Traditional and analytical philosophy
L EC T UR E S ON THE P H I L O S O P H Y
OF L A N G U A G E

ERNST T U G E N D H A T

Traditional and analytical philosophy
L ECT URE S ON THE P H I L O S O P H Y OF L A N G U A G E T R A N S L A T E D BY P. A. G O R N E R

C A M B R I D G E U N I V E R S I T Y PRESS
CAMBRIDGE LONDON NEW YORK SYDNEY NEW ROCHELLE

MELBOURNE

Published by the Press Syndicate o f th e U niversity o f C am bridge T h e Pitt B uilding, T ru rh p in g to n S treet, C am bridge CB2 1RP 32 East 5 7 th Street, New Y ork, NY 10022, USA 296 B eaconsfield P arade, M iddle Park, M elbourne 3206, A ustralia. © S u h rk a m p 1976 E nglish tran sla tio n © C a m b rid g e U niversity press 1982 F irst pub lish ed 1982 P rin ted in T h e U n ited States o f A m erica by Vail-Ballou Press, Inc., B in g h am to n , N.Y. T h is book was originally pub lish ed in G e rm an in 1976 by S u h rk a m p u n d e r the title Vorlesungen zur E inführung in die sprachanalytische Philosophie. British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data T u g e n d h a t, E rn st T ra d itio n a l a n d analytical philosophy. 1. L an g u ag es— Philosophy I. T itle II. V o rle su n g en z u r E in fü h ru n g in die sprachanalytische Philosophie. English 401 P I 06 ISB N 0 521 22236 2

T O T H E M E M O R Y OF MARTIN HEIDEGGER

Contents

P reface T ra n s la to r’s p refac e P art I

ix xi

Introduction: confrontation of analytical philosophy with traditional conceptions of philosophy 1 A q u estio n o f m e th o d 3 2 A p h ilo so p h e r in search o f a con cep tio n o f p h ilo so p h y 12 3 O ntology an d sem antics 21 4 H as fo rm a l sem antics a fu n d a m e n ta l questio n ? 35 5 C onsciousness an d speech 50 6 T h e a rg u m e n t w ith th e p h ilo so p h y o f consciousness co n tin u ed 65 7 A practical co n cep tio n o f p h ilo so p h y 76 A first step: analysis of the predicative sentence P re lim in ary reflections on m e th o d an d preview o f th e co u rse o f th e investigation 93 H u sse rl’s th e o ry o f m e a n in g 107 C ollapse o f th e tra d itio n a l th e o ry o f m e a n in g 121 P redicates: th e first step in th e d e v e lo p m e n t o f an analytical con cep tio n o f th e m e an in g o f sentences. T h e d isp u te be­ tw een nom inalists a n d conceptualists 133 T h e basic p rin cip le o f analytical p hiloso p h y . T h e d isp u te co n tin u ed . P red icates a n d q u asi-p red icates 150 T h e m e a n in g o f a n expressio n a n d th e circu m stan ces o f its use. D isp u te with a behaviouristic co n cep tio n 163 T h e e m p lo y m e n t-ru le o f an asserto ric sen ten ce. A rg u m e n t with G rice a n d S earle 177 Positive acco u n t o f th e e m p lo y m e n t-ru le o f asserto ric sen­ tences in term s o f th e tru th -re la tio n 192

P art II 8 9 10 11

12 13 14 15

Contents

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16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26

27

28

S u p p lem en ts 207 ‘A n d ’ an d ‘o r ’ 227 G en eral sentences. R esum ption of th e p ro b lem o f p redicates 243 T h e m o d e of em ploym ent o f predicates. T ra n sitio n to sin­ gular term s 257 W hat is it fo r a sign to stand fo r an object? T h e trad itio n al account 270 T h e function o f singular term s 284 Russell and Straw son 297 W hat i s ‘identification’? 310 Specification an d identification. Specification an d tru th 323 S patio -tem p o ral identification and the constitution o f the object-relation 337 S u p p lem en ts 348 I T h e connection betw een object-relation, situationin d e p e n d e n c e a n d the truth-capacity o f assertoric speech 348 II R eciprocal d e p e n d en c e of the identification o f spatiote m p o ral objects and th e identification o f spatio-tem poral positions 357 Results 372 I T h e analytical concept o f an object 375 II T h e m ode o f em ploym ent of predicative sentences an d th e explan atio n o f the w ord ‘tru e ’ 381 T h e n e x t steps 391 N otes B ibliography In d ex o f nam es In d e x o f subjects 411 429 434 436

it is directed at those who.Preface In so-called analytical o r language-analytical philosophy th e re is little reflection on its own foun d atio n s. fo r w hom it could serve as an in tro d u ctio n to th e p h ilo so p h ­ ical way of thinking. At the sam e tim e it is directed . an d the d ev elo p m en t o f new ones. As reg a rd s co n ten t they move in a field o f investigation th at is by no m eans new. if only in an oblique way. at the re a d e r who is already well-versed in linguistic analysis. miss in analyti­ cal philosophy a fu n d am e n tal q uestion which can be co m p ared with the g reat trad itio n al approaches. T his reflection on fo undations is not ju s t an additional act o f self-clarification. Partly this is d u e to a lack o f historical consciousness. A way o f philosophizing can only becom e a fu n d am e n tal philosophical posi­ tion by c o n fro n tin g it with earlier conceptions o f philosophy. T his book seeks to bu ild a b rid g e fo r such rea d ers. T h e rea d er w hom it addresses directly in the fo rm o f lectures is the philosophical b eg in n er. m ethods and basic concepts. a n d today less th an b efo re. an d even in this field they take only a first step. A bove all. T h e book is directed at th ree d iffe re n t groups o f read ers. how ever. T h ese lectures aim to provide an im petus in this direction. For the m ost part the problem s treated are inherited problem s w hich are not questioned. T hey th e re fo re have the ch aracter o f an in tro d u ctio n . by try in g to show th a t analytical philosophy contains a fu n d a ­ . It is a condition o f a philosophy’s ability to perceive the task that has always b een the genuinely philosophical task: the ex am in atio n o f existing questions. b ein g m ore o r less fam il­ iar with trad itio n al philosophical m odes o f conception. By m eans o f a con­ fro n ta tio n with trad itio n al p hilosophy’s fu n d am e n tal o rien tatio n to the subject-object schem a they attem p t to bring questions w hich already exist in analytical philosophy into the context o f a specifically languageanalytical fu n d am e n tal question.

March 1976. Starnberg. which sta rted out fro m H eid e g g er an d led to language-analytical philosophy. T his aim is a reflection o f my own d ev e lo p m e n t.T. .Preface x m ental question w hich can1 not only com pare w ith the trad itio n al ap p ro ach es b u t actually proves to be su p e rio r to th em . I becam e convinced th a t H e id e g g e r’s question ab o u t th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f ‘B e in g ’ can only acquire a concrete an d realizable m ean in g w ithin the fram ew ork o f a language-analytical philosophy. E. A lth o u g h th e re is h ardly any m en tio n o f H eid e g g er in these lectures I owe to him the specific m ode o f access with w hich I ap p ro a ch the p roblem s o f analyti­ cal philosophy. A lthough I have re-w ritten an d e x p a n d e d th e tex t it seem ed to m e sensible to reta in the lecture-form . It has its o rigin in lectures I gave in H eid e lb e rg in the S u m m er sem ester o f 1970. For this reason th e book is ded icated to him .

for to have ch osen the la tte r w ould have m ade it im possible to tran slate th e verbal fo rm s vorstellen. b u t in the e n d settled fo r ‘re p re se n ta tio n ’ b ecau se o f the c u rren c y it has acq u ired th ro u g h K em p S m ith ’s tran slatio n o f the Critique o f Pure Reason. vorgestellt etc. my frie n d s Eric M atthew s an d G uy Stock for som e very help fu l discussions o f points re la tin g to th e tran slation. b u t at tim es the latter q uality has h ad to take seco n d place. In tran slatin g q u o tatio n s fro m H u sse rl’s Logische Untersuchungen I have in the m ain follow ed J. F or gegenständlich I have used the artificial ‘o b jectu al’ because ‘objective’ w ould have been positively m isleading. For th e m ost p a rt it is clear fro m the co n tex t w hich sense is in te n d e d . a ju d g m e n t may be objective (ra th e r th an subjective). I co n sid ered th e m o re literal ‘p re se n ta tio n ’. It has n o th in g to do w ith ‘objec­ tive5 in the sense in w hich. b u t in som e cases to have d o n e this w ould have significantly a lte re d the sense o f w hat is being said. I w ould like to th a n k P rofessor T u g e n d h a t fo r the th o ro u g h n e ss o f his com m ents at every o f th e tran slatio n . b u t w h ere th e re is th e possibility o f co n fu sio n I have p u t th e G erm a n term in brackets. In th e case o f W ittgenstein I have sim ply r e p ro d u c e d the s ta n d a rd E nglish tran sla­ tions w ithout m ak in g any changes. Gegenständlich m eans so m eth in g like ‘having th e ch a racter o f an object’. ‘r e f e r ’. verweisen I have h a d to use ‘re fe re n c e ’. W h en ev er possible long sentences have b een b ro k e n dow n in to several s h o rte r ones. N. For Vorstellung I have used ‘re p re s e n ta tio n ’ r a th e r th a n ‘id e a’. fo r exam p le.Translator’s Preface My aim th ro u g h o u t this tran slatio n has been to co m bine accuracy with readability. F o r both Bezugnahme. an d th e G e rm a n A cadem ic E x ch an g e Service (DAAD) fo r en a b lin g m e to have two p erio d s o f study in G erm an y with c o n seq u e n t . As fo r my tran slatio n o f individual w ords th e follow ing re q u ire som e co m m ent. bezugnehmen an d Ver­ weisung. F in d lay ’s tran slatio n .

A. Finally. G O R N E R University o f Aberdeen . P. I wish to th a n k P rofessor H ans W e rn e r A rn d t o f th e U niversity o f M an n h eim for having first d raw n my a tte n tio n to P ro fe s­ sor T u g e n d h a t’s book.Translator's preface Xll benefit to my know ledge o f G erm a n philosophy an d th e G erm an la n ­ guage.

P art O ne Introduction: confrontation of analytical philosophy with traditional conceptions of philosophy .

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ta k en by itself. B u t o n e ca n n o t p h ilo so p h ize in o n e way w ith o u t having rejected o r in c o rp o ra te d the o th ers. F o rm s o f d an c e a re n o t m u tu ally exclusive o r inclusive. So I w ould have to d e m o n stra te to you a ch aracteristic language-analytical line o f th o u g h t in a way th a t w ould enab le you to follow it a n d stim u late you to ca rry o u t sim ilar p a tte rn s o f a rg u m e n t yourself. F ro m a le ctu re-c o u rse with this title o n e m ig h t ex p e ct a survey o f a philosophical m o v em en t. T h is is n o t w hat I shall be d o in g . by u n d e rs ta n d in g ‘p h ilo so p h y ’ in th e sense o f p h ilo so p h ­ ical activity. th e co n c ern is w ith tru th . B u t such a d e m o n stra tio n by m eans o f an e x a m p le can n o t. d an c e a ta n g o . A way o f d o in g philo so p h y is n o t re la te d to o th e r ways o f d o in g p h i­ losophy in th e way th a t o n e fo rm o f d a n c e is re la te d to o th e r form s. O n e in tro d u c e s so m eo n e to a p a rtic u la r activity by d e m o n stra tin g it to him by m eans o f an exam p le. as in every science. a b oogie a n d a ro ck ’n ’ roll . on th e o th e r h an d .1 T h e title can also be in te rp re te d in a n o th e r sense. A d an c e can be o u t o f date. b u t . so th a t h e can im itate it. F o r this reaso n . I f I am asked w hy I d o p h ilo so p h y in this way r a th e r th a n th a t I c a n n o t answ er: ‘B ecause it is u p to d a te ’. an historical o r system atic g u id e to th e p h ilo ­ sophical lite ra tu re com m only called language-analytical. suffice fo r an in tro d u c tio n if th e activity in q u estio n is a way o f d o in g philosophy. O n th e sam e e v e n in g one can. w o rry in g ab o u t this is th e business n o t o f th e p h ilo so p h e r b u t o f th e h isto rian . T h e title w ould th e n d e n o te an in tro d u c tio n to la n g u ag eanalytical philosophizing. b u t it is n o t o n th a t ac co u n t in c o r­ rect. p articu la rly as such in tro d u c tio n s to lan g u ag eanalytical ph ilo so p h y already e x ist.a n d sim ply n o t b o th e r w ith th e waltz.LECTURE 1 A question of m ethod ‘In tro d u c tio n to language-analytical p h ilo so p h y ’ . w ith equal en th u sia sm . In p h ilo so p h y . alth o u g h ways o f d o in g p h ilo so p h y can be m o d e rn o r o ld -fa sh io n e d .th a t is am b ig u o u s. A n d in d e e d this is so m e th in g I in te n d to do.

N o w h ere is it laid dow n w hat language-analytical philosophy is.’ B ut this im plies an obligation to ju stify the claim to be correct. I f o n e ’s aim is to in tro d u c e som eone to a p articu la r way o f do in g p h i­ losophy one ca n n o t sim ply p resu p p o se the concep t o f philosophy. I f we so u g h t to arriv e at a defi­ n ition o f ‘language-analytical p h ilo so p h y ’ by a process o f in d u ctio n an d ab straction fro m the existing philosophical lite ra tu re which is d escribed as language-analytical. involves rela tin g it to o th e r ways o f d o in g p h i­ losophy and. So do I w ant to in tro d u c e you to som eth in g w hich does n o t yet exist? In th e case o f philosophy this is not as ab su rd as it sounds. A n d this m eans th a t it is only in this c o n fro n tatio n th a t it will find itself. it could n o t serve as the basis fo r a con crete way o f philoso­ phizing. is an activity which only becom es w hat it is in th e process o f being in tro d u c ed . T h e im p o rta n t philosophical positions o f the past always took as th e ir sta rtin g -p o in t certain fu n d a m e n ta l substantive questions a ro u n d which th e w hole field o f possible philosophical questions was o rg anized. by co n trastin g it with o th e r ways o f d o in g philosophy. B u t in th a t case we m u st ab an d o n yet an o th e r preju d ice: if w hat is b ein g in tro d u c e d does n o t exist p rio r to its in tro d u c tio n th e n clearly . d e m o n stratin g its cor­ rectness. by m eans o f such a co n fro n tatio n . B ut this m eans th at o n e m ust d eb a te the idea o f philosophy as such. in d e ed w h eth er it has one. always also to in tro d u c e som eone to philosophizing as such. I f this is co rrec t we c a n n o t assum e th a t language-analytical philoso­ phy is already a fixed q u an tity w hich we can first in tro d u c e an d th en co n tra st with e a rlier positions in an ap p en d ix . B u t th en we m ay expect th a t it m ig h t be precisely in the co n fro n tatio n with earlier philosophical positions th a t language-analytical philosophy will find its ow n central question. In th e case o f language-analytical philosophy it may be less clear w hat its cen tral substantive question is. an d a way o f philosophizing. We ca n n o t be co n ­ te n t with ju s t any exam ple.Introduction 4 only: ‘Because it is th e correct way. If it is tru e th a t o n e can only in tro d u c e som eone to languageanalytical philosophy. I t follows fro m this th a t philoso­ p h izing. o r any o th e r so rt o f philosophy. T o in tro d u c e som eone to a way o f do in g philosophy. th e n this affects the question o f w hich line o f th o u g h t is to be chosen to illustrate it. T o in tro d u c e so m eone to a p articu lar way o f philosophizing is. th e n at best we w ould achieve an em pty ch arac­ terization. hence. A philosophy is only con stitu ted in philosophizing. th e re fo re . In co n fro n tin g language-analytical philos­ o p hy with o th e r ways o f philosophizing we are n o t ju s t co n fro n tin g m ethods.

how is th e d iffe ren ce to be ch a racter­ ized? N otice how .with im p o rta n t earlier philosophical positions th e re will em erge its own substantive fu n d am e n tal question. We can n o t expect to rem ove this unclarity by g ettin g an answ er from som ew here. A nd obviously I do have a vague p relim inary conception o f linguistic analysis. really consists. th e n . if so. it is u n clear to us. in w hat linguistic analysis. and is first co n stitu ted in the in tro d u c tio n . o r m ust be solved. o u r e n terp rise becom es m o re com plicated. as a philosophical position. Im m ediately th e question arises: by m eans o f w hat sort o f an analysis o f language? T h e analysis o f language w ould seem to be th e task o f linguistics. inasm uch as it is sim ply an explication o f its designation. with th a t vague prelim in ary u n d e rsta n d in g (Vor­ verständnis) w hich everyone can be assum ed to have. not only with a d em an d to legitim ate itself vis-a-vis o th e r con­ ceptions o f philosophy. T o arrive at this fu n d am e n tal question is th e aim o f th e in tro d u cto ry p a rt o f these lectures (Lectures 1-7). . take a first step in an sw ering this question. P erh ap s these reflections strike you as incredible an d as a p o o r p ed a­ gogical trick. B u t th en no d o u b t so do you. th en . th a t philosophy. by m eans of an analysis o f language. b u t only by d ee p en in g th e existing prelim in ary conception. H e can only in tro d u c e o th e rs by at th e sam e time in tro d u c in g him self. L anguage-analytical philosophy finds itself con­ fro n te d . from the very b eginning. rem in d one o f M ü n c h h au se n ’s atte m p t to pull him self up by his own bootstraps? C an I seriously wish to assert th a t I w ant to in tro d u c e you to som ething with w hich I am m yself n ot yet acquainted? O bviously on e can n o t look fo r som ething o f which o n e does n o t already have a vague prelim inary conception (Vorbegriff). In th e m ain p a rt which follows we shall.initially on th e basis o f th e vague prelim i­ n ary conception we have o f it .A question of method 5 the p erson w ho wishes to in tro d u ce o th ers to this activity can n o t him self have it at his disposal. becom es linguistics o r a p a rt o f linguistics? O r is the analysis o f la nguage carried o u t in philosophy d iffe re n t fro m th a t car­ ried o u t in linguistics? A nd. Clearly ‘language-analytical ph ilo so p h y ’ refers to a way o f d oing philosophy which involves the belief th a t the problem s o f philosophy can be solved. by analysing th e predicative sta tem en t-fo rm . an d in general. L et us begin. if it is u n d e rsto o d as linguistic analysis. Does this m ean. A nd it may n o t be im plausible to expect th a t precisely fro m a co n fro n ­ tation of linguistic analysis . O n the o th e r h an d . b u t also with th e d em an d to define its relatio n ­ ship to a closely-connected em pirical science. Does not the p reten sio n o f seeking to in tro d u ce som eone to som ething which does no t yet exist.

b u t in a special way in relation to o n e p articu la r science. faced when trying to define itself: how is it to define its relationship to th e sciences? It is characteristic of m o d e rn philosophy th at this question arises not ju s t in general in relation to all sciences. Anyway at the p rese n t stage o f this in tro d u ctio n we clearly lack all the presuppositions fo r m eaningfully tackling this question. P erhaps th e re is an o th e r way of d o in g philosophy for w hich sociology occupies a c o rresp o n d in g position. In every instance philosophy finds its sp h ere o f reflection already occupied by a p articu lar em pirical science. Now it is linguistics. hence. In m o d ern philosophy this peculiar collision with a specific em pirical science results from w hat is called its reflective character. w hereas in the new conception o f philosophy it is conceived as th e sp h ere o f th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f o u r linguistic expressions. I f he is a thinking p erson he will im m ediately raise th e following objection (it is th e sta n d ard objection th a t is always b ro u g h t against th e . All one can really say at p rese n t is: language-analytical philosophy differs from th e em pirical science o f linguistics in that it has to justify itself as p h i­ losophy. It conceives o f its enquiries as consisting n o t in the d irect them atization o f such an d such objects b u t in sim ultaneous reflection on how these objects can be given to us. from th e point o f view o f philosophy. if. this science was psychology. I re tu rn to th e nom inal definition of ‘language-analytical philosophy’ as a philosophy which seeks to solve the problem s o f philosophy by m eans o f an analysis o f language. a dim ension o f rep resen tatio n s o r ideas. In classical m o d e rn philosophy th e field o f givenness reflected u p o n was conceived as consciousness. accessible to a specifically philosophical m ode o f study? I know o f no satisfactory answ er to the questio n o f how languageanalytical philosophy is to be distinguished fro m the em pirical science o f linguistics. F or classical m o d ern philosophy. how they becom e accessible to us. A nd so each tim e th e question arises: how is this sphere. it is n o t ju st one sp h e re am ong others. particularly since K ant. since this answ er w ould have to d e p e n d essentially on th e new conception o f p h i­ losophy. Such an answ er can certainly n o t be given with the aid o f traditional distinctions betw een philosophy an d science. How can we get f u rth e r if we start from this first prelim inary u n d ersta n d in g ? We can tu rn to the p erso n who hears this definition for the first tim e a n d see w hat his initial rea c­ tion is.Introduction 6 We have h e re a specific instance o f a difficulty philosophy has always. finds itself co n fro n ted by o th e r philosophical positions. an d .

Precisely w hat it says is tru e o f an em pirical science: explanations o f w ords a re necessary. an d if a philos­ op h y reg a rd s th e analysis o f linguistic usage as n o t ju s t a p relim in ary task. T h e y have always done so. language is only a m ed iu m . m ode o f ex perience. are th e th in g s th e m ­ selves to which h e refers to be sought? If he is n o t a p h ilo so p h er. b u t they co nstitute only a transitional stage in research.’ W ith refe re n c e to em pirical know ledge th e objection. th e n it has clearly lost contact with th e su b stan ­ tial questions. an d hence non-em pirical.A question of method 7 language-analytical conception of philosophy). we will ask him . th e n this can only'm ean eith er (a) th at on e denies th a t philosophy is a specific d im ension o f enquiry which is n o t reducible to th e em pirical sciences (in which case it is not an objection specifically to language-analytical philosophy. be ra tio n ­ ally discussed w ithout going into th e question o f th e specific subjectm a tte r o f philosophy. th e n th e second o f these alternatives m u st be th e on e he has in m ind. In which extra-linguistic sphere. bu t as its real task. b u t sim ply a th in k in g person. ‘th a t verbal explan atio n s b elong to philosophy. H e re the things th e m ­ selves are th e facts o f a s p h e re o f scientific experien ce. B ut they re p re se n t only a prelim inary stage an d serve m erely to rem ove the unclarity an d am biguity in th e use o f philosophical term s. then he will m ost likely reply: ‘T h e things them selves? C learly they are given to us by ex perien ce. b u t fro m a p h i­ lo sopher. I f th e objection is not sim ply from a th in k in g p erso n . seem s plausible. T h is can only be a transitional stage on th e way to th e things with which we a re concern ed . A d o m in an t. B u t if th e objec­ tion is p u t fo rw ard as an objection to a conceptio n o f philosophy. b u t to philosophy as such) o r (b) th a t o n e su pposes th a t philosophy has its own. H ow ever. th e objec­ tion ju s t raised only rem ains on th e p erip h e ry . It speaks o f things in c o n tra st to w ords w ithout saying w hat sort o f things it m eans. ‘It is clear. view of philosophy in th e history o f philosophy . th e re fo re . A fter all. in d e ed conclusive. a n d w hat it is ab o u t this su b ject-m atter which distinguishes philosophy from th e em pirical sciences.’ h e will say. A n d th e appeal n o t to rem ain with m ere w ords had this m eaning: to reach know ledge on e m ust have reco u rse to ex p e rien ce. an d w h ere they a re to be fo u n d .’ W e begin th e n with th e negative in which th e idea o f a languageanalytical philosophy first ap p ears to an outsider. Only w hen we get o u r th in k in g p erso n to ex plain w hat he m eans will we have tak en a first step into th e real field o f dispute. T h e justification o f th e above objection can n o t. th o u g h no t u n d isp u te d . th e things them selves. th u s in te r­ p re te d .

T h u s we arriv e at analytic a p rio ri sentences by linguistic analysis or. St A u g u stin e’s re m a rk about tim e is n o t applicable to th e sentences o f logic an d m athem atics. ra th e r they ask about w hat is im plied by things which we already know. b u t they do not seek to articu late som e­ th in g we already know. I do n o t know . ‘W hat th en is tim e? I f no o n e asks m e. b u t with a p rio n know ledge. W hat we are h ere striving fo r is n o t th e ex p lan atio n o f so m e th in g th a t is not yet u n d ersto o d .’3 H e re then we seem to have a sp h ere o f know ledge w here o u r ig n o ran ce rests not on in ad eq u ate ex p erien ce b u t on the fact th a t we a re dealin g with aspects o f o u r u n d e rsta n d in g which are too close to us a n d too obvious. so it can n o t be used to define philosophy. b u t w hich w hen a tte n d e d to a p p e a r as som ething we know. A n d this clarification can only be achieved by reflection on o u r u n d e rsta n d in g itself. Since K ant th e analytic an d the synthetic a priori have b een d istin ­ gu ished. by th e analysis o f th e m ean in g of o u r linguistic expressions. S entences are called analytic a priori if th e ir tru th o r falsity rests solely on th e m ean in g o f the linguistic expressions co n tain ed in th em . b u t the clarification o f w hat is alread y u n d ersto o d . this description applies equally to logic an d m athem atics. i. or falsified. I know w hat it is.Introduction 8 is th a t it has to do. such an ex tern al d escriptio n rem ains unsatisfac­ tory so long as o n e does n o t ask on w hat essential fe a tu re o f philosophy it is g ro u n d e d . I f I wish to explain it to him w ho asks m e. tho u g h not em pirical. th e ir tru th did not rest sim ply on the m ean in g o f the expressions co n tain ed in them . they can n o t be verified.e. Logic an d m athem atics are also a p rio ri . m o re precisely. fo r we can n o t conceive th at it could be d iffe ren t. n o t by ex p e­ rience. wholly abstract an d thesis-like) also enables one to see how p h i­ losophy differs fro m o th e r a p rio n form s o f know ledge. O f course. T h is explication o f the subject-m atter o f philosophy (th o u g h still. By contrast. A classical ex am ple o f this (used again by W ittg en stein 2) is St A u g u stin e’s rem ark ab o u t tim e. sentences w ould be synthetic a p rio n if. o f course. M oreover. by (sensory) experience. n o t with em pirical know ledge. T h o se who have described the subject-m atter o f philosophy as a priori (Plato was th e first) have d o n e so because they believed th at all u n d e r ­ sta n d in g contains p resu p p o sitio n s we norm ally do not atten d to. o r which we can hypothetically assum e. So it now becom es clear b oth which conception o f philosophy u n d e r­ lies th e language-analytical position a n d which altern ativ e th e objection . B u t w hen we w ant to express this know ledge we becom e p e rp le x ed . th a t its propositio n s a re valid a p r io n .

T h e p ro p o sitio n s which K ant rep rese n ts as conditions o f th e possibility o f ex p erien ce can . an intellectual intuition. T h is is th e K antian conception. T h e language-analytical thesis th a t th e re is only an analytic. an analogue o f sense-experience. an d in L atin this was tran slated as intuitus. T h e ir validity is n o t a p p re h e n d e d in an intellectual intuition b u t rests on th e fact th a t they fo rm u late the conditions of th e possibility o f experience. an intellectual intuition. comes dow n to the alternative: e ith e r deny th a t th e re is an a priori subject-m atter o r claim th at th e re is a synthetic a priori. A nd the objection to th e lan­ guage-analytical positon. T h e re is o f course an o th e r conception o f a synthetic a priori which does no t involve an appeal to intellectual intuition. in the sp h e re o f th e a priori. T h e only p ro p e r way o f dealin g with th e objection is to discuss each o f th em separately. H ow ever. L anguage-analytical philosophy co rresp o n d s to th e traditional conception o f philosophy as an a priori fo rm o f knowl­ ed ge an d in te rp re ts the a priori as an analytic a priori. In th e objection as it was first abstractly fo rm u lated w ere com bined (th o u g h at first this was n o t noticed) two diam etrically o p p o sed posi­ tions. H ow ever. as now becom es a p p a re n t. only a lin­ guistic a priori can th e re fo re be seen as a counter-thesis to th e idea o f an intellectual intuition. In this way th e re arises the idea of a non-em pirical ex p erien ce. he believed th a t o ne can know syn­ thetic propositions a priori relatin g to experience. a sp ir­ itual seeing. it is d o u b tfu l w h eth er K an t’s a tte m p t to find an alternative to th e analytical an d intuitive conceptions o f philosophy is successful. K ant rejected th e idea o f a non-em pirical ex p erien ce. M ore or less explicitly this idea o f an intellectual in tu itio n plays an im p o rta n t role in large parts o f th e philosophical trad itio n . H e also related all non-analytic know ledge to em pirical experience. one em pirical and th e o th e r m etaphysical. A gainst the em piricist th e linguistic analyst can arg u e th a t in language we actually have a sp h ere o f th e a priori as this was ju s t described: we know w hat o u r linguistic expressions m ean w ithout always being able to articulate w hat we thus know . In o u r tim e it has been taken u p and theoretically developed by p h enom enology. w here we succeed th e re resu lt analytic statem ents. W ith referen c e to the explanation o f the subject-m atter o f philosophy ju s t given this m eans th at th e know ledge p resu p p o se d in all u n d e rsta n d in g is to be u n d ersto o d as know ledge o f th e m eaning o f the linguistic expressions in which u n d e rsta n d in g is articulated. B ut on w hat should a synthetic a priori rest? It seems th a t o n e m ust conceive.A question of method 9 raised to it boils dow n to. Plato and A ristotle called this intellectual intuition nous.

T h e last reflection serves to draw o u r atte n tio n to a questio n ab le assum ption which th e line o f th o u g h t p u rsu e d so fa r sh ares with th e trad itio n al conception o f philosophy. T h is how ever is to touch o n a question which po in ts ah ead an d which o n e is unlikely to m ake p ro g ress with in th e co n fro n tatio n with . In o n e ’s first co n fro n tatio n w ith th e specifically philosophical. it does n ot follow th a t it is m e an in g fu l to set th e sp h e re o f th e a priori o ver against th e sp h e re o f th e em pirical as a self-contained sp h e re o f know ledge. T h is is why one points away fro m w ords to th in g s w ith o u t co n sid erin g th a t p hilosophy does n o t relate to things in th e way th e sciences do. S um m arizing we can say: su p p o sin g (a) th a t th e critique o f th e K a n t­ ian conception o f a synthetic a priori (which I have h e re m erely h in te d at) h ad b ee n ca rrie d th ro u g h a n d (b) th at th e id ea o f an intellectual in tu itio n h a d been re fu te d . T h u s o ne can say th a t w hat K ant has d o n e is to analyse a ce rtain co n c ep t o f experience. T o th e ‘conditions o f th e possibility’ o f ex p erien ce belongs precisely w hat is analytically co n tain ed in th e m e a n ­ ing o f ‘e x p e rie n c e ’. th a t is. F or philosophy th e d em an d th a t we sh o u ld tu rn o u r atten tio n to th e things can only m ean : th a t we should conceive o f th e a priori su b ­ je c t-m a tte r in connection with experience. it is m erely fre e d fro m a naive m isu n d ersta n d in g . a priori subject-m atter o n e is easily m isled in to tra n sfe rrin g to it th e stru ctu res w hich a re fam iliar fro m scientific o r even pre-scientific know ledge. A nd even w hen this is ad m itte d th e re is a tem p ta tio n to distinguish th e things o f philosophy a n d th e ir m ode o f availability fro m em pirical things b u t n o netheless to conceive o f th e m by analogy with em pirical things. T h e philosophical su b ject-m atter is n ot s u r re n ­ d e re d in th e language-analytical conception. th en th e language-analytical co n cep tio n o f d o in g philosophy w ould have b ee n show n to be the co rrect. th a t th e a priori is characteristic o f philosophy. way o f d o in g philosophy. T h e d a n g e r o f losing c o n ­ tact with th e things (an d th a t m eans: with experien ce) arises precisely w hen a philosophy constructs in th e a priori sp h e re its ow n fictitious w orld o f things with its ow n non-em p irical m o d e o f access. because only possible. N o r does it follow th a t it is m e an in g fu l to distinguish fro m th e em pirical sciences an exclusively a priori en q u iry an d subjectm a tte r called philosophy. Precisely if ex p erien ce is th e only subject-m atter fo r p h ilosop h y th e n w hat is sp e­ cifically philosophical can only be linguistic analysis.Introduction 10 also be in te rp re te d as analytic. A ssum ing. Even if th e existence o f an a priori a n d its distinction fro m th e em pirical seem s u n d en iab le .

Sim ilarly. O nly o n th e basis o f such a co n cep tio n co u ld it be d ec id e d in w h at way a priori an d em p irical e n q u iry are to be com bined. B u t fro m w h e re does language-analytical p h ilo so p h y get its criteria fo r d ec id in g w hich w ords. T h e p rim a ry aim o f th e line o f th o u g h t p u rsu e d so fa r has b een to m a k e us realize th a t we h av e n o t yet arriv ed at a definite co n cep tio n o f ph ilo so p h y (even if we d o n o t q u estio n th e p re su p p o sitio n o f a p u re ly a priori co n cep tio n o f p h ilosophy). W e m u st n o t d isre g a rd this q u estio n . ‘A b ach elo r is u n m a rrie d ’) as b e lo n g in g to p h ilo so p h y . I f o n e looks at th e lan g uage-an aly tical lite ra tu re o n e notices th a t it is n o t ju s t any w ords w hose m e an in g is in v estig ated . W e have yet to see w h e th e r in th e very idea o f a language-analytical p hilosophy th e re m ay n o t be co n tain e d a u n ita ry fu n d a m e n ta l question. A nd at th e p re se n t stage o f o u r a rg u ­ m e n t it ca n n o t be tackled at all. it does n o t suffice fo r its specific definition. th e objection only applies to th e ex istin g lan g u ag eanalytical lite ra tu re . th e sp h e re o f logic a n d m athem atics.g. in th e way previously in d icated . an d linguistic stru c tu re s a re to be analysed? O bviously to a large e x te n t fro m its o rie n ta tio n to w ard s tra d itio n a l philosophical disciplines an d prob lem s. We clearly do n o t w an t to re g a rd all analytic statem ents which re st o n som e d efin itio n o r o th e r (e. th e re m a in in g s p h e re o f th e a priori does n o t a m o u n t to a unified su b ject-m atter. fo r we do n o t yet possess a u n ita ry co n c ep tio n o f philosophy. In so fa r as this is so th e objection th a t th e language-analytical p ositio n is only a m e th o d a n d does n o t possess a unified ce n tral q u estio n o f its ow n a p p e a rs ju stified . th o u g h it m u st b e b o rn e in m in d as a q u estio n th a t has yet to be decid ed . types o f w o rd . F or even if we exclude. H ow ever. th e notions o f m eaning-analysis a n d analyticity d o n o t su f­ fice to p ro v id e th e language-analytical co n c ep tio n with a u n ita ry co n ­ cep t o f philosophy. So a p rio rity is at best a g eneric fe a tu re o f ph ilo so p h y . e a rlie r philosophical positions. N o r did e a rlie r co n cep tio n s o f p h ilo s­ o p h y consist sim ply o f th e idea th a t p hilosophical k n o w led g e is a prion.A question of method 11. .

LECTURE 2 A philosopher in search of a conception of philosophy T h e co n fro n ta tio n with ea rlier conceptions of philosophy with which I am b eg in n in g th e in tro d u c tio n to language-analytical philosophy not only has th e aim o f justify in g this way o f doing philosophy. ‘tim e’. ‘b e lie f’. N o n e­ theless we did succeed in taking a first step tow ards justification: the ap p a re n tly superficial idea th a t the m e th o d o f philosophy consists in an analysis o f o u r linguistic u n d e rsta n d in g was show n to be the defensible core o f the trad itio n al conception of th e a priori ch aracter o f philoso­ phy. T h e first th ru st re m a in e d on th e p erip h e ry . exclude em pirical expressions which can be d efin e d in term s o f a com bination o f p ro p erties. as we have seen. H ow ever. ‘tru e ’. We m erely in fe rre d w hat lan g u ag e-an aly t­ ical philosophy is from th e definition o f the nam e. ‘actio n ’. o r w hat is philosophically rele v an t in language. to distinguish d iffe re n t species o f th e analytic. H ow should o n e proceed? O ne could try to m ake distinctions within the sp h e re o f th e a priori. it provides no criterio n fo r d istin­ g u ish in g the philosophically relevant w ords. th e sen­ tence ‘B achelors are u n m a rrie d ’ is analytic because ‘b ach elo r’ is defined as ‘u n m a rrie d m a n ’. W ith this first step we have rea ch ed th e c u rre n t self-u n d e rstan d in g o f language-analytical philosophers. . F o r this we clearly n ee d a definition o f the su b ject-m atter o f philosophy. ‘object’. F or exam ple. fro m w hat is philosophically irrelevant. O ne could try to delim it a class o f expressions which one feels a re n o t em pirical in this sense an d which may be th o u g h t to be som ehow (I am deliberately expressin g m yself in this v ague way) philosophically relevant: w ords such as ‘g o o d ’. ‘m e an in g ’. it is also in te n d e d as a way o f finding its own central question. fo r exam ple. som e­ th in g which is n o t given sim ply by saying th a t th e su b ject-m atter of ph ilosophy is a priori. ‘e x p e rie n c e ’. for. A nd th e idea th at philosophy is a p n o n was sim ply taken over fro m th e trad itio n . this self-u n d e rstan d in g is n o t ad e q u ate. O n e could.

about th e them e. o r fu n d am e n tal question. B u t how are these positions them selves to be justified? T his leads to th e question: how does o ne justify a certain conception o f philosophy in an d fo r itself ra th e r th a n sim ply relative to o th e r conceptions? T h is question we should keep in m in d in the discussion o f th e particu lar conceptions. W e m u st th e re fo re en q u ire directly as to th e them e. T h e se are (1) the concept o f being which was c h a r­ acteristic o f the ancient conception o f philosophy (2) the concepts o f consciousness and experience tow ards which m o d e rn philosophy has been o rien tate d an d (3) th e concept o f reason w hich . Even if by follow ing this p ath one succeeded in arriving at useful distinctions o ne w ould still lack o rien tatio n with respect to the q uestion of which linguistic sph ere is philosophically rel­ evant. T h e o rien tatio n tow ards o th e r perspectives o f philosophical th o u g h t could also have o th e r consequences fo r the sketch of a language-analytical position.stands at the b eg in n in g of o u r philosophical trad itio n . o f philosophy. w hen in te rp re te d language-analytically. T o this en d I shall again choose the m eth o d o f co n fro n tatio n with th e philosophical tra ­ dition. I shall consider in tu rn th re e concepts th a t are ce n tral to traditional philosophy. You m ig h t also ask: can one in the en d really be satisfied with a his­ torical o rien tatio n tow ards existing conceptions of philosophy? Even if it can be show n th a t these traditional conceptions a re only genuinely realized in linguistic analysis this w ould only justify th e lan g u ag e-an a­ lytical m ode of en q u iry relative to these positions. So to this e x te n t the follow ing a tte m p t rem ains consciously incom plete an d one-sided. W e m ust. an d . they yield a fu n d am e n tal q u es­ tion o f language-analytical philosophy. specifically. O f course we cannot with these th re e points o f o rien tatio n exhau st w hat trad itio n can teach us about the fu n d am e n tal philosophical question.In search of a conception of philosophy 13 I shall no t take this path. th o u g h it seem s to m e prom ising an d has yet to be developed. take as o u r sta rtin g -p o in t one o r m o re fu n ­ d am en tal questions o f the philosophical trad itio n an d see w h eth er. o r fu n d a ­ m ental question. T h is tim e we cannot sta rt out fro m a prelim in ary conception of language-analytical philosophy. o f language-analytical philosophy.in th e Socratic question . fo r as far as th e substantive fu n d a m e n ­ tal question is co n c ern ed we do no t have such a conception at o u r disr posal. For to be able to decide this one m ust start fro m a conception of the subject-m atter o f philosophy. an d in this way we shall gradually in tro d u c e ourselves into th e fu n d am e n tal qu estio n o f language-analysis. th e re fo re . . A lready the discussion o f th e first conception will lead to im p o rta n t hints how to answ er this question.

O n e 2 consists in an investigation o f w hat in g en eral is u n d e rsto o d by th e w ord ‘p hilosophy’ . Now it is constitutive o f know ledge th at it is general a n d th a t o n e can give r e a ­ sons fo r w hat is know n. T h e r e is m uch th a t is im p o rta n t fo r o u r u n d e rta k in g (in d ep e n d en tly o f th e o ri­ en tation tow ards being) to be le arn ed from it. if his belief is tru e an d if h e can ju stify it. B ut it is in A ristotle. in p articu la r. H usserl. T h e o th e r starts fro m the fact th a t we m ean by ‘p h ilo so p h y ’ a p re-em i­ n en t. fo r exam ple. a fo rm al indication o f w hat is to be u n d ersto o d by philosophy. seem im plausible.e. I shall th e re fo re p re se n t it in r a th e r m ore detail. It w ould th u s seem r e a ­ sonable to call th a t know ledge ‘philosophy’ w hich possesses those p r o p ­ erties constitutive o f know ledge to th e h ig h est d eg ree. still characterizes his p relim in ary co n c ep ­ tion o f philosophy as th e ‘idea o f a science a n d ultim ately a universal science with an absolute fo u n d a tio n .in A ristotle it is th e w ord ‘w isdom ’. In this line of a rg u m e n t the assertion th a t know ledge is g en eral m ay. It follows from this th a t th e h ig h est know ledge is know ledge based on ultim ate an d the m ost general g ro u n d s. A nd we w ould certainly say th at th e re can also be know ledge o f sin g u lar item s. that we first find an a tte m p t at an in tro d u c tio n to this question as th e fu n d am e n tal question o f philosophy.’1 A ristotle arrives a t this prelim inary conception o f philosophy in tw o ways. believing. T his prelim in ary idea is th a t o f know ledge o f th e h ig h est an d m ost g en eral gro u n d s. T h is prelim inary conception o f p hilosophy as a m ost g eneral a n d ultim ately justifying form of know ledge rem a in ed . an d does n o t m erely believe it. know ing an d q u es­ tio ning all belong to th e sam e level and are as a w hole co n trasted with a low er cognitive capacity h e calls ‘e x p e rien c e’ (empeiria). i. A ristotle first develops a prelim inary idea o f philosophy. sophia. d esp ite variations in in te rp re ta tio n . highest m ode o f know ledge o r enquiry.4 T o u n d e rsta n d A ristotle’s account one m u st bear in m in d th a t h e is n o t speaking o f know ledge in co n tra st to belief o r o pinion. O nly a f u rth e r reflection on how this idea can be concretely realized will lead to a d e f­ inite conception o f philosophy. In term s o f th e distinction A ristotle h e re has in m ind.3 T h e aspect o f justification figures in this definition b u t n ot th a t o f generality. In his in tro ­ d u ction A ristotle n o t only contrasts philosophy with ‘lo w er’ m odes o f .Introduction 14 It was P arm enid es who first posed the question ab o u t being as th e fu n d a m e n ta l question o f philosophy. at th e b eg in ­ ning o f his Metaphysics. largely d o m in a n t in the trad itio n th a t fol­ lowed. Usually know ledge is d istin g u ish ed fro m belief o r opinion: we say o f som eone th a t he know s so m eth in g .

’) an d hen ce also p a rtic u la r (‘som e . . A f u rth e r characteristic o f know ledge in co n trast to ex p erien ce. O nly w hen th e g en eral becom es an object an d stan d s in a d e te rm in a te rela tio n sh ip to th e in dividual is th e re a rela tio n sh ip to th e g en eral. W e can also fo rm u late this m o re precisely as follows. th e re is as yet no distinction betw een ‘all . b u t w hen this co nnection is m ad e explicit in th e belief (or know ledge) th a t ‘w h e n e v e r ^ . By m eans o f p ercep tio n a h u m a n b ein g o r anim al resp o n d s to en v iro n m en ta l stim uli in acco rd an ce with a given b eh a v io u ral schem a. . W e have th e th ird cognitive level. . In a q u ite m o d e rn -so u n d in g discussion he distinguishes th re e levels o f cognitive b e h a v io u r5 (or of th e cognitive c o m p o n e n t o f b ehaviour). b u t this is a quasi-g en erality w hich does n o t yet sta n d in any d efin ite relatio n to singularity an d in w hich. O nly m an possesses a la n g u ag e in w hich th e re are sin g u lar (‘this . acco rd in g to A ristotle. th e re fo re . A h ig h e r cognitive level is th a t which A ris­ totle calls ex perience-capacity a n d which m o d e rn psychology calls learning-capacity: th ro u g h association one learns from ex p erien ce. . h e re g a rd s it as the h ig h e st possibility o f cognitive b eh av ­ iour. says A ristotle. T h e relation to justificatio n is in fact a fe a tu re n o t ju s t o f ‘all’sentences b u t o f all asserto ric sentences.’ can be asked fo r a justification o r hav e his a tte n tio n d raw n to c o u n te r­ reasons.is already g en e ral. . . a n d we can su p p le m e n t this by saying th at only m an possesses a system o f signs in w hich it is possible to fo rm u n iv ersal ‘if . . a n d only w hen an org an ism possesses such a system o f signs can it distinguish betw een singular. T h e lowest level is th a t o f p erc ep tio n .’) sentences. o r we learn th a t if we d o B we achieve A a n d in this way fo rm a new b eh av io u ral schem a. F or this reason it is only th e cognitive level o f k n ow ledge w hich A ristotle characterizes as general. w hen th e re is fo rm e d betw een A a n d B n o t a m erely u n a rtic u la te d association w hich m anifests itself m erely in b eh av io u r. only in m an.’) a n d universal (‘all . T h e associative state o f affairs . W h o ev er asserts ‘all . T h e re p e a te d p e rc e p tio n o f a p h e n o m e n o n A to g e th e r with a p h e n o m e n o n B has th e re su lt th a t w hen A h a p p e n s we ex p ect B. is justification. all assertions in so fa r as they .’ a n d ‘m any . acco rd in g to A ristotle. T h e universality o f an ‘all’-senten ce clearly belongs to a justification-context. th e n B ’ o r th a t ‘all A are B \ W e do n o t find this capacity in th e o th e r anim als.th e co n n ectio n betw een A a n d B . T h e o rg an ism m erely behaves in th e a p p r o ­ p ria te way a n d w hat it has in m ind is th e indiv id u al th in g given in p e r ­ ception. p articu la r a n d universal states o f affairs.In search of a conception o f philosophy 15 know ledge. .th e n ’ sentences o r ‘all’ sentences. . .’ C o n n ected w ith this is th e fact th a t th e g en eral in ‘e x p e ri­ en c e ’ is n o t yet an object. . .

does not involve reasons an d co u n ter-reasons. K now l­ edge. nam ely. th a t by ‘p h ilo so p h y ’. It follows fro m this th a t no science can be re g a rd e d as th e h ighest science which is restricted in its scope an d in its justification. N e v e rth e ­ less we may not find com pelling th e construction o f th e idea o f a h ig h est science o n the basis o f th e two characteristics which resu lt fro m this distinction. B u t w hat does it m ean to say th a t they could be m o re ad eq u ate? M ore a d e q u ate to w hat? We see th a t it w ould only be a m a tte r o f a d isp u te ab o u t w ords. som ething which is n ot tru e o f the p erso n who disposes o f a co rresp o n d in g state of affairs in the m a n n e r o f association on th e basis o f ‘ex p e rien c e’. B u t the p erso n who only believes or d o u b ts ab o u t w hat th e o th e r person knows also stands in a possible justification-context. a p r e ­ e m in en t fo rm o f know ledge. on th e o th e r h a n d . B ut th e re is n o th in g sacred ab o u t this. is m e an t a highest science. We shall now p au se a m o m e n t an d con sid er w hat we can learn fro m this in tro d u c tio n o f a p relim in ary conception re g a rd in g the q u estio n o f how it is possible to in tro d u c e a conception of philosophy. My appeal to traditio n is simply a v arian t (b ro a d e n e d by th e historical dim ension) o f such an ap p e al to a p re lim ­ inary u n d e rsta n d in g . I shall exam ine this connection later. W hat A ris­ totle calls ‘e x p e rie n c e ’. A ristotle arriv ed at his p relim in ary conception o f philosophy by reflecting on (a) w hat o n e u n d e rsta n d s by th e w ord ‘p h ilo so p h y ’ (or ‘w isdom ’) an d (b) a p a rtic u la r aspect o f this u n d e rsta n d in g . it is tru e. sim ­ ply by conceding th a t by a h ig h est science one can at any ra te n o t u n d e rs ta n d a restric ted science. how ever. in co n trast to the p a rtic u la r sciences. B ut is such an ap p e al to th e p relim in ary u n d e r ­ sta n d in g o f th e w ord com pelling? Can we n o t free ourselves from it an d sketch a n o th e r. is distin g u ish ed fro m belief by th e fact th at som eo n e w ho know s so m e th in g can ju stify w hat h e knows. reach th e sam e resu lt m o re directly. So w hen A ristotle refers to justification as a characteristic o f know l­ ed g e h e re too th e co n tra st is n o t with b elief b u t with ex p erien ce. T h e re is no such th in g as the co rrec t m ean in g o f a w ord. p e rh a p s m o re ad eq u ate. O ne can.Introduction 16 m ake a truth-claim . p ro v id ed h e can d istinguish it clearly fro m th e usual m eaning. conception o f philosophy? C ertainly we can sketch o th e r conceptions o f ‘p h ilo so p h y ’. T h e distinction o f the th re e levels o f cognitive capacity th at A ristotle m akes at th e b e g in n in g of his Metaphysics is still not obsolete. the cognitive faculty w hich is not articu la ted in sentences. . A nyone is at liberty to in tro d u c e a n o th e r m ean in g . It is n a tu ra l w hen talking ab o u t ‘philo so p h y ’ to m ean w hat co rresp o n d s to th e o rd i­ n ary p relim in ary u n d e rsta n d in g o f this w ord.

irrespective o f which te rm we use to describe it. th en we m u st in reality m ean som ething else. Let us co n sid er w hat it w ould be like to ask a sim ilar q uestion o f a n o th e r science. a specific sp h ere o f objects. ju st as in th e case o f th e p articu la r sciences we say ‘th e re exists a sp h e re of objects M ’ in th e case o f philosophy we can say ‘th e re exists such-and-such a specific m ode o f know ledge’. In this question o f w hat is to be u n d ersto o d by philosophy. thus at the crucial startin g -p o in t o f o u r enquiry.exists. H e re we are dealing with som eth in g th at is th e re . We would say: o f course it is a verbal question w h eth er a p a r ­ ticular scientific subject-m atter is so called. e. H ow ever. one should ask oneself w h eth e r one does no t in reality m ean som ething d iffe re n t fro m w hat o n e thinks o n e m eans. o r so m ething else’.’ B ut in th a t case w hich m ode o f enquiry o ne engages in w ould be a m a tte r o f arb itra ry choice. a re we to rem a in subject to arbitrarin ess and a boundless re l­ ativism? Does not this a p p e a r wholly incredible? In philosophy if o ne gets into a situation like the p re se n t one.In search of a conception o f philosophy 17 Now this may a p p e a r unsatisfactory. b u t n o t w hat philosophy is. ‘th e re exists . For so long as th e m eaning o f th e w ord is n o t settled th e question: w hat is philoso­ phy? can only m ean: w hat does th e w ord m ean? Probably th en we m ean so m ething else w hen we assum e th at th e m eaning o f ‘philo so p h y ’ cannot be arbitrary. this way o f avoiding m eaning-relativism clearly leads to a fo rm o f dogm atism an d h en ce basically back to relativism . It is possible th a t som eone will now say: ‘Precisely.a m ost g eneral a n d ultim ately justify in g fo rm o f know ledge. If we concede th e w ord ‘philoso p h y ’ to an o p p o n e n t w ho declares th a t he w ould like to m ean som ethin g d iffe re n t by ‘p h i­ losophy’ an d rem ain co n ten t m erely to say ‘b u t th e re exists th e m ode o f enquiry X ’. reg ard less o f w h eth e r we call it philosophy.a h ig h est form o f know ledge. I f th e re fo re th e re is som ething co rrect about o u r feeling th a t the m e a n ­ ing of ‘p hilosophy’ ca n n o t be an y th in g arb itrary . T h e e rro r lies in yo u r language-analytical p ro ce d u re . W e thin k we know th a t the m eaning o f ‘philo so p h y ’ cannot be anything arbitrary .g. A nd we could th e n p erh a p s go on to say: ‘th e re exists —in idea at least . reg ardless o f w h eth e r we call it philosophy o r som ething else’. B ut on the o th e r h a n d it is plainly ab su rd to arg u e ab o u t the correct m ean in g o f a w ord. B u t one could h ardly say th a t philosophy deals with a specific sp h e re o f objects. T h e m ean in g o f th e word ‘philosophy’ may be arb itra ry .3 W hoever talks like this does n o t know w hat he is saying.in idea at least . H ow ever. T h e re thus em erges a difficulty w hich has no parallel in th e o th e r . b u t this subject-m atter .th e study o f plants . th e n oth ers a re free to say: ‘th e re is also th e m ode o f en q u iry Y . botany fo r exam ple.

