[hist-analytic] Boulemaic Modalities -- in Aristotle and Beyond

Jlsperanza at aol.com Jlsperanza at aol.com
Fri Feb 20 21:23:21 EST 2009

Boulemaic Modalities: from Aristotle to Hintikka
-- and back!
I am re-reading "the book" that John Gave Mary, etc. Yes, Anscombe can  throw 
one thing (a bone of contention) but it's _one_ who needs do the  chewing.
I'm amused that she uses,
        "John thought so" i.e. John  thought x.
Indeed, one tends to forget that x stands for 'whatever-it-is' under a  
description. We are _so-used_ to what Austin calls 'that'-clauses (that's an OED  
by courtesy of R. H., I'd hope) that we tend to forget that the Davidsonic  
consideration that 'that' in a 'that'-clause is merely an old  demonstrative!
1955 J. L. AUSTIN How to do Things with Words (1962) vi. 70 
"Although we have in this type of utterance a ‘that’ clause following a  
verb..we must not allude to this as ‘indirect speech’." 
Before the correction of the errata, I had read S. R. Bayne as  saying,
       "John thought the book"
I said -- how come. Surely he must have thought _that_ the book was on the  
table, or something. But just _think_ the book? But then I _am_ an  Austinian...
--- Or, where there is a _will_, there *is* a way
In a message dated 2/20/2009 8:34:48 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,  
baynesrb at yahoo.com writes in "Re: Aristotle De-Coded"
I would count Kenny as  one of the best Aristotle
scholars. I find it astonishing that his  _Aristotle's Theory of the Will_
Duckworth. 1979 has been so neglected. The  nit-picking works on
free-will are fine, great exercise and you learn many of  the current
"grips" as when Plato compared philosophy to wrestling, but  Kenny
on Aristotle is very worthwhile. 

ourexeos kai boule kai kriseos
Oh my God -- it's all so difficult!
Sorry I am suffering this bad-taste Dennettian phase, but I find that the  
'kenny' one does owen it!
kenny, adj. Clever. 
owen, v. To be indebted to the entire Greek corpus for one's view. "I  owened 
winning the argument to 1094b 12-14." 
I've just found a good reference to Kenny on Aristotle on the will in  Inwood 
-- quoting from Anscombe and Kenny, Inwood (who's writing, I think, on  
Seneca) traces the 'traditional' view of the will to Augustine -- from which, of  
course, it's all a wittenstone's throw...
What I did love about Aristotle's convolutions was the coinage 'boulemic'  
(or is it 'boulomaic') that Allwood et al use in Logic and Linguistics. I  must 
have somewhere my correspondence with J. Fields of OUP on the matter. 
                          We keep treasuring your postings 
                         on  neologisms we should include, or fail
                          to exclude as you put it.
                          'Boulemaic' is a good, pedigreed one,
                          but as I said to you before, we have
                          to let time _pass_ and the idiom become
                          _common_ to merit an entry with us.
Ah well,
I see that the OED recognises 'boule' but the etymological entry does not  
seem to give any cross-reference:
1846 GROTE Hist. Greece II. I. xx. 89 The Boulê, or council of chiefs, and  
the Agora, or general assembly of freemen. 1905 Spectator 4 Mar. 318/2 The  
Boulé, which answers practically to the House of Commons.
I must say I'm less enamoured as I once was to neologisms. When I first  read 
that Logic-in-Linguistics and saw that Allwood was speaking of doxastic  
logic versus boulemaic logic I thought, "Now this is _my_ type of  modality".
hintikka, n. A measure of belief, the smallest logically discernible  
difference between beliefs. 
"He argued with me all night, but did not alter my beliefs one hintikka." 
-- but he did break my _will_, though!
The Prefunctional Stage of First Language Acquisition: A ... - Google Books  
Result  by Ianthi-Maria Tsimpli, Laurence Horn - 1996 - Language Arts &  
Disciplines - 254 pages
At the same stage, boulemaic modality in positive  contexts is expressed by 
the element minne/unne/hunne which means something like  'I want', ...

[PDF] A semantic-pragmatic analysis oftiteEnglish imperative  
(boulemaic-non-deontic). Cencerning [he linguistic expressien of these  
notiens, [he existence of cenversational implicatures in speech acts seems te  ...
[PDF] Verb-Types and Modality in Early Child L2 Root Infinitives  
is likely to convey a boulemaic meaning (i.e. 'daddy wants to leave'),  ..... 
Most of his RIs have a future/modal interpretation (often boulemaic),  ...
by P Prévost 

[PDF] The semantic and aspectual properties of child L2 root  infinitives ... 
 File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - View as HTML
modal  interpretation, e.g. deontic or boulemaic, in contrast to finite 
declaratives  which tend to receive a present or past temporal reading.  ...
www2.hawaii.edu/~kamil/Pr%E9vost.pdf - Similar pages
by P Prévost 
The Crosslinguistic Study of Language Acquisition - Google Books  Result  by 
Dan Isaac Slobin - 1992 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 655  pages
The majority of Markus' discourse negations toward the end of the  second 
year are boulemaic. All his tokens of discourse negation were encoded by  na. ...
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