[lit-ideas] Paralogisms of Heat

  • From: Jlsperanza@xxxxxxx
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 20 Oct 2010 06:35:05 EDT


"For example, if I say: "Women  make me hot."   That's a Literary 
expression.  But if I say: "Why  do women make me hot?"  Ah, that's a 

Point taken. But a philosophical expression is a  philosophical expression 
is a philosophical expression. And what's worse, you  can provide a 
philosophical expression OF a literary expression. I never  understood 
using 'hot', as in:

i. Women make me hot.

as  opposed to

ii. Females makes me hot.

----- The use of 'woman', as  Chomsky notes, comes out, in semantic 
predicate calculus as -MALE+ADULT, i.e.  'female adult'. The difference, he 
is implicatural ("She is a nice woman"  vs. "She is a nice female adult"). 

The problem with 'makes _one_ hot' is  in 'make'. A woman makes a cake, 
say. But a woman makes 'hot'? The stratagem by  lexicologists is to use the 
personal pronoun varialble, 'one': "to make one's  hot". This indicates via 
predicative analyses that in ii, the utterer (Geary) is  hot. Americans may 
also be heard as using 'hot' as applied directly to the  subject (grammatical) 
subject. I submit that while "Women make me hot" displays  'women' as the 
grammatical subject of the sentence, the LOGICAL subject is  Geary. To turn 
'women' into the logical subject you need to say:

ii.  Women ARE hot (as they make me)

or some such -- but where the guardedness  in the expression may trigger 
the wrong implicatum. Geary's example of _causa  finalis_: "why do women make 
me hot?" is neither here nor there. While this  indeed marks a philosophical 
expression, it does so by pointing to a possible  solution: "Women make me 
hot BECAUSE OF "Y"" -- where 'y' is the antecedent of  the counterfactual, 
modal, 'y --> x" -- and where 'x' represents the state of  affairs "Women 
make Geary hot". "Women make Geary hot" is an 'event'-sentence.  It does not 
describe a fact; it describes an event. Similarly, 'y' must stand  for the 
EVENT that causes the other event. 

Strawson examined cases like  "The king of France is not a subject", since 
there is no such a thing as 'the  king of France'. The philosophical 
expression, 'why do women make me hot?' need  in that case be analysed in terms 
'implicatum' and truth-value gaps. In a  case where 'x' does NOT apply (cfr. 
"Ice makes me hot"), the corresponding 'why'  query should be analysed in 
logical formal terms, so that the answer to "why  does ice make me hot?" does 
NOT presuppose that ice makes me hot. (Cfr. "Why is  she such a bitch?" -- 
said of a bitch. "She isn't, you know" being a PROPER  reply, indeed polite.



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