On 3/16/2013 5:06 AM, WM wrote: > On 16 Mrz., 00:09, fom <fomJ...@nyms.net> wrote: >> On 3/15/2013 2:12 AM, WM wrote: >> >>> On 14 Mrz., 23:36, fom <fomJ...@nyms.net> wrote: >>>> On 3/14/2013 5:15 PM, WM wrote: >> >>>>> distinguishable, that means definable by finite words >> >>>> How does a definition "distinguish"? >> >>> A definition is a name. >> >> Ok. But, then I would have to ask >> what you mean by name. > > A name is a finite sequence of letters that two or more persons have > agreed upon to be used for a given object. This object may be material > or immaterial.
I had simply been a little surprised in the other response and gave a slightly short-tempered remark.
So I should be asking how two individuals come to agreement as to the meaning of names.
The following summarizes various discussions in the literature concerning agreement with regard to identifying reference in language.
The idea of an agreement coincides with what we have mentioned before. Namely, that language meaning does derive from pragmatic considerations and that the "ideal language theory" that is predominant in metamathematical ought to be more informed by pragmatics.
With regard to "learning" scenarios, there are two of which I am aware. Mostly, people think of how children acquire langauge. For the most part, that would not apply here except in a strange way that I will make clear now.
Certainly, many have discussed the issue of language acquisition, but I am taking from the presentation from Strawson "Individuals".
What seems to be relevant is Strawson's observation that children begin by treating all nouns as mass terms. A mass term is distinguished from a singular term in the sentences,
'I drink water'
'I pet the cat'
As a child is learning, one would be more likely to hear the statments,
'I drink water'
'I pet cat'
I mention this only because of a strange translator's footnote in Lesniewski,
"As the Polish language does not contain counterparts of 'a' and 'the', the translator has had to add the appropriate article whenever English has required it."
I cannot speak to what the Polish language has as counterparts to definite and indefinite references, but I can imagine that the difference in the languages could explain how Lesniewski had been so astute to reject the claims of Russell's paradox at such an early date.
The second learning scenario is that given by Quine in "Word and Object". The idea is that an anthropological linguist is visiting an indigenous population of people and attempting to formulate the first translation of their language.
This is what has been referred to on wikipedia as the Quinean double standard.
Now, the general pragmatic notion of agreement between speakers is given by Grice. I have no original sources for Grice, but in the literature I do have there are three principles by Levinson that seem to be accepted by others. They are what would be called Neo-Gricean inferential princples.
Do not provide a statement that is informationally weaker than your knowledge of the world allows, unless providing a stronger statement would contravene the I-principle.
Take it that the speaker made the strongest statement consistent with what he knows, and therefore that:
if the stated expression is informationally weaker than some another comparable statement, infer that the speaker knows the stronger statement to be false
if the stated expression fails to entail another comparable statement that a stronger statement would entail,
Produce the minimal linguistic information sufficient to achieve your communicational ends (bearing the Q-principle in mind)
Amplify the informational content of the speaker's utterance, by finding the most specific interpretation, up to what is judged to be the speaker's intention unless the speaker has used a marked expression.
Indicate an abnormal, non-stereotypical situation by using marked expressions in contrast to what one would use to describe normal stereotypical expresssions.
What is said in an abnormal way indicates an abnormal situation.
Clearly these rules of implicature are not directly relevant to the issue of naming. They are presented here as background for a discussion of Searle's account of reference in terms of language acts. Unlike simple description theories, Searle takes into account the language acts of a speaker and the recognition of speaker intentions by a hearer.
There are some preliminary conditions to Searle's positions given by Boersema:
1) The axiom of existence: There must exist one and only one object to which the speaker's utterance may apply.
2) The axiom of identification: The hearer must be given sufficient means to identify the object from the speaker's utterance of the expression.
3) A necessary condition for the successful performance of a definite reference in the utterance of the expression is that either the expression must be an identifying description or the speaker must be able to produce an identifying description on demand.
Given these conditions, Boersema presents Searle's account as follows:
Given that speaker S utters an expression R in the presence of hearer H in a context C, then in the literal utterance of expression R, speaker S successively and non-defectively performs the speech act of singular identifying reference if and only if the following 7 conditions obtain,
1) Normal input and output conditions obtain (speaker S and hearer H understand one another and participate in the language act felicitously)
2) The utterance of expression R occurs as part of the utterance of some sentence or similar unit of discourse T
3) The utterance or discourse T is the purported performance of an illocutionary act
4) There exists some object X such that either expression R contains an identifying description of object X or speaker S is able to supplement expression R with an identifying description of object X
5) Speaker S intends that the utterance of expression R wil pick out or identify object X to hearer H
6) Speaker S intends that the utterance of expression R will identify object X to hearer H by means of H's recognition of S's intention to identify object X and speaker S intends this recognition to be achieved by means of H's knowledge of the rules governing expression R and his awareness of context C
7) The semantical rules governing expression R are such that it is correctly uttered in discourse T and in context C
As I pointed out in the other post, your views presuppose authorial intention (or, in Searle's construction, speaker's intention).
Standard mathematics attempts to avoid this complexity by asserting an extensional foundation.
It is a simple matter to use the word "agreement". It is far more difficult to explain it as "obvious" if others are aware that this has been and is currently being investigated.