Chapter

Russell (and More Frege)

Howard Wettstein

in The Magic Prism

Published in print April 2004 | ISBN: 9780195160529
Published online January 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780199835072 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0195160525.003.0003
 Russell (and More Frege)

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Russell’s alternative to Frege’s theory of propositions, according to which there can be nonconceptual constituents of propositions, is noted. It is also Russell’s belief that when one is acquainted with something it can be referred to directly, without the mediation of a Fregean sense, and Frege’s motivation for thinking there can be no reference without sense is explored. The different views that Frege and Russell have regarding “the cognitive fix idea” – the idea that the reference of word is grounded in the mind’s grasp of the item in question, which both Russell and Frege accept – are identified as the source of their disagreement about the possibility of direct reference. An implication of this idea is that reference requires that something about the speaker’s cognitive state must distinguish the relevant item from everything else in the universe (“the intentionality intuition”).

Keywords: cognitive fix idea; direct reference; Frege; intentionality intuition; Russell; sense

Chapter.  11373 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Language

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