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By Robert van Rooij

In this booklet, the writer defends a unified externalists account of propositional attitudes and reference, and formalizes this view inside attainable international semantics. He establishes a hyperlink among philosophical analyses of intentionality and reference and formal semantic theories of discourse illustration and context swap. Stalnakerian diagonalization performs an enormous function the following. Anaphora are handled as referential expressions, whereas presupposition is obvious as a propositional perspective. The relation among trust switch and the semantic analyses of conditional sentences and evidential (knowledge) and buletic (desire) propositional attitudes is mentioned extensively.


"Van Rooij has new and fascinating issues to assert either approximately foundational concerns within the philosophy of language, and concerning the info of particular analyses, f.e. approximately intensional id, epistemic modals, propositional perspective attributions, presupposition lodging, conditionals and trust change." Robert Stalnaker, MIT

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Consider crazy Heimson (Perry, 1977), who thinks that he is David Hume. Alone in his study, he says to himself, I wrote the Treatise. Of course, he did not. So, contrary to the case in which Hume was thinking this thought, Heimson is thinking something false. However, it seems that we can explain some of Heimson’s and Hume’s behaviour in the same way if they both think I wrote the Treatise. How can the possible world analysis account both for the difference of belief and for the fact that some of their actions can be explained in a similar way?

In these cases, Stalnaker (1978) suggests, we should look not at the horizontal proposition expressed in world w, but rather at the diagonal proposition, [†A](w). The diagonal proposition expressed is the same in every world of K(w) because it abstracts away from the context-world. If [A](w) is necessarily true, but [A](w ) necessarily false, [†A](w) will be contingent. Of course, [†A](w) can be different from [A](w) in several worlds only if A determines a non-constant propositional concept. Obviously, the diagonal proposition expressed by an identity asserted between two expressions treated as rigid designators can be contingent only if these terms do not necessarily have a constant two-dimensional intension.

It cannot explain why the Earthling Oscar (one of the twins in Putnam’s Twin Earth example) is thinking about H2 O, if he is thirsty and asks Can someone give me some water? According to a purely pragmatic account of intentionality, he might as well be thinking about XY Z. But we don’t need these artificial Twin Earth stories to see that the pragmatic account by itself cannot solve the problem of intentionality. Just like for the description theory, fit is not enough. What makes an assignment of a system of belief and desire to a subject correct cannot just be that his behaviour and behavioural dispositions fit it by serving the assigned desire according to the assigned beliefs.

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