Single Idea 8585

[catalogued under 8. Modes of Existence / B. Properties / 5. Natural Properties]

Full Idea

Reference consists in part of what we do in language or thought when we refer, but in part it consists in eligibility of the referent. And this eligibility to be referred to is a matter of natural properties.

Gist of Idea

Reference partly concerns thought and language, partly eligibility of referent by natural properties


David Lewis (New work for a theory of universals [1983], 'Cont of L')

Book Reference

'Properties', ed/tr. Mellor,D.H. /Oliver,A [OUP 1997], p.220

A Reaction

This is a surprising conclusion for Lewis to reach, having started from properties as any old set members (see Idea 8572). There are references to intentional objects, such as 'there should have been someone on duty'.

Related Idea

Idea 8572 Any class of things is a property, no matter how whimsical or irrelevant [Lewis]