in th e cognitive as such. as suggestions as to how th e w ord ‘p h ilo so p h y ’ is to be u n d e rsto o d . T h e se suggestions a re to be u n d e rsto o d . T h e n o n -a rb itra rin e ss (and th a t m eans: legitim acy) o f an activity. W h at is given in the case o f a science is sim ply th e sp h e re o f objects. not ju s t historically. p u re th e o ry .8 In this text A ristotle is co n ten t to r e f e r to ex istin g opinions. alread y in p e r ­ ception a n d especially in seeing. W e delight. to philosophy. an d to a p a rtic u la r co n ­ ception o f philosophy. In this case w hat ‘exists’ is no t a s p h e re o f objects. b ut abso­ lutely? T o in tro d u c e som eone to philosophy.6 T o show th a t it is th e cognitive as such to w hich we are m otivated A ristotle believes h e has to isolate th e cognitive fro m th e co n tex t o f b e h a v io u r. is to show th e m otivation to en g ag e in this activ­ ity to be p re -e m in e n t vis-a-vis o th e r motives. as suggestions re g a rd in g th e en g ag in g in a p a rtic u la r fo rm o f enquiry.9 T h is thesis is based o n th e follow ing two prem ises: (1) th a t activity is th e o n e m ost w orth striving afte r w hich is self-sufficient an d im m utable (2) th eo ry is th e activity w hich possesses th ese p ro p ertie s. F ro m th e outset his co nceptual in tro d u c tio n goes h a n d in h a n d with an in tro d u c tio n o f m otivation. secondly (and essentially). In th e case o f philosophy. an d . A co nception o f philo so p h y is to be re g a rd e d as a suggestion to which o th e r suggestions can be o pposed. B u t A ristotle th o u g h t he could show th a t p u re th eo ry is th e activity m ost w orth striving afte r. how ever. thus a p articu la r activity. It is a m otivation. N o r do I know o f any o th e r a rg u m e n t th a t can ju stify th e m o ti­ . h e says. besides h e m erely show s th a t th e re is a m otivation to th e cognitive a n d th a t w ithin th e cognitive sp h e re th e highest m otivation belongs to th e ­ oretical science and. A ristotle already saw it like this in his in tro d u c tio n . relative to a given p relim in ary u n d e rsta n d in g .I ntroduction 18 sciences: fo r th e re we are n o t co n c ern ed to show th a t it is n o t arb itra ry to en g a g e in th e m o d e o f enquiry in question. can only resid e in th e n o n -arb itrarin e ss o f th e motivation fo r engag in g in this activity. T h is provides us with an an sw er to th e q u estion: w hat is it to legitim ate a conception o f philosophy. N e ith e r o f th ese prem ises can seem ev id en t to us today. th e h ig hest possibility o f h ap p in ess. a n d the h ig h e r th e cognitive level th e m o re estim able it is.7 T h e re fo re th e h ig h e st m otivation w ithin th e cognitive sp h e re belongs to know ledge w ithout practical p u rp o se . ultim ately. firstly (and incidentally). I f we are relu c tan t to accept th a t th e w ord ‘p h ilo so p h y ’ stan d s fo r so m e th in g a rb itra ry th e n it w ould a p p e a r th at w h at we m ean is th a t it ca n n o t stand fo r so m eth in g fo r w hich th e re is an arb itra ry m otivation. on th e o th e r h a n d . we a re no t th in k in g o f a p a rtic u la r sp h e re o f objects b u t o f a m o d e o f know ledge or en q u iry . N o r is it a n activity.

this id ea o f a su b stan tiv e un iv ersal science was rejected as u n rea liza b le by A ristotle.as a d ed u c tiv e th eo ry w hich justifies th e p ro p o si­ tions possible in this sp h e re by d ed u c in g th e m fro m th e h ig h est an d most general prem ises in this sp h e re : th e axiom s o f this science. In Metaphysics 1 . W e m u st now ex a m in e how A risto tle gets fro m the p relim in ary co n ­ cep tion o f philo so p h y as a science which (1) is univ ersal a n d (2) ra d ic a l­ izes th e asp ect o f ju stificatio n . (2) T h e A ristotelian in tro d u c ­ tion in term s o f m otivation is n o t convincing.on th e m odel o f geom etry . they a re n o t them selves ju stified . W h e th e r this invalidates th e A ristotelian p relim in ary co n cep tio n . T h e g en erality is lim ited to th e p a rtic u la r sp h e re . as valid fo r everybody. T h e P latonic idea o f philo so p h y as a d ed u c tiv e system based o n a su p re m e p rin cip le. L et m e sum m arise. T h is w ould p ro v id e a co n crete co n cep tio n o f philo so p h y an d its tasks vis-a-vis th e p a rtic u la r sciences th a t co rre sp o n d s exactly to th e p relim in ary co n c ep ­ tion d ev e lo p e d by A ristotle: th e aspects o f h ig h est g en erality a n d u lti­ m ate ju stificatio n coincide in th e idea o f a science w hich d eriv es all know ledge fro m su p re m e prin cip les (= m ost g en e ral g ro u n d s). 2 . th a t o f reaso n (Lec­ tu re 7). he indicates a specific co n crete e la b o ra tio n 10 o f it w hich is clearly P lato n ic:11 every p a rtic u la r science is being conceived . o r w h e th e r it is still possible to p ro v id e a convincing in tro d u c tio n o f this p relim in ary co n cep tio n in term s o f m otivation.In search o f a conception o f philosophy irr vation to p u r e th eo ry as a way o f life w orth striving a fte r fo r its ow n sake. to his p a rtic u la r co n cep tio n o f p h ilo so p h y as e n q u irin g into b ein g o r ‘b ein g as b ein g ’. on th e g ro u n d s th a t it p resu p p o se s a m istak en th e o ry o f science. let alo n e th e o n e m ost w orth striving a fte r. fro m w hich th e p rem ises o f all o th e r p a rtic u la r sciences a re to be d eriv ed . B oth th e ju stificatio n an d th e gen erality possible w ithin th e p a rtic u la r science are lim ited. o r s u p re m e p rinciples. T h is p ersp ectiv e leads to th e id ea o f a h ig h e st science th e task o f w hich w ould be to d eriv e th e p rem ises o f th e p a rtic ­ u la r sciences fro m o n e o r m o re s u p re m e princip les. w here A ristotle in tro d u c es th e p relim in ary co n ­ cep tion. T h e ju stificatio n is lim ited because th e axiom s a re assu m ed as h y p otheses. reta in ed a stro n g attra c tio n in th e su b se q u e n t h istory o f philo so p h y rig h t u p to G erm a n Id ealism with its dialectical system s. T h e u ltim ate su b stan tiv e . a re questions to which I shall be r e tu r n in g in co n ­ n ection w ith th e th ird tra d itio n a l g u id in g n o tio n . (1) T h e u ltim ately decisive in tro d u c tio n o f a c o n ­ ception o f philo so p h y w hich p ro v id es m o re th a n a historical leg itim a­ tion and w hich is n o t relative to a given p relim in ary u n d e rs ta n d in g is an in tro d u c tio n in te rm s o f m otivation. H ow ever.

T his new conception is th a t o f ontology. within the fram ew ork o f this prelim inary conception.12 T h is criticism can be m ad e even m o re strin g en t from a m o d e rn perspective. I f he nevertheless cam e to recognize that this conception is incapable o f realization an d yet w ished to hold fast to his p relim in ary conception. F or A ristode the Platonic conception o f philosophy was th e m ost n a t­ u ral possibility o f giving a concrete sense to his prelim in ary conception.13 T h is contradicts the concep t o f an em pirical sci­ ence which g ro u n d s its propositions so to speak fro m below. a n d not fro m above by referen c e to given prem ises. th e relation o f philosophy to th e sciences in a fu n d am en tally d iffe re n t way. If already w ithin th e p articu la r science th e m ovem ent o f justification is fro m below upw ard s r a th e r than fro m above dow nw ards th e n th e idea o f a radicalization o f substantive justification by derivation from even h ig h e r u p is ru led o u t in advance. A ristotle still accepted th e Pla­ tonic conception o f th e p articu lar science as a deductive theory on the m odel o f g eo m etry . according to A ristotle. by ex p e­ rience. not fu rth e r d eriv ab le. th e n a new ap p ro ach was req u ired which w ould d eterm in e . are ir re d u ­ cible.Introduction 20 prem ises o f the p articu la r sciences. .

can be called being. Can one say that it is also th e task o f the p articu la r science to them atize this object-sphere as such and th e pecul­ iar m ode o f givenness which distinguishes it from o th e r object-spheres? O n e could a rg u e about this. philosophy o f . Each science has to do with a specific sph ere o f objects. e. th a t o f an object. p re-em in en t science.1 W hat distinguishes the concept o f being. ‘T h e r e is a science which studies being as being. T o enable us to u n d e rsta n d the specific ch aracter o f this conception o f philosophy as ontology (and this m eans: a conception th a t is based on th e concept o f being) we can think o f an analogous reflection using a concept o f m o d e rn philosophy. T his conception. is th e subjectm a tte r o f the philosophy o f physics. is th a t it is th e m ost general concept. th at o f physics.g. m athem atics. philosophy o f art. one can say th at th e objectsp h e re as such. Clearly A ristotle arrives at his new conception o f philosophy by d ro p ­ p in g the aspect o f justification from the prelim inary conception devel­ o p ed at the beginn ing an d settling exclusively fo r th e aspect o f highest generality. an d with a specific m ode o f accessibility. Since th e concepts which characterize an object-sphere as such are n o t o f m erely gradually h ig h er generality th a n the concepts within the object-sphere. fo r A ristotle. th e arts. th e re fo re . E verything and anything. leads to the conception o f philosophy as ontology.2 F o r o f everything an d an ything one can say th a t it is. called philosophy. but does not have a justificatory role in relatio n to th e particu lar sciences. is u n i­ versal.LECTURE 3 Ontology and semantics It is at the b eginning o f B ook IV o f his Metaphysics that A ristotle first in troduces his new conception of philosophy. objects o f a specific k ind.’ In d e e d the special ch aracter of this science visa-vis the o th e r sciences is supposed to consist in the fact th a t w hereas th e latter investigate a p articu lar sp h e re o f being philosophy investi­ gates being as b eing. T h e highest. since it is orien tated tow ards the concept o f being {on).

T h e se are th e expressions which can fu n c­ . p o in tin g o u t th a t th e re exist objects th a t a re not. an d to this en d th e re is no altern ativ e b u t to go back even fu rth e r to th e linguistic b ack g ro u n d . ab o u t which I shall speak later. events or n u m b e rs and o th e r abstract objects. difficulties arise h e re .an d th e n only those which are n o t persons . because o f everythin g it is significant to say th a t it is. a n d h ere we can also say: to stand fo r som ething. O n e could d o u b t this. a n d n o t e. B ut one can go fu rth e r a n d ask: w hat is m eant by an object as such. T h e re is a class o f linguistic expressions w hich are used to stand fo r an object. how ­ ever. in abstraction fro m a p articu la r s p h e re o f objects? In this way one arrives at the q u estion ab o u t objects as objects. O ne could say: by ‘object’ is m e a n t everything th a t is som ething. objects o f phantasy. W hereas fo r us th e expression ‘bein g ’ (‘Seiendes1 is a p h ilo ­ ) sophical term o f art.. W e m u st try to avoid such u n g ra m m a ti­ cal expressions. is a term o f art. In o rd in a ry la n g u ag e we are inclined to call only m aterial objects . ju s t as previously o n e arrived at the questio n ab o u t beings as beings.g. alth o u g h th e n again o n e does speak o f the object o f a discussion. H ow ever. W hat is m eant by ‘objects’ in philos­ ophy has its basis n o t in w hat we call objects in o rd in ary lan g u ag e b ut in w hat we m ean by the w ord ‘so m e th in g ’ in o rd in ary language. e.. A re we h ere d ealin g with two analogous questions o r do b oth ques­ tions have th e sam e m eaning? Obviously this d e p e n d s on w h e th e r or n o t th e two expressions ‘b e in g ’ and ‘object’ have rou g h ly th e sam e m eaning. e.Introduction 22 m athem atics. because th e w ord ‘so m e th in g ’ is n o t a predicate.g.4 As ‘b ein g ’ (on) is th e participle o f th e verb ‘to b e ’ (einai). this form ulation is linguistically faulty.g. in th e com ­ p reh e n siv e sense in which it is used in philosophy.objects. a n d th e w ord ‘is’ is notoriously am biguous. th e G reek p hilosophers w ere able to take the ex pression ‘on fro m o rd in a ry lan g u ag e. N onetheless philo so p h ers have freq u en tly talked like this in th e trad itio n . B ut to this o n e could rep ly th at by saying ‘they ex ist’ one says o f them th a t they are. N ow w hat is m e a n t by th e w ord ‘object’? T his w o rd too. At p rese n t. T h u s it seem s th at even those objects which in a certain sense are n o t in a n o th e r sense som ehow are. we can confin e ourselves to the characterizatio n ju s t given: every­ th in g a n d a n y th in g is a being. b u t an indefinite p ro n o u n . T h u s A ristotle. T h e e r r o r o f sp eak in g in such a way w ould becom e even m ore strikingly evid en t w ere o n e to say: an object is a som ething. H usserl called such a them atization o f an o b ject-sp h ere a ‘reg io n al ontology’. coined th e e x p re s­ sion ‘a this’ (tode ti) fo r ‘object’.3 W hat is discussed in such an ontology is w hat it is to be an object o f th e relev an t sphere.

instead o f ‘the sam e’. T h e follow ing c rite rio n suggests itself: an expression X is a sin g u lar term if.5 A nd A ristotle too d efin e d his co n c ep t of an object by m eans o f the co n cep t of the hypokeimenon. O bviously th e m ode o f e m p lo y m e n t o f sin g u lar term s is co n n ected with a system o f p ro n o m in a l ex pressio n s which can take th e ir place (pro-nom ina!): ‘so m e th in g ’. ‘w hich?’. If the w ord ‘object’ is used so bro ad ly . O nly la ter will I ex am in e th e in tim ate connection betw een th e w ords ‘so m e th in g ’ an d ‘th e sam e’. is a sin g u lar term . e. ‘th e sam e object’. nam ely th a t fo r which th e ex p ressio n ‘th e n u m b e r 3’ stands. o n e can d e d u c e fro m this sentence a n o th e r sen tence in w hich X is rep laced by ‘so m e th in g ’ (or ‘so m eb o d y ’).Ontology and semantics 23 tion as th e sentence-subject in so-called sin g u lar pred icativ e statem en ts a n d w hich in logic have also b een called singular terms. V h ic h ’. ‘th e sam e’. H ence. th e subject o f p red ic atio n s. trivially. W e are thus m oving in a circle and re q u ire an in d e p e n d e n t c riterio n fo r recognizing sin g u ­ lar term s. B ut even now I can p o in t o u t that. or th e sin g u lar te rm s w hich replace th e m . o n e could also use th e id entity-sign as a criterio n o f sin g u lar term s: an expression is a sin g u lar te rm if it can stan d on e ith e r side o f ‘is the sam e as’ (or ‘= ’). w hen it is s u p p le m e n te d by a n o th e r ex p ressio n to fo rm a w hole assertoric sentence. T h e thesis th a t o f ev e ry th in g a n d a n y th in g we can say ‘it is’ m e an s-so m e th in g like: w hatever so m eth in g m ay be at any rate it is. A nd each o f these p ro n o u n s we can. T h e elu cid atio n o f th e concept o f an object by rec o u rse to sin g u lar term s is certainly also to be fo u n d p rio r to lan g uage-analytical philo so p h y . T h u s H usserl d eterm in e s th e b re a d th in w hich he w ishes th e co n c ep t ‘object’ to be u n d e rsto o d by defin in g it as follows: ‘any subject o f possible tru e p red ic atio n s’. an d . a n d we can now ad d by way o f elucidation: som eth in g . ‘som e o b ject’. instead o f ‘w hich’.7 By this criterio n ‘the n u m b e r 3’.. ‘w hich ob ject’. instead o f ‘so m e th in g ’. alread y ac co rd in g to A ristotle th e con cep t o f being was intim ately co n n ected n o t only with th a t o f unity b u t also w ith th a t . is clearly directly co n ­ nected with th at o f ‘b ein g ’. as th u s d e te rm in e d . in stea d o f th e criterio n ju s t m e n ­ tio ned. fo r fro m the sen ten ce ‘T h e n u m b e r 3 is sm aller th a n th e n u m b e r 4 ’ th e re follows th e sentence ‘S o m eth in g is sm aller th an th e n u m b e r 4 ’. Now it w ould seem n a tu ra l to d istinguish sin g u lar p redicative statem en ts fro m o th e r pred icativ e sta te m en ts by saying th at they are those w hich have a sin g u lar te rm as th e ir subject. th e n it has th e b ro ad sense in te n d e d in philosophy.6 B u t w hat is m e a n t by this rem a in s u n c le a r so long as it is n ot specified w hat is to be u n d e rsto o d by a sin g u lar p red icativ e sta te m en t a n d by its subject. by saying. su p p le m e n t by th e w ord ‘object’.g. th u s if its m e an in g is yielded by th e use o f these p ro n o u n s.8 T h e notion o f ‘objects’.

the su bject-m atter o f ontology is not to be sought in a tra n sc e n d e n t dom ain (for w here should this be?). B ut now w hat is m e a n t by ‘fo rm alizatio n ’ in co n trast to ‘g en eraliza­ tio n ’? H usserl did not elab o rate this an d A ristotle did n o t even explicitly m ake th e distinction.Introduction 24 o f so m eth in g (ti)\ a n d this connection . Being (Sein). W ith this A ristotle explicitly m ark ed o u t fo r the first tim e a them atic field which was already in Plato. B ut how can o ne th em atize such a th in g as being as being. H usserl drew atten tio n . begins to take shape. Clearly this field o f th e form al is a field o f a priori. em pirically). aliquid. objecthood. a n a ­ lytic know ledge (we have ju st seen th a t we can n o t arrive at the concepts in question inductively. B ut n o r do we reach it by abstraction. So we do not arrive at w hat we m ean by ‘an object’. o r by the e x p re s­ sion ‘so m e th in g ’. W hereas th e p articu la r sciences are co ncerned with the objects o f a dom ain an d th e ir p ro p erties.was also reta in ed in Scholasticism u n d e r th e titles ens. as ontology it them atizes th a t which all sci­ ences form ally p resu p p o se . A nd equally it is clear th a t h e re th e d em arcatio n o f a narrower field w ithin th e analytic. being as being. in co n trast to th e ‘regional ontologies’. ‘form al o n to lo g y ’. because if it is som ething th e n it is eo ipso an object. T h u s with th e conception o f philosophy as ontology th e rela tio n o f the highest science to the p a rtic ­ u la r sciences is d e te rm in e d in a new way vis-a-vis the Platonic co n cep ­ tion: philosophy no lo n g e r em braces the p articu la r sciences as reg a rd s th e ir co n ten t. W e can see this if we reflect on th e p e c u ­ liar certainty o f th e statem en t ‘E v erything is a bein g ’ o r ‘E verything is an object. we have no t arrived at it by co m p arin g m any objects an d progressive abstraction. th o u g h only im plicitly. O n e could provisionally describe it by saying th a t it p resu p p o se s a m ove o f reflection. but form ally. fo r alth o u g h we find objects in experien ce we do n o t find the object as object. ra th e r than principles fro m which th e ir p ropositions could be derived. th e n it w ould be conceivable th a t th e re m ight still be som ething which we h ad not so far co nsidered th a t could no t be te rm e d an object. w hich we m issed w hen discussing th e analytic c h a ra c te r of philosophy. objects as objects? W here an d in w hat way do we find such a thing? Clearly n o t in ex perience. unum. B ut th e n the only altern ativ e is th at on e arrives at this subject-m atter by reflecting on th e m a n n e r o f o u r r e f e r ­ . B ut this possibility is excluded a priori. by abstraction.’ Clearly th e certainty o f this statem en t is no m ere inductive o r hypothetical certainty. For if th at w ere so. in this co n n ec­ tion. to th e distinction betw een ‘g en eralizatio n ’ an d ‘fo rm alizatio n ’9 an d called th e them atizatio n of th e object as object.th a t every b eing is also som e­ th ing an d o ne and vice versa .

T his is clearly to say so m ething com pletely general. or the c o rresp o n d in g concepts. in language. concepts. we arrive at the pred icate ‘classification-expression’. o r th e p red icate ‘p re d ic a te ’.Ontology and semantics 25 ence to objects. in explaining generalization. an d . progressive abstrac­ tion clearly rests on the fact th at we can subsum e concepts u n d e r o th er.w hose m ode o f em ploym ent is such th a t by m eans o f th em we are able to re fe r to som ething. C oncepts a re principles o f classification an d to th e m th e re co rresp o n d . In contrast to the previously n am ed predicates. B ut now this is a p ro ­ c e d u re o f basically the sam e kind as th a t by which we a rriv ed at th e . Such a m ode of en q u iry was only developed in th e m od­ e rn period an d that explains why it was not possible fo r A ristotle to use a concept such as that o f form alization. B ut it is clearly n o t simply gradually m ore general th a n any o f th e predicates o r concepts them selves. ‘G e rm a n ’. referen c e to objects by m eans o f linguistic expressions. or classification-principle. viz. by reflecting on th e m ode o f em p lo y m en t o f those o r o f any predicates. does n o t belong to a series o f th e kind I have ju st p rese n ted . to objects? W e becam e acquainted with one possibility in th e attem p t to fix the philosophical co ncept o f an object. which fall u n d e r th e descrip­ tion ‘classification-principle’ or ‘classification-expression’. Now one can say o f each of these predicates. th e re fo re . th en to the question ‘how can one them atize som ething like th e objecthood o f objects (or being qua being)?’ it w ould seem plausible to answ er: only by reflecting on the use o f th e co rresp o n d in g linguistic expressions. fo r it applies to all predicates. ‘h u m a n ’. a n d th at m eans: by reflecting on th e m ode o f em ploym ent o f a species o f linguistic expression. o r to which th e predicates are applicable. because it is applicable to all objects to which th e p reced in g o n e is applicable. accordingly. W hat I have called. can be called classification-expressions. th a t it is a classification-expression. the w ord ‘so m eth in g ’ and o th e r p ro n o u n s. T h e re is a specific class o f linguistic expressions . w hereas the converse is not th e case. to an object. H ere th e next p red icate is m o re g eneral th a n the p re ­ ceding one. F rom th e linguistic perspective we can at any rate give a definite m eaning to th e distinction betw een generalization an d form alization. o r co n ­ cepts. A nd if we can only specify w hat is m e an t by the philosophical concept o f an object by recourse to sin gular term s. or can we refer. ‘spatiotem p o ral object’. T h e question now arises: in w hat way do we re fe r. which. the so-called general terms o r pred­ icates. m o re general. which a re applicable to objects. ‘living th in g ’. F o r it is the concepts o r predicates them selves a n d n o t the objects which fall u n d e r th e concepts.10 An ex am ple o f a progressive abstraction would be th e series o f predicates: ‘native o f th e P alatinate’.singular term s .

fo r th e fo rm e r can n o t be defined in d e p e n ­ d ently o f m eaning.Introduction 26 p red ic ate ‘singular te rm ’ o r ‘expression which stands fo r an object’. i. w hereas w ithin philosophical sem antics it has been. th e d o m in a n t one. and th at o n e can only explain w hat is m e an t by ‘objects’ by re f­ e re n ce to th e use of singular term s. ‘S tru c tu ral com position’ m eans that th e com position is ruleg overned: the sm aller units cannot be com bined with others arbitrarily b u t only in so fa r as they are elem ents o f certain classes. ra th e r they a re sem antic classes which a re defined in term s o f th e sort o f co n trib u tio n the m e an in g o f th e ir elem ents m akes to the m eaning o f a la rg e r u n it.e.e. Now at th e level o f the com bination o f m eaning-bearing units to fo rm sentences th e re are two possible m odes of analysis: on th e o n e h an d . ra th e r they are d eterm in e d exclusively by th e so-called principle o f ‘d istrib u tio n ’. B u t in w hat sense is this reflection on the m od e o f em plo y m en t o f expressions to be u n d e rsto o d as form alization? A b rie f indication o f linguistic distinctions is h e re req u ired . th e syntac­ tical which investigates th e ex tern al o r ‘su rface’ com position o f sen­ tences and has re g a rd n e ith e r to the m ean in g o f the sentences n o r to th a t o f the sentence-com ponents. T h e concept o f fo rm is clearly closely connected with th a t o f stru ctu re. i. since Frege. o r in term s o f th e elem ents o f o th e r sem antic classes with w hich they can be com ­ b ined. w ords or m o rp h em es an d (b) th a t o f th e com bination o f m o rp h em es to form sentences. th e substitutability o f their elem ents for o n e an o th er. ultim ately a sentence. H ere it can be a m a tte r eith er o f the m ean in g o f th e individual w ords o r o f how th e m eaning o f sentences d e p e n d s on th e m eanings o f th eir p arts. T h e classes o f sentence-parts to which one m u st re fe r in this m ode o f enquiry are not th e classes o f syntactic sentence-parts. o r by the so rt o f co n trib u tio n they . By con trast o ne calls ‘sem antic’ any m ode o f analysis w hich concerns the meaning o f linguistic expressions. Now the specifically language-analytical position w ould be th a t o n e can only explain w hat is m e an t by ‘concepts’ by referen c e to the use o f p re d ­ icates. T h e classes o f sen ten ce-co m p o n en t a re n o t defined sem antically. th e only condition bein g th at th e resu lt m ust also be a sentence. In lin­ guistics it was only a few years ago th a t atten tio n began to be paid to this second m o d e o f enquiry. T h e reason why th e definition o f singular term s is so involved is because o n e is dealing n o t with a syntactically definable class b u t with a sem antic class which is defined by th e m ode o f em ploym ent o f the expressions. As exam ples o f such sem antic classes on e can m ention both sin­ g u la r and general term s. O u r linguistic expressions are structurally com posite at two levels: (a) that o f the com bination of p h o n em es to fo rm the sm allest m ean in g -b earin g units.

O n e can show this by m eans o f th e sym ­ bolization I have ju s t illustrated. th e syntactic and th e sem antic . You could point o u t th a t I have now only d escrib ed w hat is m ean t by ‘fo rm al’ a n d ‘fo rm alizatio n ’ w ithin sem antics in term s o f th e contrast with m aterial sem antic questions.g. T h e m aterial sem anticist can en q u ire ab o u t th e meaning o f this a n d o th e r expressions. with th e expression ‘th e m o o n ’ he refers to th e m oon. It seem s n a tu ra l.g. ‘P eter hits P aul’) by ‘ Fab’. T h ese two things m ust in d e e d be d istin g u ish ed . ‘P ete r is crying’) by ‘F a. they are. a n d th at it is n o t clear w h e th e r this distinction co rresp o n d s to th e distinction betw een fo rm a l­ ization and generalization. H ow precisely this is to be u n d e rsto o d will occupy us at length later on. an d that o f a p redicativ e sentence with two sin g u lar term s (e. th en o n e does so precisely by form alizing th e m aterial su b ject-m atter o f th e sem anticist . it w ould be a th em atizatio n o f th eir sem antic form . connected. with th e u n d e rsta n d in g th a t these stan d fo r an a rb itra ry expression o f a sem antic class. F orm al sem antics arrives at its subject-m atter th ro u g h a process o f fo r­ m alization which is linguistically sym bolized by rep la cin g th e m aterial exp ressions by variables. th e re ­ fore.g. F \ £ fo r g en e ral term s an d can then G’ ex h ibit th e form o f a predicative senten ce with o n e sin g u lar te rm (e. ‘b’.Ontology and semantics 27 m ake to th e m e an in g o f a sentence. th e n it w ould be clear w hat is m ean t by ‘fo rm ali­ zatio n ’. how ever. fo r the com bination o f an expressio n which stan d s fo r an object with a classification-expression yields a (singular) p redicative assertoric sentence. an d th e ir p ro p e rtie s. th e category o f object by reflecting on th e c o rre sp o n d in g linguistic expressions. am o n g o th e r sen ­ tences. F or th e th em atization in question w ould n o t be ju s t any th e ­ m atization o f linguistic expressions. thus betw een a fo rm a l an d a m aterial ap p ro a ch to objects. In this way th e sem antic form o f a com posite expression can be exhibited. T h e scientist w ho is d ea lin g w ith objects o f a certain sph ere. T h e se two sem antic classes also p ro v id e a sim ple exam ple o f th e com bination o f th e elem en ts o f two sem antic classes. o n e can use th e letters ‘a . to distinguish betw een m aterial {inhaltlich) a n d fo rm al sem antics.form al. V for sin g u lar term s. th u s if one asks w hat in g en e ral it m eans to re fe r to an object a n d w hat in g en eral it m eans to speak o f an object (‘w hat an object qua object “is” ’). T h u s if it sh o u ld be tru e th a t we can only arriv e at.g. e. e.th e p h o ­ netic. uses. B u t w hen o n e fo rm a l­ izes w hat th e scientist (or any o th e r la n g u ag e-u ser) is d o in g w hen h e re fers with this singular te rm to this object. sentences o f th e fo rm ‘ a. W ith th e sin g u lar term s w hich h e F uses in place o f ‘a h e re fe rs to certain objects. a n d can only th em atize. Now o ne can call any stru ctu ra l them atizatio n o f lan g u ag e .

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an d asking ab o u t th e form al m ean in g o f singular term s. O bjectual fo r­ m alization finds its sense in sem antic form alization. I f this should be th e only possible way o f u n d e rsta n d in g th e form alization-step by w hich ontology is constituted, th e n o n e w ould have already show n th a t ontology is only realizable in a language-analytical p h ilosophy u n d e rsto o d as form al sem antics.11 A t this stage o f o u r reflections I can n o t yet assert so m uch. In discussing th e m o d ern , socalled tra n sc e n d e n ta l concept of philosophy we shall b ecom e ac q u ain ted with a n o th e r kind o f reflection in which re fe re n c e to objects is not u n d e rsto o d linguistically; an d only m uch later will I really attack this trad itio n al m o d e rn conception (Lectures 20 an d 27). So fa r only this m uch has b een said: (I) fo r A ristotle, an d with h im th e w hole p r e ­ m o d e rn ontology, th e re was no possibility o f exp lain in g w hat d istin ­ guishes th e form al concepts investigated in ontology fro m o th e r co n ­ cepts. (2) T h e rec o u rse to form al sem antics offers at least one possibility o f ex p lain in g this distinction. You will have felt it to be problem atic th a t fo r the A ristotelian co n ­ cept o f being I su b stitu ted th e concept o f an object, an d th a t I o rie n ta te d m yself exclusively tow ards th e latter. My reason for p ro ce ed in g in this way is th a t th e con cep t o f an object is less am biguous an d that, conse­ quently, certain aspects o f w hat is m ean t by ‘b ein g ’ can be b ro u g h t o u t by it m o re clearly. B u t w hen o n e p roceeds in this way essential p e rsp e c ­ tives o f th e trad itio n al ontology rem ain u n h e e d e d . W h at m akes th e ex pression ‘b ein g ’ so difficult is its connection with th e am biguous v e r­ bal ex p ressio n ‘is’. F o r th e tim e being it will suffice to a tte n d to two o f this w o rd ’s various m odes o f em ploym ent. W e som etim es use th e w ord ‘is’, th o u g h ad m itte d ly ra th e r seldom , with a sing u lar te rm o r a p ro ­ n o u n a n d w ithout a su p p le m e n tin g p red ic ate ex p ressio n (e.g. in th e sen tence ‘G od is’). H e re it m eans ‘exists’. A second m o d e o f em p lo y ­ m ent, an d th e on e w hich is m ost fre q u e n t in o u r lan g u ag e, is as th e socalled cop u la in a predicative sentence (e.g. ‘T h e sky is b lu e’). N ow it w ould seem th a t w hen o ne speaks o f ‘a b ein g ’ only th e use o f ‘is’ in th e sense o f ‘exists’ is involved, fo r ‘a b ein g ’ m eans ‘so m eth in g which is’, th u s th e w ord ‘is’ is h e re used w ithout a su p p le m e n tin g p redicateex pression. So w hereas th e ex pression ‘is’ is used am biguously, th e su b ­ stantival expression ‘b ein g ’ seem s to be univocal an d have th e sense ‘ex iste n t’. W e m ust be all the m o re su rp rised th e n w hen we find th a t in his ontology A ristotle is p rim arily o rien tate d tow ards th e copulative ‘is’. A nd it m u st seem even m o re su rp risin g th a t h e u n d e rsta n d s this ‘is’ as th e ‘is’ o f a ‘b ein g ’12 a n d th at he takes the ‘b ein g ’ to b e th a t for which

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the predicate stands, hence the being-thus-and-so {das So-seiend-Sein) o f th e object. O ne could try to in te rp re t this in a harm less way: why sh o u ld not th e predicate in a sentence like ‘T h e sky is blue’ also stand fo r som ething, in this case th e blueness o f the sky? T his conception w ould be co m p ar­ atively harm less because som ething like blueness is in d e ed an object (som ething) an d thus could also be designated as a being. O u r criterion o f objects fits: th e expression ‘th e blueness’ is a singular term . B u t in m oving from ‘T h e sky is b lue’ to ‘th e blueness o f the sky’ we have to ch ange th e fo rm o f th e expression; the p red icate ‘is b lu e ’ has b een ch an g ed by a so-called nom inalization into th e singular te rm ‘the b lu e­ ness’. A nd since singular term s an d predicates are sem antic classes, we m u st also u n d e rsta n d this gram m atical change as on e o f sem antic form . L ater I will show th a t th e nom inalized form is sem antically secondary relative to th e predicative form . I ca n n o t assum e this h ere. B u t th en I do no t need to, for A ristotle him self, in his d eb ate with Plato, does n o t m erely re g a rd objects like blueness, hence abstract objects, as sec­ on dary; he rejects th em altogether. W hatever o n e ’s attitu d e may be to th e Platonic p roblem o f th e relation o f th e blueness o f an individual object to th e blueness as such, A ristotle rejects no t only th e latter b u t also the fo rm e r.13 For him such abstract objects do not exist, only co n ­ crete objects with th e ir predicative determ in atio n s. A ristotle was ce r­ tainly too casual in his ap p ro ach to th e com plicated pro b lem o f abstract objects. H e was, how ever, u n d o u b te d ly right to reject the red u c tio n o f p redicative d eterm in a tio n s to abstract objects. Even if o n e accepts ab stract objects, they in th e ir tu rn have predicative d eterm in atio n s. B ut how should on e positively u n d e rsta n d predicative d e te rm in a ­ tions if they are no t objects? If one appro ach es th e problem im partially th e n I th in k one has to say: if we divide a singular predicative sentence into its sem antic com ponents both o f them - th e singular te rm an d th e pred icate - have a m eaning, i.e. we u n d e rsta n d both o f th em ; b u t only o n e of them - th e singular term - stands for an object. If only singular term s stand fo r objects th e n it seems to follow th a t form alization o f th e linguistic expressions reaches fu rth e r th a n th e form alization o f objects. A n explicitly sem antic enquiry was, how ever, u nknow n to A ristotle. T h is is why h e called predicative d eterm in atio n s both onta (beings) an d legomena (som ething said ).14 In th e M iddle Ages this u n d ecid ed n ess becam e the sta rtin g -p o in t o f th e nom inalism controversy. A ristotle re fu se d to follow Plato in trea tin g th e m eaning o f predicates as an in d e ­ p e n d e n t object. H ow ever, because h e failed to perceive th e sem antic

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dim ension he inevitably objectified th e ir m eaning. T h e result is a pecu­ liar extension o f th e concept o f being (on). It is — to g e th er with the concepts o f th e o n e an d o f som ething - m ore com p reh en siv e th an th at o f an object (tode ti). T h e title ‘o ntology’ now begins to iridesce. It would have an unequivocal sense if one w ere to define it, as I initially did, an d as is usual in analytical philosophy, in term s o f the con cep t o f an object, or, which am ounts to th e sam e thing, in term s o f th e concept o f being in th e sense o f existence; ‘ontology’ would then m ean ‘theory o f objects’. In contrast to this the introduction o f ontology by A ristotle, which becam e sta n d ard in the tradition, contains a tension which was not resolved in th e tradition. T his tension is a consequence o f A ristotle’s d u al orien tatio n : on the one h and, to th e - objectual - fo rm u la ‘being as b ein g ’; on th e o th e r h an d , to the verbal form ‘is’. H e lets him self be g u id ed by this verbal form even w here it does n o t co nnote bein g in the sense o f existence, i.e. w here th e ‘is’ is not the ‘is’ o f a being; an d since the fo rm u la ‘bein g as being’ nonetheless rem ains th e gu id in g principle, th e form alizing ap p ro ach , which in itself would have led away from the restriction to th e problem o f objects, is again being cast into an objectual term inology. A ristotelian ontology transcends th e form al th eo ry of objects in th e d irection o f a form al sem antics, b u t in such a way that w hat em erges is m isin te rp rete d in term s o f an object-o rien ted p ersp ec­ tive, ow ing to th e lack o f aw areness o f the sem antic dim ension. T h u s if one views the traditional elaboration, essentially d eterm in e d by A ristotle, o f th e idea o f a philosophical fu n d am e n tal discipline as ontology fro m a language-analytical perspective (one o f reflection on th e m eaning o f words) it tu rn s out to be unsatisfactory in re g a rd to both o f th e aspects in A ristotle’s p relim inary conception o f philosophy. Firstly, in re g a rd to its justification: the object-orientated A ristotelian fo r­ m al discipline lacks a fo u n d atio n in a m ethod o f reflection; such a fo u n ­ d atio n w ould be p rovided by a form al sem antics (though w h eth e r this is th e only possible fo u n d atio n we do n o t yet know). Secondly, in reg ard to its scope: its claim to universality could only seem convincing so long as o n e rem a in ed o rien tate d to objects. B ut the o rien tatio n to everything (and that m eans: to all objects) ap p e ars itself restricted as soon as on e focusses on th e realm o f th e form al itself. T h e perspective on objects th e n co rresp o n d s to ju s t one sem antic form am o n g others. T h e r e are two aspects o f this critique o f ontology from a languageanalytical p o in t o f view w hich I m ust particularly em phasize. Firstly, th e critique is not an external one. Both defects re p re s e n t im m an e n t diffi­ culties. T h e language-analytical perspective was n o t necessary to show

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th em u p , b u t only to rem ove them . Secondly, this critique has positive consequences fo r th e question o f linguistic analysis as reg a rd s its own co n ception o f philosophy. W e d id n o t u n d e rta k e th e c o n fro n tatio n with th e trad itio n al basic conceptions m erely in o rd e r to be able to co n trast the language-analytical conception o f philosophy with them . R a th e r we did so in o rd e r to arriv e at such a conception in th e first place, a fte r it e m erg ed th a t th e o rien tatio n tow ards m eaning-analysis does n o t suffice fo r this p u rp o se. In this re g a rd the follow ing possibility seem s so far to em erge. We can follow A ristotle in his sketch o f a p relim in ary co n cep ­ tion o f philosophy (with th e reserv atio n s about m otivation m e n tio n e d in th e last lecture). W e can also follow him in th e d ev e lo p m e n t o f his p relim in ary co nception into th e conception of a philosophical fu n d a ­ m ental discipline which does n o t deductively g ro u n d th e know ledge o f the o th e r sciences b u t ra th e r them atizes w hat they all form ally p re s u p ­ pose. A nd now we only n eed to follow u p th e two weak points o f his co nception o f ontology with an a ttitu d e th a t is p re p a re d to reflect on th e m ean in g o f linguistic expressions a n d we find th a t th e trad itio n al ontology itself points beyond itself to a new conception o f th e form al science, which, in th e shape o f a form al sem antics, u n d erlies all sciences. F orm al sem antics is, on th e o n e h a n d , a language-analytical u n d e rta k ­ ing: it is sem antics, it analyses th e m e an in g o f linguistic expressions. O n th e o th e r h a n d , it is form al, in th e sam e sense th a t ontology was form al; an d because it rem oves w eaknesses o f ontology, which are in capable o f im m an e n t reso lu tio n , it can lay claim to being onto lo g y ’s legitim ate suc­ cessor. T h e r e is also a n o th e r way in which we can com e to see th e su p erio rity which form al sem antics possesses over form al ontology fro m th e p e r­ spective of A risto tle’s own idea o f philosophy. T h is is by sta rtin g o u t no t fro m th e unclarities o f ontology b u t fro m th e step which A ristotle took fro m th e reg io n al sciences to fo rm al science. I f one co n stru es p h i­ losophy qua h ig h e st science as th e tran sitio n fro m th e p a rtic u la r sci­ ences to th e fo rm a l elem en t com m on to th em all, th e n it is by n o m eans obvious th a t th e only such elem ent is objecthood. In science, as also elsew here, we n e v e r sim ply re fe r to objects, b u t always in such a way th at we m ake p redicative statem ents a b o u t them . B u t m ost o f th e state­ m ents o f science, e.g. those in which laws are fo rm u late d , do n o t co n ­ tain singular te rm s an d only re fe r indirectly to objects. It is surely co n ­ sistent th e n n o t to restrict th e form alization to sin g u lar term s, b u t to ex ten d it to w hole sentences and all sentence-form s. N ote m o reo v er th a t ontology is com pletely p rese rv e d w ithin form al sem antics. T h is is tru e n o t only o f th e parts o f trad itio n al ontology in

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which so m ething was illegitim ately objectified - th e predicative d e te r­ m inations - bu t also o f th e th eo ry o f objects which now proves to be a p a rt o f form al sem antics. W hat still rem ains u nclear, how ever, is w hether this new conception o f a fo rm al fu n d a m e n ta l discipline has a unitary fu n d a m e n ta l question as ontology did in th e question co n cern in g ‘being as b ein g ’. So fo r the tim e being we have simply an ex ten d e d subject-m atter; w h eth er this can be org an ized a ro u n d a ce n tral question is still u n clear. I shall take u p this difficulty in th e nex t lecture. T o d ay I w ould sim ply like to lighten the shock you may have felt w hen I stated th a t ontology is p reserv ed w ithin sem antics. Even if you ag ree with m e th a t th e o rien tatio n tow ards the fo rm o f linguistic expressions opens u p a subject-m atter th a t is b ro a d e r th a n ontology, you will probably w ant to qualify this to th e effect th a t th e new subjectm a tte r is a linguistic one and thus no lon g er belongs to th e dim ension of ontology, th e d im ension o f ‘reality’. T h e r e is re p e a te d h ere the sam e resistance to the language-analytical position th a t has already show n itself, in a n o th e r connection, in th e first lecture. L anguage, o n e thinks, is som eth in g m erely subjective. If o n e co nverts ontology, w hich has to d o w ith reality, into linguistic analysis, th e n th e m ost im p o rta n t thing is lost, even if som eth in g else is ad d ed . Now it seems to m e th a t in objections o f this kind, even w hen raised by philosophers, a pre-philosophical m otive is p rese n t, a reserv atio n sim ilar to th a t w hich is en te rta in e d against philosophy in g en eral by th ose w ho are n o t fam iliar with philosophy. In w hat way, I would reto rt, does ontology have to do with reality? C ertainly n o t in th e way th e sci­ ences do. It does n o t have to do with objects. O b jecthood is n o t itself so m eth in g real like an object. B ut is n o t - you could now ask - objecthood, even if n o t itself som e­ th in g real, th e reality o f th e real? A nd is n o t this lost in the reflection on th e m erely linguistic? It is only in th e f u rth e r course o f these lectures th a t we will gradually w ork o u t th e categories which m ake it possible ad eq u ately to discuss such questions. So fa r I have barely tou ch ed on th e essence o f th e lin­ guistic. W e are, th e re fo re , no t yet in a position to see th a t it is a m istake to speak o f th e ‘m erely linguistic’, of la nguage as a m ere m ed iu m betw een us and reality. At th e p re se n t stage of o u r en q u iry it m ust suffice to say th a t th e opinion ju s t expressed, th a t th e reality o f th e real can n o t be a p p re h e n d e d in reflection on th e use o f language, arises fro m a m e re feeling; fo r if it w ere to be m o re th an this o n e w ould have to be able to say how som eth in g like ‘reality’ can be given to us, if n o t in

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linguistic usage. We will soon have an opportunity critically to examine such a positive alternative (p. 61 ff). But it would in any event be false to think that the distinction between object and m eaning is levelled out by the semantic turn. T h e opposite is the case. It was the old ontology in which this distinction was levelled out; for want of other categories the m eaning of a linguistic expression was interpreted as an object. By contrast, there is no reason, from the semantic perspective, for neglecting the object for which an expression stands in favour of its meaning. All linguistic expressions which we understand have, in so far as we understand them , a m eaning. Some of these expressions, singular terms, stand for objects. An expression can presumably only have this function of standing for an object in virtue of how we understand it, thus in virtue of its meaning. If this is correct - and it is only later that we will precisely investigate these connections - then the objecthood of objects cannot be thematized independently of the meaning of singular terms. However, that does not mean that the object for which the expression stands and its m eaning coincide. T he dimension of objects does not lose anything as a result of the semantic approach; rath er som ething is added to it and only thus does it become intelligible. If we now proceed from singular terms to whole sentences (or to other component-expressions) then, although they have a meaning, it is not clear that we can say that they stand for objects. H ere then the dimension o f objects does indeed fall away; and the impression th ere ­ fore arises that we are dealing with the ‘merely linguistic’. But the lin­ guistic is not the m ere sign; it is that which one understands and which many can understand in the same way. It is, therefore, nothing subjec­ tive. At present I am only concerned that you should dwell on this understanding in its puzzling familiarity and resist the tem ptation to force it into traditional categories. A nother reason why I have exam ined objections I assume you to have towards a formal semantics as extended ontology is that they seem to me to be the same objections that have hindered traditional ontology itself from developing into formal semantics. All the decisive steps o f Greek ontology resulted from semantic reflection. However, every step led to an objectifying reinterpretation which concealed the linguistic dimension of the reflection. Thus the problem of being (Sein) and notbeing (Nichtsein) was twisted by Parmenides into a problem o f what is and what is not (von Seiendem und Nichtseiendem ), with the grotesque but con­ sistent result that there is ju st a single unm oved being (Seiendes), because with what is not (dem Nichtseienden) not-being (das Nichtsein) was also

Introduction

34

excluded.15 Plato discovered for the first time, in reflection on questions of definition, the meanings of predicates - and immediately objectified them, in his doctrine of ideas, into supersensible entities. Finally, Aris­ totle started out from the form of the singular predicative sentence and nonetheless developed on this basis an objectual ontology. But what is it then that hindered traditional ontology from dealing with the semantic dimension as such, and which also makes it so diffi­ cult for us? Why is it that we too unconsciously interpret the nonobjectual understanding of linguistic expressions in an objectual way? Clearly it is due to the fact that when we speak o f something this is, by definition, an object. We can thus thematically direct ourselves only to objects; u n d e r­ standing is essentially unthem atic. So if we wish to investigate the m ean­ ing o f o u r expressions we find ourselves faced with peculiar difficulties. T he m eaning is not what we are naturally directed towards; we must, therefore, carry out a reflection which inhibits our natural directedness. And then we m ust also be careful not to objectify that with which we are dealing in this reflection. My saying ‘with which . . . we are dealing’ already contains, in the pronom inal ‘with which’, an objectification. And is there not an objectification already contained in speaking of ‘the m eaning’ of an expression? Indeed, and we shall see later that, and to what extent, this is an im proper way of speaking.

LECTURE 4

Has formal semantics a fundamental question?

