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Thought, Reference, and ExperienceThemes from the Philosophy of Gareth Evans$
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José Luis Bermúdez

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780199248964

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199248964.001.0001

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Plural Terms: Another Variety of Reference?

Plural Terms: Another Variety of Reference?

Chapter:
(p.84) 3 Plural Terms: Another Variety of Reference?
Source:
Thought, Reference, and Experience
Author(s):

Ian Rumfitt (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199248964.003.0004

This chapter explores the case for referentialism about plurals. It presents a version of referentialism characterized by the following theses: (i) semantic predicates, such as ‘designate’ and ‘satisfy’, remain constant in sense whether they attach to a plural subject or a singular subject; (ii) in the principles that state the designations of plural terms the expressions that follow the verb ‘designates’ (or ‘refers to’) are themselves plural expressions; and (iii) the designation relation does not distribute, so there is no entailment from ‘α refers to x & y & z’ to ‘α refers to x’. The chapter deploys Boolos's second-order account of the logic of plurals to explore how plurals behave in modal contexts.

Keywords:   referentialism, plurals, Boolos, logic

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