Re: [quickphilosophy] Re: Fodor on Concepts IV: Circularity

  • From: wittrsl@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • To: quickphilosophy@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 23 Sep 2010 15:38:29 -0700 (PDT)

Hi Walt:
But I explained both interpretations, so the "indeterminacy" is resolvable; 
this is unsurprising. And, it usually doesn't take a lot of effort to discover 
and then fix any inconsistency of interpretation, which is, again, why the 
root, ultimately unresolvable indeterminacy of translation he gestures has no 
instances in real life.
Besides, Quine says the language of first-order logic is determinate. How do 
you explain that? Do you look into the web of belief and see a hard core that 
can't be pushed to the periphery? The metaphores are evocative, but offer no 
real elucidation.
I'm surprised by your interpretation of Quine, remember well discussions of 
this text as an undergraduate and for years after, and do not ever recall a 
reduction of it to plain old polysemy.

--- On Thu, 9/23/10, walto <calhorn@xxxxxxx> wrote:

From: walto <calhorn@xxxxxxx>
Subject: [quickphilosophy] Re: Fodor on Concepts IV: Circularity
To: quickphilosophy@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Date: Thursday, September 23, 2010, 2:25 PM


--- In quickphilosophy@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx, Ron Allen <wavelets@...> wrote:

> Well, here I am advocating analyticity, and the statement "all mammals are 
> vertebrates" struck me not as analytic, but rather synthetic, albeit 
> universally true on this planet. Maybe mammals are defined within zoology as 
> vertebrates whose female individuals possess mammary glands; in that case, I 
> agree. But, if the definition of mammal is an animal with mammary glands and 
> vertebrates have a spine, then, well, it could be that someone will turn up a 
> spineless animal, like an >abalone, that nurses its young.

That seems to me a great example of the kind of thing Quine is talking about, 


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