Because Aristotle orientated him self not only towards the expression ‘being’ (Seiendes) but also towards the expression ‘is/to be’, traditional ontology reaches beyond a m ere theory of objects or theory of sub­ stance. This surplus really already belongs to the broader field of a formal semantics. If one asks why Aristotle included predicative d eter­ minations as well as objects in his form al them atic the answer m ust be: because predicative determ inations, although not objects, are at least determ inations of objects. So the orientation towards the category of an object, which is definitive of the whole o f traditional philosophy, also determ ined which non-objectual semantic form Aristotle dealt with. If we now envisage a form al semantics as the form al universal science in place o f ontology we m ust consider w hether the form al thematic, as thus extended, still has some sort of unified structure and a centre, so that h ere too a unitary fundam ental question can be form ulated. T h e fundam ental question o f ontology is: what is being as being? It is obvious that this form ulation of the question is a makeshift solution, for it is fram ed as though one were asking about the what-being (WasSein) of an object. I have therefore reform ulated it so that what is being asked is what it m eans to speak of an object (or being). This is already to give the question a semantic form ulation. But its real semantic coun­ terp art is the question: ‘How can one refer to objects with linguistic expressions?’ and this question, it would seem (cf. p. 33), leads back to the question: ‘In what does the m eaning of a singular term consist?’ And if we wish to avoid speaking of a m eaning as an object, this ques­ tion can be form ulated as follows: ‘W hat is it to understand a singular term ?’ Analogously, if we extend the sphere of the formal thematic beyond that of singular term s, we can ask with respect to any semantic class: ‘W hat is it to u n derstand an expression of this form ?’ T h e for­ mulation ‘W hat is it to u n derstand . . . ?’ is not completely clear. But at

Introduction

36

the present stage of our deliberations it is appropriate to content o u r­ selves with a question-form ula which contains only a vague indication of what we are looking for. As yet we do not know with what categorial means we can adequately thematize som ething like the understanding of linguistic expressions. T o explain how such questions about the understanding o f expressions of a certain form, or about the u n d e r­ standing of this form, are adequately to be form ulated is, therefore, a task which already belongs to the elaboration of formal semantics. We can call the question: what is it to u nderstand an expression of a certain semantic form , or the form o f this expression? the formalized question o f m eaning. Its relation to questions about the m eaning or understanding of a particular expression of this form is analogous to the relation o f the study of being as being to the reference to an indi­ vidual being. T hus it seems that we can call this question the fundam en­ tal semantic question which corresponds to the fundam ental ontological question. M oreover, with this question concerning the structure of our linguistic u nderstanding we have an answer to the question concerning a narrow er and m ore fundam ental reflection on our understanding, som ething we still lacked when attem pting, in the first lecture, to char­ acterize a language-analytical conception of philosophy. In contrast with the broad sphere of the a priori, o f the clarification of meaning, we have here a narrow er sphere of reflection in which the understandingstructures already presupposed and understood in all understanding of particular linguistic expressions are to be analysed. If we define the subject-m atter of philosophy in term s o f this formal-semantic sphere of reflection, this implies the thesis that all specifically philosophical con­ cepts are concepts connected with the analysis of the semantic struc­ tures. But if we construe the enquiry into semantic form as reflection on the presuppositions of all linguistic understanding, then we cannot be con­ tent to see this question break down into as many questions as there are sem antic forms. In this respect then the question about semantic form, as hitherto form ulated, does not yet correspond to the fundam ental question of ontology; for to speak of the question about semantic form obscures the fact that one is really dealing with several questions. How are they connected? A first step suggests itself immediately: the form of the expressions of a semantic class is determ ined by which expressions of other classes they can be com bined with and by the way in which the m eaning of the expressions contributes to the m eaning of the composite expressions which thereby arise (p. 26). T he semantic form o f a class o f com po­

personal pronouns may involve a reference to com ponents of other sentences). but only in the actual elaboration of the formal-semantic anal­ yses. e. the question concerning the form of all sentences.g.or. or the connection of all sentence-form s.2 All we can do at the present stage of our deliberations by way of . but one then understands them as parts of sentences. to put it better. the problem again arises.H as form al semantics a fundam ental question? 37 nent-expressions is thus always an abstract m om ent of the structure of the corresponding complex expressions. we can define sentences as follows (though this is not unproble­ matic): they are those linguistic expressions which can still enter as parts into larger linguistic units. T ru e. because there are different sentences. It follows from this that the question concerning the semantic form of a class of non-independent expressions (such as. of which all particular sentence-form s can in some way be regarded as specifica­ tions? It would seem clear that this question cannot be decided in advance. but essentially wholes of parts. o f w hether there are not just many similar questions in form al semantics. B ut now. and one can only say some­ thing (etwas zu verstehen geben) with a sentence.. a question we can also form ulate thus: ‘W hat is it to understand a sentence?’ It is this question which corresponds to the question about being as being in ontology. one can also understand parts of sentences.1 T h e sentence thus seems to be the primary unit of m ean­ ing. e. Accordingly. In the linguistic sphere these independent units are sentences . Now it belongs to the essence of a structural composition that it m ust term inate in units which are no longer essentially parts o f wholes. formal semantics has at least a hypothetical fundam ental question. singular terms) is always to be understood as a com ponent-question of the question concerning the semantic form o f the corresponding sentence (in this case of the predicative sentence). T h e questions concerning the seman­ tic forms of the various classes of com ponent-expressions thus enter as parts into the questions concerning the semantic forms of sentences. at the present level. not with a word or other sentence-part (save where these function as elliptical sentences). but no longer in such a way that they are essentially components of a m ore com prehensive syntactic or semantic structure (which does not rule out that some com ponents of sentences.g. But it seems equally clear that the analyses must be directed towards this question if one does not wish to have different forms of understanding merely juxtaposed to one another. viz. but a unitary question. Does o u r u n d er­ standing of linguistic expressions break down into the understanding of different sentence-forms or are these sentence-forms internally con­ nected? Is there such a thing as a general form o f all sentences.

because the interest was immediately directed towards ‘beings’. the singular predica­ tive sentence-form rem ained the only one considered in ontology. one of whose tendencies points towards a formal semantics (though this tendency is blocked by an object-orientated counter-tendency). we have seen that ontology is an ambivalent discipline. the predicative contents. was interpreted one-sidedly as a com pound of singular term and predicate. This orientation towards the assertoric sentence was connected with the thematization of the copulative ‘is’. However. O ne such place is his treatm ent of the Principle of Contra­ . was orien­ tated towards the concept o f logos . .’) with an ordered pair of singular terms (‘P eter’. We may then surmise that ontology already contains a perspective on the form of sentences. ‘Peter swims’) as sentences with a copula and a participle (e. can immediately be seen to apply also to other sentences.g. .Introduction 38 preparation for answering this fundam ental question is to ask whether traditional ontology does not already contain a perspective on some­ thing which is common to all sentences. though presented by him as formal aspects of the predicative sentence. However. In certain places. was not seen. that sentences like ‘Peter hits Paul’ can just as well be interpreted as the combination of a so-called twoplace predicate (= classification-expression) (‘. ‘Peter is swimming’)3 implies that the copula had for him the significance of the indicative verbal form as such. T he rem aining forms of assertoric sentence were partly not perceived by Aristotle at all (such as those of complex sentences) and partly (as in the case of general sentences) regarded as ontologically irrelevant because they do not express statem ents about an object. or the form of the composition of predicative sentences. And this sentence itself. this perspective on the sentence-form came to nothing. .g. the assertoric sentence. in his ontology. Aristotle’s interpretation of all (singular) predicative sentences with a verbal predicate (e. for they only deal with a single sentence-form. Aristotle encountered aspects of form which.m ore precisely the logos apophantikos. partly on account o f the orientation towards ‘is’ and partly on account of the interpretation of the predicates as standing for determ inations o f objects. . which became so crucial for the m odern logic of relations. however. T h e possibility. ‘Paul’). But most im portant o f all. because of the orientation towards ‘beings’. given that sentences did not even belong to the thematic of ontology. par­ ticularly when one considers that Aristotle. T hus one cannot derive a perspective for the question concerning something common to all forms o f sentence from these beginnings of a theory of the predicative sentence-form. hits . You may feel that it is a mistake even to surmise the presence of such a perspective.

However. Aristotle also formulates it thus: ‘it is impossible that (something) at the same time is and is not’. Instead of saying. In the context of our discus­ sion there are two respects in which Aristotle’s mode of treatm ent of these ‘most general principles’ is worthy of attention. Aristotle was undogm atic enough to place treatm ent of these principles. T h e discussion of these principles does indeed not belong to a theory of objects.’ We can perhaps say. it is only impossible for one to say som ething thereby.Has form al semantics a fundam ental question? 39 diction and the Law of Excluded Middle. Secondly. On the other hand. that this prefixed ‘is’ expresses the affirmative form of an assertoric sentence and the ‘is not’ expresses the negative form .g. however. justifies his inten­ tion to deal with them in ontology on the grounds that they underlie all sciences. T hu s the Principle of C ontradiction takes the form : ‘the same attribute cannot at the same time and in the same respect belong and not belong to the same object’. which p er­ vades the Aristotelian ontology.. in the context of the question concerning being as being. does not stand in any systematic connection with the rest of the problem atic of the Metaphysics. in Book 4.4 H ere then Aristotle him self encountered formal foundations of the sciences which cannot be understood objectually. to signify som ething (etwas zu verstehen .’ If we orientate ourselves towards this use of ‘is’. on account of their form al-universal character. Firstly. Aristotle finds it difficult to bring the discussion of these prin­ ciples into a systematic connection with the them atic of ontology .5 In o th er places.’ Why is it impossible? T o this we also find an answer in Aristotle. becom e m ore evident than here. provisionally. T he following re-form ulation o f the last-mentioned fo r­ mulation o f the Principle o f C ontradiction would correspond to this explanation: ‘It is impossible at the same time to affirm and deny some­ thing. the form ulation of the Principle of Contradiction ju st m entioned would have the m eaning: ‘It is impossible for som ething at the same time to be the case and not be the case. it is worth noting that Aristotle presents both principles only with reference to the form of singular predicative statements. On the one hand. It is clearly not impossible to u tter such a sentence. this ‘is’ can also be interpreted as having the sense of th at ‘is’ which can be placed before any assertoric sentence. ‘It is raining’ one can say ‘It is the case that it is raining’.the doctrine of substance.6 If the ‘is’ of this form ulation is understood as the copula. however. Aristotle. N owhere does the tension between theory of objects and form al semantics. then this fo r­ mulation is identical with the previous one. the discussion o f them. e. and instead of saying ‘It is not rain ­ ing’ one can say ‘It is not the case th at it is raining.

e. this is like making a move in chess and then withdrawing it. T h ere are various types. many sentences in the 1st Person F u tu re Indicative . we express this by means o f the form ulation ‘that/?’.8 In the relevant actionrespect one has not done anything.g.such as ‘1 will come’ . We find a criterion for distinguishing so-called assertoric sentences or statements from other sentences in Aristotle (though not in th e Metaphysics)'. therefore. And if the Principle of Contradiction holds for all assertoric sentences. optative sentences. But how general is it? If the m ore general interpretation holds for all sentences whose affirmative or negative form is expressed by that prefixed ‘is’ or ‘is not’. It is: w hether one can call what is said with the sentence true or false. and this criterion has been accepted ever since. ‘T h at it is raining is tru e’. then clearly it holds for all assertoric sentences. then it m ust be capable of being form ulated by means of this form ali­ zation.express not a prediction. of indicative sen­ tences in which one does not say som ething which can be called true or false and which. but on the m ore universal aspect of affirm ation and negation.Introduction 40 geben). or modes of em ploym ent. such as im perative sentences. as is usual in logic. the letters ‘ \ ‘q\ Y p as symbols for arbitrary assertoric sentences. or giving som ething away and then taking it back. interrogative sen­ tences. In contrast to this semantic criterion it m ight seem plausible to characterize assertoric sentences by reference to the syntactic criterion of the indicative verbal form . in the case of any sentence which one can equivalently transform into ‘It is . If it makes sense to speak o f the general form of assertoric sentences.g. In this way we arrive at the standard m odern form ulation of the Principle of Contradiction: a statem ent of the form ‘ and not^?’ is impossible (necessarily false). inter­ preting the Principle of Contradiction in this m ore general way is sug­ gested by Aristotle himself. namely by show­ ing that whoever denies it makes speech senseless.g ‘It is raining’) as true or false. e. B ut this ‘th at’ already occurred in the for­ m ulation with the prefixed ‘is’ and one can now easily see that. then we m ust also be able to symbolize these sentences in a general way.9 By means of this criterion assertoric sentences are distinguished from sentences in other so-called modes. But the two criteria do not correspond.1 I can elucidate this as follows: if one affirms and denies some­ thing. From now on I shall use. cannot be called assertoric sentences. but an intention. which can turn out to be true or false. Since this justifica­ tion no longer rests on the special form of the predicative statement. p If we characterize what is said with a sentence (e. Aristotle points out that one can only justify the Principle of C ontradiction indirectly.

a clearer basis would be given if that prefixed ‘is’. then we can now say that the Principle of Contradiction is grounded in this general form of assertoric sentences.13 This discussion is directed so strongly towards the predicative sentence form that it yields little for our problematic. then they have a rather slender basis in his ontology. At first he states that it does not belong to metaphysics at all. If the reflections so far can only be supported by reference to Aristotle’s treatm ent of the Principle of Contradiction. T h e situation with regard to Aristotle’s treatm ent of veritative being resembles that with regard to his treatm ent of the Principle of C ontra­ diction. the use of assertoric sentences.11 We can accordingly speak of veritative being. H ere too Aristotle considers only predicative sentences. If it is correct that the prefixed ‘is’ and ‘is not’ express the affirmative or negative form of assertoric sentences. if not of all sentences then at least of all assertoric sen­ tences. I wanted to pursue the question concerning a general sentence-form today only to the extent that clues to it can be derived from traditional ontology. although again it is clear that what he says can be applied to all asser­ toric sentences. which extends beyond the sphere of assertoric sentences? O f course m ore im portant for us than this question would be the question w hether perhaps there emerges here a general form of all sentences. But does not the distinction between affirma­ tion and negation extend beyond the use of that prefixed ‘is’ and ‘is not’? Does it not apply to imperative sentences and optative sentences as well as to assertoric sentences? And would we not then have to expect a m ore general form of the Principle of Contradiction. T he real result for our ques­ tion concerning a unitary sentence-form would of course be that here a general form. Aristotle calls this meaning of being einai hos to alethes. one can equally well say ‘It is true that/?’. Only .12 but later on there is a short discussion of this m eaning of being. This thesis he justifies by referring to the equivalence of ‘It is the case that/?’ to ‘It is tru e th a t/?’. And here too Aristotle is unsure about the systematic place of this subject in ontology. Now this is in fact the case.’10 H e p u t forward the thesis. occurs in Aristotle himself. seems to emerge. Since ontology is orientated towards the word ‘is’. Consequently. and no fu rth e r than. that with this ‘is’ it is said that some­ thing is true and with the corresponding ‘is not’ that something is false. the use of that prefixed ‘is’ extends ju st as far as. Before I investigate this question (and I will not do so until the next lecture) we m ust consolidate what has so far been achieved. In his discussion of the various meanings of the word ‘is’ Aristotle distinguished this prefixed ‘is. which a m om ent ago I merely hinted at.Has form al semantics a fundam ental question? 41 the case that/?’. on which I based the reflections.

Now if ‘that/?’ is a singular term . it is a singular term . we must not over­ look the fact that in this connection too Aristotle speaks not only of ‘to be’. this would be a mistake. actuality. is not understood in such a way that. and this means: in an objectual m anner. but also o f ‘being’.’ This circumstance might suggest the view that the objects in question are facts.Introduction 42 one thing is of interest: Aristotle arrives here at a differentiation within veritative being which relates to the so-called modalities of being (pos­ sibility. But what. is what is asserted when we u tter an assertoric sentence. e. but because of the orientation towards objects one could not see that the being of which they are modalities is veritative being. Aristotle treats them as modalities of copulative being. like the veritative ‘is’. is a fact.. In the ontological tradition possibility. you will ask. ask: what are these objects that are designated by an expression of the form ‘that/?’ (and which are only facts if they are true) in and for themselves? T h at which can be true or false and which. In his detailed discussion of possibility and actuality in th e Metaphysics. We can tell this from the fact that ‘that/?’ requires supplem entation by a (higher-level) predicate in order to become once m ore a whole sentence. ‘T h at it is raining/is pleasant. it is prefixed to the assertoric sentence (and we must add: to an arbitrary assertoric sentence) (‘It is possible that/?’). T he word ‘possible’. For in the negative case we say ‘It is not a fact that/?. but deny that it is a fact. We obviously use the predicate ‘is a fact’ as equivalent in m eaning to the predicate ‘is true’. However. necessity). ‘T h at it is raining/is tru e ’.’ We must also include here such rela­ tional supplem entations as ‘he /hopes/that p ’. on the other hand. ‘that it is raining’ is not a sentence. if it is true. Is the veritative ‘is’ the ‘is’ of an object? This con­ ception may not seem mistaken.g. So it seems . ‘he/believes/that/?’.g.’ H ere we still have to do with the object in ques­ tion. actuality and necessity have been called ‘modalities of being’. e. from any sentence ‘that p/F y we can infer ‘som ething/F’. Clearly. is this veritative being? From Aristotle we get no fu rth er inform ation on this question. th ere­ fore. However. inasmuch as the grammatical trans­ form ation o f ( ’ into ‘that /?’ m ust be conceived as nominalization. then we will have to say that every such expression stands for an object. p Although the expression ‘that it is raining’ still seems to have the same content as the assertoric sentence ‘It is raining’. T h a t it snowed yesterday is a fact only if it is true that yesterday it snowed. We must. Now what sort of objects are they for which the nominalized form of an assertoric sentence stands? Instead of saying ‘It is the case that/?’ we can also say ‘It is a fact that/?. but in such a way that one must say a is possibly F \ thus in such a way that it is the objects that are possibly or actually such-and-such.

’ Although I doubt w hether this dem and is justified. there is also a term inology for the objects in question which is free of all subjective connotations: they are referred to by Husserl. For one will have to say even of states of affairs which we do not obtain. It is the linguistic analyst who first establishes the relation to the thing (Sachbezug) by not being content with the word and asking what is m eant by it. they somehow exist. but ra th e r in the sense of what is thought. every nominalized asser­ toric sentence ‘that /?’ stands for a state of affairs.. As this word is used by Frege ‘thought’ is not to be understood in the sense of thinking. This also seems to correspond to our ordinary use of lan­ guage. as a mode of existence (Existenz). B ut the real difficulty sets in earlier. in the question: what then is a state of affairs? O ne can see nicely from this exam ple how the allegedly thing-orientated thinking and language-analytical thinking com pare. and in W ittgenstein’s Tractatus. characterize it merely subjectively as “what is m eant by us”. We ask. But p e r­ haps you will also be unhappy with Frege’s designation and say: ‘All these designations of the object in question. O f course this obtaining would be a strange kind of existence. hence states of affairs that are not facts. W ittgenstein then proceeded to define a fact as the ‘obtaining’ (Bestehen) of a state of affairs. ‘Is what he asserted (said) true? Is it a fact?’ In English philosophy the term of art ‘proposition’ has been adopted for what I here designate as what is said (das Gesagte). according to this conception. as ‘states of affairs’ (Sach­ verhalte). W hat then is m eant by it? Just try to answer this question w ithout referrin g to sentences and their meanings! I cannot . T h e re are people who breathe a sigh of relief when offered the term ‘state of affairs’ for the objects for which expressions of the form ‘th at/?’ stand. I shall for the present accede to it. namely. Perhaps this designation ‘what is th o u g h t’ or ‘the thought’ is m ore attractive to you than my linguistic talk of ‘what is said’. namely as the obtaining (Bestehen) of a state of affairs. as states of affairs.14 With this we would have reached a conception which suggests that the veritative ‘is’ is to be construed as the being (Sein) of an object.H as form al semantics a fundam erital question ? 43 that we can characterize the objects in question as what is said or asserted. e. that. But the alleg­ edly language-independent object is then som ething merely suggested by the word. for otherwise we could not talk about them . but we would like to know what it is in itself. Thus.g. w hether as “what is said” or “what is thou g h t”. As a m atter of fact. One could try (and it has been tried) to dispose of this difficulty by attributing to states of affairs ano th er sort of being which they have in themselves whether or not they also obtain. Frege called these objects ‘thoughts’.

but only in terms of its equivalence with (4) and (5). in which other position-takings vis-a-vis the same state of affairs. In these pre­ liminary reflections we are not yet trying to solve the problems. And it is true that it snowed yesterday if and only if it snowed yesterday. and seems merely to arise from a traditional tendency to assimilate this being to the exis­ tence o f perceptible objects. If instead of saying ‘Yesterday it snowed’ one simply says ‘that it snowed yester­ day’. However unclear the m eaning of ‘that /?’ still is to us. W hat was rem oved from the sentence ‘?’ in the transform ation into the sin­ / gular term ‘that/?’ is what we can call its assertion-m om ent. Let us begin with (4) and (5). one will have to say: the state of affairs that (e. If one only says ‘that it snowed yesterday’ then. in contrast to when one says ‘It snowed yesterday’ one does not yet signify (zu verstehen geben) anything. speak of the obtain­ ing of a state o f affairs. In the case of the present4question it m ust suffice if I say: the concep­ tion of veritative being as the obtaining o f states of affairs at any rate does not correspond to our ordinary ways of talking. but the m eaning of (2). so to speak. sentence. But if one asks for the criterion for deciding whether a state o f affairs obtains or not. not yet nom inalized. then clearly we also cannot explicate the m eaning of (3). .g. Now if the m eaning of (2) is not explicated by (1). but simply to arrive at a correct way of posing the problems. one creates. At certain points then I will have to be satisfied if an idea seems sufficiently plau­ sible for you to be p rep ared to follow me further. T h u s talk of the obtaining of a state of affairs points back to the u n derstanding of the unm odified. one refers to what was asserted in the preceding utterance. Also I shall only later (Lecture 10) show in what way the attem pts by Husserl and W ittgenstein to construe the object-character of states o f affairs without reference to language must be regarded as having failed. which was previously asserted. We had the following series o f equivalences: (1) the state of affairs that/? obtains = (2) that/? is a fact = (3) it is the case that/? = (4) that/? is true = (5) /?.Introduction 44 yet deal with this question adequately. hence the m eaning of verita­ tive being. by rem oving the assertion-m om ent. in term s o f its equivalence with (2) and (1).) it snowed yesterday obtains if and only if it is true that it snowed yesterday. O ne can. an empty-place for other supplem entations. rather. but in such a way that one no longer asserts it. this m uch seems clear: that the nominalized sentence ‘that/?’ contains not m ore than the original sentence *p\ but less. can be expressed. As yet we lack the categorial means for tackling a question concerning a kind of objects. and hence that of (1). if one insists. by (4) and (5).

one says again precisely the same as one said with ‘?’. For if one supplem ents ‘that/?’ with ‘. in the special case of the assertoric sentence.g. contains a truth-claim .is doubtful’. Now if the veritative ‘is’ is used as equivalent to the predicate ‘is tru e ’. doubt. has the significance of an assertion. would now be removed.I regard as im probable’. This is the supplem entation by the predicate ‘is tru e’. But because the equivalence ‘? = that/? is tru e ’ holds. But one thing it would seem can be inferred from the reflections ju st carried out. is very closely connected with the criterion that we have previously found. ‘that p . of course. You will ask: how is this assertion-m om ent to be understood? I can­ not yet answer this question here. because it can be expressed in the predicate ‘is tru e’. This definition.is tru e’. we can / now say that the m eaning of ‘?’ is composed of a propositional content / and the assertion-m om ent. T he p re ­ sent definition. on the other hand. that a sentence is an asser­ toric sentence if one can call what is said with it true or false. I think I can assume that you have a vague understanding of what is m eant by the assertion of something.g. etc. says that a sentence is an assertoric sentence if it is used in such a way that a truth-claim is thereby m ade. W hoever utters an assertoric sentence asserts something (e.Has formal semantics a fundam ental question ? 45 e.g. as opposed to o ther position-takings. T h e difficulty which arose there: that this description is too general. and this is a definition of the class of assertoric sentences by a characterization of their form . This result can now be directly linked with the explication of this ‘is’ I gave in the discussion of the Principle of Contradiction. that it is raining) is true. etc. Provisionally. and this is that the assertionmom ent. Lectures 15 and 28). From this it seems to / follow that the predicate ‘is tru e ’ expresses the assertion-moment. that it expresses the affirmative form of the statement. Now there is one such predicative supplem entation the significance of which appears to be that it gives back to the expression precisely what was taken away by its nominalization. ‘that/? . because it also applies to non-assertoric sentences. viz. that it is raining) and always also thereby asserts that what he asserts (e. and that this assertion-m om ent is to be understood as a truth-claim. of the same state of affairs. the answer again belongs to the elab­ oration rath er than to the exposition of the problematic (cf. such as supposition. then it follows that this ‘is’ also expresses the assertion-m om ent of the statem ent. In the original expression ‘?’ there is no sign for expressing the assertion/ m om ent. For we can now say: the affirmative form of the sentence. and that the propositional content corre­ sponds to what is expressed in the nominalized form by ‘that/?’. viz. We can of course easily bring out the connection between the two cri­ .

and this is only possible because here too the statem ent asserts its own truth. And that in the use o f any assertoric sentence something is asserted is clear anyway. it is not possible to divide sentences into affirmative and neg­ ative.’15 It is. It may seem negative because it is equivalent to ‘is not m ortal’. But now the following difficulty suggests itself. With ‘It is not the case that/?’. when applied to a sentence. w hether or not a ‘not’ occurs in it. in the introduction of the truth-claim . is supposed to belong to all assertoric sentences and hence also to negative assertoric sentences. for every assertoric sentence there is an opposite sentence. or sentences o f the form ‘It is not the case that/?’. as I incautiously said. cannot be correct. But ‘It is not the case that/?’ is. not to ‘ \ but to ‘not-/?’. Frege gives as an example the sentence ‘Christ is im m ortal. for the criterion that that sentence is negative in which a negation-sign occurs is of only limited application. T hus the use of any assertoric sentence. A lthough one can assert the opposite. based myself one-sidedly on the affirmative assertoric sentences and lost sight of veritative notbeing? But what would this mean? Should we say that negative sen­ tences. T h e predicate ‘is im m ortal’ is as ‘pos­ itive’ as the predicate ‘is. Does this not show that the subordination of the assertion-form to the affirmative form is mistaken? W here does the mistake lie? Have I. T ru e. T he assumption that there is an affirmative and a negative sentence-form. but it appears not to be meaningful to say that it is intrinsically negative. or that affirm ation and negation are on a level. Firstly. But the truth-claim .m ortal’. but the predicate ‘is m ortal’ can equally well seem negative because it is equivalent to ‘does not live forever’. p er­ haps. But there is no general criterion by which we could tell which of the two is the negative one.Introduction 46 teria by saying: only in so far as the use of a sentence already contains a truth-claim can what is said with it be called true or false. make a falsityclaim? ‘It is not the case that/?’ is clearly equivalent to ‘T h a t p is false’. of course. so one can indeed say that with a sentence of this form it is asserted that what is said with *p* is false. of course. or the assertion-character. the falsity of the opposite statem ent is asserted. We thus find ourselves forced to look for the e rro r on the o ther side. rather we m ust construe it as an operation which. equivalent. But what is it that is negated. th ere­ p fore. generates the opposite sentence. or. one cannot do som ething that is the opposite of asserting. that it has a ‘negative form ’. the negation of the sentence ‘Christ is m ortal’. involves a truth-claim . I had previously dis­ tinguished the affirmative sentence-form from the negative. or to what is the operation o f negation applied? As both .16 Thus we cannot regard negation as a property which belongs to a sentence.

‘It is rain in g ’ and ‘It is'n o t raining’ . If one asserts (assertorically affirms) this second propositional content (*not-/?*) one can call this the denial of the affirm ation of the first propositional content (*/?*) and. and that it would contradict the sense of such an ‘o r’-sentence if the two com po­ nent-sentences were also asserted.Has formal semantics a fundam ental question? 47 assertoric sentences . by considering the role of negation in com ponent-sentences of complex sentences.e.17 W hen sentences enter as com ponent-sentences into a com plex sentence then. We simply have to rem ove an ambiguity in speaking of denial and negation. Denial. one can acknowledge such a correlation without contradicting the results ju st achieved. which is itself an affir­ mation. following Frege. therefore. they lose their assertion-m om ent. If we symbolize the assertionm om ent o f ‘ ’ with Frege’s assertion-sign V . to continue to refer to assertion as affirmation? T he notion of an affirm ation seems essentially related to a denial. the assertoric affirm ation of a negated propositional content.are assertoric.g. But this is only possible if (since the assertion-m om ent is absent) the ‘not’ belongs to the propositional content. even if they are not nom inalized. It is in this way that we must also u n d erstan d the words ‘yes’ and ‘no’ (for the time being I shall disregard their non-assertoric use). one cannot construe the second sentence as though what is negated is the assertion o f the first. Let us take e. which we get by negating the first. For every propositional content *p* there is always one opposed to it (*not-/?*).g. the sentence-form ‘ or q\ It is obvious p that here only the complex sentence as a whole is asserted. then our two sentences have the form V*/?*’ and V *not-/?*’ rather than the form V */?*’ and ‘not h *p*\ T h at the negation-sign pertains only to the propositional content can also be reinforced. This arg u m en t can only be evaded by the outlandish thesis that the word ‘n o t’ has a different m eaning when it occurs in an in d ep en d en t sentence and when the same sentence func­ tions as a com ponent-sentence. and this m eans: of a propositional content which is negative relative to another. you will ask. T o avoid ambiguities we can reserve the word ‘negation’ for this. is opposed to another affirm ation. its propositional content. one can reserve the word ‘denial’ for this. T hus the two com ponent-sentences lack the assertion-m om ent when they occur in this form of sentence. is. and the non-nom inalized p propositional content of with */?*. But is it not then misleading. only the whole sen­ tence is asserted. However. T h u s the denial. again to avoid ambiguity. rath er w hat is negated is what the first asserts. as thus understood. though th ere is no symbol for this lack in natural language. We use these words in conversation when the propositional content which is .

I do not intend to pursue this aspect of the problem . its denial. is concealed the entire multiplicity of struc­ tures of the propositional content. and hence o f an affirm ative position-taking. A unitary understanding of the form of assertoric sentences would only be achieved if a connection of the various structures of the propositional content were also to become vis­ ible. But so far it is n o t even clear how one is to enquire into the p ro p ­ ositional structures.*/?*’ and con­ nected with this structure is the fact that (2) for every *p* there is a *not-/?*. W hereas the first part of this symbolization represents som e­ thing that rem ains the same for every assertoric sentence. T hus from the fact that what is negated is always only the proposi­ tional content and not the assertion. then it also follows that every affirmation is opposed to another affirm ation . Does every ‘yes’ also express a position-taking against a ‘no’? If it is correct that one cannot divide sentences into intrinsically positive and intrinsically negative then this is clearly how we must view it. 27). it in no way follows that the assertion-m om ent is untouched by the negation. Thus. Later I shall try to show that without consideration of this property . would be meaningless if the propositional content were not opposed to one that negated it. Again it is easily overlooked that with the ‘no’ too som ething is affirm ed.being a position-taking against . the affirm ation of the opposite propositional content. understanding the assertion-m om ent as affirm ation turns out to be cor­ rect. so that the reply does not need to repeat the propositional content and can restrict itself to the mere affirm ation or denial.namely. the opposite propositional content. then the assertoric ‘yes’ has the form ’ and the assertoric ‘no’ the form V not Now if every denial is an affirm ation which is opposed to another affirm ation. 17. T hat the utterance o f an assertoric sentence has the character of an assertion. Now w here do we stand with respect to our question concerning a unitary form of all sentences? We have arrived at a form which is common to at least all assertoric sentences: (1) they have the structure ‘t. If we use the symbol ’ to indicate that the propositional content which is at issue is the one that had been m entioned in the conversation. viz.one cannot understand the m ode of employ­ m ent o f assertoric sentences and their various forms (Lectures 15.Introduction 48 affirm ed or denied has already been expressed by a preceding assertion or question. Every assertion is a position-taking against the one opposed to it. Every ‘n o ’ expresses a position-taking against a ‘yes’. On the contrary. behind the second part. only this position-taking is not m ade explicit as it is in denial. the symbol */?*.

T he aim of this lecture was not to find an answer to the question concerning the form of assertoric sentences (and perhaps of all sentences). but simply to investigate w hether there is a unitary form at all which would be amenable to such a question. At present we only know that the question: what is it to understand an assertoric sentence? aims at three structural m oments and their inner connection: (1) what is it to understand an assertoric affirmation? (2) what is it to understand a propositional content? (3) what is it to u n d e r­ stand the word ‘not’? .Has form al semantics a fundam ental question? 49 any fu rth er in the introductory reflections. it will be our central concern in the main part of the lectures. But I would also not wish to give the impression that with the re fer­ ence to the assertion-m om ent and the negateability o f propositional content this structure that is comm on to all forms of assertoric sen­ tences is already explained.

to the im partial observer. our traditional orien­ tation towards the opposition being .1 How this proposition. indeed unintelligible.2 O n the oth er hand. T h e opposition o f being and not-being is (as we could already see in connection with the Principle of Contradiction) an opposition that belongs to veritative being ju st as much as the so-called modalities of being. which Aristotle had at least touched upon. M oreover for mediaeval ontology the start­ ing-point for the dem onstration of the universality of being was no longer the usage of ‘is’ but the thesis that the determ ination ens is the first determ ination that is given to the m ind. within the fram ew ork of ontology. the problematic. however. came closest to veritative being was in the assum ption th at the question of being is always connected with the question of not-being. a semantics of the assertoric sentence-form . How far from obvious this is can be seen immediately one considers that a theory which started out from objects or from that mediaeval conception of ens would have no occasion to them atize the ‘not’. and other meanings of ‘is’ (such as that of the cop­ ula or existence) only participate in this opposition because they are species of veritative being.LECTURE 5 Consciousness and speech If Aristotle or the tradition which followed him had taken veritative being as the guiding thread of their investigation. together with unum and aliquid. becam e unrecognizable in the shape of the inadequate doctrine of th everum as another ‘transcen­ dental’ determ ination o f ens. must appear far from evident. which. Instead o f this.not-being contributes to our ten­ . could be regarded as suprem ely evident by an entire tra ­ dition. W here the Aristotelian ontology. then there would have developed. can be explained only by reference to the concept of represen­ tation (Vorstellen) which I shall exam ine at the end of this lecture. a doctrine in which the veritative m eaning of ‘is’ was assimilated to the others and thereby finally objectified. and indeed the entire traditional ontology from Parm enides to Hegel.

word-position and intonation. 36).5 Ju st as we can transform an asser­ toric sentence into a prefixed ‘it is the case’ followed by the nominalization of the sentence. b u t it would be conceivable. O ne can see in this an effect o f the traditional ontology. W hereas Aristotle had with veritative being ju st en tered the dim ension of assertoric semantics. T his provided us with a fundam ental question for the semantics of assertoric sentence-form s. since such a restriction would be incompatible with this form al science’s claim to universality.Consciousness and speech 51 dency to place denial on a level with affirm ation and to overlook the peculiar status3 of the ‘n o t’ m the sentence-form . but towards all its modes. o u r u n d erstan d in g o f linguistic expressions in general. On the oth er hand. for in the sciences only assertoric sentences occur (at m ost-one would have to add in terro g a­ tive sentences). But then we are faced with the question: how can we extend the unified perspective we have achieved for the inves­ tigation o f assertoric sentences in such a way that it can be understood as the unified perspective for the investigation of all forms of sen­ tences? Assertoric sentences are contrasted with im peratives. optative sen­ tences and interrogative sentences.unless one understands the o rien ­ tation towards ‘is’ as an orientation not ju s t towards the indicative form of this verb. nam ely towards the question concerning the form al p resu p p o ­ sitions o f all sciences. W hat we were able to achieve in the previous lecture in connection with veritative being was a form al characterization of all assertoric sen­ tences. And I shall not now give a semantic criterion for these classifications. so we can clearly also transform an im perative . I leave undecided w hether this list of other sentence-form s is com plete and systematically significant. non-assertoric semantics seem to lie completely outside the scope o f an ontology . once one has en tered the sphere of form al semantics it would be artificial to restrict the thematic field to asserto­ ric sentences. It thus seems plausible no longer to sketch the form al them atic o f the sought-for universal science by reference to the sciences but by taking as o n e ’s point of dep artu re. then with the form al semantics of assertoric sen­ tences we have already achieved our aim. as I did in the previous lecture (p. If in the question concerning a form al universal science we orientate ourselves tow ards the Aristotelian startingpoint.4 It is usual to rely on gram m atical criteria such as m ode o f verb. T his is an indication o f how little attention has hitherto been given in philosophical semantics to non-assertoric sen­ tences. Such an orientation has never been developed in the traditional elaboration o f the question of being.

‘He is com ing’. B ringing in non-assertoric sentences also provides additional confir­ mation for the view that the ‘n o t’ belongs to the propositional content. is com mon to all sentence-form s (with of course certain quali­ fications. one can also see immediately that one and the same propositional content can occur in an assertoric sentence and in the various non-assertoric modes o f sentence. th at im peratives can only refer to something in the fu tu re). namely. that we must regard the sem antic form o f non-nom inalized assertoric sentences as also com posed o f an affirm ation-m om ent and a propositional content..’ T h e im perative denial also has the form ‘!*not -/>*’ and is thus the im perative affirm ation of a negated propositional content. although the propositional content is not grammatically isolable. Only in passing shall I m ention the problem of so-called ‘external’ negation. such as. negation in such sentences as ‘I do not order that p . or. i. ‘Is he coming?’ all clearly have the same propositional content and only differ with respect to mode. T he im perative ‘Do not come!’ dem ands the realization of the same state of affairs whose truth is asserted by the assertoric sentence ‘You will not com e. though they have the . But not only do non-assertoric sentences also have a propositional content.g. which one can symbolize by ‘M */?*’. ‘Let him come!’ etc.6 In this way then one arrives at a unitary structure of all sentences. Only this structure makes intelligible the connection between ‘He is com ing’. and in their case too the propositional content without the affirm ation-m om ent can be expressed by m eans o f the nominalized locution ‘that p ’.g. e. by V for the assertion-m om ent.g. the interro­ gative sentence ‘Is he coming?’ into ‘Is it the case that he is coming?’ This gives us a fundam ental insight into the structure of non-asser­ toric sentences: ju st like assertoric sentences they can be divided into an affirm ation-m om ent and a propositional content. which gives us the already familiar Similarly one can e. the propositional content (thus that ele­ m ent which is the bearer of all fu rth er formal-semantic sub-struc­ tures).g. e. whereas the other element.e. where ‘M ’ is a variable which is to be replaced by the symbols for the various modes e. ‘Let him come!’ ‘If only he would com e’. It thus em erges that the sentence-forms of the various sentence-m odes only differ with respect to their mode. T h ere is thus confirmed what initially did not seem to follow necessarily.g.Introduction 52 sentence (e. ‘Let him come!’) into a prefixed ‘let it be the case’ fol­ lowed by the nom inalized form ‘that he comes!’. write ‘!*p*’ for the im perative and for the inter­ rogative sentence.’1 Such so-called ‘perform ative’ sentence-form s.

A nd of course there is also an im perative use of ‘yes’ and ‘no’. For in u ttering them one is not only asserting something. precisely as in the case of the assertoric sentence. by reference / to perform atives one can see what meaning a sentence of the form ‘not-M*/?*’ would have and in this way convince oneself again that negative assertoric sentences. are not assertoric sentences. *!*/?*’. Must we also regard the non-assertoric modes as a form of affir­ mation? Do they too have the character of a position-taking against an opposing affirmation? For this view speaks the fact that the Principle of Contradiction clearly also holds for non-assertoric sentences and that one can justify it h ere in exactly the same way as in the case of assertoric sentences. If one says ‘Come here and do not come h ere’ one has said nothing. And then of course it would be plausible also to construe the im perative which does not contain a ‘not’. T he question of w hether the various non-assertoric modes can be construed as modes of affirma­ tion can.8 Now if one could assimilate ‘I assert th at/?’ and ‘I o rd er th at/?’ to ‘ y and ‘!*/?*’ p then ‘I do not assert that /?’ and ‘I do not o rd e r that /?’ would clearly have the form ‘not h */?*’and ‘not ! */?*’. . when I say ‘I o rder . ju st as in the case of the assertoric mode. . and that means as position-taking against the imperatival affirmation of the opposite propositional content. Only in the case of interrogative sentences can one see in advance that they do not conform to this schema.g. Only if it could be shown that the negative im perative is really directed against an opposite imperative by which the action is being directed would it be clear that it is to be construed as the denial of an affirm ation. etc. imperatives. I am ordering). for such an utterance seems directed not against another utterance but against an action. However.Consciousness and speech 53 grammatical form of assertoric sentences. In any case external negation does not occur in the case of the non-nominalized sentences ‘?’. How­ ever. do not have this form. one is at the same time doing what they assert (e. even in the case of the explicitly negative sentence (‘Do not come!’) it seems less clear that it is to be construed as position-takingagainst. in the end only be decided by actually carrying out the semantics of these form s of sentence. etc. therefore. it seems not to be m eaningful to . O ne may doubt w hether this assimilation is correct and w hether the semantics of performatives is not ultimately to be understood in term s of the semantics of assertoric sentences. A lthough they too have a negatable propositional content.’ I am not (only) asserting that I am ordering. so that one would again arrive at a unitary conception of negation.. With the second step one has cancelled the first. as affirmation.

Thus the only reason why interrogative sentences are not affirmative is that they contain the dem and for an affirm ation.Introduction 54 describe the two interrogative sentences which have an opposed prop­ ositional content as being themselves opposed. viz. T he fundam ental question is: how is it that our entire linguistic understanding has the structure of yes/no-position-takings of various modes vis-a-vis propositional contents? O f course. to the result that is now em erging. e. But such expressions do not exhibit any semantic structures (or only very rudim entary ones). is in essence reducible to the question of the understanding of sign-form ations of the form 'M *p*\ And so the fun­ dam ental question of form al semantics as a whole can be directly join ed to the fundam ental question o f the semantics of assertoric sen­ tences presented at the end of the previous lecture. Lecture 7).g. But it is also easy to see why interrogative sentences occupy this special position. an imperative. only in place of the question about the u n derstanding of V’ one has the question about the u nderstanding of the various modes and their interconnection. that yes/no positiontaking is fundam ental to the use of all sentences with a propositional content. in the dem onstration o f a systematic connection between the different modes. Do all our sentences have this form? Clearly there are also independent units of com m unication which have no propositional content. A question is a dem and that a sentence be uttered. though not completely reducible. a position-taking. if there are specifically practical questions (cf. With this I can conclude this prelim inary sketch of a form al sem an­ tics as the language-analytical successor-discipline to ontology in its capacity as form al universal science.9 normally an assertoric sentence or. ‘ow’. O ne can therefore say that the question con­ cerning the understan d in g of our linguistic expressions. in the dem onstration o f a systematic connection o f the structures o f the propositional content (p. We shall see later that the analysis of the m eaning of such situationrelated expressions presents far fewer difficulties than the analysis of propositional sentences. B ut at least we now know in what answering it positively would consist: firstly. within a range specified by the interrogative sentence. We do not yet know anything . w hether one can speak of a unitary structure and not simply of common structural mom ents is still an open question. secondly. ‘hello’. ‘thanks’. ‘Is he not coming?’ one and the same thing is being asked. 48) and. ‘h u rra h ’. It would be m ore cor­ rect to say that in both questions ‘Is he coming?’. Con­ sequently these non-affirm ative sentences do not constitute a counter­ example.

e. consequently. viz. It was this third aspect which led us to envisage the b ro ader disci­ pline of a form al semantics in place of ontology. In the linguistic interpretation of . then the question arises: with what right is one of the two aspects of the prelim inary conception. In o rd e r to restore the connection with this o ur principal question and to p rep are the next step I can now sum m arize the criticism that can be brought against the Aristotelian conception of a pre-em inent science as ontology in the following way. with respect to m otivation (p. that is to say by reference to a pre-em inent m otivation and not on the basis of a prelim inary u n d erstan d in g o f the w ord ‘philosophy’ (Lecture 7). So far then the only thing to recom m end the idea of a form al semantics as a pre-em inent science is essentially the fact th at it is m ore com prehensive than ontol­ ogy. the radicalization o f the justificatory character of science. If we continue to orientate ourselves prim arily towards this aspect of universality one could ask: if it has now been shown that ontology is surpassed in its universality-claim by form al semantics. one can criticize the conception of philosophy as ontology relative to the prelim inary u n d erstan d in g which Aristotle takes as his starting-point. I adm it that I am inclined to this view. viz. However. one can also criticize the ontolog­ ical conception from the point o f view of the o th er aspect of A ristotle’s prelim inary conception. At present I am only trying to m ark out a them atic field that can be claimed as the field of a science which is somehow pre-em inent and for this reason merits the title ‘philosophy’. If this is to be m easured against A ristotle’s own prelim inary conception. Firstly. 18).Consciousness and speech 55 about the conceptuality and m ethods with which such an enquiry can be tackled. we m ust be on our guard against dogm atism here. one can call this con­ ception in question absolutely. i. left out? I shall likewise be taking up this aspect u n d e r the heading ‘reason’. what gu ar­ antee have we that form al semantics will not in tu rn be surpassed in its universality-claim by an o th er discipline? O ne could argue that the sense of form alization which em erged from the analysis o f the concept of an object is only significant with reference to sentences and that. It will be in the context of the guiding idea of ‘reason’ that I shall first attem pt to introduce a conception of philosophy absolutely. Secondly. T hirdly. th at of universality. O ne could then question the idea of form alization. in the m ain part of these lectures I shall likewise attem pt to p u rsu e this enquiry by way of a step-by-step destruction of the con­ ceptuality available from the tradition. the idea of an extension of the form al discipline beyond the sphere of sentences does not make sense.

T he relationship to ontology of philosophy of consciousness and linguistic analysis is in a certain way analogous. each of which can claim to out­ reach the other. An introduction to language-analytical philosophy will therefore have to include a confrontation with the philosophy of consciousness. favours an atomistic approach. reflection on the experience or consciousness of objects. and in contrast to the theory of objects. the philoso­ phy of consciousness can argue that all sentence-understanding is merely one m ode of consciousness am ong others. the new philosophical approach arises out of reflection. a discipline which seeks to transcend this lim itation. A thematic orientated towards sentences. It subsumes the u nderstanding of linguistic expressions under the con­ cept of consciousness and thus holds out the prospect of a broadening of the field of form alization. M oreover. In both cases.Introduction 56 A ristotle’s form al reflection-step I stressed that I must initially leave open the question of w hether this is the only possible way of u n d er­ standing this step. but these belong . All consciousness of an object is always a com ponent of the u nderstanding of a sentence. un d er the title ‘pragm atics’. although off-hand it is not clear w hether a formalization of non-linguistic experience makes sense. As in the debate with ontology the concern is just as much with addi­ tional insights into the n atu re of language-analytical philosophy as with the justification of the language-analytical conception of philoso­ . It is for this reason that there has recently arisen.both in science and elsewhere . or what should take the place of formalization. Phi­ losophy of consciousness and language-analytical philosophy thus app ear as com peting undertakings. 13). In consciousness we encounter the second traditional guiding-idea with which I wanted to confront the language-analytical conception of philosophy (p. T he orientation towards consciousness character­ istic o f classical m odern philosophy has . the question arises of w hether we should leave out of account all modes of consciousness and experience which are not expressed in sentences.10 Also. ju st like one orientated towards objects.to larger contexts of com­ m unication and understanding. it seems undeniable that linguistic understanding is not reducible to the understanding of isolated sen­ tences. This question opens up a new perspective.like the language-analytical conception .been understood as a critical extension of ontology. T hese contexts rem ain unexam ined if we confine ourselves to the form of sentences. In the philosophy of consciousness this is represented as. in semantics as reflection on the sentences in which objects are spoken about. Sentences are the smallest units of communication. On the other hand.

In the question of doubt and certainty everyone finds himself thrown back upon him self: one can have one’s attention draw n to possible doubts by others. an in d u ­ bitable knowledge that he is in them .which are indubit­ able for the person who is in them . It always concerns som ething which someone believes.obviously a very simplified and schematic one .Consciousness and speech 57 phy. It then tu rn ed out that there is a whole class of states . T h e link between the debate with ontology and the debate with the philosophy of consciousness is this: reflection on consciousness opens up a perspective which appears to outbid the universality-claim of the language-analytical conception. . or what the consequences are of a language-analytical conception for these three steps. in the form of three successive and increasingly radical steps.believing.of the positions of the philosophy of conscious­ ness relevant to our problematic. wishing. This we shall do by examining how ontology was m ade into a problem. B ut knowledge is ultimately always knowledge of an individual. T h e question o f justification in the sci­ ences concerns their assertions in so far as they make a claim to knowl­ edge. if he can justify it. in contrast to ontology. It resulted from a re tu rn to that aspect of the Aristotelian preliminary conception of philosophy which Aristotle him self had neglected in his ontological interpretation of this prelim inary conception. It now seemed plausible to interpret this . but knows it. I shall present this develop­ ment of the philosophy of consciousness. T he first step is that which we can call the Cartesian step. intending. If one asks by what this class is defined perhaps the only criterion is precisely this: that the person whose states they are has. etc. that it is indubitable for him. but the doubting itself and the corresponding certainty is a state of the individual. m ore narrow concept). We also say then that he is certain of what he believes. We say that he not only believes it. feeling. Having done this we shall then have to ask what the consequences are of each of these three steps for the language-analytical conception. by reflection on consciousness. Historically it was with this step that the turn from ontology to consciousness began. Justification consists in an explicit elimination of possible doubts. Now Descartes pointed out that this state of doubt or certainty itself cannot be doubted by the person whose state it is at the time he is in that state. and its point of departure extended. at the time in which he is in them . This criterion gives us a first broad concept of consciousness (we shall later become acquainted with a sec­ ond. In o rd er to be able to carry through this debate with the philosophy of consciousness we m ust first get an idea . the aspect of grounding and justification. viz.

are not merely of gradually higher generality than the concepts which belong to the object-sphere.the Cartesian. If there are fundam en­ tally distinct object-spheres which are not simply sub-divisions of one universal realm o f being. only clarify the sense of objecthood as such in a transcendental study of givenness. However. T he ontological structures can rem ain untouched. It signifies vis-a-vis ontology only a new centre of gravity of enquiry: before the question concerning being as such there is placed the ques­ tion concerning its accessibility. This question was called the epistemological question. this m ust be because there are not only objects of different kinds in the distinct object-spheres. ‘num ber’ . according to H usserl. This step consists in this: the question of the mode of givenness of objects is no longer regarded merely as a question about certainty but as constitutive for the object­ hood of objects. T he distinctions in question are not distinctions of the objects and their contents. but objects whose mode of objecthood is different. only with the difference that Kant does not thematize objecthood as such. At the time I pointed out that the fundam ental concepts which characterize a sphere of objects as such . Now for a philosophy which does not yet reflect on language there is only one possible interpretation of this state of affairs. the question of accessibility can affect the ontological ques­ tions themselves. A nd fu rth er it seemed plausible to assume that I know everything outer and dubitable somehow by means of what is inwardly given and indubitable. For Husserl the form o f objecthood is constituted in the form of m ode of givenness of these objects (Ideen hi §7).concepts such as ‘material thing’. a conception I have already touched on in the introduction of the ontological posi­ tion. T he radicalization of the question of justification thus leads to (1) the conception of the inner as som ething indubitable and (2) the question of how som ething outer is given to me. they can therefore only concern the m ode of giv­ enness of objects. This first step in the philosophy of consciousness .does not yet imply any extension of ontology. W here this happens there results the second step.Introduction 58 sphere of consciousness as som ething inner which is somehow im m e­ diately given to the individual. C orre­ spondingly one can also. epistemological one . they are fundam entally different from them. ‘state of consciousness’. We find a basically similar position in Kant. as was now said). N or does he distin­ . how it can be known by me. thus to ‘m e’ (to the ‘ego’. the so-called transcendental-philosophical turn. We can clarify this thesis o f transcendental philosophy most easily by reference to H usserl’s conception of regional ontologies.

) is the consciousness o f the world. that by reflecting on conscious­ ness the orientation towards objects is transcended. Reflection on the experience o f objects m ade Kant aware that objects are given to us in space and time. the reflection on consciousness has an effect on ontology itself. 12 . T h a t is the sense of the celebrated statement: ‘T h e conditions o f the possibility of experience as such are at the same time conditions of the possibility of the objects o f experience. T he subjective tu rn was m ade necessary by som ething which does not becom e accessible in an objectual approach. But as I have presented the transcendental-philosophical position so far it still rem ains d ep endent on ontology in that it allows the latter to furnish it with its fundam ental concept. T h e transcendental turn merely brings it about th at what was already the theme. object­ hood. B47) K ant calls it an ‘intuition’ (Anschauung) but that is clearly a m akeshift solution. Space and time. Kant only them atized that non-objectual consciousness which belongs to the context of objectual experience. Ontological analysis is now conceived as the analysis o f the possibility of experience or of what makes it possible that objects as such and the objects o f the various regions can be given. B 39 f. Kant recognized th at concepts like totality and infinity can only be understood on the basis of the concept of a repeated (‘successive’) act . the (definite or indefinite) totality of experienceable things (B 446 f. that of an object. T h e latter consists in this. then. but the them atic field is not thereby extended. Historically this step is only hinted at in the m odern philosophies of consciousness. This extension of the them atic field by reflection on consciousness is the third step.Consciousness and speech 59 guish different spheres of object. This totality o f objects is clearly not itself an object. he is concerned only with the object­ hood of the objects of experience in space and time. But how we should positively in terpret the con­ sciousness of space and time. On the other hand. is now analysed in a new way. however. are not themselves objects. which is not itself an objectual conscious­ ness. for Kant.’1 1 With this second step.). constitutive of the objecthood of objects. K ant arrived at the necessity of a transcendental enquiry precisely through the recognition th at all experience of objects is essentially always spatial and tem poral and contains a world-relation (Weltbezug). B39. Unlike Husserl. in particular in Kant. rem ains unclear. for it emerges that there are modes o f consciousness which cannot be understood as con­ sciousness of an object. On the basis of form al analogies (Critique o f Pure Reason. Intim ately connected with the conscious­ ness of space and time (cf. As with Husserl the possibility of experience is.

