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Thursday, January 03, 2019


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My previous point remains. If I deny p, I say that p fails to be true.

But if excluded middle holds, every possible state of the world either includes p, or fails to include p. Tertium non datur. But some of the states which exclude p must also include any proposition q presupposed in asserting p.

Thus if I deny that Kepler is an astronomer, I say that it fails to be true that Kepler is an astronomer. But that failure must include the possible state of the world where Kepler does not exist.

Or are you saying that it is impossible to properly negate (i.e. deny) the truth of any proposition?

As for Frege, he clearly accepts excluded middle. In the Kepler case, he holds that if any thought is expressed at all, i.e. if what is expressed is not a ‘mock thought’, then the truth or falsity of what is expressed includes Kepler’s existence, for a true singular thought requires that the singular term has a reference, a Bedeutung.

This is a good paper on Frege, excluded middle and empty (‘fictitious’) names.

We may be disagreeing because I think of presupposition as a pragmatic notion and you don't. I'll think about it some more.



It seems obvious to me that the object of the proper name cant be a part of the sense of the whole sentence. But i also think Russell has a valid point that imposing a sense between knower and referent presents an epistemic barrier to knowing objects.

I also dont think the reference can "entail" the object since as Armstrong has pointed out, object and true proposition belong in different categories thus entailment cant cross such a barrier.

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