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Proper Names: Philosophical Aspects

Authors
Publisher
Elsevier Ltd
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/b0-08-044854-2/01137-8
Keywords
  • Causal Theories
  • Connotation
  • Definite Descriptions
  • Denotation
  • Description Theories
  • Empty Names
  • Identity Sentences
  • Meaning
  • Millian Theories
  • Natural Kind Terms
  • Negative Existentials
  • Propositional Attitude Attributions
  • Propositions
  • Reference
  • Sense
Disciplines
  • Linguistics
  • Philosophy

Abstract

Proper names, expressions such as ‘George W. Bush,’ ‘New York,’ and ‘Armageddon,’ raise two central philosophical questions. One concerns meaning: What do proper names contribute to the meanings of the sentences in which they occur? Another concerns reference: What is the mechanism by which proper names refer to their bearers? In responding to these questions, philosophers often compare and contrast proper names with other linguistic expressions, including definite descriptions and natural kind terms.

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