Propositions : an ontological inquiry

Lin, Hsuan-Chih (2017) Propositions : an ontological inquiry. Doctoral thesis, Birkbeck, University of London.

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It is more or less agreed that propositions are the meanings of sentences, the fundamental truth-bearers, and the objects of propositional attitudes. Associated with these roles, there are the following three questions: the Composition Question, the Representation Question, and the Attitude Question. Roughly, the first concerns the metaphysical relation between propositions and propositional constituents, the second concerns the ability of representing things as being such-and-so, and the third concerns how propositions can be the objects of propositional attitudes. I examine three mainstream theories of propositions: the Russellian theories, the possible-world accounts, and the Neo-Russellian theories, and argue that each fails to answer at least one of the questions and thus is incapable of providing an account of these propositional roles. Therefore, if a theory of propositions is able to answer these questions in a uniform manner, it would be a better theory of propositions. For what can be explained by other theories can also be explained by this theory, and it can also answer more questions than any other theory. In this dissertation, I defend a broadly Fregean theory of propositions, according to which propositions are sui generis, multi-analysable, and necessary beings, and argue that with respect to these propositional roles, it can provide a better account than other theories of propositions.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Copyright Holders: The copyright of this thesis rests with the author, who asserts his/her right to be known as such according to the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988. No dealing with the thesis contrary to the copyright or moral rights of the author is permitted.
School/Department: School of Social Sciences, History & Philosophy > Philosophy
Depositing User: ORBIT Editor
Date Deposited: 21 Dec 2017 12:55
Last Modified: 21 Dec 2017 12:55

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