[hist-analytic] Carnap and Grice on "logical"

Jlsperanza at aol.com Jlsperanza at aol.com
Fri Mar 5 12:26:05 EST 2010

In a message dated 3/5/2010 9:29:36 A.M.  Eastern Standard Time, 
rbj at rbjones.com writes:
If we insist that only the  
"logical" features of the language can be taken into account 
then we get  a narrower conception of logical truth than of 
analyticity, but we also get  one which must surely be 
language relative, and therefore does not really  warrant (in 
my opinion) the very nice label "logical truth", which  
should go to something really important, like Hume's "Truths 
of Reason"  or Aristotle's "Demonstrative (or intuitively 
certain)" (which is one of the  ways Hume explicates "truth 
of reason").  

Thanks v. much for the explanation. I guess I won't be using 'logical  
constant' for a while. Grice does speak of 'device' in various contexts:
They seem to be "logical devices" but he just says
"formal devices" in WoW:ii, first page.
and he has both the turth-functors (monadic, -; dyadic: &,v, ->) and  the 
three quantifiers ((x), (Ex) and (ix)). This gives the list as comprising,  
let's see _seven_ formal devices. He does not mean to be complete, because 
his  point is about "some of the formal devices". And he is not into the 
mathematic,  as you say, first-order predicate-calculus (we agree there that's 
the stuff of  mathematics) BUT of what he calls, vaguely, 'philosophical 
logic' (as opposed to  'philosophy of logic'). I think Grice and Strawson were in 
this informal  campaign of highering the status of what they were doing, 
from "philosophy of  logic" -- where they would be philosophers doing logic -- 
to "philosophical  logic" where they would be logicians philosophising. 
Matter of style --  Similarly, he saw himself as a philosophical psychologist, 
rather than as a  philosopher of mind. 
So it's the 'devices'. Other people indeed have used 'operators', and  
indeed the abstract idea of an 'operation' may be the best or more faithful to  
what we are wanting the 'devices' for. While in "Retrospective Epilogue" he  
sticks to the 'connectives', I take his point to be generalised to 
'devices' --  so that it can comprise what he says about the Square of Opposition, 
e.g. as  involving the quantifiers, say -- and not just the monadic 
truth-functor ('not'  -- that we need to define the "E" and the "O" forms) and the 
dyadic  truth-functors (that we need, qua "&" and "->", to define "A" and  
I agree with you that 'logical' should be given a higher status and that it 
 cannot be dependent on the choice of a linguistic framework like that. And 
so I  see very well Carnap's point in changing from "L" to "A". 
It seems authors who have spoken of the 'logical constants' have confused  
the things. I take your point very well that these devices can indeed be  
referred to in the meta-language, but since by Grice's Bootstrap (Principle  
-- don't have a richer metalanguage than you'll ever regret) and since the  
meta-language CAN be English, one need not have to go there --  yet. 

I'll revise for other uses of 'logical', with Grice. 
JL Speranza

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