Zelfpredicatie: Middeleeuwse en hedendaagse perspectieven

Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 79 (2):239-258 (2017)
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Abstract

The focus of the article is the self-predication principle, according to which the/a such-and-such is such-and-such. We consider contemporary approaches (Frege, Russell, Meinong) to the self-predication principle, as well as fourteenth-century approaches (Burley, Ockham, Buridan). In crucial ways, the Ockham-Buridan view prefigures Russell’s view, and Burley’s view shows a striking resemblance to Meinong’s view. In short the Russell-Ockham-Buridan view holds: no existence, no truth. The Burley-Meinong view holds, in short: intelligibility suffices for truth. Both views approach self-predication in a uniform way. We were unable to find a medieval philosopher who, like Frege, approaches self-predication in a non-uniform way. We do not want to dispute that there are also considerable differences between the contemporary and the fourteenth-century approach to self-predication. Importantly, fourteenth-century accounts of self-predication rely strongly on the identity theory of predication, and this theory is not endorsed by contemporary philosophers of language. Nevertheless, some basic tenets seem to us to be clearly shared between fourteenth-century and contemporary thinkers.

Author Profiles

Jan Heylen
KU Leuven
Can Laurens Löwe
Humboldt University, Berlin

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