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Andrea Bianchi

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198714088

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198714088.001.0001

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Names Not Predicates

Names Not Predicates

Chapter:
(p.225) 11 Names Not Predicates
Source:
On Reference
Author(s):

Robin Jeshion

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198714088.003.0012

According to predicativism about proper names, proper names are not primarily devices of reference; they are, rather, predicates that are a special kind of count noun. The view harkens back to Quine, Sloat, and Burge, and has received new life in the writings of Elbourne, Matushansky, and Fara. Predicativists frequently champion predicativism as superior to referentialism on the grounds that only predicativism is capable of offering a unified semantics for both singular “bare” occurrences of proper names, as in Alfred resides in Princeton, and pluralized and determiner- and quantifier-fronted occurrences, as in Two Alfreds reside in Princeton and Some Alfreds are crazy. This chapter explicates and dismantles this Uniformity Argument for predicativism, and, in doing so, extends the range of phenomena to be accounted for in our theorizing about proper names.

Keywords:   proper names, referentialism, reference, predicativism, count noun

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