Abstract Objects and the Semantics of Natural Language by Friederike Moltmann

By Friederike Moltmann

Summary items were a important subject in philosophy because antiquity. Philosophers have defended quite a few perspectives approximately summary items by means of beautiful to metaphysical issues, concerns concerning arithmetic or technological know-how, and, now not sometimes, intuitions approximately common language. This ebook pursues the query of ways and even if normal language allows connection with summary gadgets in a completely systematic method. via making complete use of latest linguistic semantics, it offers a miles higher diversity of linguistic generalizations than has formerly been considered in philosophical discussions, and it argues for an ontological photograph is particularly diversified from that in general taken without any consideration through philosophers and semanticists alike. connection with summary gadgets comparable to houses, numbers, propositions, and levels is significantly extra marginal than mostly held. in its place, typical language is very beneficiant in permitting connection with particularized houses (tropes), using nonreferential expressions in obvious referential place, and using "nominalizing expressions," corresponding to quantifiers like "something." connection with summary gadgets is accomplished in general basically via 'reifying terms', resembling "the quantity eight."

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Obviously, for the truth of the combination of a predicate with a plural term under F, the order of the arguments given by the plural term does not matter. Thus, natural language contains both plural and multigrade predicates as well as plural and multigrade functors. Using multigrade predicates might also account for plural predicates with higherlevel pluralities, as on one reading of (83): 36 A B S T R A C T O B J E C T S A N D T H E S E M A N T I C S O F N AT U R A L L A N G UA G E (83) John cannot distinguish the boys and the girls.

REFERENCE TO UNIVERSALS AND PLURAL REFERENCE TO PARTICULARS 31 The distinction between these two kinds of collective entities exhibits striking parallels to the distinction between properties and kinds that are “objects” on the one hand and kinds that are “non-objects” on the other hand. ” In particular, distributive readings, just like the instance-related readings of kind terms, would be possible only with non-objects, the pluralities. However, there are some major differences between the Plurality Constraint with plurals and what I called the “kind term behavior” of kind terms.

It is impossible to read (53a, b, c) in such a way that the predicates would apply to a single object that is a kind. Rather, with kind terms, predicates must have instance-related readings. The view of kinds as entities resisting (non-derivative) properties is problematic also in view of the very general fact that any entity must be able to bear at least “formal REFERENCE TO UNIVERSALS AND PLURAL REFERENCE TO PARTICULARS 25 properties” such as being a kind, being an entity, or being unable to bear properties expressed by natural language predicates.

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