more from Saul A. Kripke

Single Idea 6765

[catalogued under 26. Natural Theory / B. Natural Kinds / 7. Critique of Kinds]

Full Idea

Kripke's tiger example shows that a nominal essence is not necessary for the existence of a natural kind; examples from Putnam show that a nominal essence is not sufficient either.

Gist of Idea

Nominal essence may well be neither necessary nor sufficient for a natural kind


report of Saul A. Kripke (Naming and Necessity lectures [1970]) by Alexander Bird - Philosophy of Science Ch.3

Book Reference

Bird,Alexander: 'Philosophy of Science' [UCL Press 2000], p.101

A Reaction

None of the characteristics of a tiger is essential to it. The appearance of water doesn't fix its reference. The move is towards an external view, that what matters for natural kinds is the real essence, not human conventions about it. I agree.