Introduction 60 M oreover.14 In particular H eidegger tried to show that the disclosedness which the person has of himself. on account o f its descent from ontology. For the term ‘consciousness’ H eidegger substituted a term of art ‘disclosedness’ (Erschlossenheit). shows that Kant nonetheless rem ained orien­ tated towards the consciousness of objects: for this reason he consid­ ered only that act-consciousness which. for Kant. It is in H eidegger’s Sein und Zeit that we first find an attem pt explicitly to carry thro u g h the third step an d free the understanding of con­ sciousness from the orientation towards objects. A fter this crude survey of the relationship o f the philosophy of con­ sciousness to ontology we m ust ask: what implications does this have for the language-analytical conception? For the presen t I shall pass over the problem which we encountered in the first. Now the consciousness that som eone has o f his action (and that means: of the rule which he follows in his action) is again not the consciousness of an object. In doing so Heidegger abandoned the term ‘consciousness’. He did not develop a general theory of the consciousness of acts. 195 f. Cartesian. where ‘w orld’ stands not for the totality of objects but for the totality o f significance in which a person understands him self (Sein und Zeit §§ 18. of his own being (thus speaking traditionally: his self-consciousness) is not to be u n d e r­ stood objectually. connected with the non-objectual ‘disclosedness’ o f ‘w orld’.13 T his. 32). b u t with a completely different conception of philosophy which results from a radicalization of the aspect of justifi­ cation. step. or at any rate of that consciousness which Kant called experience: the knowledge o f objects (B103.was essential to the consciousness o f objects. for him.an act-consciousness . fundam ental to the understanding of consciousness as such. in his view.).the synthesis of the manifold according to rules .was. is essential to the consciousness o f objects and their connection in space and time. We shall retu rn to this problem later u n d e r the heading ‘reason’. o f course. This was because this term had. the concept o f a synthetic act . T h e second. he thought that a certain non-objectual con­ sciousness . hence the question of what it is to be conscious o f one’s action and what it is to be conscious o f an action-rule rem ained unclarified. for this problem had to do not with an extension of ontology. This problem atic was. So not only did K ant also take account of modes of consciousness that are non-objectual. been so tied to the concept of an object that it seemed that consciousness means eo ipso consciousness of objects. transcendental step is an expression of the insight that one can only them atize that which constitutes an object as object and .

as H usserl says. A nd that means: the difference in m ode of givenness is grounded in the difference of veritative being. that from the point of view of linguistic analysis the problem of the ‘acces­ sibility’ of objects becomes a part of the problem of the verifiability of the predicative statements which can be m ade about objects.Consciousness and speech 61 the objecthood of the various spheres of object by at the same time reflecting on our relationship to objects. But that would now also have to mean: that the applying of predicates to them is verified in fundam entally different ways. At the time I left open the question of w hether one can also conceive of this relation­ ship. On the other hand. T h e prob­ lem o f regional ontologies thereby acquires a new and more com pre­ hensive sense than it has in Husserl. by way of anticipation. In so far as our present guiding question is the universality of the m ode o f enquiry this much at least is clear: so long as it restricts itself to objects the transcendental mode of enquiry is not m ore comprehensive than the language-analytical. is. We then saw how one can achieve and thematize the concept of an object if one understands our relationship to objects in such a way that it rests on the use o f certain linguistic expressions. W hat is to be understood by the ‘givenness’ of objects in this context is som ething we shall have to consider later. It is this concep­ tion which we now find ourselves confronted with in the transcenden­ tal-philosophical position. in non-linguistic terms. this means that it concerns the form of the corresponding predicative statements. even from its perspective. But it will perhaps already make sense if I say. T hat two objects differ not only with respect to certain predicates but with respect to their objecthood means. B ut the transcendental-philosophical reflection on our relationship to objects is not ju st m ore narrowly conceived than the language-analyti­ cal. and the reflection on it. . T h e question arises: is not the idea o f a pre-linguistic relationship to objects which one can reflect on an illusion? I can today merely indi­ cate this language-analytical criticism of the transcendental-philosophical approach in o rd er to provide at least a preliminary orientation. that they are acces­ sible in essentially different ways. however. If the difference between different spheres of object concerns the objecthood of objects. for the relationship to objects which tran­ scendental philosophy of course regards as primarily non-linguistic. not linguistically inaccessible. In the discussion of the Aris­ totelian formalization-step I pointed out that one can only thematize the objecthood of objects by reflecting on our relationship to them (p. 24). the language-analytical reflection on our relationship to objects places this in the m ore com prehensive context of predication and veritative being.

‘Ich kann mir m einen Grossvater nicht m ehr vorstellen’ (‘I can no longer picture my g ran d fath er’). In ordinary linguistic usage the expression ‘sich etwas vorstellen’ (lit. In one sense ‘er stellt sich vor . bring it before one sensuously (anschaulich). In the second sense ‘er stellt sich vor .belong to a certain logical (formal-semantic) sentence-structure. T h e fundam ental m odern concept for this having before oneself is the concept of ‘representation’ (Vorstellung). It came to be used in early m odern philosophy in the context of an epistemological ‘theory o f representation’ (Repräsentation ): inner representations (Vorstellungen) as representatives (Vertreter) [repraesentationes] of outer objects. ‘Er stellt sich vor. ‘Er stellt sich den Kölner Dom vor’ (‘H e pictures Cologne C athedral to him ­ self’).g. .g.’ is com pleted by an expression which stands for an object. I do not see a picture which ‘stands fo r’ it). But it is also true of . This term is the principal point o f attack for a language-analytical critique of the transcendental-philosophical position. . Consciousness has a rela­ tionship to objects by ‘representing’ them. as indeed Husserl him self show ed. R ather it is that transcendental philosophy conceives o f the consciousness of objects in too simple a fashion. dass es jetzt in Berlin regnen könnte’ (‘He imagines that it could now be raining in B erlin’).Introduction 62 only later (Lectures 21 and 27) will we be in a position to elaborate this criticism.15 even of phantasyrepresentations (when I imagine Cologne C athedral I mean it itself directly. It is this second m ode of em ploym ent from which the philosophical terminology derives. T h e idea of a pre-linguistic relationship to objects implies that one thinks of this relationship as a having before oneself (ein Vorsichhaben). it fails to take account of the fact that we refer linguistically to objects by means o f expressions which . This is representing som ething to oneself in the sense of im ag­ ining that som ething is so and so. It is not the fact that transcendental philosophy orientates itself towards objects that lin­ guistic philosophy objects to. W hat is m eant by this? H ere I m ust become somewhat m ore precise. This is true. Used in this way ‘sich etwas vor­ stellen’ means som ething like ‘make som ething present to oneself’ (‘sich etwas vergegenw ärtigen’) in the sense o f : form an inner picture. a phantasy-im age of.’ is com pleted by a noun clause. How then is one to conceive of a pre-linguistic relationship to objects? As representation. e. .as singular term s . e. to represent som ething to oneself) is used in two different senses. transcendental philosophy still retained the term ‘representation’ (Vorstellung) even when it rejected this theory o f representation (Repräsentation) and m ade it clear that con­ sciousness relates to objects directly and not via inner representatives. However. .

g.whereas the question o f what it is to represent an object is a pseudo-question. only not sensuously. A nd thus ‘rep resen tatio n ’ became the general concept for o u r conscious relationship to objects. O f all these things he has a sensuous im age. ‘P eter’. 18 We shall later have to see w hether this conclusion. T h e consciousness of an object is like the sensuous having before o neself of a picture. Even the o rd in ary language ‘V orstellen’ . A nd it is ju st so. You could think: even w hen we refer to an object linguistically we m ust still also rep resen t it to ourselves. only this having before oneself is not sensuous. one rem oves all determ inateness. is it to m ean an object? Now that is precisely the question th at will have to be investigated. have o perated with a sensuous and even optical m odel. T h e philosopher sits at his desk and thinks about the world and nothing is m ore natural than to look at the objects he has before him: things on the desk an d . B ut in reality this concept is vacuous. w hat results is the concept o f b ein g . outside the window.17 And it was this conception o f ‘being’. even non-sensuous.Consciousness and speech 63 all o th er form s of being conscious o f an object. trees and houses. A nd as this concept is also not restricted to m aking present sensuously (anschauliches Vergegenwärtigen) it becomes so refined that it stands for any. H ence the rep resen ta­ tion (Repräsentation) aspect in the concept o f rep resen tin g (Vorstellen) drop s out. we mean objects.the language-analytically purified question of tra n ­ scendental philosophy . It was then thought: if from this content which the intellect has before it. which Hegel took as his point of d e p a rtu re in his Logic . when one refers to objects. e. that transcenden­ tal philosophy in its attem p t to construe the relationship to objects1nonlinguistically falls back on an em pty concept. as im agination its image. you will ask. But if someone uses a singular term . B ut what. From the beginnings of G reek philosophy up to Husserl philosophers.only not sensuously’ mean? j We can now also u n d erstan d the mediaeval idea that being is the prim ary object of the intellect (ens primum objectum intellectus nostri). conscious having before oneself. through the neglect o f language-analytical reflection. It is a question which can be investigated . he thinks. With it som ething which belongs to a sensuous relationship (Anschauungsbezie­ hung) is transferred to a relationship th at is logical. B ut what does ‘ u st so .16 A lthough the term ‘rep resen tatio n ’ is not yet used here the conception of an intellect which has som ething before it (objectum) is basically the same. which no longer has anything to do with the actual use of ‘is’. we do not ask him: ‘Who do you re p ­ resent to yourself with “P eter”?’ but ‘W ho do you m ean with “Peter”?’ We do not represent objects to ourselves. can also w ithstand a m ore precise exam ination.

if we ask what it is that this act synthesizes the answer is: representations. this means that he tries sensuously to represent to him self the object which he means. were taken over naively without considering the way they function in sentences.. tries to sensuously represent to him self an object.19 W hat is decisive is that the manifold which consciousness synthesizes consists of simple data (‘sense-data’). Once one has started with a problem in a wrong way. unlike the philosophical term . In general one can say: so long as one failed to con­ sider logical structure it was not possible to think of the relationship of consciousness to objects in any oth er way than by analogy with a sen­ suous having before oneself. . It is of secondary im por­ tance that Kant actually uses this term . and there are prejudices which prevent things from being put right. e.Introduction 64 which of course. since con­ sciousness allegedly cannot be grasped with the understanding. However. Particularly questionable is the developm ent of this conception in G erm an Idealism (though this would require a criti­ cal in terpretation on its own). is m eaningful (making som ething present in the imagination) is only possible in the context of m eaning som ething: if someone. H ere representation was fu rth er form al­ ized into a ‘subject-object relation’ and this one sought to grasp with general logical-ontological concepts such as those of identity and oppo­ sition. by means of logic. for their part. arid that means .w hether this expression is used or not . T hese concepts. it was the orientation towards ‘representation’ that rem ained decisive. T hough other perspectives were always being added to it.as ‘representation’. But has the whole of transcendental philosophy been so exclusively orientated towards representation? You will point out that I myself have draw n attention to the fact that Kant conceives of the conscious­ ness of objects as a synthetic act. And ju st as little as the consciousness of objects can be thought o f as representation can it be thought of as a combination of representations. these concepts were combined in paradoxical fashion in a so-called dialectical logic.g. And then. then all that seems to rem ain is the escape into the apparent profundity of the paradoxical.

How is it with the third step. a dimension of consciousness which goes beyond the u n d er­ standing of sentences ju st as much as beyond the relationship to objects. in both the Kantian and the H eideggerian version (connection of objects in space and time.went in favour of the language-analyti­ cal position. by an action-consciousness and so on? Until we can see more clearly here we . T h u s in extending the thematic it started out from an unclear basis. what is actually m eant by a consciousness of spatial and tem poral connections. such as the con­ sciousness of action-rules (the same is true of the experience of a sen­ sible manifold such as the view of a landscape or the hearing of a mel­ ody) are not ‘logical’ modes of consciousness. It thereby passed over a whole dim ension of non-objectual consciousness without which there is also no objectual consciousness.1 On the other hand.LECTURE 6 The argument with the philosophy of consciousness continued T h e debate with the second step of the philosophy of consciousness the transcendental approach . are not articulated in sentences. if this is understood as formal semantics. connection of signifi­ cance). But if we recognize such a limitation from whence do we get ou r criterion of universality? Clearly we orientate ourselves towards a broad concept of consciousness in the sense of what H eidegger m eant by ‘dis­ closedness’. But what is to be understood by consciousness in general? Plainly we have no clear concept of this. N or do we have a clear concept of the various non-logical modes of consciousness. in which the transcendental question concerning the conditions of the possibility of the experience o f objects led to modes o f consciousness which are no longer objectual? In this extension of the enquiry beyond objects transcendental phi­ losophy failed to take account of sentences. H ere then we encounter a limitation of the language-analyt­ ical approach. with the worldproblem there is opened up. Also the other non-objectual modes o f consciousness.

Introduction

66

can have no idea how we should concretely conceive an extension of the universal approach beyond the sphere of sentences. In particular it must rem ain unclear whether, and if so how, a formal analysis of a nonlinguistically articulated consciousness is possible, what formalization would mean here, or what would have to take the place of formaliza­ tion. O ne can clearly only make progress here by clarifying our u n d e r­ standing of the various modes of consciousness and of the notion of consciousness in general. How can modes of consciousness be analysed? One m ight think: by introspection, by inner perception. But is con­ sciousness something we can inwardly look at? Is there such a thing as inner perception, inner observation? I ask you to seriously try to p er­ ceive what is inside you. Is it not immediately evident that this is a non­ sensical idea? We can observe with our senses, and if we speak of observing something inwardly this can mean: attending to one’s bodily sensations. But this is not what one means when one speaks of what is inner. What is inner - that is consciousness, and here there can be no question of anything like observation or perception. Perhaps you will say: ‘But I know indubitably that I am conscious of this and that; this consciousness m ust therefore be somehow inwardly given to m e.’ Must it? It would be over hasty to argue: what we do not know by means of outer observation we know by means of inner observation. Perhaps the so-called inner differs much m ore fundam entally from the so-called outer.2 Instead of philosophizing in this way by postulation we would do bet­ ter to look at how things actually stand. But where should we look if not by inner perception? What is to be done if we do not even know where and how we have to look, if we do not know how something about which we speak is to be m ade evident? If all that is given to us of something is our speaking about it then we can only elucidate it by examining how we can speak about it. It seems then we can only clarify even that the­ matic which extends beyond the understanding of sentence-forms by means of linguistic analysis. T o be sure, I am speaking now o f ‘linguistic analysis’ in the broad sense of an analysis of m eaning, not in the narrow sense of an analysis of sentence-forms. Linguistic analysis in this broad sense takes the place of descriptive phenom enology, if one rejects as fictions the peculiar forms of intuition - inner intuition and intuition of essences - presupposed in phenomenology. I would like to try to dem onstrate to you the methodological superi­ ority of linguistic analysis to phenom enology by reference to that way o f speaking of consciousness which has become decisive for phenom e­ nology itself (in Husserl).

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Husserl distinguishes two concepts of consciousness.3 T he one derives from our speaking of som eone having a consciousness of some­ thing or a conscious relation to something. Husserl calls this conscious­ ness of som ething ‘intentionality’ or ‘intentional experience’ (intention­ ales Erlebnis). It is for Husserl the decisive concept of consciousness. However, ‘intentional experiences’, according to Husserl, fall un d er the more com prehensive genus of experiences in general. In each person experiences belong to the unity of a ‘stream of experiences’. We also call this ‘stream of experiences’ ‘consciousness’. In this sense we say, e.g., this and that is contained in my consciousness - that is, it is a part of the whole of my consciousness in the sense of my stream of experi­ ences. Consciousness in this sense - H usserl’s second concept of con­ sciousness - is clearly founded upon the concept of ‘experience’ (Erleb­ nis). T h e two term s which are fundam ental to H usserl’s concept of consciousness, and which stand in need of clarification, are, therefore, ‘experience’ and ‘intentionality’. Husserl seemingly carries out the explication and clarification of both concepts phenomenologically, using the m ethod of inner intuition. I would like to show that in neither case is there really any question of an inner intuition and that the deci­ sive criteria are exclusively linguistic. By ‘experiences’ Husserl understands anything which can be inwardly perceived by the person whose experiences they are. Husserl claims that the possibility of such an inn er perception is evident. How can Husserl claim som ething to be evident which we have just seen can­ not even be found? From H usserl’s reference to the Cartesian sphere of inner certainty we can immediately see what he has in mind. I have already draw n attention, in the previous lecture, to the fact that one can define a first concept of consciousness in such a way that it embraces all states in which the person whose states they are has, at the time at which he has them , an indubitable knowledge th at he has them . These states are what Descartes called cogitationes and what Husserl calls experi­ ences. W hen I say: I am in such-and-such.a mood, have such and such phantasies, feelings, intend, believe, wish this or that, it is clearly inap­ propriate to ask: ‘How do you know that, are you sure of that?’ (one can only ask: ‘A re you telling the truth?’) - as opposed to when, e.g., I say: ‘I weigh 70 kg’ or ‘My u p p e r right wisdom-tooth is hurting.’ This is the fact to which Descartes drew attention and which Husserl too starts out from . Husserl, however, immediately placed the following in terp re­ tation on it: if I cannot doubt a state of myself then it is directly given to me, I directly perceive it. Husserl believed that he had an evident perception of this perception. However, m ust one not say: this allegedly

Introduction

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evident perception is as fictitious as w hat it is supposed to be a percep­ tion of? W ittgenstein, in his Philosophical Investigations,4 has pointed out that an approach such as H usserl’s illegitimately assimilates statements about what is in n er to statem ents about what is outer. If we make a statem ent in which an ‘experience’ is expressed it is clearly not based on an external observation. From this philosophers like Husserl conclude that it is based on internal observation. But must a statem ent always be based on something? I have ju st pointed out that in the case of a state­ m ent about an experience it does not make sense to ask: ‘How do you know that?’ H usserl presupposes that such a question always makes sense and that one can reply: ‘I know it by inner perception.’ T hat a statem ent is not based on anything appears strange to us. But this is only because we automatically assimilate all statements to one another and construe them on the model o f observation-statements. If we exam ine how things actually stand we see that in this case the statem ent itself is som ething ultimate. T h e characteristic feature o f experience-words, for Wittgenstein, is ‘that the third person present is to be verified by observation, the first person not’ (Zettel §472). T h e statem ent ‘I am w orried’ is not based on the worry in the sense that it rests on the observation that I am worried but in the sense that in it the being w orried is expressed, as in a cry (Phil. Inv. §244). On the oth er h an d - and this distinguishes it from the cry - the statem ent is uttered by me as one which can be repeated as this same statem ent by others and can then be verified by observation. Both these things - that the word in the 1st Person Present is not to be veri­ fied and that in the 3rd Person it is to be verified by observation belong essentially to the m ode of em ploym ent o f such a word. ‘I do not say it on the basis o f the observation of my behaviour. But it only makes sense because I so behave’ (§357). (And that means: because another can say it on the basis of the observation of my behaviour and my utter­ ances.) If it were not so then we could not learn and understand such a word. By dem onstrating this two-sidedness in the use of experience-words W ittgenstein m ade possible an understanding of the so-called inner which is distinct from both behaviourism and introspectionism. In the context of our discussion we need not pursue this problem any further. O ur sole concern here is to show that, contrary to H usserl’s view, the certainty-criterion which Descartes used to define cogitationes does not rest on an inner perception. T h e certainty is not som ething positive, but simply the negative fact th at here ‘the expression of uncertainty is

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senseless’ (Phil. Inv. §247) because the request for a justification is sim­ ply not applicable and a ‘doubt is logically excluded’ (Phil. Inv. p. 221). T he criterion of an experience-sentence in the 1st Person Present such as ‘I am in pain’ is, therefore, that it can be automatically converted into ‘I know that I am in pain.’ Because this conversion, though always possible, contains no addi­ tional inform ation it hardly occurs in ordinary language. W here, how­ ever, philosophy orientated itself towards this sentence ‘I know that I am in pain’ without noticing that its m eaning is precisely that of the sentence ‘I am in pain’, the illusion arose that the person who utters such a sentence observes him self and perceives the experience-state with absolute certainty. T he orientation towards this form of sentence in which the word ‘I’ occurs twice resulted in self-consciousness being characterized as a relation o f ‘the self’ to itself (so-called reflection). T he real peculiarity of sentences in which som eone says som ething about his experience-states is not the double occurrence of the word T , but rather that they - and indeed precisely in the simple form - are not statements about the state, but its expression, and hence exclude doubt. And it is precisely this last-m entioned fact which is expressed by the sentence with the double ‘I ’ (‘I know that I . . .’). With this the language-analytical basis for H eidegger’s analysis o f the disclosedness of o n e’s own being is reached. H eidegger rejected the theory o f reflection ju st as much as W ittgenstein;5 his m istrust of sen­ tences, however, h indered a clear destruction of the theory of reflec­ tion. But H eidegger started precisely where W ittgenstein finished. T he obsession with reflection had prevented philosophers from seeing what one is actually conscious o f in self-consciousness. This can only be appreh en d ed by attending to the simple sentences (without a double ‘I ’) in which someone says som ething about himself by saying e.g.: I am in such-and-such a mood, I intend to do this and this. I am not directed towards myself in the utterance of such sentences, but express my being-thus-and-so (being-in-a-mood, being-bent-on). It is the analysis of this being which, according to Heidegger, is the task of a properly understood theory of self-consciousness.6 I come now to the other, and for Husserl decisive, concept of con­ sciousness: that o f ‘intentional experience’. This is intended to desig­ nate that class of experiences the peculiar character o f which is to be directed towards an object. Consciousness in this sense, then, is essen­ tially consciousness of something. Now we must ask ourselves: how does H usserl establish the existence of this object-relation, and in what does it consist? What is m eant ‘strikes

Introduction

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us unmistakably in any illustration we choose. In perception something is perceived, in im agination som ething imagined, in a statem ent some­ thing stated, in love som ething loved, in hate something hated, in desire som ething desired, etc. It is the common feature that can be ap p re­ hended in such examples that B rentano has in mind when he says: “Every m ental phenom enon is characterized by what the scholastics of the m iddle ages called the intentional (or mental) inexistence of an object and what we . . . would call the direction to an object.” ’7 How does Husserl establish the directedness to an object by means of these examples? H ere too Husserl appealed to the evidence of the intu­ ition of essences (Wesensanschauung ). However, the examples show that again the criterion is simply a linguistic one. He notices that verbs such as ‘perceive’ ‘state’ ‘h ate’, etc., are transitive, that they have a gram m at­ ical object. Intentionality is thus a relation. Since intentionality is sup­ posed to constitute what is to be understood by ‘consciousness in the strict sense’,8 everything depends on making clear what it is that distin­ guishes these transitive verbs from non-intentional transitive verbs. Husserl gives no fu rth er explanation. I will now try to work out what is specific to the intentional relation by asking: of what kind are the objects referred to by the grammatical object of these verbs? We find that the majority of these verbs are not completed by singular terms which stand for concrete (perceptual, spatio-temporal) objects but by nominalized sentences, thus by linguistic expressions of the form ‘that p ’ which stand for ‘states of affairs’. W hen Husserl, in his series of examples, says that in a statem ent som ething is stated, the word ‘some­ thing’ clearly stands not for a concrete object, but for a state of affairs. T he same is true of most intentional verbs or modes of consciousness e.g. knowing, believing, doubting, wishing, questioning. T he sentence ‘I know . . .’ can only be completed by an expression of the form ‘that p’. Som ething corresponding is true of asking a question and intending, except that the completing sentence has a different grammatical struc­ ture. We can therefore say that the characteristic feature of these inten­ tional verbs is that they stand for a relation which holds not between two concrete objects but between a concrete object (a person) and a state of affairs. In English philosophy, in which the term ‘proposition’ has been adopted for ‘Sachverhalt’, these modes of consciousness are called propositional attitudes. We can speak of propositional modes of conscious­ ness. Now clearly not all the examples Husserl gives of intentional experi­ ences belong to the class of propositional modes of consciousness. In the case of some of them , e.g. loving, pitying, adm iring, only a singular

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term which stands for a concrete object can ap p ear as transitive object. Moreover, th ere is a group of intentional verbs which can be used in both ways. T o this mixed group belong perceiving, seeing, rem em ber­ ing, desiring. O ne can say ‘I see that the sun is rising’, but also ‘I see the sun’, ‘I desire to eat a piece of b re a d ’ but also ‘I desire a piece of bread.’ We can distribute this mixed g roup according to their two modes of em ploym ent am ong the two other groups, and we would then have two fundam ental classes of intentional modes of consciousness: propositional and non-propositional, those which relate to states of affairs and those which relate to concrete objects. Now the question is: what do these two classes have in common that distinguishes them from all o th er relations? We cannot appeal to the fact that both are modes of consciousness o f som ething; for what this means is supposed to be explained by the characterization of intention­ ality. H usserl says that common to all modes o f consciousness is a directedness to something. But what does this m ean? ‘D irectedness’ is clearly a m etaphor. Sign posts and guns are directed towards something; how­ ever they are not intentional. Again the appeal to inner evidence may appear tem pting. But if someone were to say to me: ‘You see when you are conscious of an object, perceive it, rem em ber it, fear it, that you are directed towards it; and you see how this relation differs from other relations’, then I would say: I see nothing at all. I sense a difference of course, but here it is a question of m aking clear what is unclearly sensed; and for this I have no intuition at my disposal - only linguistic usage. If there was only the one class o f intentional modes of consciousness, viz. the propositional, then we would have a clear distinguishing crite­ rion. For we do not find relations between a concrete object and p ro p ­ ositions outside intentionality. O pposed to this criterion, however, stands the o th er class of experiences designated as intentional. W hat is to be done in such a case? T h ree possibilities are conceivable, (a) the modes of consciousness of the two classes have nothing in common, in which case the concept of intentionality tu rn s out to be a pseudo­ concept o r (b) we succeed in finding a completely different common characteristic; the supposition that the orientation towards the p ro p o ­ sitional could be a way of achieving a general criterion of intentionality would then be shown to be m istaken, or (c) it would have to be shown that the non-propositional modes o f consciousness are only apparently non-propositional, that in reality they imply propositional conscious­ ness. It is this last possibility which, in my opinion, can be realized. I assert then: all non-propositional intentional modes of conscious­

Introduction

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ness imply propositional modes of consciousness. We can take as our point of d e p a rtu re a thesis of B rentano according to which what distin­ guishes intentional relations from o ther relations is the fact that the second term of such a relation need not exist.9 We shall see in a m om ent that this characterization does not apply to all non-propositional inten­ tional relations. It is, however, clearly correct for most cases. X can fear, love, desire, etc.,7V, even though T does not exist. Non-intentional rela­ V tions, by contrast, are not possible unless both terms of the relation exist. If N does not exist, then I cannot hit N , eat him, or sit on him. But how is this peculiarity of intentional relations to be explained? Shall we say that in the case of an intentional relation the object is, so to speak, in the m ind of the person concerned and, hence, that the rela­ tion is also possible when the object does not exist in reality? But this way of speaking is again clearly metaphorical. How can we give it a clear m eaning? Probably by saying that X m ust at least believe that N exists. I can fear the devil w ithout him existing but not without believing that he exists. T o believe that N exists - or, to put it m ore precisely, that there is exactly one object to which the properties implied in ‘ belong - is a AT propositional m ode of consciousness. W hat B rentano drew attention to, viz. that the object o f an intentional mode of consciousness need not exist, is th erefo re simply a consequence of the fact that one can only relate intentionally (consciously) to an object in such a way that one believes it to exist. T h a t it is really this th at is characteristic of the non-propositional intentional relation is shown by those cases to which B rentano’s thesis does not apply. If I say ‘X sees, hears, recognizes N ’, then that N does not exist is ruled out. T h a t would only be possible if I had said: ‘ X believes that he sees, hears N .’ However, even here the consciousness that there exists an object that = N is implied. W hen we say of X that he sees N this m eans: he knows on the basis of his optical perception (1) that there is som ething which = N (2) that here (in his optical su rro u n d ­ ings) there is som ething, (3) that this = N. T h at the apparently simple sentence ‘He sees N ’ contains such a complex assertion can be seen from the fact that if som eone says ‘I see N ’ one can dispute this assertion in three ways: (1) there is nothing which = N (N does not exist) (2) there is nothing here or (3) this (what you see) is not = N . Thus seeing, etc., also implies a propositional consciousness that N exists. At the same time the account ju st given makes it clear why B rentano’s thesis does not apply to these cases. If one says of som eone that he sees, hears, recog­ nizes N, this means that he does not ju st believe the implied state of affairs; he knows it.10 Now if one says of som eone ‘He knows that/?’

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(and not: ‘He believes he knows th a tp ’), then one asserts (among other things) that it is true that p. Thus, whoever says ‘X sees N ’ (and not just ‘X believes he sees AT) at the same time endorses the truth of the state­ ments implied by X’s statem ent ‘I s e e N ’, hence the truth of the implied existential statements; and fo r this reason it is implied in these cases that N exists. T o reinforce my thesis that all non-propositional intentional con­ sciousness implies a propositional consciousness —or, more precisely, a belief that that to which it refers exists - I would like to deal with another apparent counter-exam ple. How is it when we represent some­ thing to ourselves in the imagination? T he specific character of this m ode of consciousness seems to be precisely that that to which it refers is m eant as non-existent. But how is this non-existence to be under­ stood? For example, one is telling a story, a joke or the like and one begins ‘A man . . .’ Im plied is: ‘Im agine that there existed a man . . T he man is thus m eant as non-existent. But that can only be done by thinking of him as existing. It would be incorrect to think that when we m ean something in the imagination the existence is taken away and the m ere object is left over. T h e phantasy-modification has the character ‘it is not so, but I imagine that it were so’. T h e phantasy-modification is a modification of veritative being. It therefore concerns not ju st objects but, e.g., a whole story. Everything which is told there or thought up is not m eant as really being so, but only thought of as being so. It is, however, thought of as being so. And for the objects this means that they are not m eant as really existing, but are merely thought of as exist­ ing. They are, however, thought of as existing. T hus phantasy-consciousness too is implicitly propositional. In the previous lecture I drew attention to the fact that to have a consciousness of an object is not to have a representation of it but to m ean it, and to mean an object by means of a singular term is a nonindependent com ponent in the understanding of predicative sentences. T he reflections which have now been carried through take us a step further: to mean an object is not only a non-independent com ponent of a propositional consciousness; it in turn rests on a propositional con­ sciousness, which consists in holding to be true an existential sentence.1 1 And thus the general proposition would be proved that all so-called intentional consciousness is explicitly or implicitly propositional con­ sciousness. T h e essence of the intentional relation consists in this: it is a relation between a concrete object and a state of affairs. And that means: that it is grounded in the understanding of a sentence. Thus the attem pt to recover in a language-analytical way H usserl’s ‘strict’ con­

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cept of consciousness has led us to an unexpected discovery: we find that a consciousness of som ething that is not founded in a holding-tobe-true of an existential sentence does not exist. T h e peculiar ‘quality’ of consciousness which Husserl called ‘intentionality’ and which in sup­ posedly intuitive description he characterized as a directedness to an object turns out to be sentence-understanding. Let me rem ark, incidentally, that the description of consciousness as a subject-object relation, of which the transcendental philosopher is so fond, is also thereby ren d ered untenable. T h ere is no such relation. W here a subject has a conscious relationship to an object this is never a simple relation but is always founded in the understanding of a sen­ tence. A particularly u n fortunate consequence o f the idea o f the ‘sub­ ject-object relation’ was that the attem pt was also made, in German Idealism, to interp ret self-consciousness in accordance with this schema. In the case of self-consciousness the subject is conscious of him ­ self. This consciousness was, therefore, interpreted as a subject-object relation in which subject and object are identical; thus as a relation of som ething to itself. This idea, which was simply a result of the underinterpretation of the actual facts as m anifested in the sentences in which someone speaks about himself led the already inadequate conception of self-conscious­ ness as reflection into absurdity. Instead of simply orientating oneself towards sentences with the double T (‘I know that I . . .’) one took these two occurrences of T out of their sentence-context and constructed an abstract self-relation of ‘the’ self to itself. Insoluble problems were obviously bound to result from such an ap p ro ach.12 T h e dem onstration th at all intentional consciousness is propositional gives an additional historical significance to the language-analytical pro ­ gram m e of a theory of sentences: the question about consciousness, like the ontological question about being as being, turns out to be a question about the understanding o f sentences. O f course this only applies to consciousness in the sense of intentionality, not to the non-objectual modes of consciousness. A language-analytical clarification o f the non-objectual modes of con­ sciousness, unlike that o f experiences and intentionality, would not be able to base itself on work that has already been done. M ore extensive preparation would therefore be necessary here. I thus leave open the question of w hether, and, if so, how, the question concerning the understanding of sentences can be surpassed by invoking either a m ore com prehensive concept o f understanding such as that aimed at by ‘pragm atics’, or a more com prehensive concept o f consciousness of the

which concern the limits of a philosophical posi­ tion. this new approach.The argument continued lb kind to which the transcendental-philosophical attem pts point. and if so how. there would not im m ediately result a new posi­ tive conception o f philosophical m ethod. w hen the questions left open by a philosophy (e. for the tim e being at least. and it seems to me d oubtful w hether it is possible to develop a new concep­ tuality other than by debating with the inadequacies of previous ones (cf. B ut does this m ean then that the decisive question rem ains u n an ­ swered? T h e decisive questions never find an answer in philosophy. In the case o f such questions. You could ask: if I see the limits of a sentence-orientated theory of understanding why do I not go beyond them? My answer is: because I do not know how the concept of form alization can be extended beyond these limits or w hat would th ere take the place of form alization. it cannot answer. so long as it is philo­ sophically alive. Only somebody who does not see these specifically philosophical difficulties of conceptual clarification and the form ation of categorial m eans adequate to a m ode of enquiry can wish to take two or m ore steps at a time. . From such doubts. Lecture 8). but only a syncretism. this conception could be extended. Perhaps you will draw my attention to the fact that I m yself expressed doubts. in Lecture 1. A nd so the question also rem ains open as to how the'universality-claim of the language-analytical conception of philosophy I have developed is to be ju d g e d and w hether. itself reaches into the dark. but only that. This is not to say that they are unansw erable. it is already a gain if one at least perceives these limits. inasm uch as it encounters questions which.g. about an a priori conception o f philosophy. For in the main the categorial means available to us still stem from an object-orientated tradition. however. ontology) are answ ered by a new philosophical approach. You will see th at it will not be at all easy for us even to find an adequate concep­ tuality for the new semantic thematic. Should one not be even m ore dubious about a purely formalistic conception? Certainly.

according to which reason is designated as ‘the faculty of principles’ (B356). hence. A nd the dem and to use one’s reason means: one should not take over opinions unexam ined. But from this there follows a second ‘transcenden­ tal’ definition.LECTURE 7 A practical conception of philosophy Today I come to a new and final attem pt at an introduction of the language-analytical conception of philosophy. Despite this peculiar developm ent of G erm an philosophy the words Vernunft and vernünftig retained. whereas vernünfteln and räsonnieren are now only used in a pejorative sense. From this there resulted for Kant a concept of reason according to which reason stands for the conscious­ ness of unconditioned totality (B378 ff. Greek: logon didonai). B355). In the G erm an Enlightenm ent vernünfteln was used to translate the Latin ratiocinari. In ordinary language vernünftig means something like ‘well g ro u n d ed ’. raison. reason can mean both ‘gro u n d ’ (Grund) and ‘reason’ (Vernunft). wholeness. the capacity to justify statements. in ordinary language. . and there began that disdain for the logical that is character­ istic of the G erm an developm ent of the last century and a half. T h e word ‘reason’ (Vernunft ) is not used univocally. It is this that K ant has in m ind when he defines rea­ son in its logical sense as the faculty of making inferences (Critique of Pure Reason. On this basis G erm an Idealism then came to oppose reason. ‘Principles’ are the first and. m ore generally. their original Enlight­ enm ent sense. just as today raisonner in French and to reason in English are still in use.). but enquire as to their grounds and counter-grounds. T he faculty of reason would accordingly consist in the capacity to argue. dialectic. T h e faculty of reason is the capacity of being able to answer for one’s beliefs and actions (Latin: rationem reddere. Ratio. unconditional propositions of a deductive system. It is orientated towards the idea of reason. to the ‘m ere’ u n d er­ standing. T h e capacity to argue is not only a capacity to make deductive inferences but.

Let us first try to get clear in a prelim inary way about the meaning of such practical questions in general and about the meaning of the most . rath er than relatively to given historical concep­ tions or a given understanding o f ‘philosophy’. But. I shall not undertake the introduction of a language-analytical conception of philosophy which is orientated towards the idea of reason in connection with these historical positions. and we can now say: if it motivates or requires a particular theoretical activity then we will call this theoretical activity ‘philosophy’. However.we shall call phi­ losophy. in Descartes. secondly. only have the sense of a practical justification. By this I mean: to dem onstrate that it is advisable (ratsam) to engage in this activity. in Germ an Idealism.A practical conception of philosophy 77 A conception of philosophy which is orientated towards the idea of reason thus takes up that aspect of the Aristotelian preliminary concep­ tion of philosophy which had been neglected in its ontological realiza­ tion. as I tried to show in the second lecture. For now. A justification of a conception of philosophy which is not merely relative to a presupposed prelim inary understanding of the word ‘philosophy’ can. for example.absolutely. in Plato. If such a practical introduction is not itself to presuppose a particular understanding of a word then we cannot start from a particular concep­ tion of philosophy and only subsequently attem pt to justify it practi­ cally. at the end of the introductory reflections.which it can be shown to be advis­ able to engage in? A nd whatever the answer will be. With this I link up with the reflections of Lecture 2: to justify a par­ ticular conception of philosophy can mean: to show that it corresponds to our prelim inary understanding of philosophy or that in it the inten­ tions of earlier conceptions of philosophy can be realised or better real­ ised. try to justify a particular conception of philosophy directly. in Husserl.and with it an idea of philosophy as such .for we can assume that this is what is at issue . it will be this theo­ retical activity which . therefore. I would like to make an attem pt to justify the languageanalytical conception of philosophy . Rather we must ask: is there a theoretical activity . T he previous p art of my introduction moved within this fram e­ work.being practically pre-em inent . O r we can drop the assumption ju st m ade and simply ask: is there any activity which it is advisable to engage in? O r better: what is it advisable to do? This is clearly the most comprehensive practical question that it is possible to ask. T h ere have been many attem pts in the history of philosophy to develop a conception of philosophy as the science which radicalizes the aspect of justification which is present in all sciences. this can only mean: to justify the motivation for this activity. One can.

If one accepts this criterion. but ‘He did not stick to his declaration. with respect to beings who can speak. above p. We can always ask someone who can speak and who is not asleep or unconscious: ‘What are you doing?’ We achieve an additional understanding o f the relation o f intention and action if we consider that we can also intend future actions. What is he doing? He is letting fresh air in.* It is to be noted that such sentences in the 1st Person Future which look like assertoric sentences are not assertoric sentences (cf. So to the question ‘What is he doing?’ we can also reply: ‘He is opening the window. under­ lies theoretical certainty (I am sure that p when I am convinced that it is excluded that not-p) so too the practical certainty of resolution is grounded in a denial o f the negation. and hence o f doing or acting in a narrow sense. Someone is making movements at a window.as means to an end . considered as a possibility. considered as a possibility.2 for what concerns us is that our entire conscious life. that is: for me there is no question of my not coming.1 Some authors even define ‘action’ in terms of intentionality. is always characterized by intentions and intentional activity. Now we encounter here a pecu- . In our context we can ignore the problem of unconscious inten­ tions. If the person said ‘I will come* and he does not come we do not say ‘He made a mistake’. I shall call such sentences intention-sentences. ‘I will come. What are practical questions and to what context do they belong? There is a class o f actions which are characterized by being inten­ tional. that which can express itself linguistically.’ What criterion do we have for recognizing an intentional action? The distinguishing criterion o f intentional action seems to be that the action can be characterized by reference to its intention. then one can only speak of intentional acting. That is his intention.’ When I say to someone ‘I will certainly come* this ‘certainly’ expresses. e. But the opening of the window .’ How do we tell that the action is really intentional and has precisely this intention? Ultimately only from the fact that the person concerned is himself prepared to express his intention.g.Introduction 78 comprehensive practical question.is also intended. 49). Just as the denial o f the negation. If someone has the intention o f doing something in the future he can also simply say: ‘I will do this*. not the theoretical certainty of a predic­ tion. for of an unintentional movement and its consequences one does not say ‘He did it* but ‘It happened to him. The sentence ‘I will come’ is not a prediction but a sentence in which an intention is expressed. o f the intention (the intention-sentence): ‘I will certainly come’. but the resolution to stick to my word.

freedom requires that the consciousness o f alternative possibilities can be actiondetermining. for which there are empirical criteria. but the sentence is negateable. With this we have reached the phenomenon of so-called human free­ dom. We can therefore say that the question-counterpart of the intention-sentence is the question: what is it advisable to do? . for all deliberation is guided by a ques­ tion. and we do not say of compulsive acts that they are intentional. freedom as I have just defined it is a phenomenon. You will now perhaps ask: how can one know that action. How can one estab­ lish whether the consciousness of alternative possibilities is action-deter­ mining? By connecting with the act which someone claims not to be able to avoid a disproportionate punishment.g. When we deliberate and ask what is to be done we take counsel with ourselves. is really free. say ‘I am free to do it’ or ‘It depends on me whether I will do it/ Now just as there is deliberation with reference to the range of free­ dom.A practical conception of philosophy 79 liar feature of intentional activity that is conscious (capable of linguistic articulation): because the act is determined by an intention and this is articulable in a sentence. Where this is not the case we speak of compulsive acts. The compulsive act happens to the person concerned. the mere consciousness o f alternative possibilities does not amount to freedom. however. I would therefore say that in this sense of freedom intentional action is not free. However. e..thus what I have called a practical question. no longer permissible if a free act is defined as one in which the con­ sciousness o f alternative possibilities is action-determining. The ques­ tion just posed presupposes a concept of ‘real* freedom which would be opposed to determinism. so too there is questioning. that it is not itself determined? This question is.3 It is better if we speak of a free action than of a free will. And it seems to me that it fulfils what we mean when we. with the con­ sciousness of the act there is always given the consciousness of the pos­ sibility of refraining from the act. Conscious intentional action is there­ fore always situated in a range (Spielraum) o f possibilities against which one can of course close oneself but for which one can also open oneself in deliberation. This question must be understood as the question-counterpart of the intention-sentence. just as the theoretical question is the questioncounterpart of the statement.4 . I hold this metaphysical concept of freedom to be fictitious. If he still cannot refrain from the action then he is acting unfreely. By contrast. All conscious intentional action is free. in which the consciousness of alternative possibilities can be action-determining.

e. b u t th e m ode of em ploym ent. . in th a t it gives th e im pression o f being a theoretical question (‘which intentions. th e relationship is such th a t th e event . In th e case of a statem ent (‘H e will com e') the relationship betw een sentence and event is such th a t the sentence is su p p o sed to co rresp o n d to th e event.. motives are p re se n t in m e?’). i.nam ely th e action . th e n its g eneral form w ould have to be th a t which results fro m “the question-m odification o f such a sentence.I ntroduction 80 H ow ever. th en th e question m ust also be able to take th e form ‘Do I in ten d to com e?’ an d . th e re fo re. N onetheless a deliberation can be expressed in this question an d also in th e question ‘W hat do 1 in te n d to do?’ You see.g. ‘H e acts as h e was o rd e re d to do/as he h ad resolved to d o ’. T h e r e is. thus. as the com prehensive question.is supposed to co rresp o n d to th e sentence. how ever. to be correct (or incorrect) relative to it. ‘Will I com e?’ an d . In the case o f th e im perative an d th e intention-sentence. it is not th e g ram ­ m atical form which is decisive. n o t a statem ent. O nly at a pinch can it be u n d ersto o d as a practical question. on the o th e r han d . intention-sentences are th e equivalent in the 1st Person o f im peratives in the 2n d (or 3rd) P erson. W hen we deliberate on w hat is to be d o n e we are m ost likely to say ‘W hat ought I to do?’ A nd yet this form too is am biguous. T his is connected with the fact th a t sem antically intention-sentences a n d im peratives are closely related. as a question w hich initiates a deliberation an d is d irected to a decision. unless fu rth e r qualified is at least am biguous. still a n o th e r gram m atical fo rm for th e practical question in which th e possibility o f m isin te rp retin g it as a theoretical q uestion seems to be excluded. to be correct (or incorrect) relative to it. e. is am biguous in a n o th e r way: it can have the sense o f a request for a theoretical prognosis. for such a question can equally well be u sed as a req u e st for an o rd e r: it is at th e sam e tim e th e q u estio n -co u n te rp a rt of th e im perative. o n th e o th e r h an d . ‘W hat will I do?’ Now if in an intention-sentence an in ten tio n is expressed an d ‘I will com e’ m eans som ething like ‘I in ten d to com e’. (C om pare: ‘H e presents th e m atter as it is’. it is stili u n clear w hat is really being asked ab o u t w hen one asks: w hat is advisable? Is th e re a typical q uestion-fo rm u la fo r this q u es­ tion which brings o u t the logical character o f this question? If the practical question is the q u estio n -co u n te rp a rt o f th e intentional-sentence.) C onnected with this affinity betw een im perative and in ten tion-sentence is th e fact th a t ‘O u g h t I to com e?’ is used both as a q u estio n -co u n te rp a rt o f ‘C om e!’ an d as a q u estio n -co u n ­ te rp a rt o f ‘I will com e.’ T h e question ‘W h at o u g h t I to do?’ is. T h e previously m entioned form ‘W hat will I do ?’. as co m p re h e n ­ sive question: ‘W hat do I in te n d to do?’ T h is question. how ever.

th e w ord ‘b e t­ te r’ expresses th a t th e p re fe re n c e is an objectively ju stified one. T h e w ord ‘g o o d ’ th u s belongs. . as a p re fe re n c e -w o rd . states o f affairs o r actions. I believe.A practical conception of philosophy 81 also am biguous. it can be used as a re q u e st fo r an o rd e r as well as fo r advice. T h e definition I am suggesting th u s has two co m p o n en ts: (1) the w ord ‘b e tte r’ is used to exp ress a p re fe re n c e . T h is gives us a sim ple linguistic criterion fo r telling w h eth e r th e question ‘O u g h t I . clearly. A lth o u g h he ought to p re fe r the o n e. (2) In co n trast to o th e r p referen ce-w o rd s like ‘m o re p le a sa n t’ o r ‘like m o re ’. to choose it. W hat d o we m ean by th e w ord ‘g o o d ’? W hen d o we call so m eth in g ‘b e tte r’ th a n so m eth in g else?5 T o this th e follow ing g en e ral answ er can. can be philosophically significant. th a t it is good o r is b etter th a n an o th er. ‘W hat o u g h t I to d o ?’ In th e case o f each o f the form s we m ust add: i f it is u n d e rsto o d as a req u e st fo r advice. we say o f a th ing o f a certain k in d . a car fo r instance. w hat d o we expect fro m advice? S uppose we ask som eone: ‘W hat o u g h t I to d o (in this situation)?’ an d suppose h e u n d e rsta n d s th a t we a re no t asking fo r an o rd e r b u t fo r advice. T h e p re fe re n c e —both th e subjective o n e an d th e objective o n e —can relate to things. T h is m eans: if o ne need s a th in g o f this k in d . to decid e fo r one. a n d n o t fo r an o rd er: nam ely. w hich express th a t som ething is m erely subjectively p re fe rre d by som eo n e. . as a req u est fo r advice. this is to be p re fe rre d to the o th e r fo r objective reaso n s (which does n o t ru le o ut th a t som eone m ig h t consciously choose th e w orse because he n e v e rth e ­ less likes it m ore. to th e co n tex t o f choice an d freed o m . be given: w hen the o ne is to he preferred to th e o th e rfo r objective reasons. T h u s to reach an u n d e rsta n d in g o f practical qu estio n s we ca n n o t confine o u r atten tio n to any o ne o f th e gram m atical fo rm s ‘W hat will I do?. a n d ‘to p re fe r’ m eans: with re fe re n c e to a plurality o f possibilities. w h enever it occurs in explicit o r im plicit connectio n w ith the e x p re s­ sions ‘th e best’ or ‘g o o d ’. b u t what is th e best (in this situation)?’ W hat seem s ridiculous in th e co n tex t o f a co n crete question.’ Surely we w ould say: ‘W hat is best. because it is trivial. he chooses th e other). an d sup p o se h e replies: ‘D o w hat is best (in this situ atio n ). T h e trivial answ er to a practical question is ‘T h e b est’. O nly a bein g w hich is free in th e sense p rev i­ ously described can u n d e rsta n d th e w ord ‘g o o d ’. F o r ex am p le. A nd so we find ourselves again h aving to fall back on th e fo rm u latio n we started o u t from : ‘W hat is it advisable to d o ?’ We m u st th e re fo re ask ourselves: w hat are we asking fo r w hen we ask fo r advice. . ‘W hat d o I in te n d to do?’.?’ is m e an t as a practical question.

e. th e best. we a re asking w hat it is ratio n al to do. T h e question ‘W hat o u g h t I to d o?’ is itself a special fo rm o f th e com pletely g en eral question ‘W hat o u g h t I to choose?’ ‘W hat is to be p re fe rre d for objective reasons?’ T h e scope o f th e trivial answ er ‘th e best’ extends as fa r as this question.Introduction 82 T alk o f good things is d e p e n d e n t on talk o f good actions. a rule o f a gam e. i. the b et­ te r. An action can. e. A th in g is good if one can p e rfo rm well with it the action fo r which it is servicea­ ble. ‘G o o d ’ m eans com pletely generally som ething like ‘w orthy o f b ein g d esire d ’. th a t th e condition . Now w hat does it m e an to say th a t som eth in g is to be p re fe rre d fo r objective reasons? T o g ro u n d so m eth in g objectively m eans to ju stify it. re n d e rs an account o f it. All conscious action is ru le -g u id e d an d th e re fo re th e w o rd -p air ‘c o rre c tin c o rre c t’ belongs essentially to all conscious actions. an d by this we m ean th at it conform s to a rule. W hen we legitim ate an action we are saying th a t it is correct. a n d this th en also m eans: vis-ä-vis th e p articu la r . best) fo r him to do. a legal norm . A n d now we can also say: w hen we ask som eo n e fo r advice. i. b u t n o t only to this question. a social conven­ tion. O ne can speak o f a relative legiti­ m ation here. which course o f action we can g ro u n d . T h is c o rre­ sp onds to the con cep t o f reaso n which I in tro d u c ed at the b eg in n in g o f to d a y ’s lecture. W hat we re g a rd as w orthy o f being desired. o r take counsel with ourselves re g a rd in g w hat we o u g h t to do. In th e practical question the q u estio n er is n o t asking ab o u t w hat is (veritative being) b u t ab o u t w hat it is good (better. rel­ ative to a certain n o rm . n o t relative to so m eth in g else) w orthy o f being d esire d can itself only be th o u g h t o f as activity.. For. So instead o f saying o f th at which is good th a t it is th at which is to be p re fe rre d fo r objective reasons we can equally well say th a t it is th a t w hich is rationally to be p re fe rre d .g. It is n o t only in q u estions co n c ern in g o u r own actions th a t we find ourselves faced with a choice. T h e an sw er ‘W hat is best’ is th u s the trivial answ er to th e q uestion ‘W hat o u g h t I to d o ?’.e. fo r objective reasons. be co rrec t relative to a ru le o f w riting.th a t is b ro u g h t ab o u t by it is to be p re fe rre d . B u t w hat does th a t m ean? Justification (Ausweisen) is a species o f leg­ itim ation (Rechtfertigung). H ow ever. th a t an action is to be p re fe rre d to an o th e r fo r objective reaso n s may in tu rn be g ro u n d e d in this. Practical q uestions th e n a re questions concernin g the good. O n e legitim ates o n e ’s action. w h at we believe is to be d esire d (p referred ) fo r objective reasons. d e term in e s w hat we believe we o u g h t to do. a technical ru le. to th a t w hich w ould be b ro u g h t about by th e o th e r action.th e state o f affairs .e. justify. this is n o t to say th a t ‘goo d ’ m u st ultim ately re fe r to actions. We can leave o p en the q u estio n o f w h eth e r w hat is ultim ately (i.

a path which . T h e good is thus a species o f the tru e .’) Such statem ents. only in re la ­ tion to linguistic acts. th at species. re n d e rin g an account of. th e n the ju stifi­ cation o f this practical statem en t carries over to th e action which im plies this statem ent. which are possible replies to practical questions.’ N ow w hen I d o x because I believe th at th e best th in g (in this situation) is to d o x . o r a c o rresp o n d in g w ord like ‘advisable’ or ‘o u g h t’. justification. this is because in te n ­ tional acts im ply intention-sentences which can be g ro u n d e d by state­ m ents o f th e form ‘It is good (better) th at . Justification differs fro m this relative legitim ation in b eing an absolute legitim ation. in a p rim ary sense. statem ents. Such an absolute legitim ation exists. It is precisely th e capacity fo r this absolute legitim ation th a t we call ‘reaso n ’. O n e can th e re fo re also legitim ate non-linguistic acts in an absolute sense. ren d e rs an account of it by referen c e to th e ru le which it follows. by justify in g th e statem ents ab o u t what is good th a t are im plicit in them (and th a t o f course m eans: ju stifying th em as true). nam ely. we can call practical statem ents. does not occur. this correctness one calls tru th . absolute in the sense th a t (a) it is n o t accom plished relative to a given ru le and hence also (b) n o t vis-a-vis p articu lar p artn e rs but vis-a-vis arb itrary p a rtn e rs (and is in this sense ‘objective’). one can call theoretical statem ents. in co n ­ trast to practical statem ents. W hat one is dealin g with h e re th e n is a possibility o f answ ering for. T h is relative legitim ation can already be called a gro u n d in g : one g ro u n d s o n e ’s action. in th e latter ‘B ecause it is good (better) to d o this. O n e can also oppose the tru e to the good. B ut now how are statem ents o f th e form ‘It is good th a t/? ’. H ere reason m eans som eth in g like m otive. bu t also to every action-sentence ‘I am d o in g x \ th e re can be attached a w hy-question ab o u t th e reason fo r the action. in reg a rd to which we can speak o f absolute legitim ation. I f we can also ask (in a secondary sense) o f o th e r actions w h eth er they can be legitim ated (in th e absolute sense). which is sim ply to say th at practical statem ents are a k ind o f statem ent. T o every in ten tio n -sen ten ce ‘I will do x*. . T h e correctness o f statem ents does n o t hold relative to a rule. In th e fo rm e r case I say ‘B ecause I like d o in g it’.A practical conception o f philosophy 83 p artn e rs who ad h e re to this rule. b u t absolutely. It th e n stands only fo r those statem ents which. an action in a way th a t is n o t relative to a given rule. (including th e form ‘It is good to do x. ‘T h a t p is b e tte r th a n th a t q to be justified? O nly w hen th at is exp lain ed w ould the com plicated path we have follow ed in to d ay ’s lecture . o r fo r the in tention. it th e n stands fo r those statem ents in which the w ord ‘g o o d ’. If I am asked why I am d oing som ething I can reply by giving eith er a subjective o r an objective reason. show them to be rational. A nd th e tru e in tu rn is a species o f th e correct.

e. B ut is it g o o d ?’ T h is does n o t apply to subjective p referen ce-w o rd s: we can n o t (except u n d e r special circum stances) say ‘I believe th a t I like it’ 'That p seem s to m e to be m o re p le san t th a n that q. d o u b tin g . to reaso n as the faculty o f justification . T h e m ean in g o f th e ju stification-w ord ‘is tr u e ’ (ju st like th a t o f any sim ple use o f an asserto ric sentence) lies in this co n tra st with ‘it seem s th a t . T h is seem s to be co n trad icted by th e fact th a t we can say ‘T h a t is good fo r him . ju stification-questions. fo r m e. disp u tin g . We can say: ‘It seems to th em to be good. B u t these reasons fo r this being b e tte r fo r him are valid n o t ju s t fo r him b u t fo r an y o n e an d . ‘It is good fo r h im ’ m eans: it is conducive to his well-being.Introduction 84 sta rted with practical questions and led. B ut w hat ab o u t w hen we do n o t ask ‘W hat o u g h t I to do in o r d e r to achieve A V b u t sim ply ‘W hat o u g h t I to do (in this situation). advice. B u t now how is a justificatio n o f practical state­ m ents conceivable? T his q u estio n can easily be answ ered fo r all cases in w hich we ask w hat we o u g h t to do (w hat it is good to do) in order to achieve a certain end. to us) th a t’. . so m eo n e else can advise him with re fe re n c e to his well-being. choice. .lead beyond an appeal to ev er new w ords to a g e n u in e result. fo r all ratio n al beings (e. we c a n n o t significantly an sw er such a q u estion w ithout know ing th e situation an d theoretically p e n e tra tin g . L et us first m ake clear to ourselves th a t sentences o f this fo rm are used in such a way th a t they at any ra te make a claim to objectivity an d justifiability. they believe th a t it is good. ‘Is a capitalistic o r a socialistic econom ic system b e tte r? ’ Also in th e answ ering o f such a q uestion th eo retical co n sid era­ tions take u p th e g reatest space. via th e p h e n o m e n a o f fre ed o m . if his w ell-being is to be p ro m o te d th e re are objective reasons fo r p re fe rrin g this. th eir validity claim is objective. d elib eratio n . fo r all w ho can ask ab o u t th e justification o f sentences).’ T h e w hole co n tex t o f qu es­ tio ning. w h at is th e best to wish an d to do (in it)?’. th e good as w hat is objectively to be p r e ­ fe rre d . p articularly a b o u t th e rele v an t causal connections. ‘I believe t h a t .g. Now this co n ­ trast is also p re s e n t in sentences in w hich th e w ord ‘g o o d ’ is u sed. T h e se sentences th e re fo re also have no subjectivity-indicator. h ence. T h u s it is clear th a t practical questions are actually ratio n al questions. T h e q uestion o f w hat a re th e best m eans to p r e ­ su p p o sed ends can be answ ered by rec o u rse to th eo retical reaso n in g . b u t n o t in th e case o f those sentences in w hich it is asserted th a t so m eth in g is good.’ B u t th e re is an am biguity in th e w ord ‘fo r’. T h e characteristic fe a tu re o f the justification-claim of statem en ts is th e possibility o f b rack etin g it by th e use o f expressions like ‘it seem s (to m e. ju stify in g is absent h ere .g.

