Nonexistent Objects and their Semantic and Ontological Dependence on Referential Acts

Topoi (forthcoming)
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Abstract

This paper argues for a distinction between fictional characters, as parts of intentionally created abstract artifacts, and intentional objects, as nonexistent objects generated by referential acts that fail to refer. It argues that intentional objects as the nonexistent objects of imagination and other objectual attitudes are well-reflected in natural language, though in a highly restricted way, reflecting their ontological dependence on referential acts. The paper elaborates how that ontological dependence can be understood.

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Friederike Moltmann
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique

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2024-05-11

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