[hist-analytic] L-truth, A-truth: Carnap and Grice

Jlsperanza at aol.com Jlsperanza at aol.com
Tue Mar 2 17:31:10 EST 2010

In a message dated 3/2/2010, rbj at rbjones.com writes:

"at the last in the Schilpp volume he concedes defeat to the  Quine-Tarski 
conspiracy on use of the term "Logical Truth" and starts using  A-true  
instead of L-true. In "Meaning Postulates" he seems to use the "L-"  concepts 
Interesting. So, in the new rewrite the "Meaning Postulates" would then  
become 'analytic'. Personally, I don't think it was a bad move at all: from 
"L"  to "A". It does make you wonder about meaning, though.
Suppose I say I use 'snow' to mean snow CONTINGENTLY, i.e. not really  
'analytically'. I do it because my parents taught me to. I could have used  
"Arthur" (Harrison, Intro to the Philosophy of Language -- Macmillan, ""Arthur"  
we could use to refer to snow -- the idea that a natural kind should  not  
be thus named is a convention we should sometimes _flout" (or words -- what 
a  genius of insight Harrison is -- born Sussex, this his main work, a 
treasure in  my Swimming-Pool Library). And suppose I use 'white' CONTINGENTLY 
too. So, 'all  snow is white' is true iff all snow is white. "All snow is 
white" as ANALYTIC  meaning postulate? Well, yes, but relying on a few 
contingent things, like my  choice of labels... etc. So, I would think that L-truth 
vs. A-truth, may be read  as a move towards a _stronger_ position? I'm 
speaking vaguely. I should revise  what Grice did say about 'logical' qua 
adjective (we know what he said about  'analytic'). I would think he did not care 
much -- who DID care, and to boring  tears, is Strawson in "Introduction to 
Logical Theory": all those introductory  chapters before he gets to the gist 
of "and" and '.', "not" and "-", "or" and  'v' and "if" and '->', or the 
footnote on Grice -- are all about 'logical.  Quine in fact has a good one here. 
He quotes from Tweedledum (see him as Sir  Peter) and Tweedledee (see him 
as Paul Grice).  Slightly adapted from The  Alice Books -- see Alice as 
Quine, who met the pair in the spring of 1954:
PAUL (to Q): 
If you think we're wax-works, you ought to pay, you know. Wax-works weren't 
 made to be looked at for nothing, Nohow.
PETER. Contrariwise. If you think we're alive, you ought to speak.
Q. I'm sure I'm very sorry,' 
PETER. I know what you're thinking about. But it isn't so, nohow. 
if it was so, it might be; 
And, if it were so, it would be; 
But as it isn't, it ain't. 
That's logic." 
--- Quine has that as epigraph in "Philosophy of Logics". Cheers. JL  

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