I w ould like to call th e fu n d a m e n ta l practical q u estio n . w h en we u ltim ately call in q u estio n o u r actions a n d desires. It is th e re fo re n o t as th o u g h o u r actio n m oved in a fixed r a n g e o f possibilities w hich is th e re in d e p e n d e n tly o f o u r co n ­ sciousness a n d to w hich we only have to a tte n d . A im ing a t rea so n in o n e ’s actions c a n n o t sim ple m ean : ask in g w h eth e r w h at o n e is actually d o in g is good. ultim ately. F o r th e rea d in ess to ju stify th e th e o re tic a l a n d practical beliefs im plicit in o n e ’s ow n action p re su p p o se s th a t o n e co n sid ers altern ativ e possibilities. this usually only co n c ern s th e q u estio n o f th e co rrect choice o f m eans. If. a n d th a t m eans: rationally.A practical conception o f philosophy 85 th e altern ativ es envisaged in th e questio n . to o u r life as a w hole. S eldom d o we also call in q u estio n o u r aim s an d o u r way o f life as a w hole. R a th e r it m ean s asking w hat it w ould be best to do. B u t m u st we ultim ately call in q u estio n o u r action? W h at in d u c es us to d o so? W e have previously seen th a t practical q u estio n s arise fo r us to th e e x te n t th a t we are conscious o f ourselves as faced w ith a ra n g e o f p o s­ sibilities. T h is ratio n al in te re st can be re stric te d to th e m eans to given ends. o n e w ants to act rationally . So th e re arises th e q u estio n c o n c e rn in g th e possibility o f th e ju stificatio n o f th e irred u cib ly practical c o m p o n e n ts o f practical ju s tifi­ cation. T h e q u estio n : w h at is w o rth y o f b ein g d esired in g e n e ra l (an d n o t ju s t fo r me)? a n d th e q u estio n c o n n e cted with it: w h at o u g h t I to do? (u n d e rsto o d as a q u estio n re la tin g to my w hole life). R eason p resu p p o se s fre e d o m a n d ex te n d s only as f a r as freed o m . B u t m e re k n o w led g e is n o t ad e q u a te fo r an sw e rin g th e questio n : w hat is it best to do? T h e leg iti­ m ation o f o u r u ltim a te aims is n o t a m a tte r o f th e o re tic al reaso n . B u t o n w hat th e n does th e e x te n t o f o u r consciousness o f o u r r a n g e o f possibilities d e p e n d ? T h e qu estio n : w hat induces us to ask p ractical q u estio n s? th u s re fe rs us back to th e q uestion: w hat in d u ces us to b eco m e conscious o f a ra n g e o f possibilities? W e can now say th a t it is th e in te re s t o f rea so n in ju s ti­ fication. K n ow ledge o f w hat o u g h t to be c a n n o t be re d u c e d to k n o w led g e o f w hat is. W hat in d u c es us to ask this q u estio n is th u s th e in te re st in reaso n . H ow f a r th e ra n g e o f possibilities ex ten d s d e p e n d s on o u r in te re st in actin g reflectively. th e re fo re . So w hen we ask practical q u estio n s w hich a re n o t m erely relativ e to p re su p p o se d ends. b u t it can also rela te to th e en d s them selves an d . a n d . a n d w hen we are . M ostly we a re n o t conscious o f a r a n g e o f possibilities fo r o u r action. It is th e q u estio n c o n c ern in g th e possibility o f p ractical reaso n . we a re re f e r re d back to th e p rio r q u estio n o f th e possibility o f practical reason. o n e has an in te re st in beco m in g conscious o f o n e ’s ra n g e o f possibilities a n d in e x te n d in g it.

an d in this sense . T h u s we arriv e at th e follow ing result. if o ne speaks at all . T h e r e are th e n two possibilities. B u t th e re is no absolute sta n d p o in t outside reaso n from w hich one could p e rsu a d e an in te rlo cu to r . b u t the ques­ tio n asked by B. th e o p p o n e n t (of the principle) w ould have to give u p sp e ak in g .th e in terest o f reason is itself rational. how the in te rest o f reaso n is to be legitim ated. because it m ust itself be p re su p p o se d in any justification.) But. since A ristotle.6 In th e case of th e in terest o f reason we are n ot in so fav ourable a position: h e re we can only say th a t to be consistent th e o p p o n e n t m ay n o t ask fo r a legitim ation. was n o t in te n d e d in this relative sense. O ne could go a step fu rth e r an d ask: but why should on e w ant to be rational? T h is w hy-question is am biguous. e ith e r the p erso n who re p ­ resents the in te re st o f reaso n (A) is challenged by an o th e r p erso n (B) to ju stify it.Introduction 86 th a t m eans: the in te rest in existing responsibly in an absolute sense. in which case it has th e sense: is it rational to w ant to be rational? O r it can be u n d ersto o d as a question o f m otivation: w hat as a m a tte r of fact induces us to be rational? Is it ratio n al to w ant to be rational? We cannot. if he does n ot ask a ratio n al question B also ca n n o t be convinced by A o f the sta n d ­ p o in t o f reason. nam ely. conversely. M ust we n o t th en say that the rational in te rest is itself irratio n al. (O ne could still allow him to ask relative ratio n al questions concern in g m eans to ends.as th e p resu p p o sitio n o f all ratio n al questions . this w ould be to p resu p p o se the very th in g we wish to justify. o r A tries to c o n v in c e d o f his standpoin t. fo r som eone who does not e n te r in to ratio n al arg u m e n t can clearly also no t be rationally convinced.in sentences . In th e first case A can reply th a t in asking him for a justification B is already p resu p p o sin g th e in terest o f reason. B u t for this very reason it can n o t be called in question.p erh a p s the one in o n e ’s . T h e in terest o f reaso n is itself ratio n al in th e special sense th a t it is the presu p p o sitio n o f all rational questions.e. A ristotle th e re fo re says th a t. It can eith er be u n d e rsto o d as being itself a q u estion o f rea so n .th e n one has p re su p p o se d th e P rinciple o f C ontradiction. so it seem s. i. c a n n o t itself be rationally justified? In o rd e r to be able correctly to assess the logical situation in which we h e re find ourselves it will be best if we think o f it in th e form o f a dialogue. to be consistent. T h e Principle o f C o n trad ictio n can also n o t be ju stified directly. in such a way th a t we can be answ erable for o u r actions n o t only with re fe re n c e to given n o rm s and n o t only with referen c e to given aims. o ne justifies th e Principle o f C ontradiction. T his legiti­ m ation o f th e in te rest o f reason co rresp o n d s to the way in which. legitim ate reaso n th ro u g h itself.

T o this p relim in ary stage th e re co rresp o n d s in the p rese n t intro d u ctio n the co n cep t o f reaso n so far as this is not yet specifically related to th e fu n d am e n tal practical question. I can now re tu rn to my real p urpose. O ne can only aw aken an d stren g th en the in te rest o f reason th ro u g h p ro p er education. th e only o n e which can be legitim ated as rational. A nd alth o u g h such an education is only one of m any conceivable e d u ­ cations. we saw.who lives according to the principle o f im m ediacy (n o n ­ deliberation) to accept the in te rest of reason. A nd the fu n d am en tal practical q u es­ tion. and from w hat has gone before it is clear th a t th e re is fo r b o th o f them not ju st som e m otivation b u t the highest rational m otivation. But. it follows from w hat has previously been said th a t it is th e only one th a t is correct in the absolute sense. Now th e question ju st re fe rre d to is th e question w hich in the m eantim e I have called th e fu n d am e n tal practical question and which has em erg ed as th e m ost com prehensive ratio n al question. My suggestion at th e b eg inning o f th e lecture was: if th e practical question ‘W hat is it advisable to do?’ d em ands a certain theoretical activity then we can call this activity . If we com pare this in tro d u ctio n of philosophy with th a t of A ristotle then it already differs from it in th e prelim inary stage which in A ristotle was characterized by the concept of science. which co n cern ed not th e leg­ itim ation o f the in terest o f reason but its factual genesis.‘philosophy’. T his also answ ers the second question.as a practically p re-em in en t activity . secondly. Now one could designate as philosophy both the co ncrete process of answ ering the fu n d am e n tal practical question with all its th e o re tic a lveritative and p ractical-veritative im plications and also th e p rio r q u es­ tion co ncerning th e possibility o f practical reason. B ut does this m ean th a t everything is relativized again by the question: in w hat does the p ro p e r education consist? No. It co m p reh en d s both practical an d theoretical reason an d is thus m o re com prehensive th an the concept of (theoretical) science. points in tu rn to th e p rio r question co n cern in g th e possi­ bility o f practical reason. for th e correct ed ucation is defined by this line o f th o u g h t as th a t which cultivates the in terest o f reason. T h e two belo n g to gether.A practical conception of philosophy 87 own soul . T his was supposed to arise fro m th e context o f practical questions and for this reason we h ad first to get clear ab o u t the n a tu re o f practical questions. a practical in tro d u ctio n o f a conception of philosophy. th e p rese n t in tro d u ctio n is prim arily distin g u ish ed . In the concept o f reason there is taken up the aspect o f justification w hich was em phasized by A ristotle h im self but neglected in th e second stage of his intro d u ctio n .

the o rd e r in which they w ould do so w ould be d e te rm in e d by th e practical aim . T h e aspect o f justification which was neglected by A ristotle in th e form alization-step is in tu rn accessible to a form al th em atization a n d th e resu ltin g them atic coincides with th e th e ­ m atic o f ontology ex ten d e d to veritative being in th e w idest sense (which also em braces statem ents in which w ords like ‘g o o d ’ occur). n o r am I in a position to p rese n t such a conception. My practical in tro d u c tio n th e re fo re break s o ff at th e crucial p o in t w here th e p relim in ary conception o f philosophy o b tain ed fro m th e practical fu n d a m e n ta l question sh o u ld acq u ire definite m e th ­ odological contours. a n d th at m eans: know s how it is to be justified. i. with the questio n o f how statem ents can be ju stified . T h u s th e question co n ­ cerning the possibility o f reason finds its answ er in a sem antics o f a sser­ toric sentences. or rational question. We shall see later th a t o n e u n d e rsta n d s an assertoric sen ten ce if an d only if one know s its tru th -co n d itio n s.Introduction 88 from th e A ristotelian by th a t aspect by w hich p h ilo so p h y is d istin ­ g uished as a p re -e m in e n t science. O nly at th e h ig h est point o f th e fu n d am e n tal practical q u estion. th e question co n c ern in g th e possibility o f . the th eo ry o f veritative being. as th e question ab o u t th e m eaning o f life an d as a g en eral p ra c ­ tic al-th eo retical w o rld-orientation. In th e fu n d a m e n ta l practical question we also find again th e aspect o f universality w hich A ristotle em phasized. W ith th e question a b o u t th e possibility of-practical an d theoretical reason. I f we call it philosophy th e n co m ponents in th e usual p relim in ary u n d e r ­ stan d in g o f th e w ord sophia becom e im p o rta n t which A ristotle neglected: ‘p h ilo so p h y ’ an d ‘w isdom ’ as th e question ab o u t th e h ig h est good. o r the assertoric senten ce-fo rm . do we reach m ethodologically fam iliar g ro u n d . only now th e universality is n o t u n d e rsto o d in term s o f spheres o f objects b u t in term s o f th e p ra c ­ tical q u estion which ideally d ep e n d s on a theoretical p e n e tra tio n o f th e total co n c rete w orld-situation. F or in th e p re se n t in tro d u c tio n this p re-em in en ce is a practical p r e ­ em inence.e. T o be sure. T h e re is a practically p re -e m in e n t rational q u estio n . Em pirical sciences w ould have to e n te r into ‘p h ilo so p h y ’ as th u s u n d ersto o d . is taken u p again with p articu la r re fe re n c e to the aspect o f justification. fro m th e o th ers. in the p relim in ary q u estion co n c ern in g the possibility o f practical reaso n . I am b eg in n in g to speak in th e subjunctive because as yet a m ethodologically clarified co nception o f such a ‘p h ilo so p h y ’ does n o t exist. We call him a wise m an who can advise us well with resp ect to ultim ate aims an d life as a whole. A nticipating this later result I can say th a t th e ex p lan atio n o f th e m e an in g o f a sta te m en t-fo rm is identical with th e ex p lan atio n o f how statem ents o f this form are to be justified .

N o n -asserto ric sentences have no relatio n to reason. H ow ­ ever. H ow ever. T h is questio n belongs to th e m o re gen eral q u estio n c o n c e rn in g th e possibility o f rea so n as such. T h u s my practical in tro d u c tio n o f p h ilosophy leads. T h e p re -e m in e n t m otivation we h av e fo r th e q u estio n co n c ern in g th e possibility o f practical re a so n thus leads us in to th e sam e sem antic th e ­ m atic th a t resu lted w hen we took ontology as o u r sta rtin g -p o in t. A n d yet fro m th e p o in t o f view o f this p ractical in tro d u c tio n th a t w ould be th e m ost im p o rta n t philosophical task. By analo g y with th e A risto ­ telian fo rm u latio n ‘th e re is a science w hich stu d ies b ein g as b ein g ’ (above p. above p. back to th e language-analytical co n c ep tio n o f p h ilo so p h y as this em e rg e d in co n n ectio n w ith th e ontological realizatio n o f th e A risto te­ lian p relim in ary co n cep tio n o f philosophy. at least at its h ig h e st point. 21) we can now say: th e re is a fo rm a l q u estio n w h ich we have a p re -e m in e n t ratio n al m otivation fo r asking: th e qu estio n c o n c ern in g th e possibility o f practical reason. th e ju stificatio n a n d necessity o f such an ex ten sio n does n o t sim ply follow fro m th e fact th a t o n e can only elu cid ate so m e th in g by th em atizin g th e w hole g en u s to w hich it belongs an d by co n tra stin g it with o th e r species o f th e sam e genus. T h e w ord ‘g o o d ’ can only be e x p lain e d in this way. T h e practical h ie ra rc h y based on th e p r e ­ e m in e n t m otivation does n o t c o rre sp o n d to th e th e o re tic al sequ en ce which results fro m th e in n e r co nnections o f th e th em atic field. R a th e r it has alread y b ecom e clear th a t we c a n n o t h o p e to analyse p ractical sta te m en ts w ith o u t analysing in te n tio n -se n ten c es. th u s th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th o se assertoric sentences in which th e w ord ‘g o o d ’ occurs is g ro u n d e d on th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th ese n o n -asserto ric se n ten ce-fo rm s.w hich fo r a g en e ral analysis o f th e sem an tic sp h e re ca n n o t sta n d at th e b eg in n in g .A practical conception of philosophy 89 reaso n does n o t directly lead beyond veritative bein g to a g e n e ra l fo r­ mal sem antics. it leads in to it via a p a rtic u la r sem antic s tru c tu re . w hose fu n d a m e n ta l q u estio n is: w h at is it to u n d e rs ta n d a sentence? A n d this q u estio n (cf. 36) coincides with th e elu cid atio n o f th e questio n o f w h at it is to u n d e rs ta n d th e m e an in g o f a linguistic exp ressio n . a q u e s­ tion which is identical w ith th e q u estio n c o n c e rn in g th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f assertoric sentences. im peratives a n d optative sentences. . T h is is also th e rea so n why it is so difficult to w ork o u t in m ethodologically clarified fo rm th a t co n c ep tio n o f ph ilo so p h y w hich re p re s e n ts th e co n ­ crete ca rry in g th ro u g h o f th e fu n d a m e n ta l practical q u estio n . T h is la tte r q u estio n is po sed w ithin th e fra m e ­ w ork o f a g e n e ra l fo rm a l sem antics.th a t o f practical statem ents .

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P art Two A first step: analysis of the predicative sentence .

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Essentially we have b eco m e ac q u ain ted with th re e ways in w hich ‘p h ilo so p h y ’ co u ld be u n d e rsto o d . Such en q u iry w ould be a ‘p re -e m in e n t’ en q u iry in asm uch as it con cern s th e u n d e rsta n d in g -p re su p p o sitio n s o f d irect. T h e fact th a t this has n o t yielded a u n ita ry co n c ep tio n o f p h ilo so p h y is no disad v an tag e. It co n tain s a q u es­ tion w hich. It re p re se n ts. Secondly.LECTURE 8 Prelim inary reflections on m ethod and preview of the course of the investigation My aim in th e in tro d u c to ry p a rt o f th e se lectures was to w o rk o u t a q u estio n w hich can be r e g a rd e d as a fu n d a m e n ta l q u estio n o f lan g u ag eanalytical philosophy. it can be ju stified vis-ä-vis these o th e r positions. b ro a d co n cep tio n o f language-analy tical p h ilo so p h y . non-reflective k n o w ledge a n d en q u iry . th e g ro u n d -d iscip lin e o f language-analytical p hilosoph y . w hich is to be u n d e rs to o d as form al sem antics. T h e object o f such reflections is to g et clear about th e d iffe re n t possibilities o f u n d e rs ta n d in g so m e th in g (in o u r case th e idea o f a ‘p re -e m in e n t science’) a n d a b o u t how th e se d iffe re n t possibil­ ities are re la te d to o n e a n o th e r. is . Firstly. fro m o u r e x a m in a tio n o f th e A risto telian in tro d u c tio n th e re em erg ed a co n c ep tio n o f ph ilo so p h y as a u n iv ersal fo rm a l science. At th e sam e tim e th e languag e-an aly tical co n cep ­ tion o f p h ilo so p h y was to be c o n fro n te d with o th e r p h ilo so p h ical posi­ tions an d we w ere to ex a m in e w h eth e r. o n th e basis o f th e discussions o f th e first lectu re. vis-ä-vis questio n s in ac co rd an ce with th e first co n cep tio n . if o n e holds on to the first. T h e first o f th ese two co nceptions o f p h ilo so p h y re p re se n ts a vague. A nd this involved also discussing th e idea o f p hilo so p h y in general. By co n tra st th e second co n c ep tio n has clear th e m atic co n ­ to u rs an d a d efin ite fu n d a m e n ta l q uestion. all clarification o f co n ­ cepts o r m eanings. o n e could d e sig n a te ‘p h i­ lo so p h y ’ all elu cid a tio n o f p rio r u n d e rs ta n d in g . W hich o f these o n e th en calls ‘p hiloso­ p h y ’ is a se co n d a ry m a tte r. m etho d o lo g ical co n c ep tio n o f lan g u ag e-an aly tical philosophy. b u t indispensable. a n d if so how .

by m eans o f an analysis o f th e fo rm o f these sentences (p. this questio n c o n c ern in g the good . It is possible to see th e w hole history o f E u ro p e a n philosophy as a d eb ate betw een this practical con cep tio n o f philosophy an d th e A ristotelian th e o re tic a l-fo rm a l conception. hig h est in th e sense th a t it is th e only o n e th a t is p re -e m in e n t in te rm s o f its m otivation. nam ely.W hat is to be done? H ow should we live? .to in fe r fro m this connectio n th a t the u n c o n ­ d itio n al ratio n al m otivation th e re is fo r th e th ird co n cep tio n o f philos­ . thus by m eans o f a p ro c e d u re in accordance with th e first conception o f philosophy. N ow which sense o f ‘p r e ­ e m in e n t’ sh o u ld we settle for: th a t w hich leads to th e second conception o f philo so p h y o r th a t w hich leads to the th ird conception? If by this q u estio n o n e m eans: w hich so rt o f enq u iry sh o u ld be called ‘philoso­ p h y ’? th e n it is u n d ec id a b le an d also u n im p o rta n t.has in flu en ced th e conceptio n o f philosophy. I was n o t in a position to give clear co n to u rs to this kind o f philoso­ phy. fo r it concerns th e universal presu p p o sitio n s o f all u n d e rsta n d in g .1 H ow ever. since Soc­ rates an d Plato. H istorically. it does n o t re q u ire m uch reflection to see th a t the q u es­ tion: w hat o u g h t to be d one? is n o t a sem antic question. Finally. 8 8 . B u t it is p re -e m in e n t in a n o th e r sense. T h e co nceptions o f p hilosophy as ontology an d as tran sc en d e n ta l p h ilosophy have show n them selves to be in a d eq u a te ap p ro x im atio n s to th e second con cep tio n o f philosophy. N ow we have seen th a t this th ird conception o f philo so p h y also refers back to o u r second concep tio n .th e possibility o f th e justificatio n o f p ractical statem en ts . it w ould be sophistical .th o u g h very attractive as a way o f easing th e theoretical p h ilo s o p h e r’s conscience .9 ). is th u s n o t a languageanalytical co n cep tio n o f philosophy. which q uestion o u g h t one to ask? th en it follows a n a ­ lytically th a t it can only be th e th ird conception o f philosophy. in as m uch as o ne can only clarify th e p relim in ary q uestion c o n c ern in g th e possibility o f practical reason . In so far as tran scen d en tal p h i­ losophy contains elem ents which p o in t beyond this co n cep tio n these elem ents can them selves only be clarified by linguistic analysis (L ecture 6). a third con cep tio n o f philosophy re p rese n ts th e question I have called th e fu n d a m e n ta l practical question.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 94 ‘p re -e m in e n t’. T h is practical fu n d a m e n ta l question is also a ‘p re -e m in e n t’ question. O f course. B u t if th e questio n m eans: fo r w hat so rt o f en q u iry should on e rationally decid e. It is a m atter o f in d iffe re n c e to which so rt o f e n q u iry one attaches the label ‘philoso­ p h y ’. T h e h ig h est co n cep tio n o f p hilosophy. in th e sense th a t it is th e only question fo r w hich th e re is an im m ed ia te a n d absolute ratio n al m otivation.

bu t it does not follow from this th at it sh o u ld p reced e it practically. a n d thus fo r arriv in g at th e totality o f form al distinctions ju s t d em an d e d . M oreover. In the first lecture I a n n o u n c e d th a t I w ould n o t be p rov id in g any results or surveys.sin g u lar term s a n d predicates . It is tru e th at th e question o f th e possibility o f asking th e practical question is m ethodologically p rio r to the practical question. A fte r this w arn in g I can begin th e m ain p a rt o f th e lectures. O n e w ould be simply ev ad in g the practical question w ere one to try to p e rsu a d e o n eself th at o n e cannot ask it w ithout having first clarified th e m ethodologically necessary p re ­ lim inary questions. w hich was m a rk e d out by th e tr a ­ ditional concept o f an object. W e d o n o t yet know how o n e can en q u ire into the m e an in g o f a linguistic expression.Preliminary reflections on method 95 o p h y carries over to the second conception. W e now have a ro u g h id ea o f th e outlines o f the fu n d a m e n ta l discipline o f linguistic analysis. T h e few distinc­ tions I have m a d e in th e in tro d u c to ry reflections w ere p u rely provi­ sional ones which could sim ply claim a certain plausibility. It w ould th en be possible to carry o u t th e enq u iry into th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f sentences at th e re q u ire d level o f system atic generality. F or th e fu n d a m e n ta l practical question does n o t ad m it o f p o stp o n em en t. Since it has becom e clear th a t w hat is unsatisfactory about ontology is th e restrictio n to one or at best two sem antic form s . A nd even in th e p rese n tatio n o f these classes I h ad to an ticip ate unclarified notions such as th a t o f a m o d e o f em p lo y m en t. As yet we d o n o t even have a clear conception o f sem antic fo rm . I only d istin g u ish ed the sem antic class o f sin g u lar term s. H ow can we begin to w ork this them atic field? T h e follow ing p ro c e d u re m ight suggest itself. In stea d 1 would like to p u rsu e with you a fu n d a m e n ta l ques­ tion o f linguistic analysis. or the co m bination o f expressions o f d iffe re n t classes. w hat g u a ra n te e is th e re th at o n e will not rem a in stuck in th e form al prelim in ary questions? In these lectures at any ra te I will n o t even get as far as a sem antics o f practical statem ents. I will thus rem ain stuck in a question w hich is prelim in ary to th e p relim ­ inary question. they m erely served to give us a view o f th e field o f investigation. an d the co m p lem en tary class o f pred icates (g eneral term s). Equally tentative w ere th e distinctions betw een p ro p o sitio n al co n ten t . Such a system atic p ro c e d u re is how ever not possible if o n e does n o t yet possess the categorial m eans o f analysis. hence we do n o t yet have a p ro c e d u re for sem antically classifying sentences.a g en ­ u in e reflection on th e sentence-form s w ould have to m ake su re th a t the totality o f the rele v an t fo rm al distinctions w ere inclu d ed . let alone into w hat it is to u n d e rsta n d a sem antic class o f ex pressions.

T h e fu n d a m e n ta l co n cep t o f m o d e rn p h ilo so p h y . W h e re th e in a p p ro p ria te n e ss o f this m o d e o f conception is felt in linguistic rese arch . in p articu la r. d e p e n d in g on w h e th e r (as in a p a rtic u la r science. If we wish to r e g a rd form al sem antics as th e successor discipline to ontology th e n we m u st first w ork o u t a conceptuality. is as little in evidence as possible. H ow ever. T h is leads to every new p h ilo so p h i­ cal o r scientific them atic bein g c o n stru e d in term s o f this concept. such an objec­ tionable co n c ep t as th a t o f an ‘object’ is avoided by u sing a m o re n e u tra l . o r (as in philosophical research into fo u n ­ d ations) o n e a p p ro a c h e s th e field o f investigation with th e p rim a ry in te n tio n o f w o rk in g o u t an ad e q u ate conceptuality. in o u r case linguistic science) o n e em b ark s directly on th e theo retical w orking o f a field. an d alth o u g h even in th e ir case m e an in g an d object sh o u ld be d istin g u ish ed . an d w hat on e re p re se n ts to o n eself is an object. dev elo p in g a new conceptuality. th e distinction o f d iffe re n t m odes. In th e first case th e investigations o f th e co n c rete m aterial a re ca rrie d o u t in such a way th a t th e available trad itio n al conceptuality (which is know n to be in a d e ­ q u ate).th a t o f consciousness . w ith which this field o f investigation can be m a d e accessible. O f course a co nceptuality which is ad e q u a te to a su b ject-m atter can only be achieved in th e analysis o f this su b ject-m atter itself. In th e second case we m u st carry o u t such analyses as a re aim ed at p u ttin g th e adequacy o f th e trad itio n al conceptuality to th e test an d . an d h en c e any conceptuality. T h e co n seq u en ce fo r sem antics is th a t th e answ er given to th e q u estio n : w h at is it to u n d e rs ta n d a linguistic ex pression? is th a t w hat o n e u n d e r ­ stan d s w hen o n e u n d e rsta n d s an ex p ressio n is th e meaning o f th e ex p ressio n .Analysis o f the predicative sentence 96 a n d m ode a n d . as fu n d a m e n ta l as th e ontological. th e fact th a t th e re is no o th e r concep tu ality available in th e trad itio n leads o n e to co n stru e even th e m e an in g o f th ese ex pressions an d th a t o f every ex p ressio n as an object. T h e d e m a n d to e x te n d th e analysis fro m objects to th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f sentences can th e re fo re n o t be taken to m ean th a t in sentences we have a field o f investigation w hich we sim ply have to e n te r. this bein g conceived as follows: th e exp ressio n stands fo r th e m e an in g w hich th e p e rso n w ho u n d e rsta n d s th e ex p ressio n represents to him self. if it proves to be in a d eq u a te. b u t a fu n d am e n tally new o n e is not available. usin g an existing con ceptuality a n d leaving th e d ev e lo p m e n t o f a m o re a d e q u a te co n cep ­ tuality to scientific p ro g re ss. T h u s alth o u g h sta n d in g fo r objects is p ec u lia r to o n e specific class o f ex p ressio n s (sin­ g u la r term s). th e re results a com pletely d iffe re n t kin d o f p ro c e d u re . In co n crete term s th a t m eans: th e fu n d a m e n ta l co n cep t o f previous philosophy is th a t o f beings o r objects.is also u n d e rsto o d in th e sense o f a consciousness o f objects.

fo r ex am p le. T h is co n n e ctio n b etw een d estru c tiv e an d co n stru ctiv e c o n c ep tu al w ork is exem p lified by a s tru c tu re w hich in th e co u rse o f these lectu res will re p e a te d ly p ro v e to be fu n d a m e n ta l to a new step: if an ex istin g co n cep tu ality tu rn s o u t to be in a d e q u a te w hen a p p lie d to a w ider th em atic field. b u t only in reflection o n th e w eaknesses o r limits o f a prev io u s conceptuality. r a th e r it co n stitu tes th e in d isp e n s­ able first step in th e positive task o f w o rk in g o u t a m o re a d e q u a te co n ­ ceptuality. th e n o n e has m erely lost clarity an d g ain ed n o th in g . o f ‘c o n te n ts’. critical— estru c tiv e step .seem s relatively easy to u n d e rs ta n d . o r on e sim ply co n ­ fines o n e s e lf to saying th a t every e x p re ssio n stands fo r so m eth in g . I f in stead o f saying th a t th e ex p re ssio n stan d s fo r an object o n e says th a t it stan d s fo r a co n te n t. W e m u st avoid concepts w hose only a d v a n ta g e is in d e te rm in a te n e ss. A new co n cep tu ality can n ev e r be a tta in e d d irectly fro m an u n c o n ­ cep tu alized th e m atic field. o n e is obliged to reflect on p re su p p o sitio n s o f this co n ceptuality w hich did n o t have to be reflected u p o n w ithin th e p r e ­ vious co n cep tio n . B u t how sh o u ld o n e conceive th e se co n d . o r sim ply fo r so m e th in g .th e te stin g o f th e ad eq u acy o f th e d tra d itio n a l o b je ct-o rien ted a p p ro a c h in its ap p lica tio n to th e u n d e r ­ sta n d in g o f linguistic ex p ressio n s . T h e first. b u t only u n d e r th e p re s s u re o f new d a ta o f th e th e m atic field w hich ca n n o t . leav­ ing it com pletely o p e n how this ‘so m e th in g ’ is to be u n d e rsto o d . It is p erfectly intelligible th a t a co n c ep tu ality th a t was d ev e lo p e d fo r a specific an d m o re n a rro w th e m atic sh o u ld pro v e in a d e q u a te w hen a p p lied to a n o th e r a n d b ro a d e r them atic. O n e th u s arriv es at a m o re g e n e ra l co n c ep tu ality . on e w hich u n d e rlie s th e p rev io u s co n c ep tu ality b u t w hich also p e rm its other c o n cep tu al in te rp re ta tio n s. h o w ever. co n stru ctiv e step? I f we p u t th e tra d itio n a l p ersp ectiv e o u t o f action an d e n te r o u r th e m atic field as it w ere w ith o u t any p e rsp e c ­ tive. C rucial fo r us m u st be th e q u estio n o f w h e th e r o n e can say th a t th e ex p re ssio n stands jo r so m e th in g a t all. W e shall have to a d o p t precisely th e o p p o site p ro c e d u re .Preliminary reflections on method 97 term in o lo g y : o n e speaks. T h u s th e critiq u e o f th e objecto rie n ta te d position in its ap p licatio n to th e q u estio n o f m e a n in g is by no m eans in te n d e d to have th e m erely neg ativ e significance o f clearin g away an in a d e q u a te conceptuality. O f c o u rse n o t every kind o f critiq u e o f a given co n cep tu ality is co n structive. I f this tu rn s o u t to be false th e n we m u st try to w ork o u t a new c o n c ep tio n w hich is as fu n d a m e n ta l as th e objectual co n c ep tio n . Such new co n c ep tu al in te rp re ta tio n s o f co u rse n ev e r arise in a m erely ab stra ct reflectio n on fo u n d a tio n s. th e n far fro m a p p e a rin g in a new lig h t it will a p p e a r in n o lig h t at all. th e re is no p ro g re ss in th e field o f fo u n d a ­ tional rese arch w hich does n o t arise fro m a c ritiq u e o f th e p rev io u s co nceptuality.

how ever. th e d eb a te will concern th e conceptuality. firstly. th e trad itio n al sem antic co n cep tio n m akes sense. it w ould seem reaso n ab le to ig n o re co m ­ pletely fo r th e tim e b ein g n o n -asse rto ric sentences. In th e in tro d u c to ry p a rt o f these lectures the d eb ate with trad itio n al con cep tio n s co n c ern ed only the d em arca tio n o f th e th em atic field. T h e aim s o f this m ain p a rt o f th e lectures are. W e shall see th at this critica l-co n stru ctiv e s tru c tu re is n o t only im p o rta n t fo r th e w orking o u t o f a specifically language-analytical conceptuality. in term s o f w hich we can ex­ plain. is co n cep tu al rese arch in to fo u n d atio n s an d is n o t m erely co n ­ ce rn ed with p a rtic u la r problem s (m any analytical p h ilo so p h ers o f co urse a re only co n c e rn e d with p articu la r problem s. if n o t th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f all sentences. to sta rt w ith th e criticism o f a th eo ry o f m e an in g w hich th o u g h m o d e rn is still tra d itio n ­ ally o rie n ta te d a n d w hich a ttem p ts to m ake as m uch as possible o f the o b je ct-o rien tate d concep tu ality in sem antics. b u t th at it also rep eats itself w ithin th e language-analytical position. fo r us how ever this is irre lev an t). th e n as re g a rd s th e m e th o d o f o u r en q u iry it w ould be advisable. fo r these sentences d o n o t fall w ithin the scope o f th e trad itio n al conceptuality at all. 27) an d (3) to show th a t th e tra d itio n a l fu n d a m e n ta l concept o f an object can itself only be u n d e rsto o d on th e basis o f this new conceptuality (L ectures 2 0 -2 7 ). initially to restrict th e in v estigation to those sem antic stru ctu re s which fall w ithin th e purview o f tra d itio n a l p h ilo so p h y an d . I f it is co rrec t th a t we can only achieve a new conceptuality with which th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f linguistic expressions can be ex p lain e d by ex plic­ itly taking leave o f th e o b je c t-o rie n ta te d conceptio n . (1) to d e m o n stra te th a t th e m e an in g o f sentences ca n n o t be co n stru e d objectually (L ectures 9 10). L ectures 17 a n d 18). a n d th e stru c tu re o f th e predicative se n ­ . Now . A lth o u g h th e tra d itio n was also fam iliar with o th e r fo rm s o f assertoric sen ten ce. R e g ard in g th e first p oint. only in co n n ectio n with predicative sentences (for o th e r fo rm s cf. as o p p o sed to the trad itio n al o b je ct-o rien tate d conceptuality. In so fa r as languageanalytical p hilosophy. secondly. if at all. M o re­ o ver it w ould a p p e a r sensible to co n c en tra te above all on th e pred icativ e sen ten c e-fo rm . (2) to w ork o u t a new conceptuality. th e n at least th e u n d e r ­ sta n d in g o f all asserto ric sen ten ces (L ectures 11-19.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 98 be ex p lain e d in te rm s o f th e previous conceptuality. like all previous form s o f fu n d a m e n ta l p h ilo so ­ phy. it is ca rrie d o u t by m eans o f a critiq u e o f trad itio n al philosophy. T h e d e b a te with trad itio n al philosophical conceptions o f trad itio n al ph ilosophy was th u s by no m eans m erely a m a tte r o f in tro d u c in g you to th e th em atic o f lan guage-analytical philosophy.

in his th e o ry o f categ o rial synthesis H u sserl m a d e an effo rt. o r ju d g m e n t. In analytical philosophy th e re are two ap p ro ach es to th e ex p lan atio n of th e u n d e rs ta n d in g of linguistic expressions an d . th a t o f assertoric sentences. I f o n e ’s o rien tatio n is tow ards objects th e n th e predicative sen­ tence seems th e one m ost easy to u n d e rsta n d . T h e collapse o f the trad itio n al conception. an d to look o u t for a new conception. thus th e two constituen ts o f th e predicative sentence. trie d to avoid co n stru in g th e m ean in g o f an ex p ressio n as its object. acco rd in g to which lin ­ guistic expressions a re always used to stand fo r so m eth in g . which ex ten d s fro m F rege via th e early W ittgenstein. says: to u n d e rsta n d a sen ten ce is to know how it is to be used. F u rth e rm o re . C a rn a p an d T arsk i to D avidson an d o th ers. to solve by m eans o f th e trad itio n al conceptuality th e p ro b lem o f how th e m e a n ­ ing o f a com plex expression (in p articu la r th a t o f a sentence) arises o u t o f th e m ean in g o f its com ponents. We shall see th a t a satisfactory analysis o f th e m ean in g o f assertoric an d . o f mode o f employment. will lead us to them atize th e p h e n o m e n o n . th eir com bination. as such. u n d e r th e influence o f Frege. u nlike Frege. in ex am in in g th e possibility o f explaining th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f linguistic expressions an d .Preliminary reflections on method 99 ten ce was widely re g a rd e d as the universal stru c tu re o f th e assertoric sentence. ap p ro a c h e d th e p ro b lem fro m a philosophical position w hich did no t exclude th e subjective (psychological-epistem ological) aspect. H usserl was already aw are o f th e p roblem o f th e m e an in g o f linguistic expressions an d . T h e o th e r ap p ro a ch . fo r besides an objectd esignation it contains only one o th e r com p o n en t. p re su p p o se d b u t n o t reflected u p o n in th e trad itio n al conception. can only be achieved by com bining these ap p ro a ch es in a c e r­ . th e difficulties an d blind alleys o f H u sserl’s sem antics can be re g a rd e d as exem plary. H ence. O n th e one h a n d .2 It is n o accident th at in th e d eb ate with ontology th e two sem antic classes o f singular an d general term s. H usserl is a good rep rese n tativ e o f a trad itio n al position with which to begin. in p artic­ u lar. says: to u n d e rsta n d an assertoric sentence is to know u n d e r w hat conditions it is tru e o r false. which stem s fro m the later W ittgenstein. T h e o ne ap p ro a ch . in p articu lar. M oreover it also seem s reaso n ab le to assum e th at th e predicative statem en t in which an individual is classified is th e m ost elem en tary fo rm o f assertoric speech a n d the o ne which u n d erlies all o th e r sem antic stru ctu res. O n th e o th e r h a n d . u n iq u e in th e pre-analytical trad itio n . o f predicative sentences a n d th e ir com ­ p o n en ts. e m erg ed relatively easily. he. in term s o f an o b ject-orien tated conceptuality. in p articu la r. an d it was a d ecidedly objecto rien tate d position.

an d . b u t alread y an analytical one. 27). O f co u rse th e w ord ‘tr u e ’ is n o t definable. A nd o n e can ask w h eth er. object-orientated trad itio n is essen ­ tial is concluded. It w ould also involve a sim u ltan eo u s d eb ate with th e previously available fu n d a m e n ta l conceptuality. O f course th e concept o f tru th also occurs in trad itio n al philosophy. T h is step is re g a rd e d by m any analytical p h ilo so p h ers today as th e n ex t to be tak en . W ith the d e m o n stra tio n th a t the refe re n c e to objects is an elem e n t in th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f a species o f sentences th e step in th e co n cep tu al research into fo u n d atio n s to w hich th e d eb a te with th e pre-analytical. this tim e th a t o f th e tru th -re la tio n . except th a t this w ould n o lo n g e r be a trad itio n al conceptuality. So again th e n ext step in the q u estion o f fo u n d atio n s w ould not consist sim ply in a tte n d in g to h ith ­ e rto neglected sem antic form s. It will th e n em erg e th a t the ex p lan a tio n o f th e w ord ‘tr u e ’ coincides with th e ex p lan a tio n o f the assertoric. w hich co n cern s the ex ten sio n o f th e problem atic fro m assertoric to n o n -asserto ric sen ­ tences. In these lectures I shall n o t get beyond this first step in th e w orking o u t o f a basic analytical conceptuality. th eir a tte n tio n having h ith e rto b een largely confined to assertoric sentences. I shall try to show th a t refe re n c e to objects is essentially an elem en t in the tru th -re la tio n . T h e n ex t fu n d a m e n ta l step. It will be o n e o f o u r first tasks a fte r the d em o n stratio n o f th e collapse o f th e o b je ct-o rien tated ap p ro a ch to ex p lain how th e m ean in g o f expressions a n d sem antic classes o f e x p re s­ sions can be investigated philosophically. M oreover th e concept o f an object is also reta in ed in analytical philosophy. w hereas in th e trad itio n th e tru th -re la tio n was u n d e rsto o d in term s o f refe re n c e to objects. Even now it may a p p e a r plausible th a t th e con cep t o f tru th occupies a place in th e conceptuality o f a th eo ry o f th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f assertoric sentences which is com parably fu n d a m e n ta l to th a t occu­ pied by th e co n cep t o f an object in th e conceptuality o f ontology an d tran sc en d e n ta l philosophy. H ow ever. I shall m erely indicate in th e last lecture. .to sentences which do n o t ch aracteristi­ cally contain a truth-claim . by reflecting on its fo u n d atio n s. th e predicative se n ten ce-fo rm (L ectures 18. ultim ately. o n e can so ex ten d this co n cep t as to yield a concept w hich achieves fo r all sentences w hat th e co n cep t o f tru th achieved fo r assertoric sentences. B ut we ca n n o t be c o n te n t to trea t th e concept o f tru th as som eth in g sim ply given. So again we a re faced with an in a d e q u a te concept. It seem s clear th a t o n e ca n n o t tra n sfe r th e notion o f tru th -co n d itio n s o r at least n o t autom atically . ju s t as th e fu n ctio n o f sin g u lar term s is only to be u n d e r ­ stood in term s o f th e ir role in a sentence.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 100 tain way.

n o t with tw o c o n stitu e n ts. W ould it n o t th e n be m uch m o re satisfactory fro m a system atic p o in t o f view if in stead o f first restric tin g ourselves to asserto ric sen ten ces we w ere to p ro ce ed like J o h n S earle in his book Speech Acts. m a first section investigate th e sem antics o f th e d iffe re n t m o d e s a n d . b u t m u st p e n e tra te th e th e m atic field step by step. a n d co n n e c te d with this is th e fact th a t in d ev e lo p in g th e co n c ep tu ality necessary fo r th e analysis o f th ese co m p o n en ts th e re is. is naive. we c a n n o t begin im m ediately a c o m p le te fo rm a l sem antics. a tra d itio n a l co n cep tu ality w hich we can sta rt o u t fro m . etc. m o re restric ted co n ­ cep tuality. B u t if this a p p ro a c h fails th e n th e q u estio n arises: fro m w hat o th e r co n c ep tu ality can o n e start? T h e idea th a t th e re is no n e e d to start fro m a p rev io u s.M * p * .. W e m u st th e re fo re ex p e ct th a t th e re is also a p r e d i­ cative fo rm . B u t in th a t case it w ould seem m ost unlikely th a t an analysis first o f th e m odes a n d th e n o f th e p ro p o sitio n a l co n te n t could lead to a satisfactory resu lt. T h e s tru c tu re o f all sentences w hich I b r o u g h t o u t in th e in tro d u c tio n . A n d th e m o d e m ost suitable . S econdly.e. i. Since o n e c a n n o t d o ev ery ­ th in g at o n ce th e re is no a ltern ativ e b u t to p r e p a re th e g en e ral se m an ­ tics o f th e form s o f p ro p o sitio n a l c o n te n t by first an alysing som e o f th ese fo rm s in co n n e ctio n with one m o d e. o n e c a n n o t so conceive th e stru c ­ tu re M*^>* th a t th e con cep tu ality re q u ire d fo r th e analysis o f th e on e elem e n t could be in d e p e n d e n t o f th e co n cep tu ality re q u ire d fo r th e analysis o f th e o th e r elem ent. I h ad p o in te d o u t th a t all f u rth e r fo rm a l su b s tru c tu rin g belo n g s to th e p r o p ­ ositional co n ten t. In p a rtic u la r I m u st p o in t to two difficulties: firstly. in n e ith e r case. as o ne is d ea lin g with two m o m en ts. an d th a t a new co n cep tu ality will auto m atically arise fro m th e c o n fro n ta tio n w ith th e new d a ta . in th e case o f n o n -a sse rto ric sentences. b u t I do n o t see th e co n c ep tu al m e an s with w hich we can carry o u t such a n u n d e rta k in g . T h e seq u en ce o f steps h e re is p re sc rib e d n o t by factors o f th e th e m a tic field b u t by th e avail­ able conceptuality. T h is is th e reaso n why. th e sem antics o f p ro p o sitio n a l stru c tu re s in ab stractio n fro m th e m odes? T h is w ould in d e e d be m o re satisfactory fro m a system atic p o in t o f view.Preliminary reflections on method 101 O n e m u st o f co u rse leave o p e n th e q u estio n o f w h e th e r th e co n cep t o f tru th (always assu m in g th a t it does p ro v e to be fu n d a m e n ta l to the analysis o f asserto ric sentences) is really su ite d to serve as th e basis fo r th e so u g h t-a fte r b ro a d e r conceptuality. in a second sec­ tion.could o f co u rse give rise to d o u b ts a b o u t this p ro c e d u re . b o th m o d e a n d p ro p o sitio n a l c o n te n t a re ab stra ct elem en ts o f sen tences th e significance o f w hich we c a n n o t h o p e to clearly g rasp rig h t at th e b eg in n in g o f o u r u n d e rta k in g . if we a re seeking n o t so m e kind o f in v e n to ry b u t ra th e r co n c ep tu al clari­ fication.

