Grammar in Early Twentieth-Century Philosophy (Routledge by Richard Gaskin

By Richard Gaskin

This booklet is a scientific and old exploration of the philosophical importance of grammar. within the first half the 20th century, and specifically within the writings of Frege, Husserl, Russell, Carnap and Wittgenstein, there has been sustained philosophical mirrored image at the nature of grammar, and at the relevance of grammar to metaphysics, common sense and technology.

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Additional info for Grammar in Early Twentieth-Century Philosophy (Routledge Studies in Twentieth Century Philosophy)

Sample text

On the de re reading of the modal claim, Necessarily the number of planets is greater than 7, it is the number described that we are speaking about, not the sense of the description. But Frege’s argument is not the vehicle for settling the question whether reference shifts in these contexts.

The equation (33) ‘(1 + 1) = 2’ 0111 0111 5111 can be regarded as having a removable part, (34) ‘(x + 1) = 2’, and depending upon which value we insert for x, we get something that is either true or false, but never both. For a given argument, we have a unique value. So, identifying a removable name part in this way, we can regard a sentence as also functionally composed, with (35) (x + 1) = 2 being a function that maps objects to truth-values. A similar analysis works for English sentences. The declarative sentence (36) ‘Abraham Lincoln has red hair’ 38 1 Richard Mendelsohn is complex.

For, as we have seen, entities at the level of reference determine suitable sets of items at the level of sense, and those sets can in turn actually be identified with suitable sets of (meaningful) spoken and written linguistic items. It is in that sense that the propositions in question are linguistic; but they are also non-linguistic in the sense that they are entities at the level of reference, not at the level of sense (let alone at the level of spoken and written language itself), and, as we have seen, there is no prospect of a reduction of the level of reference to, or an ‘incorporation’ of it into, the levels of sense or spoken and written language.

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