Combining Philosophers

Ideas for Roger Fry, Dale Jacquette and Pierre Gassendi

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2 ideas

19. Language / C. Assigning Meanings / 7. Extensional Semantics
Extensionalist semantics is circular, as we must know the extension before assessing 'Fa' [Jacquette]
     Full Idea: Extensional semantics is blatantly circular. For 'Fa' to be interpreted as true, we must know that object a belongs to the extension of the predicate F, so we must already know which objects belong to the extension.
     From: Dale Jacquette (Intro to 'Philosophy of Logic' [2002], 4)
     A reaction: I'm delighted to read this, because it was the first thought that occurred to me when I encountered the theory. Presumably this leads Quine to take predication as basic, because you can't break into the circle. Or, vote for intensionalism?
Extensionalist semantics forbids reference to nonexistent objects [Jacquette]
     Full Idea: In extensionalist semantics only existent objects can be referred to, ...but in everyday thought and discourse we regularly and apparently without undue confusion speak about nonexistent objects.
     From: Dale Jacquette (Intro to 'Philosophy of Logic' [2002], 4)
     A reaction: This is the reason why Meinong, whose views are presented by Russell as absurd, are undergoing a revival. The full-blown view will even treat 'round squares' as objects about which we can reason - and why not? Don't open a shop which sells them.