In fo rm u la t­ ing the q u estio n we sh o u ld n o t already p re d e te rm in e a p articu la r answ er. O nly th a t su b se q u en t ab straction -step to which I have already re fe rre d w hich w ould have to lead beyond th e conceptuality th a t p ro v ed successful fo r th e analysis o f assertoric sentences w ould m ake possible both an u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e o th e r m odes an d a co n cep ­ tuality in which we can u n d e rs ta n d th e form s o f p ro p o sitio n al co n ten t in d e p e n d e n tly o f th e individual m odes. W e will be dealing fo r th e first tim e with q u estions o f m e an in g an d we sho u ld fra m e such questions in a way w hich involves th e few est possible assum ptions. it co ncern s th e m ean in g o f an ex p ressio n (such as ‘T h e ball is r e d ’) which is com posed o f two elem ents . we sho u ld n o t be m isled into asking questions w hich a re only suggested by this m o d e o f speech. So alth o u g h we should n o t puristically avoid sp eak in g o f the m e an in g o f an ex p re ssio n (which is a perfectly n a tu ra l way o f speaking). H ow ever we are n o t dealin g with so sim ple a sem antic q u estion as th a t co n c ern in g th e m e an in g o f th e w ord ‘r e d ’. T h e q u estio n c o n c e rn ­ ing the u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e pred icativ e sen ten c e-fo rm d iffers fro m such a q u estio n in two respects. the assertoric m ode. so too in philosophical research into fo u n d a tio n s. W e thus find ourselves once m o re r e fe rre d to a step-by-step p ro c e d u re .Analysis o f the predicative sentence 102 fo r this p u rp o se is clearly th e traditionally m ost fam iliar one. It w ould th e re fo re seem to involve few er p resu p p o sitio n s if one w ere to fo rm u late a m eaningq u estion as follows: ‘H ow is th e expression “ ” to be u n d e rsto o d ? ’ A r a th e r th a n as follows: ‘W hat is th e m e an in g o f th e ex p ressio n “A ”?’ A n o b je ct-o rien tated th e o ry o f m e a n in g will o f course p re fe r th e second version because it is analogously fo rm u la te d to th e q u estio n : ‘W h at is th e object fo r w hich th e n am e ‘W ” stan d s?’ B u t th e o b ject-o rien tated p h ilo so p h er can also have no objection to th e first version. b u t we can p erfectly well speak o f th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f an ex p ression w ithout re fe rrin g to a m eaning. B efo re we begin o u r u n d e rta k in g with th e ex am in atio n o f H u sse rl’s analysis o f the predicative sen ten c e-fo rm I would like to specify the q u estions w hich m u st g u id e us. as in any rese arch . 398). See p.as can be seen fro m the co n c ep tu al u n fru itfu ln e ss o f S earle’s own carry in g o u t o f this p ro g ra m m e (w hich I will only be ex am in in g later. H ow ever convincing S earle’s p ro g ra m m e may be it is a p ro g ra m m e fo r th e fu tu re . Firstly. viz. O n e m u st recognize th at. th e seq u en ce o f steps in the analysis does n ot c o rre sp o n d to th e sequence in th e su b se q u en t system atic exposition. I f one asks: ‘W hat is the m e an in g o f th e ex p re ssio n “r e d ”?’ o ne clearly m eans the sam e as w hen on e asks: ‘H ow is th e expression “r e d ” to be u n d e rsto o d ? ’ We ca n n o t speak o f th e m e a n in g o f an ex p re ssio n w ith o u t re fe rrin g to an u n d e r ­ stan d in g .

35 f). ab o u t th e m e an in g o f ‘r e d ’) fro m w hich . secondly..g. it could tu rn o u t to be a p seu d o -q u estio n . B ecause o f these difficulties I have im m ediately fo rm u la te d th e fo u r questions w ithout using a w ord like ‘m e an in g ’ o r ‘sense’ (like H usserl I re g a rd these two expressions as synonym s).g. As we are in te reste d in th e q uestion o f how the u n d e rsta n d in g o f the sentence-w hole d e p e n d s on the u n d e rsta n d in g o f th e two sen ten ce-p arts we m ust now. W e will th u s have to b e a r in m in d th a t th e questions them selves also becom e c lea re r in the co u rse o f bein g answ ered. B u t even if we confine o u r ­ selves to th e w ord ‘u n d e rs ta n d in g ’ it is far fro m clear how such fo rm a lsem antic questions a re to be fo rm u late d . th e re is clearly a relatio n o f in te rd e p e n d e n c e betw een a co rrect u n d e rsta n d in g o f th e p arts (as p arts o f this whole) o f the w hole a n d o f th e com bination. In question (3). 26). It is im p o r­ ta n t in such cases th a t o n e at least knows th a t o n e does n o t know. ‘In w hat does th e m ean in g o f a p red icate as such consist?’ B ut th e question ‘In w hat does th e m e an in g consist?’ has no clear m eaning. unless th a t is o n e assum es th a t to th e co m bination too th e re som ehow c o rresp o n d s ‘a m e an in g ’. O n an ea rlier occasion I u sed th e fo rm u latio n ‘W hat is it to u n d e rsta n d a p red ic ate ?’ B u t already at th e tim e I re m a rk e d th a t this fo rm u latio n can only be re g a rd e d as p r o ­ visional (p. finally.g. W e co u ld only arrive at a clear fo rm u latio n o f o u r questions if we w ere clear ab o u t th e type o f answ er we expect. It may seem plausible to use th e ‘as’ fo r­ m u la o f ontology and ask. position o f n o t know ing clearly w hat it is we a re really asking ab o u t. In p articu la r we m u st see to it th a t th e fo rm al sem antic questions (e. I f one asks how a w hole is m ade u p of p arts. We th u s find ourselves in the aw kw ard. e.Preliminary reflections on method 103 each of w hich already has a m ean in g b u t w hich w hen co m b in ed yield a u n ita ry m eaning. th e referen c e to a m eaning no lo n g er seem s a p p ro ­ p riate. p. b u t in philosophy n o t u n u su a l. abstract fro m the p artic­ u la r m e an in g o f this sentence o r its com ponents an d ask ab o u t th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e sentence-form ‘Fa o r ‘Fab’ (cf. We m ust th e re fo re exp ect an analysis o f th e predicative sen ten ce-fo rm to p ro ­ vide an answ er to the follow ing fo u r questions: (1) how is a singular te rm u n d ersto o d ? (2) how is a p red ic ate u n d ersto o d ? (3) how is th e com bination of a singular te rm with a p red ic ate u n d e r ­ stood? (4) how is a (predicative) assertoric sentence u n d ersto o d ? It is n o t so easy to fo rm u late these fo rm a l-sem an tic questions in term s o f th e w ord ‘m e a n in g ’. co n c ern in g th e u n d e r ­ sta n d in g o f predicates) reta in th e necessary connections w ith th e c o n ­ cre te sem antic questions (e.

We m u st th e re fo re find a fo rm fo r co n crete sem antic q uestions w hich can be tra n s fe rre d to the fo rm alized questions. o r at least include it fro m th e very b eginning. th eory th e n we m u st first observe th e sequen ce which th e basic ap p ro a ch o f this th e o ry dictates. e.’ Now it seem s plausible to conceive th e co m p letio n o f this ifsen tence in such a way th a t both in th e co ncrete q u estio n an d in the fo rm alized sem antic question th e m ode o f em p lo y m e n t o f the e x p re s­ sion is bein g r e fe rre d to. th e expression ‘r e d ’ an d ask: ‘U n d e r w hat co nditions d o we say o f som eo n e th at h e u n d e rsta n d s th e ex p ressio n “r e d ”?’ B u t to speak o f conditions (or th e ‘conditions o f th e possibility’) also involves substantivization. It is characteristic o f th e o b ject-o rien ­ . L et us now r e tu r n to th e fo u r questions re fe rre d to above. Clearly we ca n n o t ex p ress w hat is m e an t by m eans o f a substantive. . a n d specifically th e H u sserlian .’ T h is fo rm u latio n can now easily be tra n s fe rre d to th e form alized sem antic q u estio n . if we w ant to tak e as o u r sta rtin g -p o in t the object-o rien tated . It w ould seem th e re fo re th a t we sho u ld begin with questio n (3). .. . W hen we ask ab o u t th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f p redicates we are looking fo r an answ er o f th e form : ‘S om eone u n d e rsta n d s a p red ic ate “F” if an d only if . I shall com e back to this q u es­ tion o f th e fo rm in w hich fo rm a l-se m a n tic questions a re to be p o sed at th e b eg in n in g o f th e positive analytical reflections.g. C learly q u estion (3) (how is th e com bination o f th e sin g u lar te rm with th e p r e d ­ icate u n d ersto o d ? ) is th e key-question. As this seem s to involve a distinct p reju d ice against th e o b ject-o rien tated position I w anted at p rese n t sim ply to m en tio n this perspective. b u t only by m eans o f a sen ten ce. O n e can also d e-substantify the q u estio n co n c ern in g ‘the u n d e rs ta n d in g ’ of. nam ely. by saying: th e answ er we are aim ing at to th e questio n co n c ern in g th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e expression ‘r e d ’ m u st have th e form : ‘so m eo n e u n d e rsta n d s the expression “r e d ” if an d only if . F rom its clarification th e re w ould im m ediately have to follow th e answ er to th e fo u rth q u estio n : how is th e predicative sentence u n d e rsto o d ? We can also expect th a t an ad e q u a te answ er to th e first two questions is only possible if th e th ird q u estion is alread y included. . n o t to ad o p t it. H ow ever. fo r only if it can be show n th a t in the u n d e rsta n d in g o f each o f th e two se n ten ce-co m p o n en ts the u n d e r ­ sta n d in g o f its com bination with th e o th e r c o m p o n e n t is alread y in clu d ed can o n e expect a u n ita ry m e an in g o f the w hole sen ten ce an d n o t a m e re ag g lo m erate o f two m eanings to result. in conn ectio n with a p rin cip le o f W ittgenstein (L ectures 11 a n d 12).Analysis o f the predicative sentence 104 they re su lt th ro u g h form alization. O n e such possibility (which I m e n tio n by way o f anticip atio n ) is th e follow ing.

a n d fro m th e re m ove tow ards a p re lim in a ry decision a b o u t q u estio n (4). We m ust th e re fo re also ex p e ct th a t all n o n ­ co m posite ex p ressio n s a re essentially c o m p o n e n t-e x p re ssio n s a n d th a t th e ir m e a n in g can only be u n d e rsto o d in te rm s o f th e sentence-w hole. O nly at the en d (L ectures 2 0 -2 7 ) will I d ev elo p th e lan g u ag eanalytical con cep tio n o f sin g u lar term s. specifically lan guage-analytical. a n d th e o b je ct-o rien tate d ap p ro a ch in g en e ral. I am b eg in n in g with th e q u estio n o f th e m e an in g o f a com posite ex p ressio n . H ow ever. It th e n c o n stru e s th e w hole se n ten c e as also sta n d in g fo r an object. fo r w hose e x p la n a tio n it was se em ­ ingly p re d e stin e d .p red ic ate s . fo u n d e rs on th e q u estio n o f how p red ic ate s a re u n d e rsto o d . viz. In th e lan g u ag eanalytical analysis sin g u la r te rm a n d p re d ic a te are essentially u n d e r ­ stood as se n ten c e-p arts. in a wholly in a d e q u a te way. b u t is prim arily o rie n ta te d tow ard s th a t sen ten cec o m p o n e n t w hich stan d s fo r an object. In p red ic ate s th e re fo re we will find a sta rtin g -p o in t fo r th e d ev e lo p ­ m e n t o f a new . . T h u s in w o rking o u t th e language-analytical co n c ep tio n I will p ro ce ed in rev e rse o rd e r. In th e in te r ­ p re ta tio n o f H usserl we will th e re fo re have to sta rt w ith qu estio n (1). H u sse rl’s a p p ro a c h .Preliminary reflections on method 105 ta te d ap p ro a c h th a t it does n o t tak e as its sta rtin g -p o in t th e com p o sitio n o f th e se n ten ce. a n d th a t th e o b je ct-o rien tate d analysis ex p lain s th e sem antic categ o ry o f sin g u lar term s. It will em e rg e th a t sin g u lar term s in fact p re se n t sem antic analysis with m uch g re a te r difficulties th a n do p red icates. th e sin g u lar term .(L ectures 11 and 12) a n d th e n p ro ce ed to a p re lim in a ry inv estig atio n o f q u estio n (4) . I shall begin with q u estio n (2) .(L ectu res 1 3 16). B u t in th a t case o n e c a n n o t h o p e to be able to clarify th e essence o f th e m e a n in g o f ex p ressio n s in g en e ral in d e p e n d e n tly of an sw erin g this q uestion. co n cep tio n . th e an sw er to q u estio n s (3) a n d (4) will th e r e ­ fo re follow autom atically fro m th e clarification o f th e first two q u e s­ tions. In conclusion I w ant to deal w ith an objection th a t has p ro b ab ly o c c u rre d to som e o f you d u rin g th ese last reflections. O nly a fte r this will we be able to deal w ith q u estio n s (2) an d (3) to g e th e r. if it is co rrec t th a t th e p rim a ry sem an tic u n its a re sen ten ces (an d h en c e com posite expressions) th e n th e q u estio n c o n c e rn in g the sem antics o f elem e n ta ry com posite ex p ressio n s is th e fu n d a m e n ta l sem antic q uestion.th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f asserto ric sentences as such . B u t w ould it n o t be m o re a p p ro p ria te fro m a system atic p o in t o f view to first ex p lain how a n o n -co m p o site ex p re ssio n is to be u n d e rs to o d ? F or only th en w ould we have a basis fo r th e q u estio n o f how a co m p o site e x p re s ­ sion arises o u t o f th e m eanings o f its c o m p o n e n t ex p ressio n s.

.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 106 If this is co rrec t th e n any sem antic theory is m istaken which believes it can first say so m e th in g ab o u t th e m eaning o f sim ple expressions an d only th e n m ove on to th e q u estio n o f how th e m e an in g o f a com posite ex p ressio n arises o u t o f the m e a n in g of its c o m p o n e n t expressions.

T h e in tro d u c to ry p a ra g ra p h s are d ev o ted to d istin ­ g u ishing ‘m e a n in g fu l’ signs . p articularly in Investigation I. w hich is en title d ‘E x p res­ sion and M e an in g ’. they a re m eanings o f signs. in w hich an expression is in te rp re te d as m ean in g fu l. r a th e r the m ean in g is ‘c o n fe rre d ’ u p o n it by its b ein g in te r­ p re te d in a p a rtic u la r way. In th e p r e ­ vious lecture I drew atte n tio n to th e fact th at o ne only speaks o f m e a n ­ ings o f expressions in connection with an u n d e rsta n d in g o f these expressions. o r conscious­ ness. By taking it H u sserl placed his analyses o n a d e e p e r th o u g h m o re h azard o u s basis th a n Frege: a satisfactory th e o ry o f m e an in g ca n n o t confine itself to talking abstractly a b o u t m eanings.LECTURE 9 Husserl’s theory of m eaning1 H u sserl develops the fo u n d atio n s o f his theory o f m ean in g in his Logical Investigations. T h e m ere p a tte rn o f so u n d s or m ark s o n p a p e r d o es n o t have a m e a n ­ ing in its e lf. T h e first.fro m indicative signs. th o u g h no t obvious.linguistic expressions . T h is first step in H u sse rl’s investigation seem s to m e to be u n o b jec­ tionable. a sign o f a specific kin d . O n e w ould th e re fo re have expected H u sserl to re fe r to th a t which ‘c o n fe rs’ m e an in g on th e expression as understanding. M eanings do n o t exist in a Platonic h eaven. th e n th is is d u e to th e fact th a t it can be ‘in te rp re te d ’ as so m ething w hich has a m eaning. th e n it is fu n d a m e n ta l to a satisfactory th eo ry o f m e an in g th a t one correctly characterize the m ode o f b ehav io u r. it m u st also take into account the psychological o r a n th ro ­ pological fac to r o f the sign-user. T h e concepts essential to his th eo ry o f th e m ean in g o f linguistic exp ressions a re in tro d u c e d by H u sserl in §§9-14. I f this is so. A nd they a re m ean in g s o f signs only in virtue o f the fact th a t certain sensible fo rm s are u sed (‘in te r­ p r e te d ’) as signs. so th a t . fu n d a m e n ­ tal step is ta k en in §9: if an expression is n o t ju s t ‘a m e re w o rd -so u n d ’ b u t a sign an d . m oreo v er.

It m eans som eth in g . significantly. an o b je ct-o rien tate d one. th a t th e m e an in g o f an expression w ould be sim ply id e n ­ tified w ith th e object to w hich th e m e a n in g -c o n fe rrin g act is d irected . O n e m ight have ex p ected . Y ou will notice how . ‘In virtu e o f these acts [the m e a n in g -c o n fe rrin g acts] th e expression is m o re th a n m erely a w ordso u n d . in an alm ost p ara d ig m atic m a n n e r.is alread y p re su p p o se d as th e only possible basic concept o f th e th e o ry o f co n ­ sciousness in th e sem antic Investig atio n I. T h e co n c ep t o f intentionality. H usserl does n o t m ake such an identification. o f m e a n in g -c o n fe rrin g acts. consciousness d ire c te d to an object. o b ject-o rien tated co n cep ­ tuality. as th o u g h this w ere obvious. he n o n eth eless reco g n ized th a t th e m ean in g s o f expressions ca n n o t sim ply be co n ­ s tru e d as objects. by an in te n ­ tional ex p e rien c e H usserl m eans a m ode o f consciousness o f an object. a n d in so doing in d ic ated d iffe re n t possible ways in w hich th e m ean in g s o f linguistic expressions can be in c o rp o ra te d into a consciousness o f objects w ith o u t them selves having to be re g a rd e d as objects. explicitly a n d as a resu lt o f philosophical reflectio n . As in d icated in L ec tu re 6. A nd in H usserl ‘act’ is a technical te rm fo r ‘in te n tio n a l e x p e rie n c e ’. F rom th e o u t­ set H u sserl ap p ro a c h e s th e p ro b lem o f m e an in g w ith this co n c ep t o f consciousness. o ne can n o netheless take accoun t o f th e fact th a t the u n d e rs ta n d in g o f expressions is n o t identical with th e re p re se n ta tio n o f objects. d o n o t in any way stand fo r an object: th e so- . th e p ro b lem o f m e a n in g is h e re overlain w ith a trad itio n al. It is ta k en fo r g ra n te d th a t it is a m a tte r o f in te n ­ tional consciousness. H u sse rl is so re w a rd in g as a critical p o in t o f d e p a r tu re because. a n d because. if on e starts o u t fro m th e assu m p tio n th a t linguistic expressions a re u sed to re p re s e n t objects. on th e o n e h a n d . Firstly. is no lo n g e r o rie n ta te d tow ards th e m eanings o f linguistic exp ressio n s . his a p p ro a c h is. he acknow ledged th a t th e re a re expressio n s w hich.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 108 the further question would then have to be: What is it to understand an ex p ression? F rom th e ou tset. how ever. as th e logical co n seq u en ce o f this a p p ro a c h . th o u g h they have a m e an in g . which is n o t explicitly d ev elo p ed u n til In v estigation V . H u sse rl took account o f this fact in two respects. H usserl speaks.in an analysis w hich. So by ex a m in in g H u sse rl’s theory o f m e an in g o n e can investigate th e questio n o f how far a consistently o b ject-o rien tated a p p ro a c h can as it w ere be stretch e d bey o n d itse lf. W h at it m ean s to u n d e rs ta n d a linguistic exp ressio n is a q u estio n w hich is n o t asked. th u s how far. H ow ever. on th e o th e r h a n d . a n d by m e an in g it it re fe rs to an o b ject’ (§9).

H u sse rl takes over th e division in to c a te g o re m atic a n d sy n c a te g o re ­ m atic ex p ressio n s (In v estig atio n IV §4 ff. has n o t only its m e an in g . i. . T h e se ex pressions w hich stan d fo r so m e th in g have an in d e ­ p e n d e n t m e an in g . th e d istin ctio n is ig n o re d . I n i­ tially. A n d H u sse rl too states: ‘N am es o ffe r th e clea re st ex a m p le s o f th e s e p a ra tio n o f m e an in g a n d re fe re n c e to an o b je ct’ (In v e stig a tio n I 12). to be th in k ­ in g only o f c a te g o re m atic expressions. o th e r e x p re ssio n s h ave a m e a n in g only in co n n e ctio n w ith ca te g o re m a tic ex p re ssio n s a n d w ere. In th e n o tio n th a t. stan d s fo r so m eth in g . . o n e m u st d istin g u ish betw een th e object a n d th e m e a n in g o f th e ex p ressio n . in th e case o f all (categorem atic) ex p ressio n s. A cc o rd in g to this co n c ep tio n .e. called ‘sy n c ate g o re m a tic’. fo r this re a so n . B u t th e object n ev e r coincides with th e m e a n in g ’ (In v estig atio n I §12). H u sserl is in v o k in g a distinction m a d e som e years e a rlie r by F re g e.Husserl’ theory of meaning s 109 called sy n ca te g o rem a tic expressions.e. h e m e an s by n am es p rin cipally ex p ressio n s w hich ‘can p e rfo rm th e sim ple su b je ct-fu n ctio n in a sta te m e n t’ (Investig atio n V §34). ev ery ex p re ssio n w hich falls u n d e r o n e o f th e ‘ca te g o rie s’ (every kategorema). H u sse rl does n o t th in k th a t th e object fo r w hich an ex p ressio n stan ds is th e m e an in g o f th a t ex p re ssio n : ‘E very [!] e x p re ssio n .2 C a te g o re m a tic ex p re ssio n s w ere th o se w hich can o ccu r as terms. . E xp ressio n s w hich c a n n o t fu n c tio n as te rm s w ere re g a rd e d as m e re aux iliary w ords. . T h is c o n c ep t ste m s fr o m th e sem antics o f tra d itio n a l logic. T h e n o tio n o f sin g u la r an d g e n e ra l te rm s is o f th e sam e o rig in . W e a re th e re fo r e fac ed with th e first o f th e fo u r questio n s w hich I sin g led o u t a t th e e n d o f th e p rev io u s lectu re as b ein g im p o rta n t fo r th e clarification o f th e p red ic ativ e se n ­ tence. W hat we have h e r e th e n is H u s ­ se rl’s sem antics o f sin g u la r term s. B u t even in th e case o f c a te g o ­ rem atic ex p ressio n s. in In v estig atio n I.). In th e A risto telian o n tolo g y . i. H e re H u sserl seem s. . b u t also re fe rs to c e rta in objects . in his essay ‘O n Sense a n d R e fe re n c e ’. In c lu d e d a m o n g th e m w ere also w hole asserto ric sen tences. w hen sp e a k in g o f ex p ressio n s in a com pletely g en e ral way. T h e o b je c t-o rie n ta te d a p p ro a c h also lies b e h in d this division o f ex p re ssio n s in to cate g o re m atic a n d syncateg o rem atic. W e will see la te r how h e fits sy n c ateg o rem atic ex p ressio n s into his o b je c t-o rie n ta te d a p p ro a c h . ex p re ssio n s w hich sta n d fo r so m e­ th in g . in o th e r w ords. in th e position o f su b ject o r p re d ic a te in th e p ro p o sitio n s o f a syllogism. A lth o u g h H u sse rl’s te rm in o lo g y is n o t w holly u n a m b ig u o u s.3 In this essay F re g e sta rte d o u t fro m th o se ex p ressio n s he called p r o p e r n a m e s a n d w hich m o re o r less c o rre sp o n d to th e sin g u la r term s o f th e o ld e r tra d itio n . every ex p re ssio n w hich can fu n ctio n as a sin g u la r o r g e n e ra l te rm .

A n d if one defines ‘object’ as I suggested in L ec tu re 3 an d as it is also d efin ed by H u sse rl. e. likewise th e com b in atio n with th e d efin ite article (‘th e h o rse ’) w h ere the expressio n is n o t used to d es­ ig n ate a species (‘th e h o rse is a dom estic an im al’) b u t in such a way th a t an in d iv id u al object o f this k in d is m ean t. A second class is co n stitu ted by definite descriptions: expressions such as ‘th e victor o f J e n a ’. a n d yet n o t know th a t they stand fo r th e sam e object. It is characteristic o f this m o d e o f d esig n atio n th a t it d e p e n d s on th e co n tex t o f speech w hich object th e ex p ressio n stan d s for. So as to be able so m e­ how to classify th e se ex pressions we should first get clear ab o u t the various sem antic types o f tho se sin g u lar term s with which co n crete (p erceptible) objects can be d esig n ated . ‘you’. F re g e an d H u sse rl a re h e re re fe rrin g in p articu la r to a specific class o f sin g u lar term s know n as ‘d efin ite d escrip tio n s’. like F rege. In s u p p o rt o f this claim . ‘o u r h o rse ’. or. h e con tin u es. a n d thus know w hat m e a n ­ ing they have. designates an object. ‘th e victor o f J e n a ’ an d ‘the v anquished o f W aterlo o ’. ‘this h o rse ’.g. I will r e tu rn to these d istin c­ tions w hen. to q u o te F re g e ’s c e le b ra ted ex am p le. th a t o f b eing th e victor o f J e n a ) w hich.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 110 H ow does H u sserl answ er th e questio n ab o u t the m ean in g o f sin g u lar term s? Every such ex p ressio n . H u sserl. one ca n n o t ask fo r w hich object does it stand.g. every such ex p ressio n also has a m e a n in g . points to th e fact th a t two sin g u lar term s can d esig n ate th e sam e object a n d yet n o t have the sam e m e a n ­ ing. w here it is again given by the co n text w hich object it is. O n e can u n d e rs ta n d both expressions. by m eans o f d em o n strativ e p ro n o u n s such as ‘th is’ o r ‘th a t’ a n d p e rso n a l p ro n o u n s such as ‘I ’. ‘th e E vening S tar’ an d ‘the M o rn in g S ta r’. an d this is to be d istin g u ish ed fro m th e object. follow ing th e discussion o f predicates. E xpressions o f this kind d esig n ate an object by specifying a certain characteristic (e. he says. I give my ow n an a l­ ysis o f sin g u lar term s. e. belongs only to a single . ‘th e E vening S ta r’.g. ‘it’. A first possible way in w hich expressions can d esig n ate co n crete objects is th e deictic. only for w hich object does it stan d in this o r th a t context.4 th e n o n e will take no excep tio n to this sta te m en t (th o u g h one may p e rh a p s fo rm u la te it m o re carefully as: ‘Every sin g u lar te rm claims to d e sig n ate an o b ject’5 in o r d e r to allow fo r th e fact th a t w hat is d esig­ n ated m ay n o t exist). In th e case o f such a w ord. B ut. th e n we will also have to in clu d e in th e class o f deictic subject-expressions tho se expressions which consist in th e co m b in atio n o f a d e m o n stra tiv e p ro n o u n o r a possessive adjective with a su bstantive. T h e ob ject-referen ce d e p e n d s on th e p a r ­ ticu lar use. it is su p p o sed . I f o n e takes this p ro p e rty as th e criterio n o f an ex p re ssio n ’s m e m b e rsh ip o f this class.

does no t use ‘sense’ (Sinn) and ‘m e a n in g ’ (Bedeutung) as synonym s. Deictic sin g u lar term s do no t in them selves stan d for an object. W h at is to be u n d e rsto o d by th e m e a n ­ ing o f a ‘n a m e ’? F rege h ad alread y given a plausible answ er to this question. From a naive p o in t o f view p r o p e r nam es seem also to be the sin g u lar term s w hich it is m ost easy to u n d e rsta n d . calls th e object th e m eaning (Bedeutung) o f the expression. N ow acco rd in g to F rege th e sense o f th e ex pressio n contains th e ‘m o d e o f p re se n ta tio n ’ o f the object.Husserl’ theory of meaning s 111 object. ‘B o n n ’. and p ro p e r nam es have no m eaning. alth o u g h they des­ ignate an object. it is ju s t th a t w hen speaking ab o u t F re g e ’s views o n e m ust be clear w h eth e r o ne is using th e w ord ‘m e an in g ’ in his o r th e u su al sense. . ra th e r for th a t which H usserl p rim arily calls ‘m e an in g ’ F reg e exclu­ sively uses th e w ord ‘sen se’ an d . th a t every ‘n am e’ bo th designates an object an d has a m eaning. T h is term inological d iffe ren ce does n o t involve any ad d itio n al substantive problem s. ‘V en u s’. F or us th e im p o rta n t q u es­ tion is w h eth er. an d if so how. they do no t do so by m eans o f a co n te x t-d e p e n d e n t or c o n te x t-in d e p e n d e n t description. It is characteristic o f these expressions that. At p re se n t all th a t needs to be m a d e clear is that the thesis o f F reg e an d H usserl. this being expressed by th e definite article. d e p a rtin g fro m o rd in a ry linguistic usage. F rege. It th e re fo re seems co rrect to say o f th ese w ords th a t they have no m eaning. In contrast to a definite d escription a p ro p e r n am e seem s to desig n ate th e object as such.7 W e will see later th a t this is a m istake an d th a t th e m ode o f em p lo y m en t o f p ro p e r nam es belongs to a h ig h e r level th a n th a t o f th e o th e r two classes o f referrin g ex pression an d indeed presu p p o ses them . such as ‘N ap o le o n ’. is valid for only one class o f co ncrete sin g u lar term s: definite descriptions.8 It is clearly constitutive o f m aterial objects th a t they can a p p e a r in an u n lim ite d n u m b e r o f perspectives o r m odes o f p rese n tatio n . o n e can m ake sense o f th e n o tio n o f a m ean in g o f an expression which is distinct fro m th e object fro m an ob ject-o rien tated p oint o f view. im m ediately an d d irectly. u n lik e H usserl. In th e trad itio n d e term in e d by ontology the fact th a t these w ords d esignate objects b u t th at one can n o t in ad d itio n ask fo r th eir m e an in g m ade th em seem th e linguistic expressions par excellence. O f course o n e m ust take note o f his d iffe re n t term inology. F re g e ’s thesis is th a t every definite d escription designates an object as th e object w hich is given in such-and-such a way. For it m akes no sense to ask for th e m ean in g o f such a w ord o r to ask how it is to be u n d e rsto o d : one can only ask which object does it designate.6 A th ird class consists o f p ro p e r nam es. Russell th e re fo re aptly called these expressions ‘defin ite d escrip tio n s’.

In its tran sc en d e n ta l fo rm th e theory o f objects th u s h ad a perspective in which it could m ake intelligible th e m eanings o f at least those expressions which also desig­ n ate objects. . w hereas any n u m ­ b er o f acts can in te rp re t it in th e sam e way. H ow ever. In d e e d fro m th e o u tset we m ust expect th a t it is sim ply n o t possible fo r th e object-o rien tated ap p ro a ch . H u sserl m odified his co n ception in this direction.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 112 T h e expression ‘th e Evening S ta r’. an expression has o n e identical m eaning .Bedeutung). T h is acco u n t is also u n ab le to answ er the question o f how it is th a t th e re are d iffe re n t m odes in which o n e an d th e sam e object can be m eant. T h is is a second possible way o f in te g ra tin g m ean in g s which a re dis­ tinct fro m th e object into th e object-o rien tated ap p ro a ch : th e m ean in g is n o t th e object b u t th e m o d e o f p rese n tatio n o f th e object. stands for th e object which a p p e ars at a p articu la r tim e in a p a rtic u la r p a rt o f th e sky. In In v estigation I th o u g h he gives yet a n o th e r account. T h e sam e object a p p e a rs at a n o th e r tim e in a n o th e r p a rt o f the sky an d if on e designates it as th e object w hich a p p e a rs thus o n e calls it ‘th e M o rn ­ ing S ta r’. as red n ess in specie stands to th e strips o f p a p e r lying h e re w hich all “h av e” this sam e re d n e ss’ (Investigation I §31). In th e th eo ry th a t the m e an in g of an ex p ressio n is th e m ode o f p rese n tatio n o f th e object. th e concept o f m e an in g rem ains d e p e n d e n t on th e concept o f an object. R eflection on th e m ode o f p re se n ta tio n of objects is characteristic o f th e so-called tra n sc e n d e n ta l tu rn in ontology. Does n o t a p articu la r m ode o f p re se n ta tio n o f th e object co rre sp o n d to each such act-essence? L ater. . B ut it is by no m eans obvious th a t w hen we m ean an object with a d efin ite d escrip tio n w hat we u n d e rsta n d is th e essence o f this (act of) m eaning. (§94). H e starts fro m the assu m p tio n th a t expressions w hich d esig n ate th e sam e object b u t have d iffe re n t m eanings a re distin g u ish ed fro m o ne a n o th e r by ‘th e specific m a n n e r in which th e object is m e a n t’ (Investigation I §13). It th e re fo re seem ed plausible to co n stru e th e m ean in g as a ch aracteristic o f th e act. in his Ideas. which h ad already b een an ticip ated by F re g e’s account: th e ‘sense’ is th e ‘object in its specific m ode o f p re se n ­ ta tio n ’ (§131). A n d it is. th e re fo re stands to th e various acts o f m ean in g (Meinen) . m o reover. ‘T h e m e an in g (. Now th a t is an account w hich H usserl was well able to ad o p t. T h is at any ra te is a possible way in w hich H usserl can acco m m o d ate m eanings w ithin th e fram ew o rk o f his o b ject-o rien tated ap p ro a ch . H usserl th e re fo re cam e to th e view th a t th e m ean in g consists in th e essence (th e ‘ideal species’) of th e rele v an t act (‘o f m ean in g th e p a rtic u la r object’). quite a plausible view. fo r exam ple.

B u t now w h at a re we to u n d e rs ta n d by th e m e an in g an d th e object o f a w hole asserto ric sentence? H u sse rl p ro v id es n o u n e q u iv ­ ocal answ er to this questio n . H usserl does n o t wish to restric t his thesis th a t every ex p ressio n b o th re fe rs to an object a n d has a m e a n in g to sin g u la r term s. F or o n e can certainly say so m e th in g ab o u t how in g e n e ra l o ne sh o u ld in te r p re t th e m e a n in g o f w hole asserto ric se n ten ces . N ow . .’ h e th e n says. as th e object o f th e sentence. (a) g en e ral term s a n d (b) w hole assertoric sentences? T h e s e q u estio n s c o rre sp o n d to th e second a n d th e fo u rth o f th e fo u r questio n s to w hich I r e f e r re d at th e e n d o f th e p rev io u s lec­ tu re.th e m e an in g is th e essence o f th e act o f m e an in g . T ac k lin g th in g s in this o r d e r also m akes sense in te rm s o f th e su b je ct-m a tte r. th a t ‘ “ab o u t” w hich th e sta te m e n t is m a d e ’. T h e co n c ep t o f m e a n in g which is d e p e n d e n t on re fe re n c e to objects is o f course u n p ro b le m a tic so long as we a re d ealin g with sin g u lar te rm s. fo r w hole asserto ric se n ­ tences (§12). b e fo re an sw e rin g th e th ird q uestion . B u t they ex p ress th e sam e state o f affairs .in In v estig ato n V I. w ith expressio n s w hich d esig n ate objects.is an e x p la ­ n a tio n in w hich th e m e a n in g is u n d e rs to o d in term s o f th e object-reference. ‘B u t th e re is also possible. o n e can re g a rd th e object o f th e su b ject-term o f th e sen ten ce. in p a rtic u la r. . T h e two sentences clearly assert so m e­ th in g d if fe r e n t . H u sse rl’s first ex p la n a tio n o f th e m e an in g of a ‘n a m e ’ . th a t o f th e m e an in g o f th e w hole assertoric senten ce. in o th e r w ords. fo r it rests on th e assu m p tio n th a t th e re is an act.Husserl’ theory of meaning s 113 to develop a co n c ep t o f m e an in g w hich w ould be in d e p e n d e n t o f th e co n c ep t o f an object.th e q u estio n ab o u t p r e ­ dicative s tru c tu re . H u sse rl gives an answ er to this q u estio n in In v esti­ g ation I.w h e th e r they be p red icativ e o r n o t even b e fo re o n e has investigated th e ir stru c tu re . It holds fo r all (categorem atic) ex p ressio n s an d . in o th e r w ords. h e says. . If o n e does this th e n o n e will give as exam ples sen ten c e-p airs such as “a is la rg e r th a n b” a n d is sm aller th a n a ”. We shall see th a t th e a cco u n t w hich H usserl gives o f th e m e an in g o f th e w hole asserto ric se n ten ce p re d e te rm in e s a p a rtic u la r answ er to th e th ird a n d crucial q u estio n a b o u t p red ic ativ e stru c tu re . a n d an act is th e consciousness o f an object. th e object o f th e sta te m e n t ‘a is la rg e r th an b’ w ould be a o r p e rh a p s a a n d b. B u t now w hat is th e position as re g a rd s th e m e an in g o f th e re m a in in g ca te­ go rem atic ex p ressio n s. viz. ‘a n o th e r c o n ­ cep tion w hich views th e w hole state o f affairs c o rre sp o n d in g to th e sta te m e n t as th e a n a lo g u e o f th e object n a m e d by a n a m e an d w hich d istinguishes it fro m th e m e an in g o f th e asserto ric sen ten ce. . O n this view. L et us first co n sid er q u estio n 4. O n th e o n e h a n d .

even if th e assertoric senten ce itself is n o t a subject-expression (a sin g u lar te rm ). O n th e o n e h a n d . H usserl too d efin e d an ‘o b ject’ as th at w hich is the subject o f possible p red ic atio n s. fo r.th e assu m p tio n th a t all ‘m e an in g -co n fe r­ rin g consciousness’ is consciousness o f an object . H ow ­ ever. stands fo r an object. his o b je ct-o rien tate d ap p ro a ch . T h e two sentences ‘a is big g er th a n b ’ an d lb is sm aller th an a ’ re p re se n t th e sam e state o f affairs b u t have d iffe re n t m eanings. viz. . In this way m e a n in g an d object o f th e se n ten c e are in d e e d sh arp ly d istin g u ish ed . fo r th e re is now n o object c o rre sp o n d in g to th e m e an in g o f the w hole sentence. It follows fro m th e first co n cep tio n th a t the only th in g th a t can be re g a rd e d as th e object o f an assertoric sentence is th e object (or objects) fo r w hich th e su bject-term (or subject-term s) o f th e se n ten ce stan d s (and o n e can only speak o f an object o f th e sentence in th e case o f sin g u lar p red icativ e sentences).9 O n the o th e r h a n d . its nom inalized fo rm ‘th a t p ’ certainly is. T h e o b je ct-o rien tated ap p ro a ch d e m a n d e d a co n cep tio n w hich assigns to th e sen ten ce an object c o rre ­ s p o n d in g to th e w hole m e an in g . the p state o f affairs that p. B u t now if th e object o f an assertoric sentence is u n d e rsto o d in this way can we in ad d itio n distinguish a m ean in g o f th e sentence? T h is is w hat H usserl tries to do in th e discussion to which I have ju s t re fe rre d . fo r fro m such a p o in t o f view a m e an in g not s u p p o rte d by conscious­ ness o f an object hangs as it w ere in a void and is sim ply inconceivable.obliged h im to hold th a t every linguistic ex p ressio n .Analysis o f the predicative sentence 114 w h e th e r we d efin e the object o f th e sta te m en t in this o r the o th e r sense . M o reo v er such a conception is com patible with the d efin itio n o f an object as the subject o f possible p red icatio n s. So H usserl fo u n d h im self com pelled by his ob ject-o rien tated a p p ro a c h to d raw the distinction betw een object a n d m e an in g in reg a rd to w hole sentences in a d iffe re n t way. statem en ts a re always possible w hich d iffe r in m ean in g b u t which rela te to the sam e “object” ’ (§12). . T h is gives th e im pressio n th a t it is m o re im p o rta n t to distinguish object an d m e a n in g at any price th a n to specify w h at is to be u n d e rsto o d by th e m e an in g a n d th e object o f a statem en t. fo r the o b je ct-o rien tate d ap p ro a c h this is an u n accep tab le result. H u sserl clearly w ants to assim ilate the m e a n in g -o b je c t distinction as ap p lied to state­ m ents as closely as possible to th e distinction as ap p lied to sin g u lar . A n d as we have already seen we can in d e e d speak o f an object fo r which a w hole senten ce ‘ ’ stan d s. o r at least every categ o rem atic ex p re s­ sion. H u sserl’s w avering b etw een two possible ways o f c o n stru in g th e m e an in g -o b je ct distinction as ap p lie d to w hole asserto ric sentences reveals a fu n d a m e n ta l u n c e r­ tain ty as to how talk o f objects in re g a rd to linguistic expressions is to be d efin e d .

th e criterio n fo r d escrip tio n s’ h a v ­ ing the sam e object.11 H e too th o u g h t th a t o n e m ust also d istin g u ish b etw een ‘sen se’ (Sinn) a n d ‘object’ (Bedeutung) in th e case o f statem en ts.e.10 B ut o n e w ould th e n have to say th a t all tru e statem ents designate o n e an d th e sam e object. as ‘the cir­ . viz. In th e case o f statem ents a classification-criterion as wide as th a t which connects all descriptions which d esig n ate the sam e object w ould have to be: statem ents have th e sam e object if they h av e n o t only th e sam e tru th -co n d itio n s. tw o sentences stand fo r th e sam e state o f affairs if they have th e sam e tru th -co n d itio n s. A n exam ple o f d escrip tio n s analogous to ‘a is big g er th a n b’ a n d ‘b is sm aller th an a in this resp e ct w ould be. an d h en c e a d efinite concept of m eaning. sim ply on the basis o f o u r u n d e rsta n d in g o f th e expressions. an d likewise all false statem ents.g. in m ind. We ca n n o t in fer th a t ‘th e victor o f J e n a ’ stands fo r th e sam e object as ‘th e v an q u ish ed o f W aterlo o ’ m erely fro m o u r u n d e rsta n d in g o f these expressions. ‘a is b ig g er th an b’) is tru e th e n th e o th e r (e. fo r norm ally we can n o t establish w h eth e r they d esignate th e sam e object sim ply on th e basis o f o u r u n d e rsta n d in g o f th e expressions. th a t they d esignate th e sam e object. (b is sm aller th a n a ’) is also tru e . B ut h ere talk o f d iffe re n t m odes o f p rese n tatio n o f o n e a n d the sam e th in g has only a m etap h o rical sense. T h e c o rre sp o n d in g criterio n in th e case o f descrip tio n s w ould be: two d escriptions stan d fo r th e sam e object if we can assert a priori (analyti­ cally). It may be d o u b te d w h e th e r he had definite criteria. th a t if the o n e (e. W hat lies beh in d it? W h at are the criteria fo r d eciding (a) w hen two sentences have th e sam e o r d iffe re n t m eanings a n d (b) w hen they stan d fo r the sam e o r d iffe re n t states o f affairs? As reg a rd s (a) n o th in g specific can be in fe rre d fro m H u sse rl’s exam ple. an d n a rro w e r th a n . i. T h is intuitively u n n a tu ra l b u t form ally consistent thesis was p r o ­ p o u n d e d by F re g e . ‘th e victor o f J e n a ’ an d ‘th e c o m m a n d e r o f th e victorious arm y at J e n a ’. H ow ever this is not the criterio n w hich h olds fo r all d escriptions which desig n ate th e sam e object. if we can assert a priori (analytically).g. As fo r (b) H u sserl probably u sed the sta n d a rd criterio n . we can only establish this by ex perience. and if th e one is false th e n th e o th e r is also false. T h u s we see th a t the criterio n by re fe re n c e to w hich H u sserl d eterm in e s w hich statem en ts stan d fo r th e sam e state o f affairs is in fact d iffe re n t fro m . sim ply on the basis o f o u r u n d e rsta n d in g o f th e se n ­ tences. i. p erh a p s. H ow ever h e in te rp re te d th e object o f the assertoric sen ten ce n o t as th e state o f affairs fo r w hich it stands b u t as its truth-v alu e.e.Husserl’s theory of meaning 115 term s: th e m eanings o f th e two sentences are so to speak two m odes o f p rese n tatio n o f o n e an d the sam e state o f affairs. b u t th e sam e tru th -v a lu e .

nam ely. H u sserl on th e o th e r h a n d probably d id not u n d e rs ta n d th e fo rm al co nnections F reg e h ad in m in d . B u t H u sserl was able to d ispense w ith th e very vague idea o f th e m e an in g o f asserto ric sentences w hich h e in tro d u c e d on this occasion.14 I f it is taken in its usual sense . r a th e r th e ir m e an in g s w ould re p re se n t th e aspects in w hich reality does n o t m anifest its e lf). T h e two sentences ‘B e rn e is th e capital o f Switz­ e rla n d ’ and ‘B o n n is situated on th e R h in e ’ have d iffe re n t m eanings. O nly th e co n cep t o f m e an in g h ad to be newly d efin ed a n d its rela tio n sh ip to th e object newly d e te r­ m ined. I ca n n o t go in to this h e r e 13 b u t w ould m erely p o in t o u t th a t F re g e was clearly using the w ord ‘o b ject’ in a n o n -sta n ­ d a rd se n se. viz.as ‘subject o f possible p red ic atio n s’ . co n sid ered as alternatives in §12. b u t they stand fo r th e sam e ‘object’. w hatever its positive co n te n t may be. You will recall th a t. A n d he d id n o t develop it fu rth e r. fo r they a re both tru e . th e object o f a predicative sentence is th e object o f its su bject-term .12 B ut this idea o f reality as an object as sug g ested by th e substantival expression m ust itself a p p e a r su sp ect to us.th e n F re g e’s theo ry . It now o c c u rre d to H usserl to com bine th e two possible ways. th e state o f affairs that p. T his co n cep tio n . O n e can reach a b e tte r intuitiv e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f this id ea by th in k in g o f th e ‘object’ fo r w hich all tr u e statem en ts stand as ‘reality ’ o r th e ‘w orld’. an d in any case h e was b o u n d to be p u t o ff by th e intuitive u n n a tu ra ln e ss o f F re g e ’s result. p rovides no possible answ er to th e q uestion co n c ern in g th e object o f assertoric sentences. th e w hole sen ten ce as such only has a m e an in g a n d not. H ow ever we sh o u ld n o t over-estim ate this negative result.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 116 cu m stance th a t it is tru e o r th a t it is false’. in co n trast to H u sse rl’s. h e was nev erth eless able to ho ld on to th e view th a t every assertoric sen ten ce ‘ ’ stan d s for p an object. . It sim ply consists in this: th a t th e distinction betw een m e an in g an d object which is m a d e in re g a rd to descrip tio n s can scarcely be tra n s fe rre d to asser­ toric sentences in th e m a n n e r suggested by H usserl. T h e real sub stance o f th e analogy w hich F rege exhibited b etw een th e m e an in g a n d object o f descrip tio n s an d th e m e an in g an d tru th -v a lu e o f state­ m ents lies in a n o th e r d irectio n an d alread y points b ey o n d th e objecto rie n ta te d a p p ro a c h . at least allow ed a clear distinction to be d raw n betw een m e an in g an d object. th e sam e tru th -v alu e . th e m eanings (senses) o f tru e statem en ts w ould th e n be th e d iffe re n t m odes o f p re se n ta tio n in w hich reality m anifests itself (false statem en ts w ould th e n n o t have th e ir ow n object. acco rd in g to th e first o f these. h e thus m a d e his ow n suggestion in which th e analogy with the c o rre sp o n d in g distinction in re g a rd to descriptio n s is no lo n g e r p re ­ sent. o f d istin g u ish in g betw een th e object an d th e m e an in g o f a statem en t.

C o rre sp o n d in g to th e g ram m atical m odificatio n o f n o m in alizatio n is th e sem antic m odification o f th e o bjectification o f m e an in g .states o f affairs o r p ro p o sitio n s sh o u ld be conceived. th e object fo r w hich th e ex p ressio n ‘th a t/? ’ sta n d s. T h is fact w hich is o fte n re m a rk e d u p o n 15 does n o t itself p ro v e an y th in g . B u t o n e can also speak a b o u t th e m e a n in g o f th e sen ten ce.Hass er Vs theory of meaning 117 in a d d itio n . W hat o n e m u st go o n to ask is w hat th e g r o u n d o f this d iscrep an cy in linguistic usage is. viz. on th e o th e r h a n d . W e can p alread y see this fro m linguistic usage: we c a n n o t tra n s la te sta te m en ts a b o u t states o f affairs w ith sta te m en ts a b o u t m ean in g s. T h is id e a could a p p e a r p p lausible. T h u s in §34 o f In v estig atio n I th e re e m e rg e s th e follow ing c o n c e p ­ tion (the o n e which is finally a c ce p te d by H usserl). T h e q u estio n c o n c e rn in g th e re la tio n sh ip b etw een th e m e an in g a n d object o f th e asserto ric se n ten c e is th u s m a d e m o re co m p licated by th e fact th a t now two objects are involved. T h e r e was no real a r g u m e n t w hich told ag ain st this co n c ep tio n . In this case th e m e an in g o f th e se n te n c e becom es itself th e ob ject-ab o u tw hich o f a f u r th e r sta te m en t. viz. is th e —objectified . B u t even if we d isre g a rd deictic ex p re ssio n s th e id en tificatio n o f th e state o f affairs that p w ith th e m e a n in g o f ‘ ’ is n o t ten ab le. T o . T h e object o f th e se n ten c e ‘ u liu s is w e e p in g ’ is th a t o f w hich it asserts so m eth in g . how th e se objects . th e idea th a t every n o m in a liz ed asserto ric se n ten ce ‘th a t p' sta n d s fo r a state o f affairs. o n e ca n n o t say instead o f ‘th e state o f aff airs th a t it was snow ing y ester­ d ay is p le asin g ’ ‘th e m e a n in g o f th e se n ten c e “it was sn o w in g y esterd ay ” is p leasin g ’. T h e q u estio n I left o p e n w hen I in tro d u c e d objects o f th e ty p e that p in L ec tu re 3. an object. ac co rd in g to w hich th e re also h ad to be an object c o r re s p o n d in g to th e w hole e x p re s­ sion. it is d istin ­ g u ish ed fro m th e m e a n in g in th e way d e sc rib e d by H u sse rl in th e first altern ativ e o f § 12. B ut now this re q u ire m e n t is fulfilled by sim ply in c o rp o ra tin g in to th e first possibility th e o n e u n p ro b le m a tic idea o f th e seco n d possibility. viz. T h e state o f affairs.m ean in g . fo r it is n a tu ra l to say th a t tw o states o f affairs that p a n d that q a re iden tical if th e tw o sentences a n d ‘q h av e th e sam e m e a n in g (it is o f co u rse assu m ed th a t th e se n ten c es a n d ‘q c o n tain no deictic expressions). T h is new object w hich is d esig n ated by th e nom in alized ex p re ssio n ‘th a t J u liu s is w e e p in g ’ is th e state o f affairs. J Ju liu s. F o r ex am p le. w ould th u s b e an sw e re d in a specific way: th e object that p is th e m e a n in g o f th e se n te n c e ‘ ’. T h e object-ab o u t-w h ich o f th e sta te m en t is th e object o f th e su b je ct-te rm o f th e se n ten ce. only th e o b je c t-o rie n ta te d a p p ro a c h . It is usefu l to look ag a in a t th e c o rre s p o n d in g th e o ry o f F rege.

