by extension, competing theories of propositional representation. My aim is to clarify what is at stake between them by characterizing and evaluating a Relationist argument. Relationists claim that it is cognitively possible for distinct token propositional attitudes to be, in a sense, qualitatively indistinguishable: to differ in no intrinsic representational features. The idea of an ‘intrinsic representational feature’ is not, however, made especially clear in the argument. I clarify (...)
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  • Intuition and the Substitution Argument.Richard G. Heck - 2014 - Analytic Philosophy 55 (1):1-30.
    The 'substitution argument' purports to demonstrate the falsity of Russellian accounts of belief-ascription by observing that, e.g., these two sentences: (LC) Lois believes that Clark can fly. (LS) Lois believes that Superman can fly. could have different truth-values. But what is the basis for that claim? It seems widely to be supposed, especially by Russellians, that it is simply an 'intuition', one that could then be 'explained away'. And this supposition plays an especially important role in Jennifer Saul's defense of (...)
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  • Shared Modes of Presentation.Simon Prosser - 2019 - Mind and Language 34 (4):465-482.
    What is it for two people to think of an object, natural kind or other entity under the same mode of presentation (MOP)? This has seemed a particularly difficult question for advocates of the Mental Files approach, the Language of Thought, or other ‘atomistic’ theories. In this paper I propose a simple answer. I first argue that, by parallel with the synchronic intrapersonal case, the sharing of a MOP should involve a certain kind of epistemic transparency between the token thoughts (...)
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  • Russellianism Unencumbered.Mark McCullagh - 2017 - Philosophical Studies 174 (11):2819-2843.
    Richard Heck, Jr has recently argued against Russellianism about proper names not in the usual way—by appeal to “intuitions” about the truth conditions of “that”-clause belief ascriptions—but by appeal to our need to specify beliefs in a way that reflects their individuation. Since beliefs are individuated by their psychological roles and not their Russellian contents, he argues, Russellianism is precluded in principle from accounting for our ability to specify beliefs in ordinary language. I argue that Heck thus makes things easier (...)
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  • De Se Thoughts and Immunity to Error Through Misidentification.Manuel García-Carpintero - 2018 - Synthese 195 (8):3311-3333.
    I discuss an aspect of the relation between accounts of de se thought and the phenomenon of immunity to error through misidentification. I will argue that a deflationary account of the latter—the Simple Account, due to Evans —will not do; a more robust one based on an account of de se thoughts is required. I will then sketch such an alternative account, based on a more general view on singular thoughts, and show how it can deal with the problems I (...)
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  • Mental Filing.Rachel Goodman & Aidan Gray - forthcoming - Noûs.
    We offer an interpretation of the mental files framework that eliminates the metaphor of files, information being contained in files, etc. The guiding question is whether, once we move beyond the metaphors, there is any theoretical role for files. We claim not. We replace the file-metaphor with two theses: the semantic thesis that there are irreducibly relational representational facts (viz. facts about the coordination of representations); and the metasemantic thesis that processes tied to information-relations ground those facts. In its canonical (...)
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  • In Defense of Formal Relationism.Richard Heck - 2014 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 3 (3):243-250.
    In his paper “Flaws of Formal Relationism”, Mahrad Almotahari argues against the sort of response to Frege's Puzzle I have defended elsewhere, which he dubs ‘Formal Relationism’. Almotahari argues that, because of its specifically formal character, this view is vulnerable to objections that cannot be raised against the otherwise similar Semantic Relationism due to Kit Fine. I argue in response that Formal Relationism has neither of the flaws Almotahari claims to identify.
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  • Frege Cases and Bad Psychological Laws.Mahrad Almotahari & Aidan Gray - forthcoming - Mind.
    We draw attention to a series of implicit assumptions that have structured the debate about Frege’s Puzzle. Once these assumptions are made explicit, we rely on them to show that if one focuses exclusively on the issues raised by Frege cases, then one obtains a powerful consideration against a fine-grained conception of propositional-attitude content. In light of this consideration, a form of Russellianism about content becomes viable.
