[hist-analytic] RBJ's Proposal on analyticity

Danny Frederick danny.frederick at tiscali.co.uk
Wed Mar 11 16:50:33 EDT 2009


Hi Steve,

 

I am not sure I understood your message, but here are a few comments anyway.

 

 

<< If two designators designate the same thing in all possible worlds, then
the truth of the sentence asserting that they are identical entails their
identity in all possible worlds >>

 

 

We need to distinguish necessary and contingent existents. Thus '2 + 2 = 4'
is true in all possible worlds because the two rigid designators flanking
the identity-sign designate the same necessary existent. But 'Hesperus =
Phosphorus' is false in all those worlds in which Hesperus (and thus
Phosphorus) does not exist.

 

 

<< ALL of Kripke's examples [of a posteriori necessities] can ONLY be
examples where the necessary truth at issue is an IDENTITY statement>>

 

 

Some examples have to do with the material from which a thing is made. Could
this table not have been made of wood yet still have been this table? The
notion of the table's identity plays an essential part here; but the a
posteriori necessity is that this table is made of wood, which is not an
identity statement.

 

 

<<I believe '=' is a logical operator (or at least it is in my way of doing
things). Insofar as it is a logical operator, truths containing it
essentially are not facts in the world>>

 

 

I am not sure what you mean here. But the fact the '=' can occur between
variables seems to show that it is a relation between objects. For example,
'if a thing x and a thing y occupy the same region of space-time, then x =
y.'

 

Cheers.

 

Danny

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