22 Now this view co rre sp o n d s in th e m ost precise fashion to actual linguis­ tic usage. H ow ever justified a n d how ever n atu ra l it is to say th a t an ex p re ssio n ‘th a t p* stan d s for so m eth in g . Som eone w ho says ‘ ’ is n o t simply p p d esig n atin g a state o f affairs. a n d this ad d itio n a l factor w hich is in c lu d ed in the m e an in g o f ‘ ’ can no lo n g e r be c o n stru e d objectually.21 W h a t is im p o rta n t from the p oint o f view o f o u r discussion is th a t. as D u m m e tt has show n. 64). this m ean s th a t th e assertio n -m o d e o r q u estio n -m o d e (F rege speaks of ‘assertoric fo rce’) do es n o t b elo n g to th e sense b u t is an additional elem en t o f m e an in g . th e sense is th e th o u g h t a n d th e th o u g h t is th at which can be tru e o r false. I w ould re m in d you th a t F re g e ’s te rm for w hat H usserl calls a ‘state o f a ffa irs’ is ‘th o u g h t’. w hen we co n sid er th a t th e sense is th a t for which th e e x p re s­ sion ‘t h a t// stands.it is false to say this o f th e u n m o d ifie d ex p re ssio n ‘ ’.we will have to say that fo r F rege th e sense o f an assertoric sen ten ce constitu tes only a p a rt o f its m eaning.an d thus use the w ord quite d ifferen tly fro m F re g e . fo r F rege. p T h e m e an in g o f e ’ always contains m ore th a n th a t fo r w hich the p ex p ressio n ‘th a t/? ’ stands. ‘T h a t/? ’ d iffers fro m ( ’ in th a t it lacks th e assertionp m o m e n t (cf. fo r F rege. a p ro p o sitio n o r a th o u g h t . I f we co n tin u e to call th a t which we u n d e rsta n d ‘m e a n in g ’ (B edeutung) .16 Also acco rd in g to F reg e th e object o f the n o m ­ inalized e x p re ssio n ‘th a t p ’ is the sense o f ‘ ’. p . B ecause.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 118 th e superficial r e a d e r F re g e seems to hold th e sam e view as H usserl. In p articu lar the c o rre ­ lation betw een sense a n d u n d e rsta n d in g fro m which I sta rted in th e p revious le ctu re does n o t hold fo r Frege. an assertoric sentence an d th e c o rre sp o n d ­ ing in te rro g a tiv e sen ten ce have th e sam e sense. F rege anticip ated th e m o d ern view th a t th e m e a n in g o f a sentence consists in its tru th -co n d itio n s. It is only later th a t I shall r e tu r n to this really crucial aspect o f F re g e’s th e ­ ory.19 H e re . I shall also at p re s e n t d isre g a rd those o th e r con stitu en ts o f m e a n ­ in g 20 in w hich acco rd in g to F rege a feeling is ex p ressed o r a ‘h in t’ is given to th e h e a r e r .18 only w hat is re le v a n t to th e question o f tru th o r falsity belongs to th e se n se . above p. b u t at the same tim e asserting th a t it is tru e o r ‘o b ta in s’. it is easy to p o verlook th e fact th a t w h at F rege calls ‘sense’ is a technical term an d does not c o rre sp o n d at all to w hat o n e ordinarily u n d e rsta n d s an d w hat H u sserl u n d e rs ta n d s by ‘m e a n in g ’ (or ‘sense’). 17 H ow ever. W e can now r e tu r n to H u sse rl’s thesis th a t th e state o f affairs that p is th e (‘objectified’) m e an in g o f ‘ \ It is now clear why this thesis is false.w h eth e r o ne calls it a state o f affairs. T h e r e seems to be no com ­ p reh e n siv e te rm in F reg e fo r w hat we u n d e rsta n d w hen we u n d e rsta n d a linguistic exp ressio n . N ow F rege also says that th e sense o f an assertoric sen tence is a th o u g h t.

posed by the n a tu re o f sentences by sim ply in c o rp o ratin g this aspect o f sentences into th e object-reference. . ap p lied to the nom in al expressions with w hich we are now co n cern ed . So H usserl draw s th e conclusion which. 73). e x p re s­ sions o f the form ‘th a t/? ’. H usserl him self.. with ‘is false’. w hich is o rien tate d tow ards nam es a n d re p rese n tatio n . ‘is d o u b tfu l’. th e thesis w ould seem to be false. .Husserl’s theory of meaning 119 H usserl did n o t overlook this factor o f the sentence-m ode. with such a term so m ething is implicitly asserted. as with ‘is tr u e ’. H ow ever. characterizes th e connection betw een m e an in g an d state o f affairs thus: th e state o f affairs is the objectified m eaning. in Investigation I. S om eone who is ju s t begin n in g to say ‘th a t p . including all ‘nom in al’ acts.23 H e th u s trie d to neutralize the th re a t to his fu n d a m e n ta l position. T h is w ould seem to im ply that th e identification o f th e state o f affairs that p already p resu p p o ses th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f th e m eaning o f ‘ \ B ut th e n this w ould m ean th a t the m e an in g w ould fo r p its p a rt have to be in te rp re te d non-objectually.24 A pplied to singular term s th a t stan d for (m ate­ rial) objects this thesis is no t im plausible an d I shall be re tu rn in g to it later (Lect. 26). But. B u t even now we can anticipate th a t if this thesis tu rn s o u t to be co rrect the conclusion it suggests is th e o p p o site o f th a t d raw n by H usserl: it w ould follow th a t these nam es re fe r back to statem en ts (those w hich they implicitly assert) (cf. Now this w ould m ean: every singular term not only stands for an object. T h e idea th a t w hen we say ‘th a t p ’ the obtaining o f th e state o f affairs (or the tru th o f the th o u g h t) is im plicitly asserted contrad icts th e fact th a t we can ju s t as well com plete ‘that/? . is the only possible one: as the state o f affairs thatp is in any case su p p o sed to be identical with th e m eaning o f *p’ it is easy to pro ject th e conscious­ .’ has n o t yet im plicitly p re ju d g e d how he will com plete it. etc. B u t w h at is it th a t is im plicitly asserted w ith a sin g u lar term ? A ccording to H usserl it is the existence o f the object. as we have alread y seen. o n the co ntrary he held th a t a ‘positional q uality’ belongs to th e essence o f in ten tio n al acts as such. H u sserl’s objectp o rien tate d ap p ro a ch gives rise to a n o th e r a n d even m o re serious p ro b ­ lem. fo r H u sse rl’s object-orientated ap p ro a ch a m e an in g which is n o t p ro p p e d u p by an object-consciousness is impossible. . So we have no alternative b u t to reject H u sse rl’s identification o f the state o f affairs thatp with the m eaning of ‘ ’. W h e th e r one identifies th e state o f affairs that p with th e m ean in g o f *p’ or in te rp re ts th e ir relationship in a d iffe re n t way th e re still arises th e f u rth e r and crucial question o f w h eth e r o u r u n d e rsta n d in g o f the m ean in g o f ‘?’ is g ro u n d e d in o u r know ing for w hich object ‘th a t p ’ / stands o r w h eth e r it is the o th e r way ro u n d . H ow ever. above p. given his sta rtin g -p o in t.

is it positively u n d e rsto o d ? I f o n e ca n n o t have rec o u rse to th e m e a n in g o f the sta te m e n t th e only way o f ex p lain in g th e ontological status o f th e state o f affairs is to re g a rd it as a composite object. T h e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e n o t yet nom in alized sta te m e n t is also in te rp re te d as ‘conscious­ ness o f th e state o f a ffa irs’. acco rd in g to this co n cep tio n . b u t only o f th e state o f affairs. n o r is this resu lt th e essential one. an d p e rh a p s you will even ask in asto n ish m e n t: how else is th e m e an in g o f th e w hole ex p ressio n to be u n d e rsto o d . its m e an in g is an object (a state o f affairs). . C onsistently with this H u sserl no lo n g e r speaks. In itself this w ould be no d isaster. o f th e m ean in g . only in this case th e state o f affairs is n o t yet ‘objectual in th e strict sen se’ (Investigation V §§36. in Inv estig atio n s V a n d V I. W e m u st th e re fo re re g a rd H u sse rl’s a tte m p t to apply th e m e a n in g object d istinction to statem en ts as well as to n am es as a failu re. viz. T h is m ay at first a p p e a r harm less. C om p o sitio n im plies objects both as its elem en ts an d as its results. O n e can leave o p e n th e q u estio n o f w h e th e r o n e speaks o f m ean in g s o r objects in re g a rd to th e sen ten ce-p arts. H ow can th e so u n d n e ss o f this co n cep tio n be tested? By asking: if th e state o f affairs is n o t fo u n d e d in th e m e a n in g th e n how . in th e co n cep t o f com position o n e is m ak in g u se o f an objectual categ o ry a n d h en c e co n stru in g m eanings as objects. o r m ean in g . T h e idea th a t th e m ean in g o f an asserto ric sen ten ce is an object inevitably results in th e view th a t th e m a n n e r in which th e m e an in g o f th e w hole sta te m e n t arises o u t o f th e m eanings o f its p a rts can only be th o u g h t o f as com position. to be u n d e rsto o d ? H u sse rl’s answ er to th e fo u rth q u estio n (how is th e w hole assertoric se n ten c e u n d ersto o d ? ). W e are thus faced w ith the crucial th ird q u estio n o f th e fo u r q u e s­ tions em p h asized by m e at th e e n d o f th e last lectu re viz. th e sin g u lar te rm a n d th e p r e d ­ icate.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 120 ness o f th e state o f affairs back in to th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f m ean in g . largely p re d e te rm in e s th e answ er to th e th ird q u e s­ tion: to th e com position o f th e expression th e re m u st co rre sp o n d a co m position in th e object. W h at is essential is th a t H u sserl co n stru es th e m e a n in g o f th e se n ten c e as an object. how is th e co m bination o f th e two sen ten c e-p arts. 38). if n o t as com posed o f th e m e an in g s o f its co m p o n en texpressions? In th e n e x t le ctu re we shall h av e to ex a m in e how fa r th e objectual co n ception o f th e m e a n in g o f a pred icativ e sen ten ce can be p rese rv e d by m eans o f an acceptable co n c ep t o f com position. W h a t is crucial is th a t it is a m a tte r o f com position. E ven if o n e avoids sp e ak ­ in g o f objects a n d thin k s o f th e meaning o f th e com posite ex p ressio n as com posed o f th e meanings o f th e c o m p o n e n t ex pressio n s.

m u st. d oes n o t a m o u n t to a new a p p ro a c h vis-ä-vis th e objecto rie n ta te d a p p ro a c h .w h at is b ein g as being? o r w h at is it to r e p r e s e n t a n object? W e a re th u s n o t asking this q u estio n fo r th e sake o f ask in g it b u t r a th e r with th e aim o f re a c h in g a new philo so p h ical a p p ro a c h . T h e conviction ex p re sse d in th e first p a r t o f these le c tu re s th a t th e q u estio n . given th e o b je c t-o rie n ­ ta te d a p p ro a c h .LECTURE 10 Collapse of the traditional theory of m eaning T h e g u id in g q u e stio n o f o u r in v estigation is: W h a t is it to u n d e r s ta n d a se n ten c e? T h is q u estio n I re g a rd as th e fu n d a m e n ta l q u estio n o f p h i­ lo sophy. I n th e last le c tu re we w ere able to see how th e o b je ct-o rien tate d a p p ro a c h d id n o t p re v e n t H u sse rl fro m giving a p lau sib le a c co u n t o f th e d istin ctio n betw een th e m e a n in g a n d th e ob ject o f n am es b u t th a t in th e case o f th e m e a n in g o f w hole sen ten ces it lan d s h im in grav e difficulties. th e n th e m a n n e r in w hich th e m e a n in g o f th e p red ic ativ e se n ten c e d e p e n d s o n th e m e a n ­ . b u t th e u n d e r s ta n d in g o f th e e x p re ssio n co m p o sed o f sin g u la r te rm a n d p re d ic a te is an originally objectual consciousn ess. it m e re ly points in th e d ire c tio n o f su ch a new a p p ro a c h . T o achieve this we shall first look at w h at h a p p e n s w hen th e tra d itio n a l basic co n c ep tu ality is a p p lie d to th e u n d e r s ta n d in g o f a se n ten c e.has th e fo rm a l un iv ersality o f th e q u es­ tio n c o n c e rn in g objects as objects a n d in fact is m o re c o m p re h e n siv e th a n th e la tte r. be p ro je c te d back in to th e o rig in a l con scio u sn ess o f th e m e a n in g o f A ccordingly. O n e can only d ev e lo p it by w o rk in g o u t a new basic co n c ep ­ tu ality a p p r o p r ia te to th e new su b je ct-m a tte r. T h e state o f affairs that p.W h at is it to u n d e r s ta n d a sentence? . w hich sh o u ld ta k e th e place o f th e tra d itio n a l fu n d a m e n ta l q u estio n . w hich H u sse rl h im s e lf initially in te r p re ts as a su b se q u e n t m odification. in th e e x p e c ta tio n th a t th e re su ltin g te n sio n will yield a basis fo r th e d e v e lo p m e n t o f a new h o rizo n o f e x p la n a tio n . if th e co n sciousness o f a sta te o f affairs c a n n o t be e lu c id a te d by re fe re n c e to th e u n d e r s ta n d in g o f a se n ten ce.

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in g o f its te rm s can only be ex p lain ed by m eans o f th e only o b ject-o rien ­ ta te d conceptuality available fo r this p u rp o se, i.e. it m ust be co n stru e d as composition, as synthesis. So we are faced with th e fu n d a m e n ta l q uestion o f sem antics, h ere in co n n e ctio n w ith th e special case o f th e predicative sentence: how does th e m e an in g o f a com posite ex p ressio n result fro m th e m ean in g s o f its c o m p o n e n t expressions? P roving itself a d e q u ate in this fu n d a m e n ta l sem an tic q u estio n is th e decisive criterio n for th e applicability o f a p h il­ o sophical concep tu ality to the q uestions of sem antics. I t was clear to H usserl th a t the com position constitutive o f a state o f affairs c a n n o t be w hat o n e o rd in arily u n d e rsta n d s w hen o n e speaks o f co m posite objects. O rd in arily w hen one com bines objects to form a co m posite object - e.g. w h en on e com bines pearls to fo rm a pearl-necklace o r build in g -sto n es to fo rm a b u ild in g - th e com posite object is ju s t as m u ch a c o n c re te sp a tio -tem p o ra l object as its parts. A state o f affairs o r fact, on th e o th e r h a n d , is n o t a concrete sp atio -tem p o ral object. W h e n we sp eak o f th e fact th a t C aesar was m u rd e re d in R om e in 44 B.C. C aesar is a co n crete sp atio -tem p o ral object. Equally th e event o f his m u r d e r is sp atio -tem p o rally locatable. It h a p p e n e d in th a t place an d at th a t tim e. T h e fact th a t C aesar was m u rd e re d in th a t place at th a t tim e, on th e o th e r h a n d , is n o t locatable and datable. T h u s th e object fo r w hich a nom in alized sentence stands, like th a t for w hich a n o m i­ n alized p re d ic a te stands, is no t a co n c rete spatio -tem p o ral object: states o f affairs are , like a ttrib u te s, so-called ‘ab stract’ objects. H u sserl calls co n c rete objects ‘re a l’ objects an d ab stra ct objects ‘ideal’ objects. For him th e c riterio n o f a ‘re a l’ object is th a t it can be sensibly perceiv ed (Inves­ tig atio n VI §46). T h u s a lth o u g h his o b je ct-o rien tate d ap p ro a ch obliged H u sserl to c o n s tru e states o f affairs as com posite objects they are non eth eless objects o f a n o th e r o rd e r th a n the objects of w hich they a re com posed. B u t now this m ean s th a t th e com position in questio n m ust be o f a sp e­ cial kind. H u sse rl a tte m p te d to o vercom e this difficulty by m eans o f his th e o ry o f categ o rial synthesis. T h is re p re se n ts th e m ost far-rea ch in g a tte m p t so f a r m a d e to ex p lain states o f affairs an d th e m ean in g o f sen tences fro m an o b je ct-o rien tate d position. B e fo re e x p o u n d in g th e basic fe a tu re s o f this th eo ry I w ould like briefly to d raw y o u r a tte n tio n to a n o th e r object-o rien tated position in w hich th e n o tio n o f com position is ap p lied naively to states o f affairs, viz. th e position re p re s e n te d by W ittg e n stein ’s Tractatus. In asm u ch as W ittg en stein in th e Tractatus is, u n lik e H usserl, o rien tate d prim arily to w ard s sentences r a th e r th a n nam es his position is alread y a decidedly

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language-analytical one: ‘O nly propositions have sense; only in the n exus o f a p ro p o sitio n does a nam e have m e an in g ’ (3.3). H ow ever this idea is still in te rp re te d ontologically. T h e Tractatus g ro u n d s th e sem an ­ tic prim acy o f se n ten ce over n am e in an ontological prim acy o f facts o v er things: ‘T h e w orld is th e totality o f facts, n o t o f th in g s’ (1.1). Now th e question arises: w hat are we to u n d e rsta n d by a ‘fact’? W ittgenstein answ ers: ‘W hat is th e case - a fact - is th e o btainin g o f states o f affairs’ (2.). A nd w hat is a state o f affairs? T o this W ittgenstein answ ers: ‘A state o f affairs is a com bination o f objects’ (2.01). T h is view is o p e n to th e criticism at w hich I have already h in te d , viz. th at it depicts th e state of affairs as a com posite co n crete object. T h e Tractatus invites this criticism by explicitly stating: ‘In a state o f affairs objects fit into o n e a n o th e r like th e links o f a ch ain ’ (2.03). W ittgenstein rejected this view h im self w hen h e ab a n d o n ed the ob ject-orientated position o f th e Tractatus. F rom this p erio d stem som e notes w hich, u n d e r th e title ‘C om plex a n d F act’ have been p u b lish ed as an a p p e n d ix to Philosophical Remarks. 1 H e re W ittgenstein writes: ‘C om ­ plex is n o t like fact. F or I can e.g. say o f a com plex th a t it moves fro m one place to a n o th e r, b u t n o t o f a fact . . . A nd a com plex is a spatial object, com posed o f spatial objects . . . B u t that this com plex is now situated h e re is a fact . . . T o say th a t a re d circle is composed o f red n ess an d circularity, o r is a com plex with these c o m p o n en t p arts is a m isuse o f these w ords an d is m isleading (Frege was aw are o f this an d told me). It is ju s t as m isleading to say th e fact th a t this circle is re d (that I am tired) is a com plex w hose c o m p o n en t p arts are a circle an d red n ess (m yself an d tiredness) . . . O f course we also say: “to p o in t o u t a fact”; bu t th a t always m eans; “to p o in t o u t th e fact th a t T o p o in t o u t a fact m eans to assert som ething, to state som ething. “T o p o in t o u t a flow er” d o esn ’t m ean this . . . T h e ro o t o f this m u d d le is th e co n fu sin g use o f th e w ord “object”.’ W hat W ittgenstein h e re calls a com plex is a com posite co n crete object. In now g oing so far as to say th a t th e fact does not consist o f so m eth in g he is rejecting th e object-orientated ap p ro a ch alto g eth er. H usserl, how ever, has show n th a t on th e basis o f an ob ject-o rien tated a p p ro a ch one can still perfectly well distinguish betw een a com plex an d a fact. T h is brings m e to his theory o f categorial synthesis. T h e task H u sse rl set h im self was to distinguish fro m th e real com position o f an object a special n o n -re al com position w hich is constitutive o f a fact. L et m e try to m ake th e distinction clear by m eans o f an exam ple. A h a m m e r is a real object which is com posed o f two p arts: a shaft an d a head. I f we

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ascertain this a n d say ‘this h a m m e r is com posed o f a sh aft a n d a h e a d ’ th e re c o rre sp o n d s to this sta te m en t th e state o f affairs th a t th is h a m m e r is co m posed o f a sh aft a n d a head. T h e state o f affairs, it is assu m ed , is itself an (ideal) com posite object. Now w hat a re its co n stitu en ts? S h o u ld we say: th e (real) com position is (ideally) co m b in ed , o n th e o n e h a n d , w ith th e h a m m e r, on th e o th e r h a n d , with th e sh a ft a n d th e head? T h e state o f affairs in questio n w ould th e n be co m p o sed o f tw o co n stitu en ts: (1) th e real com position a n d (2) th e o rd e re d object-trio [h am m er, sh aft, h ead]. H u sse rl p r e fe rre d a n o th e r way o f looking at it (In v estig atio n VI §48) ac co rd in g to w hich only th e real objects, th u s h a m m e r, sh aft a n d h e a d , fu n ctio n as co n stitu e n ts o f th e state o f affairs a n d th e real co m ­ po sition (the p a rt-w h o le relation) re p re se n ts th e way in w hich th ese objects a re (ideally) co m b in ed in th e state o f affairs. N ow w hichever way th e m o d e o f com position o f th e state o f affairs is to be u n d e rsto o d (I shall com e back to this) it is clearly fu n d a m e n ta lly d iffe re n t fro m th e m o d e o f co m position o f th e h am m er. T h e h a m m e r itself e n te rs into th e state o f affairs as a p a rt, an d , alth o u g h a real co m p o site object can always be itself a real p a r t o f a la rg e r w hole, it can n ev er be so in such a way th a t its ow n p arts can be th e c o m p le m e n ta ry co n stitu e n ts o f th e new whole. T h e state o f affairs th a t th e h a m m e r consists o f h ea d a n d sh aft, is, in co n tra st to th e h a m m e r, n o t a p erc ep tib le object. A n d equally we c a n n o t p erceiv e its com position as we can p erceiv e th e co m ­ p osition o f th e h a m m e r o u t o f h e a d an d shaft. It is th e re fo re te m p tin g to say: ideal com position is n o t ascertain ab le by p e rc e p tio n b u t only in thought. H u sserl can h e re a p p e a l to a lo n g tra d itio n ac co rd in g to w hich th in k ­ in g , th e ‘u n d e rs ta n d in g ’, is a faculty o f synthesis an d a synthesis w hich is n o t a species o f real co m p o sitio n .2 L et m e illu strate this by m ean s o f a n o th e r ex am p le. W h e n we a p p r e h e n d th e fact th a t A is se p a ra te fro m B th e n A a n d B a re certainly n o t really co m b in ed , they a re sep arate . A n d yet in th e state o f affairs th a t they are se p a ra te , they a r e co n n ected . T h ey a re b ro u g h t in to this co nnection, w hich is n o t a real co n n ectio n , by th o u g h t. T h is does n o t m e an th a t th e co n n e ctio n do es n o t actually (wirklich) exist (A a n d B a re actually separate). T h a t facts are n o t real objects (con crete objects in space an d tim e), th a t they a re only co n sti­ tu te d in th o u g h t, does n o t m ean th a t they a re n o t actual. T h in k in g too, like all consciousness, is u n d e rsto o d by H u sserl as objectual consciousness an d h en c e as an ‘act’.3 Acts o f th in k in g h e calls ‘categ o rial’ acts in co n tra st to ‘sensory’ acts in w hich c o n c rete objects a re re p re se n te d . It is ch aracteristic o f a categ o rial act th a t it re p re se n ts an object w hich is co m p o sed in such a n d such a way as co m p o sed in such

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a n d such a way - w hich it can only d o by sim u ltan eo u sly r e p re s e n tin g its c o m p o n e n t objects. N ow th e r e p re s e n tin g o f each co m p o n e n t-o b je c t is (by d efinition) itself an act. A ca te g o ria l act is th e re fo re a sy n th etic act w hich is fo u n d e d o n o th e r acts, ultim ately o n sen so ry acts w hich r e p ­ re se n t th e real objects w hich e n te r in to th e synthetic object. T h e sy n th e ­ sis o f th e objects o f th e f o u n d in g acts is ac co m p lish e d by th e fo u n d e d categ o rial act; a n d in this synthesis th e new synth etic object is consti­ tu te d . T h u s th e la tte r c a n n o t, even in p rin cip le, be re p re s e n te d in a sim ple (sensory) act. So H u sserl tries to ex p lain th e d istin ctio n b etw e en ideal a n d real objects a n d th e p e c u lia r co m p o sitio n o f ideal objects by d istin g u ish in g b etw een th e c o rre s p o n d in g acts, th u s by d istin g u ish in g th e ways in w hich th e re le v a n t objects a re given (th u s by giving a ‘tra n s c e n d e n ta l’ ex p lan a tio n ). T h e o r d e r o f types o f object is g r o u n d e d in th e o r d e r o f acts. T h e e x p la n a tio n h e gives is s u p p o se d to h o ld fo r all ideal objects, also fo r species (w hich a re c o n stitu te d in acts o f ‘id eativ e ab stra c tio n ’), a ttrib u te s a n d equally fo r sets. H o w ev er, I shall co n fin e m yself to states o f affairs. T h e co m p o sitio n o f a state o f affairs, w hich is fu n d a m e n ta lly d if fe r e n t fro m all real co m p o sitio n , is ex p la in e d by saying th a t this syn­ thesis is th e synthesis ac co m p lish e d by a categorial act. It th u s becom es clear ‘th a t categ o rial fu n ctio n s, in “fo rm in g ” sensible objects, leave th e ir real essence u n to u c h e d . . . C a te g o ria l fo rm s d o n o t glue, tie o r p u t p a rts to g e th e r so th a t a real, sensibly p e rc e p tib le w hole resu lts. T h e y d o n o t fo rm in th e sense in w hich th e p o tte r fo rm s. F o r th e n th a t w hich was originally given to se n se -p e rc e p tio n w ould be m o d ified in its ow n o b jecth o o d : re la tin g a n d c o n n e c tin g th o u g h t a n d k n o w led g e w ould n o t be th o u g h t a n d k n o w led g e o f w hat is, b u t r a th e r falsifying tra n s fo r­ m a tio n into so m e th in g else’ (In v e stig a tio n V I §61). P e rh a p s you will ask: to w h at e x te n t th e n can o n e say th a t p a rtic u la r states o f affairs actually {wirklich) o b ta in (and th a t th e c o rre sp o n d in g sta te m en ts a re tru e ), if th e se objects a re n o t ‘re a l’ (real) a n d a re only c o n stitu te d in th e sy n th etic acts o f th in k in g ? T o th is H u sse rl can reply: a state o f affa irs is o n e th a t actually obtains (an d th e c o rre sp o n d in g sta te m e n t is tru e ) if th e re le v a n t ca te g o ria l synthesis o n th e fo u n d a tio n o f th e real objects th a t e n te r into it can be p e rfo rm e d (is possible) (e.g. th e state o f affa irs th a t sh a ft a n d h e a d a re co m b in ed , actually o btains if th e c o rre s p o n d in g synthesis o f th e se rea l p a rts can be p e rfo rm e d ).4 N ow b e fo re I com e to th e a p p lica tio n o f this th e o ry o f c ateg o rial sy n ­ thesis to o u r c o n c re te q u estio n c o n c e rn in g th e sem an tic stru c tu re o f p red ic ativ e sta te m e n ts I w ould like to d raw y o u r a tte n tio n to a p a rtic u ­ lar sem an tic p ro b le m w hich H u sse rl th o u g h t this th eo ry co uld solve:

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th e p ro b lem o f th e sem antics o f syncategorem atic expressions. As I re m a rk e d in the last lectu re (p. 109) such expressio n s co n stitu te, even fo r H u sserl, a class o f ex pressions w hich have m ean in g b u t do n o t stan d fo r an object. T h is co nception can be in te g ra te d with th e o b ject-o rien ­ ta ted co n cep tio n , with which p rim a facie it seem s in co m p atib le (In v es­ tigation V §§4 ff.), by m eans o f th e th e o ry o f categorial synthesis. A ccording to H usserl, syncategorem atic expressions a re com binationw ords; they have no ‘in d e p e n d e n t’ m eaning. O nly exp ressio n s w hich stand fo r an object (categorem atic expressions) have an ‘in d e p e n d e n t’ m ean in g . N ow categ o rem atic ex pressions can only be co m b in ed w ith o th e r categ o rem atic ex pressions to form a com plex ex p ressio n w ith a new u n ita ry m e an in g if this com bination is m ed iated by one o r m o re sy n categ o rem atic expressions. T h is sem antic-syntactic con cep tio n c o r­ resp o n d s directly to th e o n to lo g ic a l-tra n sc e n d e n ta l co n cep tio n o f cate­ gorial synthesis. T h e synthesis o f a categorial act is ex p re ssed in th e n o n -in d e p e n d e n t m ean in g s o f th e syncategorem atic te rm s (e.g. ‘a n d ’, th e p red icativ e ‘is’, ‘= ’). T h ey a re objectually in te rp re te d by these acts n o t in th e sense th a t th ey them selves stand fo r objects, b u t ra th e r in th e sense th a t they re p re s e n t the fo rm o f unity in which th e synthetic object is c o n stitu ted on th e basis o f th e fo u n d in g objects. Since it is again an act w hich con fers m e a n in g on th e syncategorem atic ex p ressio n , an d since th e to ta l-m ea n in g o f this synthetic act is again an object, th e o b je ct-o rien tate d ap p ro a c h can be u p h e ld in im pressive fashion even fo r th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f these expressions. B u t in th e e n d we have to ask w h e th e r th e theo ry o f categorial acts is really cap ab le o f m a k in g th e consciousness o f states o f affairs, o r the u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e m e an in g o f com posite expressions, intelligible. In p a rtic u la r, how do th in g s sta n d as re g a rd s th e m e an in g o f th e p re d ic a ­ tive sentence? I have d elib erately p rese n ted H u sse rl’s th eo ry o f nonreal com position as abstractly as H u sserl h im self p rese n ts it, because th e su b su m p tio n u n d e r this th e o ry o f th e predicativ e sen ten ce gives rise to an ad d itio n a l difficulty. I f we tak e a sim ple p red icativ e sentence, e.g. ‘H e id e lb e rg C astle is r e d ’, th e n if th e th eo ry o f categ o rial synthesis is to be a p p lie d we m u st assum e th a t n o t only th e sin g u lar te rm ‘H e id e l­ b e rg C astle’ b u t also th e p red ic ate -ex p ressio n ‘r e d ’ stands fo r an object; fo r if we d o n o t have at least tw o objects th e n we ca n n o t speak o f a co m position, a synthesis. We th u s com e up again st th e second o f my fo u r q u estions, viz. th a t co n c ern in g th e m e a n in g o f th e predicate. A n objectifying co n cep tio n o f p red icates o f th e kind o n e could have in fe rre d fro m th e g e n e ra l s tru c tu re o f the th e o ry o f categorial acts is in fact to be fo u n d in H u sserl. T h e analysis o f th e p red icativ e sentence-

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fo rm in Investigation VI §48 is ca rrie d out to g e th e r with an analysis o f sentences in w hich it is said o f som eth in g th at it contains so m e th in g else as a p art. As a un itary schem a fo r both predicative sen ten ces and w h o le -p a rt sentences H usserl suggests: A is (has) a A is a ’ is th e fo r­ m alization o f a predicative sentence w ith a copula such as: ‘T h e castle is re d .’ H usserl attaches g re a t im p o rta n ce to se p aratin g the co p u la, as a sy n categorem atic com bination-w ord which is sup p o sed to re p re se n t (repräsentieren) th e synthesis, from th e predicate. A has a , o n th e o th e r h a n d , is a (not very happy) attem p t to form alize a w h o le -p a rt sentence, e.g. ‘T h e castle has the b an q u e t-h all.’ T h e converse fo rm w hich H usserl gives both fo r A is a’ an d fo r A has a , viz. ‘a is in A ’ (e.g. ‘T h e b an q u ethall is in the castle’) is clearer. If we also apply this converse fo rm to th e predicative sen ten ce we get: ‘(the) red n e ss is in th e castle’. O bviously we can now convert this fo rm itself into th e converse fo rm ‘T h e castle has re d n e ss’, w hich, in co n tra st to ‘T h e castle is re d ’, H u sserl re g a rd s as th e fo rm o f expression in w hich the synthetic s tru c tu re becom es explicit. W e also find this assim ilation o f th e su b je ct-p red ic ate sen ten ce to th e w h o le -p a rt sen ten ce elsew here in H usserl. In Investigation I II , which is h e a d e d ‘O n th e theory o f wholes an d p a rts’, h e says th a t p red icates sta n d fo r ‘n o n -in d e p e n d e n t p a rts’. ‘W e in te rp re t th e con cep t part in th e widest sense w hich allows o n e to call an y th in g a “p a r t” th a t can be d istin ­ g u ish ed “in ” an object or, speaking objectively, th a t is “p re s e n t” in it . . . T h u s every non-relative “rea l” p red ic ate points to a p a r t o f th e object o f th e subject-term . T h u s e.g. “r e d ” an d “r o u n d ” . . .’ (§2) O n e m ight question w h eth e r th e w h o le -p a rt relatio n is th e m ost su it­ able relation to which to assim ilate th e su b je ct-p red ic ate stru ctu re . In ste a d o f ‘th e red n ess is in th e castle’ one could suggest ‘th e red n ess is o n th e castle’, a n d instead o f ‘th e castle has red n e ss’, ‘th e castle is com ­ b in e d with re d n e ss’. T h e real question, how ever, is n o t which relatio n is to be p re fe rre d b u t whether a predicative sentence can be in te rp re te d as a relatio n al sta te m en t at all. T h a t it m u st be thus in te rp re te d how ever follows necessarily from th e idea th a t th e p red ic ate stands fo r so m e­ th in g ; an d this idea is itself inevitable if o ne starts fro m th e assu m p tio n th a t th e state o f affairs is co n stitu ted in a categorial synthesis. In d e e d th e idea th a t th e p red icate stands fo r som ething does n o t even d e p e n d o n th e peculiarities o f H u sse rl’s th e o ry o f categorial synthesis; ra th e r it rests on th e fu n d a m e n ta l p resu p p o sitio n , which we also fo u n d in th e Tractatus, th a t th e state o f affairs is som ething com posite; fo r this p r e ­ su p poses th a t it is com posed o f at least two constituents. So you see, th e specific way in w hich H usserl has answ ered th e fo u rth q u estio n (the m e an in g of th e w hole sentence is th e state o f affairs) p r e ­

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d eterm in e s a specific answ er to th e th ird question, how the m e an in g of th e w hole senten ce arises o u t o f th e m e an in g of th e co m p o n en t-ex p ressions (nam ely, as a resu lt o f com position, o r m ore precisely: as a resu lt o f categorial synthesis). A nd this answ er to th e th ird question in tu rn p resu p p o se s a specific answ er to th e second question, th a t co n c ern in g th e m ean in g o f th e pred icate, nam ely, th a t the m e an in g o f th e p re d i­ cate (e.g. ‘r e d ’) is th e object fo r w hich its nom inalized m odification (‘re d n e ss’) stands. It is to be noted th a t every step in this th o u g h tseq uence (if o n e d isreg ard s th e peculiarities o f th e th eo ry o f categorial synthesis) is a necessary consequence o f th e o bject-o rien tated ap p ro a ch as such an d n o t som eth in g p eculiar to H u sse rl’s philosophy. In H usserl th e in te rp re ta tio n o f predicates as objects does n o t only arise in this way as a necessary consequence from th e system atic con­ text, b u t also sim ply from th e conception o f a p red ic ate as a ca te g o re­ m atic expression, or, m o re fu n d am en tally , because an altern ativ e con­ cep tio n o f m e an in g which d id no t re q u ire to be p ro p p e d u p by objects was sim ply n o t available w ithin the fra m ew o rk o f th e o b ject-o rien tated ap p ro a ch . It is tr u e that in Investigation I. §12, with w hich I began, H u sserl also claim ed th a t th e distinction betw een object a n d m ean in g w hich h ad been show n to obtain in re g a rd to nam es m ust also be m ade with re g a rd to predicates; in d e ed he even assum ed th e re th a t a p re d i­ cate does not d esig n ate an object at all an d that, th e re fo re , o n e can n o t speak o f th e object o f a p re d ic a te b u t sim ply of a ‘relatio n to objects’, th ese being th e objects to w hich a p red ic ate can be applied. T h u s he can explain th e distinction betw een object and m e an in g as ap p lied to p red icates in a way fam iliar to us fro m m o d e rn sem antics: two p re d i­ cates - e.g. ‘an equ ilateral tria n g le’ an d ‘an eq u ia n g u la r tria n g le ’- can h ave ‘th e sam e relatio n to objects, th e sam e ra n g e o f possible applica­ tio n ’ an d yet n o t have th e sam e m eaning. B ut if we ask how this m ean ­ ing w hich is d istinct fro m th e relation to objects is itself to be u n d e r ­ sto od th e answ er is exactly analogous to th a t in th e case o f th e m ean in g o f th e w hole sentence: (a) in speaking o f ‘red n e ss’ o n e is sp eak in g objectually o f the m e an in g o f th e p red ic ate ‘r e d ’ (b) in th e absence o f any o th e r conception o f m e an in g th e objectual consciousness (of redness) is p ro jected back in to th e o rig in al m eaning-consciousness o f th e p red icate ‘r e d ’. A lthough in u n d e rsta n d in g th e p red ic ate o f a sentence th e act of consciousness is n o t objectually d irected to th e m ean in g o f th e p re d i­ cate, b u t only to th e object o f th e subject-term o f th e sen ten ce, th e m e an in g o f th e p red ic ate is n o netheless an object, nam ely, th e c o rre ­ sp o n d in g attrib u te. T h u s th e objectual conception o f predicates ca n n o t be sh ak en by sim ­

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ply p o in tin g to th e fact th a t H u sse rl h im self defin ed an ‘o b ject’ as th e subject o f possible p red ic atio n s (cf. p. 418 n. 4). T h is d efin itio n do es n o t c o n tra d ic t th e idea th a t p red ic ate s too sta n d fo r objects. F o r every p r e d ­ icate can be nom in alized an d o n e ca n th e n say: ju s t as, th o u g h th e state o f affairs that p is n o t the o b ject-about-w hich o f the sen ten ce ‘ ’ th e p sen ten ce neverth eless stan d s fo r this state o f affairs, so, in th e sam e way, a lth o u g h in using the p red ic ate ‘r e d ’ o n e is n o t d ire c te d to the a ttrib u te o f red n e ss as an object, n ev erth eless th e p re d ic a te stan d s fo r this object, an d this object is its m ean in g . A re we b e tte r e q u ip p e d in th e case o f p red ic ate s th a n we w ere in th e case o f assertoric sentences to show th a t this p ro c e d u re o f H u sse rl’s involves a hysteron-proteron? I believe we are . F or in th e m e an tim e we have in c o rp o ra te d in to o u r en q u iry th e q u e stio n o f th e c o n stru c tio n o f th e w hole ex p ressio n fro m th e m e an in g s o f th e co m p o n en t-ex p re ssions; a n d it is in rela tio n to this p ro b lem , th e p ro b lem u p o n w hich ev ery th in g else h in g e s, th a t we can show th a t th e o b je ct-o rien tated ap p ro a ch fo u n d e rs. T h e o b je ct-o rien tate d a p p ro a c h re q u ire d th a t th e way in w hich th e m e an in g o f th e w hole ex p re ssio n arises o u t o f th e m ean in g s o f its co m ­ p o n e n t expressions be in te rp re te d as composition. T h a t this co n cep tio n is u n te n a b le if com position is th o u g h t o f in th e usual sense as real co m ­ position we saw by re fe re n c e to W ittg e n ste in ’s Tractatus. T h e p u rp o se o f th e th e o ry o f categorial synthesis was to o vercom e this difficulty. Was it successful? Yes, to th e e x te n t th a t th e co m po sitio n o f th e state o f affairs ca n n o t be in te rp re te d as-real com position. B u t this only tells us how th e com position may not be in te rp re te d . W hat is still lacking is a positive ch aracteriza tio n o f this com position. In th e case o f real com ­ position we have d efin ite c riteria fo r d e c id in g w h e th e r o r n o t an object A is co m b in ed with an object B (e.g. th e sh a ft a n d h e a d o f th e h am m er); an d this is equally so in th e case o f a real p a rt-w h o le rela tio n sh ip . Now if th e talk o f com position is n o t to be com pletely em p ty we m u st also have a criterio n fo r d ec id in g w h e th e r o r n o t an ideal com position obtains. We ca n n o t establish, e.g., w h e th e r red n e ss is in th e castle o r co m bined with th e castle in th e way th a t we can establish th a t th e d ra w e r is in th e table o r is co m b in ed with it. R edn ess fo r its p a r t is n ot a real object, b u t an a ttrib u te a n d this c a n n o t be a tta c h e d in a real way to th e castle o r o ccu r in it as a real, se p a ra te p a rt. In d e e d this was stressed by H usserl him self. B ut th e n w hat sort o f positive criteria do we have? It seem s to m e we only h av e one: th a t red n e ss is in (o r on) th e castle is th e case if an d only if th e castle is re d . In o th e r w ords, if we a re asked

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which relatio n we m e an w hen we speak o f th e relatio n betw een th e a ttrib u te a n d th e object we can only reply: th a t relatio n which o btains w hen th e c o rre sp o n d in g p re d ic a te applies to th e object. I f this is c o rrec t - an d so lo n g as no a ltern ativ e way o f u n d e rs ta n d in g this rela tio n is o ffe re d we m u st accep t it - th e n th e hysteron-proteron o f th e o b ject-o rien ­ tated co n c ep tio n o f p red ic ate s is established. W hat a sen ten ce such as ‘R edness is in th e castle’ o r ‘R ed n ess is com bined with th e castle’ m eans can only be ex p la in e d by re c o u rse to the sentence ‘T h e castle is r e d ’ an d n o t th e o th e r way ro u n d . It is im m aterial w hich p rep o sitio n we use in th e objectual r e n d e rin g - w h e th e r we say th e red n ess is in o r o n o r u p o n th e castle o r co m b in ed w ith it; fo r w hat we m ean by all such aw k­ w ard fo rm u la tio n s (aw kw ard because they are p arasitic on d iffe re n t real relations) can be m a d e precise (and can only be m a d e precise) by re fe re n c e to th e stra ig h tfo rw a rd pred icativ e senten ce in which n o re la ­ tion is ex p re ssed . We a re th u s at th e tu rn in g p o in t o f th e w hole discussion. For if it is tru e th a t we can only d efin e th e rela tio n betw een a ttrib u te an d object by m eans o f th e o rig in a l p red ic ativ e sen ten ce th e n we can n o t seek to ex p lain th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e predicative sen ten ce itself by m eans o f th a t rela tio n . B u t th e n this m ean s th a t we re q u ire a com pletely new ex p lan a tio n o f th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f a pred icate, an ex p lan a tio n w hich does n o t have re c o u rse to th e n o m inalized fo rm o f th e p red ic ate an d w hich d oes n o t take th e fo rm o f saying th a t th e p red ic ate stands fo r so m eth in g . F or any such e x p la n a tio n w ould again have to speak o f a co m b in atio n o f th e object o f th e subject-term with th e object (or m e a n ­ ing) o f th e p red ic ate , a n d w hen asked fo r th e criterio n o f th e ex istence o f this co m b in atio n w ould ag a in have to have rec o u rse to an u n d e r ­ sta n d in g o f th e p red ic ativ e se n te n c e which o n e alread y possesses. W e m u st th e re fo re com pletely a b a n d o n the o b je ct-o rien tated ex p lan a to ry m odel o f a com po sitio n o r synthesis. T his m odel w hich consisted in th e assim ilation o f a logical stru c tu re to a real relatio n (an d com p o sitio n unless specially d efin ed is a real re la ­ tion) o ffers only tw o altern ativ es: either o ne does n o t d istinguish th e co m position o f a state o f affairs fro m th a t o f a real th in g a t all (Tracta­ tus), or o n e does d istin g u ish th e m b u t is th e n unab le positively to c h a r­ acterize th e m (H usserl). I f we now look back at th e th e o ry o f categ o rial synthesis it becom es clear th a t w hat gave it plausibility was m erely th e negative a d v a n ta g e o f avoiding th e absu rd ities o f a real com position. T h e vagueness o f th e co n c ep t o f ideal com position by w hich this a d v a n ta g e is p u rc h a se d is n o t rem o v e d by p ro p p in g it u p with categorial acts, fo r such acts can them selves n o t be directly exhibited . O u r only evid en ce

In this co n cep tio n a relational sta te m en t is tre a te d as a m any-place pred icativ e statem en t. So far o f cou rse I have only d e m o n stra te d th e failu re o f th e theory o f categorial synthesis in re g a rd to one-place predicative sentences. T h e in adequacy o f th e th e o ry is particularly obvious in th e ir case because such a sentence has only o n e object-about-w hich an d it was necessary th e re fo re first to tra n sfo rm them b efo re one could speak o f a synthesis o f tw o objects at all.’ In my discussion o f this exam ple I p o in ted o u t th a t the com position o f this state of affairs can be th o u g h t o f in two d iffe re n t ways. with th e object-pair sh a ft an d h ea d . T h e r e is no rea so n to re g a rd any relatio n betw een two real objects as n o t a real relation. O n e m ight th in k th at th e th eo ry can at least be su stained in th e case o f relational statem ents. T h is view seem s to m e to be u n te n ab le . As I have alread y p o in te d out. C onsistently ap p lie d this . th e object-p air sh a ft an d h ead o n th e o th e r h an d ) thus co rresp o n d s exactly to th e co m b in atio n o f th e a ttrib u te with th e one real object in th e case o f a o n e-place p redicative sentence. H usserl how ever th o u g h t th a t to the d iffe re n t real relations th e re co rre sp o n d d iffe re n t ideal relations. th e real relatio n on th e o th e r h a n d is so to speak in c o rp o ra te d into th e categorial synthesis. H ow ever let us now look at th e m a tte r m ore closely. H u sserl p re fe rre d a n o th e r co n cep ­ tion. th u s in th e case o f manyplace predicative sentences. B u t th e n this conception is o p en to precisely th e sam e objec­ tion as the previous one: asked to give a criterio n fo r th e p resen ce o f this ideal com position o ne can only reply th a t it obtains betw een th e real com position and th e objects if th e original sentence is tru e . T h u s th e categorial act will be a d iffe re n t one d e p e n d in g o n th e type o f rela tio n co n c ern ed . th e h a m m e r a n d . W hen I first in tro d u c e d th e th eo ry in a g en e ral way 1 also gave relational sentences as exam ples. T h e relation (in this case th e real com position) is th e object fo r which th e nom inalization o f th e m any-place p red ic ate (‘com posed o f ’) stands a n d thus co rresp o n d s to th e a ttrib u te in th e case o f a o n e-p lace p re d i­ cative sentence. on th e o th e r h an d . on the o n e h an d .Collapse of the traditional theory of meaning 131 th a t a categorial act o f a p articu la r type is involved is th e fact th a t an ex p ression o f a p articu la r sem antic fo rm is bein g used. T h e ideal com bination of th e relatio n with th e real objects (the h a m m e r on th e one h a n d . in o u r ex am ple: if th e h a m m e r is com posed o f sh aft an d head. L et us take th e exam ple 1 have alread y used. T h e one th a t seem s to m e to be logically co r­ rect is as follows: in th e state o f affairs th e relatio n o f real com position is ideally com bined with. according to which in a relational sta te m en t it is only th e real objects which are synthesized in th e categorial act. th e sentence ‘T h is h am ­ m e r is com posed o f sh a ft a n d h e a d .

how ever. th e sensible ad jo in in g o f con ten ts A a n d B given in th e p e rc e p tio n o f a co m p re h en siv e w hole G in the synthetic form s “ adjoins B ” o r “B adjoins v4” W ith th e co n stitu tio n o f A th e la tte r form s. as w hen we a p p re h e n d . . L ater on I will ex am in e a n o th e r aspect o f H u sse rl’s th eo ry o f cate­ gorial synthesis which co ncerns th e m e a n in g o f th e w ords ‘a n d ’ a n d ‘o r ’. a n d p e rh a p s express. T h e only ideal relation involved is th e relatio n betw een th e real relation o f ad jo in in g an d th e object pair {A. F rom th e fact th a t th e state o f affairs th a t A adjoins B is an ideal object H u sserl m istakenly infers th a t th e relation o f ad jo in in g ex p ressed in th e two sentences is itself an ideal relation. B }. ‘In th e fo r­ m ation o f ex te rn a l relations a sensuous fo rm m ay serve as th e fo u n d a ­ tion fo r th e constitution o f a c o rre sp o n d in g [!] categorial form . B u t o u r first task m u st be to w ork o u t a new con cep tio n o f p red icates which does n o t tre a t th em as sta n d in g fo r objects. th e re arise new objects b elo n g in g to th e class “states o f affairs” ’ (Investigation VI § 48). we w ould thus be back with my original conception w hich leads to th e sam e difficulty as aro se in th e case o f o ne-place p redicative sentences.Analysis of the predicative sentence 132 idea w ould re su lt in a d u p licatio n o f all types o f relatio n .

T h is gives a c o n c re te clue to th e en q u iry in to th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f a p red ic ate . T h is an sw e r led to th e dilem m a: e ith e r th e com position m u st be c o n s tru e d as th e real c o m p o ­ sition o f a co m p lex object o r o n e c a n n o t say w hat is to be u n d e rsto o d by com po sitio n h e re w ith o u t p re su p p o sin g precisely th a t u n d e r s ta n d ­ in g o f th e se n ten ce w hich was to be ex p lain e d . W ere we sim ply to f o r ­ m u late th e questio n c o n c ern in g th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e p re d ic a te th u s: w h at is it to u n d e rs ta n d a p re d ic a te if this u n d e rs ta n d in g c a n n o t consist in th e consciousness o f an object? we w ould h av e n o positive clue as to how we sh o u ld p ro ce ed . we can ask: if th e su p p le m e n ta ­ .th e seco n d o f my f o u r qu estio n s (see p. T h e dispute between nominalists and conceptualists T h e o b je c t-o rie n ta te d con cep tio n o f th e m e a n in g o f p red icativ e se n ­ tences f o u n d e r e d on th e questio n o f how th e m e a n in g o f th e w hole se n ten c e results fro m th e m ean in g s o f th e sen ten c e-co m p o n en ts. If. how we u n d e rs ta n d th e co m b in atio n o f th e sin g u lar te rm with th e p red ic ate . 103) .is directly c o n n e c te d w ith o u r th ird q u estio n . on th e o th e r h a n d . u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e p re d ic a te has e m e rg e d as th e . Firstly. T h is re su lt is n o t p u re ly negative. W e will th u s first h ave to try to achieve a new a n d no lo n g e r o b je ct-o rien tate d c o n c ep tio n o f th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f a p red icate. inasm uch as it p rescrib es a specific d irec tio n o f e n q u iry fo r a new . It w ould th e re fo re seem plausible th a t th ese two q u estio n s sh o u ld now be co m bined.critical e le m e n t in th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f a p red icativ e sentence.LECTURE 11 Predicates: the first step in the development of an analytical conception of the m eaning of sentences. S econdly. we co m b in e th e second q u estio n with th e th ird a n d h o ld fast to th e id ea th a t at any ra te th e sin g u lar te rm sta n d s fo r an object. viz. T h e only an sw er th e o b je ct-o rien tate d position co u ld give was: th e m e a n in g o f th e w hole se n ten c e is co m p o sed o f th a t fo r w hich th e sin g u lar te rm sta n d s a n d th a t fo r w hich the p red ic ate stan d s. it has a t th e sam e tim e b eco m e clear th a t th e p ro b lem o f th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f a p re d ic a te .fro m an o b je ct-o rien tate d p o in t o f view . n o lo n g e r o b je c t-o rie n ta te d a tte m p t at an ex p la n a tio n .

‘p ro p e rtie s ’. T h e d esig n atio n ‘universals’ expresses th e idea o f ‘g en e ral objects’ w hich can b elo n g to any n u m b e r o f in d iv id u al objects. A n a ttrib u te such as redness is a p ro p e rty o f th e castle b u t we w ould n o t call th e a ttrib u te o f b ein g a castle a quality o f this b u ilding.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 134 tion o f th e sin g u la r te rm by a p red ic ate does n o t have th e fu n ctio n o f co m b in in g th e object o f th e sin g u lar te rm with a n o th e r object (th at o f th e p red icate) how th e n is it to be u n d e rsto o d ? C learly we ca n n o t now look fo r so m e th in g o th e r th a n an object with w hich th e object o f the sin g u la r te rm w ould be co m b in ed . th e desig n atio n p re fe rre d by H u s­ serl. is th e L atin tra n sla tio n o f th e G reek eidos (‘loo k ’. ‘S pecies’. So we have to ask: if th e su p p le m e n ta tio n o f a sin g u lar te rm by a p re d ic a te does n o t have th e fu n c tio n o f com b in in g th e object fo r w hich th e sin g u lar te rm stands with so m e th in g else th en w hat is its function? W e can h e re link o u r discussion to a co n cep t which was already p re s e n t in th e tra d itio n a l th e o ry o f th e p red ic ate . ‘a p p e a ra n c e ’). this d esig n atio n is insufficiently c o m p re h e n ­ sive. T h e w ord ‘c o n c e p t’ occupies a special position. th e d esig n atio n o f universals as ‘p ro p e rtie s ’ can be u n d e rsto o d as a fu rth e r specification o f th e ir d e sig n atio n as attrib u tes: it is ch aracteristic o f u n i­ versals th a t w h en they a re ascribed (‘a ttrib u te d ’) to a real object it a p p e a rs as c h a racterize d by th ese attrib u tes. th e a ttrib u te is its ‘q uality’ o r ‘p r o p e r ty ’. It is this ‘b elo n g in g ’ w hich is ex p ressed in th e d esig n atio n ‘a ttrib u te ’. in a d d itio n to ‘a ttrib u te ’. ‘T h is is a castle’ answ ers th e q u estio n ‘W hat is this?’ w hereas o n e only calls q u al­ ities th o se characteristics o f objects w hich r e p re s e n t answ ers to th e q u estio n : ‘H ow is this q u alified ?’ W hat is m e an t th e n by calling u n iv e r­ sals ‘p ro p e rtie s ’ is sim ply th a t th e object is som ehow ch a racterize d by . T h e only aspect o f th e tra d itio n a l th e o ry I have so far co n sid ered is th e id ea th a t th e p r e d ­ icate sta n d s fo r an object. W hat we have to a b a n d o n is precisely this id e a o f a co m b in atio n o r synthesis. ‘u n iv e rsa ls’. fo r one hesitates to r e g a rd concepts as objects. H ow ever. It is only in passing th a t I have called these objects d e sig n a te d by nom in alized p red ic ate s ‘a ttrib u te s’: we find in th e tra d itio n . I have n o t g o n e into th e q u estio n o f w hat th at o bject was conceived to be. an object. th e te rm ‘c o n c e p t’ sh o u ld th e re fo r e be specially in v e stig a ted . ‘co n c ep ts’. So already in trad itio n al p h ilo so p h y th e re seem s to exist.1 Finally. in th e id e a th a t p red icates sta n d fo r co ncepts. an a p p ro a c h w hich leads aw ay fro m th e o b je ct-o rien tate d co n cep tio n . fo r w hatever is com b in ed with som e­ th in g is so m e th in g an d . this w o rd c o n trib u te s little to th e ch aracteriza tio n o f th e objects in questio n e x c ep t p e rh a p s this: th a t they a re objects o f an intellectual in tu itio n . a series o f o th e r d esig n atio n s such as ‘sp ecies’. h en c e.