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  • Flaws of Formal Relationism.Mahrad Almotahari - 2013 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 2 (4):367-376.
    Formal relationism in the philosophy of mind is the thesis that folk psychological states should be individuated, at least partially, in terms of the purely formal inference-licensing relations between underlying mental representations. It's supposed to provide a Russellian alternative to a Fregean theory of propositional attitudes. I argue that there's an inconsistency between the motivation for formal relationism and the use to which it's put in defense of Russellian propositions. Furthermore, I argue that formal relationism is committed to epiphenomenalism about (...)
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  • Anaphoric Dependence and Logical Form.Manuel García-Carpintero - 2020 - Disputatio 12 (58):265-276.
    In the core chapters 4–6, Iacona argues against the “Uniqueness Thesis”, stating that “there is a unique notion of logical form that fulfils both the logical role and the semantic role”, where the former “concerns the formal explanation of logical properties and logical relations, such as validity or contradiction”, and the latter “concerns the formulation of a compositional theory of meaning”. He argues for this on the basis of relations of coreference among referential expressions, names and indexicals. From what I (...)
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  • Mental Graphs.James Pryor - 2016 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 7 (2):309-341.
    I argue that Frege Problems in thought are best modeled using graph-theoretic machinery; and that these problems can arise even when subjects associate all the same qualitative properties to the object they’re thinking of twice. I compare the proposed treatment to similar ideas by Heck, Ninan, Recanati, Kamp and Asher, Fodor, and others.
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  • Relational Approaches to Frege's Puzzle.Aidan Gray - 2017 - Philosophy Compass 12 (10):e12429.
    Frege's puzzle is a fundamental challenge for accounts of mental and linguistic representation. This piece surveys a family of recent approaches to the puzzle that posit representational relations. I identify the central commitments of relational approaches and present several arguments for them. I also distinguish two kinds of relationism—semantic relationism and formal relationism—corresponding to two conceptions of representational relations. I briefly discuss the consequences of relational approaches for foundational questions about propositional attitudes, intentional explanation, and compositionality.
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  • The Metaphysics of Mental Files.Simon Prosser - 2020 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 100 (3):657-676.
    There is much to be said for a diachronic or interpersonal individuation of singular modes of presentation (MOPs) in terms of a criterion of epistemic transparency between thought tokens. This way of individuating MOPs has been discussed recently within the mental files framework, though the issues discussed here arise for all theories that individuate MOPs in terms of relations among tokens. All such theories face objections concerning apparent failures of the transitivity of the ‘same MOP’ relation. For mental files, these (...)
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  • Frege’s Puzzle is About Identity After All.Elmar Unnsteinsson - 2019 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 99 (3):628-643.
    Many philosophers have argued or taken for granted that Frege's puzzle has little or nothing to do with identity statements. I show that this is wrong, arguing that the puzzle can only be motivated relative to a thinker's beliefs about the identity or distinctness of the relevant object. The result is important, as it suggests that the puzzle can be solved, not by a semantic theory of names or referring expressions as such, but simply by a theory of identity statements. (...)
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  • O expressivismo lógico de Aristóteles segundo Lucas Angioni: um breve e introdutório quadro teórico.Aislan Fernandes Pereira - 2017 - Books of Abstracts (3rd FILOMENA Workshop).
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  • Understanding Semantic Coordination in Cognition.Gurpreet Rattan - 2019 - Dialectica 73 (3):289-313.
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  • How to Infer What Persistent Things Are Up to – a Fregean Puzzle for Traditional Fregeans.Johan Gersel - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy:1-30.
    ABSTRACTHow do we inferentially unify separately acquired empirical information into a single comprehensive picture of the lives of persistent particulars? This paper argues that hidden in such inferences is a Fregean puzzle that can only be solved by individuating our demonstratives thoughts in terms of object-dependent Fregean Senses. I begin by characterizing some constraints on a non-skeptical account of our inferential unification of empirical information. I then go on to show that traditional Fregean views of Sense cannot explain the rationality (...)
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  • The Rules of Thought.Bradley Rives - 2016 - Philosophical Psychology 29 (2):310-314.
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