Academic journal article The Review of Metaphysics

Philosophy and Phenomenological Research

Academic journal article The Review of Metaphysics

Philosophy and Phenomenological Research

Article excerpt

Vol. 68, No. 2, March 2004

Open Questions and the Manifest Image, MARK ELI KALDERON

This essay argues that, on their usual metalinguistic reconstructions, the open question argument and Frege's puzzle are variants of the same argument. Each is an argument to a conclusion about a difference in meaning, each deploys compositionality as a premise, and each deploys a premise linking epistemic features of sentences with their meaning (which, given certain meaning-platonist assumptions, can be interpreted as a universal instantiation of Leibniz's law). Given these parallels, each is sound just in case the other is. They are, in fact, unsound. The essay first argues that reformulations of these arguments directly in terms of Leibniz's law are unsound and then that subarguments of the metalinguistic versions are unsound for structurally similar reasons. Finally, given how the theory/observation distinction is deployed in linguistic practice, the meaning-platonist assumptions are shown to be optional.

Charity Implies Meta-Charity, ROY SORENSEN

The principle of charity says that all agents are rational. The principle of metacharity says that all agents believe all agents are rational. The author's thesis is that the arguments which are used to support charity also support metacharity. Metacharity implies meta-metacharity. By recursion, the principle of charity implies that it is common knowledge. But there appears to be intelligent, well informed disagreement with the principle of charity. So if the entailment thesis holds, opponents of the principle of charity have a new objection to the principle. Defenders of the principle of charity must either refute the entailment thesis or accept much stronger consequences than they expected. …

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