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Plato on conventionalism

Phronesis 42 (2):143 - 162 (1997)

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  1. Commerce, Theft and Deception : The Etymology of Hermes in Plato’s Cratylus.Olof Pettersson - forthcoming - In Filip Karfik & Vladimir Mikes (eds.), Proceeding from the XI International Plato Symposium. Brill.
    In the light of Socrates’ largely neglected etymological account of the name Hermes, this article reexamines the dialogue’s perplexing conclusion that reality should not be sought through names, but through itself. By a close scrutiny of three claims made in this etymology – that language is commercial, thievish and deceptive – it argues that Socrates’ discussion about the relation between names and reality cannot only be meaningfully understood in terms of his characterization of language as deceptive and therefore tragic, but (...)
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  • Extreme and Modest Conventionalism in Plato’s Cratylus.C. G. Healow - 2020 - Apeiron 54 (1):1-28.
    The Cratylus’ main concern is to outline and evaluate the competing views of language held by two characters, Hermogenes and Cratylus, who disagree about whether convention or nature are the source of onomastic correctness. Hermogenes has been thought to hold two radically different views by different scholars, one extreme conventionalism whereby all names are correct relative to their speakers, and another modest conventionalism according to which distinct naming actions – establishment and employment – explain why some names are correct and (...)
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  • The Legacy of Hermes: Deception and Dialectic in Plato’s Cratylus.Olof Pettersson - 2016 - Journal of Ancient Philosophy 10 (1):26-58.
    Against the background of a conventionalist theory, and staged as a defense of a naturalistic notion of names and naming, the critique of language developed in Plato’s Cratylus does not only propose that human language, in contrast to the language of the gods, is bound to the realm of myth and lie. The dialogue also concludes by offering a set of reasons to think that knowledge of reality is not within the reach of our words. Interpretations of the dialogue’s long (...)
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  • Does Plato Argue Fallaciously at Cratylus 385b–C?Geoffrey Bagwell - 2011 - Apeiron 44 (1):13-21.
    At Cratylus 385b–c, Plato appears to argue that names have truth-value. Critics have almost universally condemned the argument as fallacious. Their case has proven so compelling that it has driven editors to recommend moving or removing the argument from its received position in the manuscripts. I argue that a close reading of the argument reveals it commits no fallacy, and its purpose in the dialogue justifies its original position. I wish to vindicate the manuscript tradition, showing that the argument establishes (...)
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  • Plato Against the Naturalism: The Staggered Dialectic of Cratylus.Pilar Spangenberg - 2016 - Archai: Revista de Estudos Sobre as Origens Do Pensamento Ocidental 18:217-257.
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  • Contextual Reading. Methodology for Reading Fragmentary Texts of Pre-Socratic Philosophers Applied to the Platonic Interpretative Tradition on Heraclitus.Liliana Sánchez-Castro - 2011 - Pensamiento y Cultura 14 (2):133-144.
    La lectura contextual es una metodología de estudio para estos testimonios fragmentarios que,aunque no deja de lado los aspectos microtextuales, se concentra en las estructuras argumentativas de los textosque portan los testimonios de los presocráticos , buscando detectar sesgos y elementos paradigmáticos que sean dicientes a la hora de unareconstrucción filosófica del pensamiento del autor en cuestión. En este caso me concentraré en el testimonio dePlatón sobre Heráclito, particularmente en el Crátilo, para mostrar cómo una lectura contextual da luces sobrela (...)
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  • Interpreting Mrs Malaprop: Davidson and Communication Without Conventions.Imogen Smith - unknown
    Inspired by my reading of the conclusions of Plato’s Cratylus, in which I suggest that Socrates endorses the claim that speaker’s intentions determine meaning of their utterances, this thesis investigates a modern parallel. Drawing on observations that people who produce an utterances that do not accord with the conventions of their linguistic community can often nevertheless communicate successfully, Donald Davidson concludes that it is the legitimate intentions of speakers to be interpreted in a particular way that determine the meanings of (...)
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  • Plato's Interpretation of the Philosophy of Heraclitus.Liliana Carolina Sánchez Castro - 2012 - Ideas Y Valores 61 (150):229-244.
    Se busca rastrear la imagen que Platón tiene de Heráclito y articularla con la estructura argumentativa del Cratilo, para comprender las necesidades textuales a las que responde la doctrina del flujo perpetuo, es decir, la discusión sobre la corrección (ὀρθότης) del nombre. Gracias a la inclusión del testimonio heraclíteo, resulta posible rastrear la presunta consolidación de la tesis sobre los nombres primarios y los secundarios como el eje de la separación entre dos planos de realidad (uno estable y uno móvil) (...)
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  • Making Sense of Δήλωμα.Mariapaola Bergomi - 2017 - AKROPOLIS: Journal of Hellenic Studies 1:72-91.
    In this paper I aim to discuss the notion of δήλωμα which can be found for the first time in the extant Greek literature in Plato, Cratylus 423 b, by analysing the philosophical argument of bodily imitation and language. I aim to show that this portion of text in particular contains extraordinary original material which has no parallel in other Platonic works. I shall also discuss the notion of δήλωμα in critical relation to μίμημα and σημεῖον, with reference to the (...)
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  • Commentary on Rist: Is Plato Interested in Meta-Ethics?Rachel Barney - 1998 - Proceedings of the Boston Area Colloquium of Ancient Philosophy 14 (1):73-82.
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  • Significado y Mente en Aristóteles.Fabian G. Mie - 2018 - Journal of Ancient Philosophy 12 (1):28.
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  • Naturalism, Conventionalism, and Forms of Life: Wittgenstein and the "Cratylus".Paul M. Livingston - 2015 - Nordic Wittgenstein Review 4 (2):7-38.
    I consider Plato’s argument, in the dialogue Cratylus, against both of two opposed views of the “correctness of names.” The first is a conventionalist view, according to which this relationship is arbitrary, the product of a free inaugural decision made at the moment of the first institution of names. The second is a naturalist view, according to which the correctness of names is initially fixed and subsequently maintained by some kind of natural assignment, rooted in the things themselves. I argue (...)
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