A1 Journal article – refereed

Necessary a Posteriori Identity Truths: Fregeanism Beats Direct Reference Theory

List of Authors: Ari Maunu

Publisher: Springer Netherlands

Publication year: 2018

Journal: Axiomathes

Volume number: 28

Issue number: 1

Number of pages: 8

ISSN: 1122-1151

eISSN: 1572-8390

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10516-017-9332-8


I argue that Fregeanism with respect to proper names—the view that modes of presentation are relevant to the contents of proper names—is able to account for the thesis that there are necessarily true a posteriori identity propositions such as the one expressed in “Hesperus is identical with Phosphorus”, whereas the Direct Reference Theory—according to which the semantic function of certain expressions, e.g., proper names, is only to pick out an object (referent)—is able to deal with only their necessary truth. Thus, at least in so far as necessarily true a posteriori identity propositions are concerned, Fregeanism should be preferred to the Direct Reference Theory.

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