Ideas from 'Presupposition' by Michael Dummett [1960], by Theme Structure

[found in 'Truth and Other Enigmas' by Dummett,Michael [Duckworth 1978,0-7156-1650-1]].

green numbers give full details    |     back to texts     |     unexpand these ideas

4. Formal Logic / A. Syllogistic Logic / 3. Term Logic
Logic would be more natural if negation only referred to predicates
                        Full Idea: A better proposal for a formal logic closer to natural language would be one that had a negation-operator only for (simple) predicates.
                        From: Michael Dummett (Presupposition [1960], p.27)
                        A reaction: Dummett observes that classical formal logic was never intended to be close to natural language. Term logic does have that aim, but the meta-question is whether that end is desirable, and why.
5. Theory of Logic / E. Structures of Logic / 2. Logical Connectives / c. not
Natural language 'not' doesn't apply to sentences
                        Full Idea: Natural language does not possess a sentential negation-operator.
                        From: Michael Dummett (Presupposition [1960], p.27)
                        A reaction: This is a criticism of Strawson, who criticises logic for not following natural language, but does it himself with negation. In the question of how language and logic connect, this idea seems important. Term Logic aims to get closer to natural language.