It was fo r this reaso n th a t I fo rm u la te d th e q u estio n thus: if th e su p p le m e n tatio n o f th e sin g u lar te rm by a p red ic ate does not have th e fun ctio n o f co m b in in g th e object o f th e sin g u lar te rm w ith so m e th in g th en w hat fu n ctio n does it have? W e can d eriv e an answ er to this q u estio n directly fro m th e o b ject-o rien ­ tated ac co u n t ju s t given by d r o p p in g the specifically o b je ct-o rien tate d ad d itio n . with w hat rig h t do I su d d en ly sta rt sp eak in g o f a fu n ctio n o f a linguistic expression. b u t r a th e r to characterize so m e th in g (th e object o f th e sin g u lar term ) a n d h en c e to u n d e rs ta n d th e p red ic ate is to u n d e rsta n d its ch aracterizatio n fu n ction. Secondly. Now we w ere su p p o se d to d ro p th e idea o f a com bination with som ething. F or as a ch aracteristic th a t fo r w hich th e p re d ic a te stands is viewed in its relation to th e object o f th e sin g u lar term . A ccording to this new c o n ­ cep tion th e fu n ctio n o f th e p re d ic a te is n o t to stand fo r so m eth in g . in w hatever resp e ct this m ay be. Firstly. Such an an sw er w ould be: th e s u p p le ­ m e n tatio n o f th e sin g u lar te rm by th e p red ic ate has th e fu n ctio n o f ch aracterizin g the object o f th e sin g u lar te rm an d it does this by co m ­ bin in g this object with a characteristic. but instead th a t o f ch aracterizin g it. you w ould be ju stified in asking how far my suggestion is an altern ativ e to th e o b je ct-o rien tate d acco u n t at all. you will w ant to know w hat precisely is m e a n t by a ‘ch a racteriza tio n -fu n ctio n ’. F o r this reaso n it w ould seem b e tte r to call an a ttrib u te a ‘ch a racteristic’ r a th e r th a n a ‘p ro p e rty ’. T h a t th e object o f th e . A sen ten ce such as ‘T h e castle is r e d ’ is n o lo n g er to be ex p lain e d by saying th a t th e p re d ic a te stands fo r a ch aracteristic (re d ­ ness) w hich is synthesized with th e object.th e castle . I h a d asked: w hat fu n ctio n has th e su p p le m e n ta tio n o f th e sin g u lar te rm by a pred icate? U sing th e concept o f a c h a ra c te r­ istic it is possible to give an answ er to this q uestion th a t still co n fo rm s to th e object-o rien tated ap p ro a ch . you m ight ask.Predicates 135 th em . I can see th a t you will raise a w hole series o f fu n d a m e n ta l objections an d q ueries. b u t ra th e r by saying th a t th e object . I f th e object fo r w hich a p re d ic a te stands is conceived as a c h a ra c te r­ istic th e n th e o b ject-o rien tated con cep tio n com es closest to th e p re se n ­ tatio n o f th e pro b lem I have ju s t elaborated. W ith this we e n c o u n te r a new a n d no lo n g e r ob ject-o rien tated thesis ab o u t w hat it is to u n d e rs ta n d a pred icate.is ch a racterize d in a specific m a n n e r by th e p r e d i­ cate ‘is r e d ’. T h ird ly . In ste a d o f saying: th e su p p le m e n ta tio n o f th e sin g u lar te rm by a p re d ic a te has th e fu n ctio n o f co m bining th e object w ith so m eth in g a n d th e re b y ch aracterizin g it we can say: th e su p p le m e n tatio n by th e p re d ic a te does not have th e fu n ctio n o f co m binin g th e object o f th e sin g u lar te rm with som eth in g .

O nly if it becam e clear how th e new e x p la ­ n atio n com pen sates fo r this a p p a re n t lack could it really claim to be re g a rd e d as an altern ativ e to th e object-o rien tated ex p lan atio n . Now th a t fo r w hich so m e th in g is used is w hat we call its fu n ctio n .Analysis o f the predicative sentence 136 sin g u lar te rm is ch a racterized by th e p re d ic a te is. Now this concept o f sig n -em p lo y m en t has. T h u s th e w hole th e o ry o f categorial acts can be c a rrie d th ro u g h p u rely as a th e o ry o f th in k in g w ith o u t having to r e f e r to signs. It p e r ­ mits th e view th a t all o r som e signs a re u se d to stan d fo r an object. B u t d o esn ’t this sim ply say less th a n th e object-orienta ted conception? T h e la tte r also allows o n e to speak o f a c h a racteriza­ tion o f th e object o f th e sin g u lar te rm by th e p red ic ate . T h e situ atio n is . It has th e fu n ctio n o f m ak in g p re se n t to consciousness th e object fo r w hich it stands. how ever. N otice th a t in this new way o f looking at thin g s signs assum e an im p o rta n c e w hich th ey did n o t have in th e o b ject-o rien tated c o n c ep ­ tion. W e th u s find ourselves throw n back to th e sta rtin g -p o in t o f H u sse rl’s sem antics an d m u st so to speak take a n o th e r step b e h in d this startin g p o in t so th a t th e a ltern ativ e possibilities can reveal them selves. In this le ctu re I w ant to deal in tu rn with these th re e question-com plexes. firstly. b u t in stead o f sim ply leaving it a t th a t it also provides an ex p lan a tio n o f how this c h a r­ acterization is achieved. H u sse rl’s sta rtin g -p o in t was th e ‘c o n fe rrin g o f m e a n in g ’ by th e u se o f signs (above p. viz. we can now ask: fo r w hat o th e r p u rp o ses a re signs used? A nd o n e possible answ er w ould be: to ch aracterize. O n th e o th e r h a n d . H ow ever. I f we go b eh in d this first m ove o f H u sse rl we arriv e at th e m o re g en eral p e r ­ spective o f th e use o f signs. by th e com bination with a ch aracteristic fo r w hich th e p red ic ate stands. F o r th e la tte r th e sign is a m e re in te rm e d ia ry b etw een conscious­ ness a n d object. in th e specific case o f p red icates. So. W e saw how H usserl im m ediately in te rp re ts this ‘c o n fe rrin g o f m e a n in g ’ as an ‘act’ a n d thus as consciousness o f an object. I w ould ask you to co n sid er th a t o u r task m u st now be th a t o f fin d in g an alternative. with w h at rig h t d o I ask fo r th e fu n ctio n o f a linguistic expression? In so d o in g I seem to be sm u g g lin g in a new id ea w hich has n o t arisen fro m my critical in te rp re ta tio n o f th e o b je ct-o rien tate d a p p ro a c h . as a basic concept. you will say. to th e o b je ct-o rien tate d in te rp re ta tio n o f linguistic exp ressio n s. th e u n d e rly in g con cep t o f th e use o f a sign could n ot as such becom e salient fo r him . 107). B ecause fro m th e o u tset H u sserl so co n ­ ceived th e use o f a sign th a t a sign can only be used to stan d fo r an object. th e a d v a n ta g e th a t it still encom passes th e o b ject-o rien ­ tated a p p ro a c h b u t a t th e sam e tim e o p en s u p altern ativ es to it. B u t consciousness can also be conscious o f th e sam e object th a t is m ad e p re se n t to it by th e sign w ith o u t th e sign. obvious a n d alm ost trivial.

W e saw th a t H u sse rl im m ed iately by­ p assed u n d e rs ta n d in g in fav o u r o f th e in te n tio n a l act. N ow if we know o f so m e th in g how it is u se d th e n this m ean s th a t we know its em p lo y m e n t-ru le s. th e k n o ck in g in o f nails).g. C o n sid eratio n o f an u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e sign was fo r him as su p e rflu o u s as c o n sid e ra ­ tion o f th e u se o f th e sign. alth o u g h th e o b je c t-o rie n ta te d co n c ep tio n can equally well be b ased on u n d e rs ta n d in g as on use: to u n d e rs ta n d a sign is to know fo r w hich object it stands. we a re asking: fo r w hat p u r p o s e is it n o rm ally used ? A n d this q u estio n re fe rs to a p a rtic u la r h u m a n activity (e. N ow how is th e u n d e r s ta n d in g o f a sign c o n n e c te d w ith its use? C learly in this way: to u n d e rs ta n d a sign is to know w h at fu n c tio n it has o r how it is u sed . For exam ple. If this is so th e n u n d e r s ta n d ­ in g th e fu n c tio n o f a sign m u st consist in k n o w in g th e ru les o f its em p lo y m e n t. N ow if th e fu n c tio n o f a th in g is w h at th a t th in g is used fo r th e n th e n o tio n o f th e fu n ctio n o f a sign is closely co n n e cted with th a t o f th e employment o r use o f a sign. I f we e n q u ire as to th e fu n ctio n o f so m e th in g . if th e fu n c tio n o f a sign consists in ch aracterizin g . A sign with th e fu n c tio n o f sta n d in g fo r so m e th in g is u sed to in d icate w hich object o n e m eans. So th e q u e s­ tion: w hat is th e fu n c tio n o f a sign? is directly co n n e cted w ith th e q u e s­ tion: w hat is th e n o rm a l u se o f this sign? an d th e la tte r q u e stio n re fe rs to th e q uestion: w hat is th e action o f w hich this u se o f a sign is th e (or a possible) co n d itio n ? F o r ex am p le. W h en we ask w hat th e fu n ctio n o f so m e th in g is we p re s u p p o s e th a t it belo n g s to a c o n te x t o f p u rp o siv e actio n . th e n this fu n ctio n o f ch a ra c te riz in g is d e p e n d e n t o n a sign. if a p a rtic u la r class o f signs has th e fu n ctio n o f c h a ra c te riz in g so m e th in g this m e an s th a t th e se signs a re n o rm ally u se d to c h a ra c te riz e so m e th in g a n d th a t th e action w hich so m e o n e p e rfo rm s w h en h e uses a p re d ic a te is th a t o f ch a ra c te riz in g so m e th in g as th u s o r th u s. W h en I discussed H u s s e rl’s ta k in g th e ‘c o n fe rrin g o f m e a n in g ’ as his s ta rtin g -p o in t I p o in te d o u t th a t th e in te rp re ta tio n (Auffassung) o f a sign w hich co n fers m e a n in g o n it sh o u ld really be called ‘u n d e r s ta n d in g ’ fo r we h a d e a rlie r seen th a t to ask fo r th e m e a n in g o f a sign is to ask how th a t sign is to be u n d e rs to o d . H e re th e sign d oes n o t serve as a m e re in s tru m e n t fo r so m e th in g w hich co u ld also be ach ieved w ith o u t it. a h a m m e r.g. All o f this is clearly also tr u e in th e p a rtic u la r case w hich th e o b je c t-o rie n ta te d c o n c ep tio n re g a rd s as th e o nly case. A n d th e a n sw e r to th e q u estio n : w h at is a p e r ­ son d o in g w ho uses a sign in this way? is th a t h e is in d ic atin g w hich ob ject h e m eans.Predicates 137 co m pletely d if fe r e n t as so o n as o n e co n sid ers o th e r fu n ctio n s o f signs. . e.

W h en we apply a p red ic ate to an object we declare it to be an object w hich is like th e o th e r objects to w hich we app ly th e p red ic ate an d u n lik e those to w hich we d o n o t apply it. A fte r th e discussion o f pred icates we will have to a tte m p t to apply the sam e set o f concepts to sin g u lar term s. R a th e r th e q uestion now acquires th e sense: how is th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le o f th e o n e so rt o f expressio n co n n ected with th e e m p lo y m e n t-ru le o f th e o th e r so rt o f expression? T h e aim o f th e w hole investigation is an answ er to th e question: w hat is it to u n d e r ­ sta n d a w hole predicative sentence? It should now be possible to p u t this question th u s: w hat is th e fu n ctio n o f such a sentence? o r w hat are we d o in g w hen we em ploy a p redicative sentence? H u sse rl’s answ er was: w hat we a re d o in g w h en we u se a predicativ e sentence is r e p r e ­ sen tin g . a state of affairs. O f course on th e p re se n t basis it is to be ex p ected th a t we will arriv e at quite a d iffe re n t so rt o f answ er. to separate) is so m eth in g w hich serves to d istinguish. B u t now let us re tu r n to p redicates. m erely elucidate it. A p red ic ate fulfils its ch a racteriza tio n -fu n ctio n by acting as a crite­ rion. by m ean s o f it. F or you could now a rg u e against m e as follows. A criterio n (from th e G reek krinein. I f ch arac­ te rizin g is a fo rm o f classifying th en fo r precisely this reason th e objects ch a racterize d by a p re d ic a te m ust h av e som ething in com m on. ac tio n -ru le and an u n d e rsta n d in g th a t is an u n d e rs ta n d in g o f a rule. w hat is it to u n d e rs ta n d th e co m bination o f a sin­ g u la r te rm w ith a pred icate? F or we no longer feel com pelled to en q u ire in to a com bination o f w hat th e sin g u lar term stands fo r with w hat th e p re d ic a te stands for. to o u r th ird q uestion .Analysis of the predicative sentence 138 It thus em erg es th a t by going back to th e fu nction o f linguistic ex p ressions we arrive at a new co m prehensive ex p lan a to ry perspective o f which th e follow ing concepts a re characteristic: fu n ctio n . use o f so m eth in g . A nd do we n o t th en h av e to say th a t it is really this com m o n so m eth in g th a t . T h e th ird q u estio n I ex p e cted fro m you can be directly linked to this elu cidation.viz. T h e ch aracteriza tio n -fu n ctio n consists in this classifying-and-distinguishing. ru le o f this use. I ca n n o t d efine this w ord. In ap p ly in g a p red ic ate to som e objects b u t n o t to o th ers we classify all those objects to which we apply it an d at th e sam e tim e distinguish th e m fro m th o se to which we do n o t apply it. and th a t m eans: we c h a ra c te r­ ize it as such an object. O n the basis o f the th u s re -fo rm u la te d questions ab o u t singular term s an d p red icates we will be able to re tu r n . with m o re pro sp ect o f success (th o u g h only a t the en d o f th e w hole lecture-series [L ecture 27]). T h e second question 1 exp ected fro m you was: w hat does it m ean to speak o f ‘ch aracteriza tio n ’? As I th in k this is a basic d a tu m o f o u r u n d e rsta n d in g in so far as we u n d e r­ sta n d how to use p red icates.

My accusa­ tion of a hysteron-proteron w ould th u s re b o u n d against m y own e x p la n a ­ tion. an d th e only objects given to us in u n d e rsta n d in g these signs a re th e signs them selves.Predicates 139 characterizes th e object and are we not th u s led back to th e objectual characteristic? T h e p redicate. I t w ould th e n have been show n th a t the fu n ctional conception does not o ffe r a g en u in e alternative. I will co n d u ct this c o n fro n tatio n in th e fo rm o f a dialo g u e betw een th e two positions. So if this fu nctional ex p lan atio n is to re p re se n t a g e n u in e altern ativ e to the object-o rien tated one th e n its real co n ten t m ust be d e e p e r th a n an y th in g suggested by my account so far. o r ‘m a rk o f d istin ctio n ’. It does n o t sim ply arise from th e philosophical p reju d ice th a t every linguistic expression stands fo r som ething. It is only now th a t th e real w eight o f th e object-o rien tated conception shows itself. T h e functional ex p lan atio n fits into th e so-called n o m in alist trad itio n acco rd in g to which th e re are no gen eral essences fo r w hich p red icates stand. ra th e r it seem s to be th e only in telli­ gible epistem ological explan atio n o f th e use o f predicates. Such a dialogue sh o u ld b rin g us step by step to th e rea l kernel o f th e problem . you will say. S hould this a rg u m e n t prove com pelling. can n o t itself fu n ctio n as a criterion. fo r it is itself obliged to have reco u rse to th e object-o rien tated co nception: th e p r e d ­ icate only characterizes th e object by sta n d in g fo r a characteristic which itself characterizes th e object in a prim ary sense. the fo rm e r w hen th e th e o ry has been u n d e rsto o d in a m o re ontological sense (p red icates stand fo r real objects). epistem ologically th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f th e p red ic ate is fo u n d e d in the re p re se n ta tio n o f the c o rre sp o n d in g characteristic. th e nomina. Vis-ä-vis my earlier re fe re n c e to th e priority o f th e predicative fo rm (‘r e d ’) over its nom inalized m odification (‘re d n e ss’). F ro m th e p o in t o f view o f m e th o d it w ould seem reasonable to start th e p rese n tatio n o f th e new ap p ro a ch by arg u in g with this criticism . th e object-orien tated p h ilo so p h er could now a rg u e th a t this priority tu rn s o u t to be a m erely g ram m atical one. a n d in d e ed th e characteristic was also so called in trad itio n al philosophy. th e latter w hen it has b een u n d e rsto o d in a m o re . fo r the application o f th e p red ic ate to ju s t th ese objects an d n o t o th ers requires a fo u n d atio n in the objects. th e n the o b ject-o rien tated co nception w ould be resto red . som etim es conceptualism . T h e co n tra ry position has som etim es been called realism . a n d it m ust be in term s o f this d e e p e r c o n te n t th a t th e fu nctional ex p lan atio n is able to answ er th e ob ject-orientated counter-criticism ju s t p re se n te d . fo r such a c o n fro n ta ­ tion should disclose th e real substance o f th e fu nctio n al ex p lan atio n .

T h a t we can use a p red ic ate with u n d e rs ta n d in g w ith o u t having sensuous im ages is so m e th in g th e c o n ­ ceptualist will im m ediately concede. it is red ness in general. it w ould be arb itrary . Previously th e n om inalist h a d asserte d th at u n d e rs ta n d in g a p re d ic a te is not always acco m p an ied by a sensuous re p re se n ta tio n . T a k e . It tu rn s o u t to be a m is u n d e rsta n d in g . H u sserl h im self show ed this in im pressive fashion. F o r it is now clear th a t th e only k in d o f re p re s e n ta ­ tions in question a re non-sen su o u s re p re se n ta tio n s. th e sentence ‘H eid e lb e rg Castle is r e d . r a th e r it re la te d to th e o th e r p ro blem o f how o n e a n d th e sam e g en e ral object can sim u ltan eo u sly be in m any co n crete objects. in C h a p te r 2 o f Investigation I. w hich c o n c e rn e d the p ro b le m o f how th e object o f the p r e d i­ cate is co n n e cted w ith th a t o f th e subject. we can have a c o rre sp o n d in g c o lo u r-re p re s e n ­ tation in o u r im ag in atio n . on th e o th e r h an d . h e will now claim th a t th e re sim ply a re no re p re se n ta tio n s o f th e kind claim ed by th e conceptualist. So this was a m is u n d e rsta n d in g . B u t su p p o se we u tte r such a sen ten ce h e re in th e lectu re-ro o m . L et us first allow th e nom inalist to m o u n t his co u n ter-attack . e. th e c h a ra c ­ teristic o f red n e ss is so m e th in g w hich is co m m o n to m an y things. b u t clearly we can also u n d e rs ta n d th e sen ­ tence w ith o u t h aving any such re p re se n ta tio n co rre sp o n d in g to th e w ord ‘r e d ’. fo r ex am p le.. fo r it th o u g h t o f th e re p re se n ta tio n o f so m e th in g fo r which th e p red ic ate is su p p o se d to stan d as a sensuous re p re se n ta tio n . F or if this w ere n o t so th e p red ic ate w ould h ave no objective fo u n d a tio n . th e conceptualist will say.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 140 psychological o r epistem ological sense. T h e d e b a te into w hich we m u st e n te r (in view o f th e counter-criticism ju s t raised).’ I f we m ake this sta te m e n t in th e p e rc e p tu a l situatio n . H e will d en y th a t we in fact always r e p re s e n t so m e th in g w hen we significantly em ploy a p red icate.g. is n o t p rim arily an ontological d eb a te b u t a psychological-epistem ological one. B u t it is n o t a q u es­ tion o f sensuous re p re se n ta tio n s. it was n o t an u n p ro d u c tiv e m isu n d ersta n d in g . T h e suspicion arises th a t. th u s in a situ atio n in w hich we perceive th e castle a n d perceive th a t it is re d . th e n clearly we do so on th e basis o f a p articu la r co lo u r-rep rese n tatio n . T his first attack by th e nom inalist can easily be b e a te n o ff by his o p p o n e n t. A ccording to th e con cep tu alist thesis o n e can only u n d e rsta n d th e ch aracteriza tio n -fu n ctio n o f a p re d ic a te if th e em p lo y m e n t o f th e p r e d ­ icate is co n n e cted w ith th e re p re se n ta tio n o f so m eth in g fo r w hich th e p red icate stands. T h e traditional ontological cri­ tiq u e o f realism by nom inalism is n o t th e o n e I p re se n te d in my last lecture. a lth o u g h th e co m m o n ch aracteristic is n o t an . w h ere we ca n n o t see th e castle. H ow ever.

b u t r a th e r in th e fo rm o f an inability to th in k o f th e c h a ra c te riz a tio n -fu n c tio n o f p re d ic a te s in any o th e r way. It was n o t show n th a t it is so. a f u r th e r n o n -se n su o u s re p re s e n ta tio n th ro u g h w hich we a p p r e h e n d th a t co m m o n c h a racteristic . h e h a d claim ed . in th e sim ple fo rm o f sta tin g in ad v a n ce th a t every sign m u st stan d fo r so m e th in g . a c c o rd in g to w hich we r e p r e ­ se n t th e se g e n e ra l essences in an intellectu al in tu itio n (nous). O n e c a n n o t th in k o f it d iffe ren tly . A c o rre sp o n d in g tra d itio n . His a rg u m e n t will now be th a t in any e v e n t we do n o t e n c o u n te r such a re p re se n ta tio n o f so m e th in g g en e ral th a t we reco g n ize in an object. in a d d itio n to this r e p r e s e n ta ­ tio n (or fo u n d e d in it). because it is so m e th in g g en e ral. n o t. T h e com m on characteristic. r a th e r it was a rg u e d th a t it m u st be so.th e re d n e s s . w hen we say o f th e castle th a t it is r e d . viz. T h e no m in alist can leave u n d e c id e d how far his o p p o n e n t th in k s o f th e g en e ral ch aracteristic o n th e m o d el o f se n se-p erce p tio n (th o u g h one m ay well th in k th a t u ltim ately h e has to th in k o f it in this way). th e stre n g th o f th e co n ­ ce p tu a list vis-ä-vis th e n o m in alist consists in th e fact th a t a lth o u g h th e co n c ep tu alist ca n n o t ex h ib it th e n o n -se n su o u s re p re s e n ta tio n h e p o s­ tu lates. B u t if o n e ca n n o t ascertain th a t it is so th e n th e re w ould seem to be so m e th in g w ro n g wich o n e ’s p re su p p o sitio n s. th e m ost fav o u rab le case. B ut how ? T h a t se n se-p erce p tio n h e re serves as th e m o d el seem s p articu la rly clear in H u sse rl’s case. th e re fo r e it m u st be so. we h av e a p a rtic u la r sen su o u s c o lo u r-re p re se n ta tio n . T h is aro u se s th e suspicion th a t ag ain it is only th e o b je ct-o rien tate d p re ju d ic e th a t is at w o rk h e re . A n d now it is objected to him th a t we sim ply c a n n o t fin d such a re p re s e n ta ­ tio n o f a ch aracteristic. reco g n ize an object as o ne c h a ra c te riz e d by a p re d ic a te unless we can d iscern in it a ch a racteristic fo r w hich th e p re d ic a te stan d s. ca n n o t be se n su o u sly re p re s e n te d . fo r h e says: th e g en e ral object is given to us in an in tu itio n o f essence (Wesen­ sanschauung).in th e object? T h is q u estio n is m e a n t to hit th e o p p o n e n t a t precisely th a t p o in t w hich h e h im se lf em p h asized as th e decisive one. th a t o f p e rc e p tio n . b u t it can n o n eth ele ss be re p re s e n te d . . this re p re se n ta tio n is still b e in g th o u g h t o f on th e m odel o f sen se-p erce p tio n . W e ca n n o t. L et us assum e.Predicates 141 o b ject o f se n se-p erc ep tio n . ad m itte d ly . b u t d o we h av e . th e no m in alist f o r his p a rt h as n o t yet given a positive ac co u n t o f how th e c h a ra c te riz a tio n -fu n c tio n o f p re d ic a te s is to be u n d e rsto o d . has existed since Plato. T h is b rin g s o u t a p ec u lia rity o f his a rg u m e n t w hich sh o u ld be n o ted : his insistence on th e a p p re h e n s io n o f a c h a rac­ teristic w hich m u st u n d e rlie th e c h a ra c te riz a tio n -fu n c tio n o f th e p r e d i­ cate was n o t a discovery b u t a p o stu late . B u t at th e stage th e d e b a te has now re a c h e d .

H ow ever. O nly since W ittg e n stein ’s Philosophical Investigations has th e re been a positive ex p la­ n a tio n o f how o n e can u n d e rs ta n d th e ch a racterizatio n -fu n ctio n o f p red icates th a t does n o t involve p r o p p in g up this fu n ctio n with objects.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 142 So long as n o altern ativ e acco u n t is available th e co n cep tu alist account. h o w ev er hy p o th etical it m ay be. T h e sense o f this re m a rk is th e re fo re o n a level w ith m y ea rlier suggestion th a t in stead o f asking fo r th e m e a n in g o f an expressio n we sh o u ld ask how we u n d e rs ta n d it. ‘explain to m e w hat th a t m e an s’. I f I ask som eone to ex p lain to m e how a m a ch in e w orks I assum e th a t he u n d e rsta n d s how it works a n d how o ne o p e ra te s it. a n d th e ex p lan a tio n is successful if it . It is ex p la­ n a tio n in this second sense th a t W ittgenstein is re fe rrin g to.e. A t th e b e g in n in g o f th e Blue Book. W ittgenstein explains its significance by saying th a t it is in te n d e d to b rin g th e q u estio n ‘W h at is m e an in g ?’ ‘dow n to e a r th ’. E xplaining-w hat o r -how differs fro m this ex p laining-w hy: ‘E xplain to m e how th a t w orks’. as fo r ex am p le in the fam iliar co n tra st betw een in te rp re ta tiv e (verstehend) a n d e x p la n a to ry psychology. C o rresp o n d in g ly . th e w o rd ‘e x p la in ’ is used in tw o d iffe re n t senses. if you w ant to u n d e rsta n d th e use o f th e w ord “m e a n in g ”. reta in s the advan tag e. O n e can say ‘E xplain to m e why th at is th u s a n d so’: ex p la n a tio n in th e sense o f th e giving o f reasons. T h e n o m in alist m ust th e re fo re now be pressed into giving his ow n positive account. It is in te n d e d to fre e us fro m th e com pulsive idea th a t m ean in g m u st be an object. T h e w eakness o f trad itio n al nom inalism was th a t its stre n g th lay only in its critiq u e o f th e o p posing position.2 1 shall take as my p o in t o f d e p a r tu re a g e n e ra l re m a rk ab o u t th e m e a n in g o f linguistic expressions w hich is fo u n d in §560 o f th e Investi­ gations: ‘-“T h e m e an in g o f a w ord is w hat is ex p lain e d by th e e x p lan a­ tio n o f th e m e a n in g ” i. H ow is th e understanding o f m e a n in g of w hich I h ad sp o k en co n ­ n ec te d with th e explanation o f m e a n in g re fe rre d to in th e q u o tatio n fro m W ittgenstein? U n d e rsta n d in g a n d explain in g a re fre q u en tly used as o p p o sin g concepts. T h e re la ­ tio n sh ip o f this kind o f ex p la n a tio n to u n d e rsta n d in g is as follows: so m e o n e w ho explains so m e th in g show s w hat h e u n d e rsta n d s o r how h e u n d e rs ta n d s so m e th in g . if I ask so m eo n e to ex p lain th e m e a n in g o f a linguistic expression to m e I assum e th a t h e u n d e rsta n d s th e ex p ressio n . look fo r w hat a re called “explan atio n s o f m e a n in g ” ’. w here a sim ilar re m a rk occurs. ‘ex p lain to m e th e m e a n in g o f th e ex p re ssio n ’. a n d th e e x p la n a tio n is successful if it results in my u n d e r ­ sta n d in g how it is o p e ra te d . It is only this k in d o f ex p lan a tio n th a t can be o p p o sed to u n d e rs ta n d in g o r describing.

Predicates 143 results in my u n d e rsta n d in g th e expression. R a th e r a new positive conception has tak en its place. In real­ ity we explain th e m ean in g o f a p red ic ate . th e n th e m e a n in g o f th e p red ic ate ca n n o t be id en tified with th e com m on featu re.by m eans o f exam ples. even if th e ru le ca n n o t be fo rm u late d in w ords. r a th e r the la tte r does n o t figure in th e ex p lan atio n of m ean in g at all. e. to classify an d d istinguish.g. W h at we explain to him by m eans o f th e exam ples is th u s th e employment-rule o f th e p redicate. as th e conceptualist rightly em phasized. W e can th e n ascertain w h eth e r th e p erso n to w hom we have ex p lain ed th e use o f th e p re d ic a te has u n d e r ­ stood th e ex p lan a tio n by g etting him to use th e p red ic ate him self. T h e positive exam ples show how th e p red ic ate classifies an d the n egative ones show fro m w hat it distinguishes th a t which it classifies. to com m unicate an u n d e rsta n d in g . H ow can this be d o n e. If now we apply W ittg en stein ’s rem a rk to predicates we m ust say: the m ean in g o f a p re d ic a te is w hat we explain w hen we ex p lain its m eaning.e. T h e factor w hich conceptualism held to be essential p roves to be su p e rflu o u s in th e ex p lan atio n o f m eaning. T h u s we can say: to explain (in this sense) m eans to show w hat o ne u n d e rsta n d s.if we ca n n o t explain it by m eans o f o th e r w ords. T h is g en e ral essence sim ply plays no p a rt in th e ex p lan atio n o f the m e an in g of a p redicate. this is su p p o sed to be a g en eral essence an d h ence n o th in g which can be sim ply p o in te d to. We p rese n t th e p erso n to w hom we wish to explain th e m ean in g o f the w ord ‘r e d ’ with objects which we characterize as re d (‘th a t is r e d ’) an d o th ers o f which we den y the p red ic ate (‘th a t is n o t r e d ’). for. T h e ru le shows itself only in its c o rre c t use. an d in o u r case this m eans: in th e co rrec t ap plication o f th e p red ic ate to exam ples. by a definition . F o r an activity which in all its stages is re g u la te d by ‘co rrec t’ a n d ‘in c o rrec t’ is an activity which follows a rule. th e n th e ex p lan atio n o f th e m ean in g o f a p red icate m ust consist in explainin g how it is u sed to classify an d distinguish. T h e rejection o f th e re p re se n ta tio n o f a g en e ral essence is now no lo n g e r m erely n eg ­ ative. i. in th e case o f th e p red ic ate ‘re d ’? C learly n o t by p o in t­ ing to th e g en eral characteristic o f red n ess. to m ake so m eth in g u n d e rsto o d . A n d if h e th e n uses it d iffe ren tly fro m w hat we in te n d e d we co rrect him by m eans o f such expressions as ‘c o rre c t’ a n d ‘n o t c o rre c t’ until h e has u n d e rsto o d us. I f h e is . A nd how do we ex p lain th e m e an in g o f a predicate? If to u n d e rsta n d a p red ic ate is to know how it is u sed to characterize. W h at we show in this way is how th e p re d ic a te is used. We th u s arrive at th e follow ing result: if th e m ean in g o f a p red ic ate is sim ply w hat we explain w hen we explain th e m ean in g o f th e p r e d i­ cate.

an d th a t we can only becom e clear ab o u t w h at we u n d e rsta n d by exp lain in g it. even if th e re w ere such a th in g as th a t gen eral re p re se n ta tio n o f red n ess. E xplanation. how ever. we can. it w ould be useless to ap p eal to it: even to o n eself o n e can only ex p lain (m ake clear) o n e ’s own u n d e r ­ sta n d in g o f a p red ic ate by elucidating to o n eself by m eans o f exam ples how one uses it. I f o n e wishes to get clear a b o u t th e m e an in g with w hich one is using th e w ord ‘re d ’. It does n o t follow fro m this th a t w hat we u n d e rs ta n d can be identified with w hat we can explain. tak en over fro m W ittgenstein. a n o th e r special in n ersubjective u n d e rsta n d in g ? (2) T h e p o in t previously rea ch ed in th e d eb a te was th a t th e conceptualist was n o t able to d e m o n stra te th e exis­ te n ce o f his postu lated re p re se n ta tio n o f a g en eral essence an d d e m a n d e d fro m the nom inalist an alternative positive ex p lan atio n . in ad d itio n to this u n d e r ­ sta n d in g th a t o n e can explain. m u st em ploy the sam e m e th o d h e uses w hen exp lain in g th e em p lo y m en t-ru le o f th e p red icate to som eone else. if h e wishes to becom e clear ab o u t his u n d e rsta n d in g o f a predicate. A nd as th e co n cep tu alist h a d no d em o n strab le alternative to o ffe r fo r inner-subjective u n d e r ­ sta n d in g he o u g h t now to accept this explanation-possibility exhibited in intersubjective ex p lan atio n as hold in g also for in ner-subjective u n d e rsta n d in g . As a m a tte r o f fact the in dividual only acquires a lan g u ag e in this way. T h is ex p lan a tio n w hich is actually valid fo r intersubjectively com m unicable m e an in g is. T h is has now b een p ro v id ed . H ow ever.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 144 asked: how can a m ode o f em p lo y m en t o f a p re d ic a te avoid b ein g a rb i­ tra ry if it is w ithout a fo u n d a tio n in objects? th e nom inalist can now p o in t to th e ru le obtain ed by applying the p re d ic a te to exam ples. make understood. th a t th e m e a n ­ in g o f a linguistic expression is sim ply w hat we ex p lain w hen we explain its m eaning. is sim ply an in tersubjective co m m u n icatio n o f u n d e rsta n d in g . seem s all th e m o re plausible if we consider th a t each individual. say th at we only u n d e rsta n d clearly w hat we a re able to explain. th e n . A nd this. th e nom inalist will now give th e conceptualist the follow ing points to consider: (1) L in ­ guistic signs do as a m a tte r o f fact belong to intersu b jectiv e co m m u n i­ cation. A n d in d e ed this does n o t necessarily follow. the nom inalist w ould say. he could say. at least fo r that m e an in g which is in tersu b jectively com m u n icated . Is it n o t th en superfluous to posit. W e will n o t be able to leave th e d eb a te betw een nom inalism an d co n ­ ceptualism in this state. a possible ex p lan atio n o f th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f m ean in g in general. T h e conceptualist can still get r o u n d this last . T h e conceptualist could try to relativize this re su lt by calling in q u es­ tion th e p resu p p o sitio n . We c a n n o t say th a t we only u n d e rsta n d w hat we are able to explain.

th e c o m m o n m ark . T h u s a co n ce p t is u n d e rs to o d by K a n t a n d in early m o d e m p h ilo so p h y g e n era lly as a species o f re p re s e n ta tio n (G e rm a n : Vorstellung. h e says a c o n ce p t is a ‘re p re s e n ta tio n ’ w hich in c o n tra st to in tu itio n rela te s to a n object n o t im m ediately b u t ‘m e d ia te ly ’ ‘by m ean s o f a fea­ tu re w hich several th in g s m ay hav e in c o m m o n ’ (B377 cf. I t w ould a p p e a r to m ak e n o p a rtic u la r sen se to say th a t th e p re d ic a te stands . T h e d efi­ nitions o f K a n t w hich have ju s t b e en given. 134) I also m en tio n ed a term inology which o n e m ight th in k could p o in t b e yond th e o b je c t-o rie n ta te d fram e w o rk : th e term in o lo g y a cc o rd in g to w hich p re d ic ate s sta n d f o r concepts. Firstly. if o n e speaks o f c o n cep ts this n o lo n g e r suggests th e idea o f a c o m p o ­ sition. So it m ig h t seem th a t H u sse rl’s c o n ce p tio n o f p re d ic a te s is n o t a t all re p re s e n ­ tative o f th e tra d itio n . in th e d e fin itio n th e objective m e a n in g is a g ain expressly e m p h a ­ sized as so m e th in g to w hich th e co n cep t relates: nota communis. b etw een th e sta te o f consciousness and th e object a p p re h e n d e d by it. in th e Cri­ tique of Pure Reason.). ho w ev er. B u t now this objective c o rre la te o f th e subjectively in te r p re te d c o n c e p t .th e re p re s e n tin g o r m e a n in g (Mei­ nen) o f th e a ttrib u te —is clearly n o t a possible th eo re tic al su b stitu te fo r th e a ttri­ bute. its objective c o rre la te . Secondly. T h is a m b ig u ity also m akes it u n c le a r w h a t is m e a n t by sp e a k in g o f a ‘c o n c e p t’ (conceptus). In his Lectures on Logic § 1 K a n t d e fin e s ‘c o n c e p t’ as ‘g e n e ra l re p re s e n ta tio n ’ a n d in b ra ck e ts adds: repraesentatio per notas communes. W h at th e n is th e significance o f sp e a k in g o f concepts? K a n t’s c o n ce p tio n can p e rh a p s be re g a rd e d as e x em p lify in g th e tra d itio n a l u n d e r s ta n d in g o f concepts.Predicates 145 a rg u m e n t o f th e n om inalist. In early m o d e m p h ilo so p h y th e re is a d d e d to th e fu n d a m e n ta l d ifficul­ ties involved in sp e a k in g o f ‘re p re s e n ta tio n s ’ th e a m b ig u ity o f th e te rm as b etw een re p re s e n tin g a n d r e p re s e n te d . i. T h e y d e cid e th e am biguity in fa v o u r o f th e subjective m e a n in g (concipere.is sim ply H u s se rl’s ‘species’. A n d o f c o u rse if this w ere so th e n m erely d e m o n s tra tin g th a t H u s se rl’s c o n ce p tio n c a n n o t w ith sta n d critical analy­ sis w ould be no cause fo r a b a n d o n in g th e e n tire tra d itio n a l position a n d a d o p t­ ing a specifically lan g u ag e-an aly tical co n cep tio n . Appendix on speaking of concepts W h en listing th e v a rio u s tra d itio n a l d e sig n atio n s o f w hat p re d ic a te s sta n d fo r p. W e d o n o t say th a t th e ob ject fo r w hich th e sin g u la r te rm sta n d s is com­ bined w ith a c o n cep t. th a t th e object falb under th e concept. in d e e d th a t in c h o o sin g H u sse rl I h a d picked a p a rtic u ­ larly w eak re p re se n ta tiv e o f th e tra d itio n . it is n o t c le ar th a t a c o n c e p t is a n object. L atin: repraesentatio. r a th e r we say th a t it is subsumed u n d e r it. C o rre sp o n d in g ly . also B93 f. conceive) fo r. a re relatively u n a m b ig u ­ ous. Now th e subjective c o rre la te o f th e a ttrib u te . th e ‘a ttrib u te ’ o f th e o b je c t-o rie n ta te d co n cep tio n . B u t b efo re p assing final ju d g m e n t in the co n tro v ersy we will first have to get cle a re r a b o u t th e m eth o d o lo g ical significance o f th e new perspectives in tro d u c e d by th e n om inalist. T h is way o f sp e a k in g seem s to avoid two difficulties to which H u sse rl’s c o n ce p tio n gave rise.e. English: ‘id ea ’).

they a re th u s ‘in n e e d o f su p p le m e n ta tio n ’. . A c co rd in g to F reg e fu n c tio n a l e x p ressio n s also d e sig n ate som ething. .thus c o n stitu te a species o f fu n c tio n al expression. F re g e calls w hat is d e sig n ated by a fu n ctio n al e xpression a ‘fu n c tio n ’. th e tra d itio n a l a ttrib u te . If. O f b o th we can say th a t they sta n d fo r an object. it m u st ‘first be tra n s fo rm e d in to an object’.two kinds o f linguistic ex p ressio n : ‘c o m p le te ’ a n d ‘in co m p lete ’.7 In assessing F re g e ’s th e o ry o f p re d ic ate s we can distin g u ish two co m p o n en ts. we find. e. In te r p r e te d in this way th e n th e c o n ce p t-te rm in o lo g y does n o t re p re se n t an a lte rn a tiv e to th e o b jec t-o rie n ta ted co nception. F reg e em phasizes that this h olds fo r th e p re d ic ate precisely in its c h ara cte r as predicate. o n the o th e r h a n d . if on e says so m eth in g about it.g. in c o n tra st to this e a rlie r m o d e rn trad itio n .e.g. I can h e re ig n o re the peculiarity in F re g e ’s co n ce p ­ tion th a t a w hole se n ten c e . C o m p lete expressions a re (1) n am es (sin g u lar term s) a n d (2) w hole (assertoric) sentences. a n d if the fu n c tio n a l e x p ressio n is a p re d ic a te he calls the fu n c tio n a ‘c o n cep t’. All exp ressio n s which n e ed su p p le m e n tin g in this way F reg e calls ‘fun ctio n al e x p ressio n s’. a n d even if it d id m ake sense one w ould still be left with the u n c la rifie d n o tio n o f an a ttrib u te . ‘. fo r ‘o bject’ is d e fin e d as w hat is d e sig n ated by a com plete e x p ressio n . F u n ctio n s in th e w id er sense I can h e re d isre g a rd . I f an in co m p lete e x p ressio n is su p p le m e n te d by a co m p lete ex p ressio n (by a nam e) th e re resu lts a n o th e r c o m p le te e x p ressio n . th e im pression o f a non-objectual c o n ce p tio n results sim ply fro m th e am biguity o f this term inology. E xam ples are: ‘T h e b ro th e r o f . T h e im p o rta n t aspect o f F re g e ’s th e o ry in this c o n te x t is th e id ea th a t a p re d ic a te too stands fo r so m e­ th in g . b u t th a t this is n o t an object b u t a concept. th e re fo re . o n e speaks of a co n cep t. is a h o rse ’. a th eo ry o f p re d ic ate s a cc o rd in g to w hich (1) p re d ic ate s stand fo r concepts (2) con cep ts a re explicitly u n d e rsto o d objectively (objektiv) a n d (3) concepts a re n o n e th e less sh arp ly d istin g u ish e d fro m objects (Gegenstände). T h is leads to th e p a ra d o x ‘th a t in my term in o lo g y expressions such as “th e c o n ce p t F” d o n o t d e sig n ate con cep ts b u t o bjects’.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 146 fo r th e re p re s e n tin g o f th e a ttrib u te . B u t now a n a m e can only d e s­ ig n a te a n object. P redicates . In F reg e.6 T h is object into which th a t which th e p re d ic ate stan d s fo r is tra n s fo rm e d is ro u g h ly th e sam e as H u s s e rl’s ‘species’.3 F o r F re g e th e re are . F rege th ereb y gets h im self in to th e follow ing aw kw ard position: w hen sp eak in g o f such an object in dividually he calls it a ‘c o n ce p t’ even th o u g h b eing a n object it c an n o t be a concept. . . w h e th er it be a n a m e o r a sentence. o n e w ants to say som ething about a co n cep t th e n one m u st d e sig n ate th e concept by m eans o f a ‘n a m e ’ which resu lts fro m th e n o m in a liz atio n o f th e p red icate. ‘C atalina is a h o rse ’.5 If. A b rie f d escrip tio n o f th e essential fe atu res o f his th eo ry will have to suffice h e re . ‘the c o n ce p t horse is not a c o n c e p t’. they are those ex p ressio n s w hose su p p le m e n ta tio n results n o t in a nam e b u t in a sentence.4 In c o m p lete ex p ressio n s a re e x p ressio n s with o n e o r m o re gaps. is a h o rs e ’ . . how ever.a p a r t fro m syn categ o rem atic expressions . T h e con cep t is ‘essentially p re d ic ativ e ’. ‘the b r o th e r o f C h a rle s’.also stands fo r an object (a tru th -v a lu e ). how ever this is n o t a n object.

w hat was called th e c o p u la is a p a rt o f th e pred icate. T h e q uestion is w h e th er this re p re se n ts a g e n u in e th ird possibility b etw een th e o b jec t-o rie n ta ted concep­ tion a n d th e language-analytical conception. w hat it stan d s for. T h a t th e co n ce p t is ‘essentially p re d ic ativ e ’ m eans th a t it is so m e th in g in com plete. T h e p ecu ­ liarity o f F re g e ’s c onception finds expression in th e fact th a t h e applies to w hat the p re d ic ate stan d s fo r a n d w hat h e calls a concept. T h e syntactical fo u n d a tio n o f F re g e ’s th e ­ ory is his id ea th a t a p re d ic ate is an essentially incom plete expression. I f the p re d ic ate does n o t sta n d fo r an object th e n o n e w ould be rid o f th e difficulties o f th e o b jec t-o rie n ta ted con­ ception a n d yet w ould n o t sim ply be left with th e view th a t it is all a m a tte r o f the sign a n d its em p lo y m en t-ru le . is n o t an object. how ever. F o r F reg e th e cop u la n o longer exists. T h e question: w hat is o n e to u n d e rs ta n d by a concept? can th e re ­ .’ H ow ever I d o not wish to p u rsu e this p ro b lem fu rth e r. a n d th a t in each case th e re fe re n c e is w hat th e exp ressio n desig n ates. to b egin with. w hich H u sserl took over. th a t each stan d s fo r an object a n d th a t b etw een the two objects fo r w hich they sta n d th e re m u st be a com binationelem ent. Does such a th ird possibility really exist? T h e r e is.12 F reg e is th e re fo re able to call the c o n cep t the re fe re n c e o f a p re d ic ate . stands f o r . the sem antic c o u n te rp a rt o f the c opula. a sta te m en t-frag m en t. its ‘re fe re n c e ’ (Bedeutung). u n sa tu ra te d a n d fo r precisely this re aso n c an n o t be an object. th a t a sin g u lar pred icativ e sen ten ce is com posed o f subject. th e basic difficulty th a t a sign is su p p o sed to stand fo r so m e th in g th a t is n ev erth eless n o t an object. like th a t w hich a sin g u lar term stan d s fo r. F rege th u s rem ain s tie d to th e tra d itio n in so fa r as h e holds fast to th e idea th a t th e p re d ic ate too stan d s for som ething. th a t b oth p re d ic a te a n d subject a re in d e p e n d e n t un its. it still rem ain s to ask (1) w h at positive in te rp re ta tio n a re we to give to this so m e th in g which is n o t an object? a n d (2) how a re we to u n d e rs ta n d th e relation in a p re ­ dicative sentence betw een this so m eth in g a n d w hat th e subject o f th e sen ten ce stands for? T h ese two questions a re directly connected. ‘u n s a tu ra te d ’. copula a n d p red icate.10 It is n o t necessary fo r m e h e re to go fu r th e r in to th e p ro b lem s co n n ec te d with this term in o lo g y .’9 A ssum ing o n e is p re p a re d to accept this. H e b re ak s with th e trad itio n a l idea. T h is c onception o f th e syntax o f predicative sentences also enables F re g e to b re ak with th e trad itio n a l idea th a t the p re d ic ate stands fo r a n object. I re fe r you instead to th e instructive in te rp re ta tio n a n d criticism in S e a rle . th a t it is to be u n d e rsto o d as essentially a se n ten c e-p a rt. a synthesis betw een th e two objects.8 F reg e him self says: ‘L an g u ag e h e re is in an aw kw ard situ atio n w hich justifies d e p a rtin g fro m w hat is u su al. th e sam e term s as h e applies to th e predicate: ‘n e e d in g su p p le m e n ta tio n ’. T h e c o n tra d ic tio n w hich seem s to be involved h e re is show n by the fact th a t F reg e finds h im self h a ving to m ake such statem en ts as ‘T h e concept horse is n o t a co n ce p t. F re g e calls th a t w hich a p re d ic ate stands fo r. W ith this p io n e e rin g step F re g e p re p a re d th e way fo r th e language-analytical conception.Predicates 147 a syntactical on e a n d a sem antic one.11 Suffice it to say th at w ith re g a rd to b o th p red icates a n d nam es F rege distinguishes th e ir re fe r­ ence fro m th e ir sense.

Frege’s theory of concepts does not offer a third possibility. . . we cannot rest content with this. In contrast to Frege. The relation o f ‘an object’s falling under a concept’ Frege calls ‘the fundamental logical relation’. It was this ambigu­ ity which concealed from Aristotle the later alternatives of nominalism and con­ ceptualism. correspondingly the correlative term ‘subject’ (.kategorein . a concept-word that does not satisfy this requirem ent in its reference has no reference. According to Husserl one rec­ ognizes the attribute in an act of intuition of essence. One can. In the context of a funda­ mental philosophical enquiry.rather they are such as have vague boundaries. What does it mean to say that an object ‘falls u nder’ a concept? What does the corresponding notion of ‘subsumption’ mean? T he metaphor of ‘falling under’ goes back to the terminology Aristotle used for the subject-predicate relation. For him they are epistemological questions and as such no concern of logic.’13 This definition shows that for Frege a concept is a criterion by which objects are distinguished into those which fall u nder it and those which do not. T hat the question of what a concept is is so closely connected with the ques­ tion of how we are to understand its relation to what a name stands for is the consequence of Frege’s idea that the concept is something essentially in need of supplementation. One can find no answer to these questions in Frege. the expression being said down upon’ stems from the orientation towards the use of the expression.hypokeimenon) means ‘that which lies under’.means something like ‘say down upon’. There is a peculiar ambiguity in the way Aristotle uses this terminology: it is not clear whether he is referring to the linguistic expression or to something for which the expression stands. The term for ‘to predicate’ .for a concept can very well be empty . both Husserl and linguistic analysis give an answer to this question. it provides no answer at all. Just as in Greek one could use the . State­ ments about what is to be understood by the sense or the reference of an expression which do not tell us how we can know what sense or reference an individual expression has remain empty. however. are not such as combine contradictory elements . which have no reference . and against this the language-analytical position argued that one explains the application-rule of a predicate by means of examples.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 148 fore also be construed thus: what is it for a predicate to have a reference? Frege’s answer to this question can be inferred from his account of what it is for a pred­ icate (concept-word) to have no reference: ‘Concept-words . However. In regard to every object it must be determinate whether it falls under the concept or not.1 4 O f course these answers to the two questions just referred to which can be inferred from Frege immediately give rise to counter-questions: (1) to speak of an object falling under a concept is to speak metaphorically. . try to get clear about what Frege calls the ‘fundamental logical relation’. however. How are we to conceive this falling of something under a concept? (2) Even though we may understand in general what it means to speak of a criterion there still remains the question of how in a given case one can recognize a concept or how one can decide whether an object falls under a particular concept. .

In this I follow P. T h is w ord w ould th e n be so d e fin e d th a t all p re d ic a te s th a t a re u se d in a cc o rd an c e with th e sam e ru le re p re s e n t th e sam e co n cep t. H o w ev er. 16 T h u s fo r in sta n c e th e tw o p re d ic ate s ‘an im al with a h e a r t ’ a n d ‘a n im al with k id n e y s’ re p re se n t. th e c h a ra c te riz a ­ tio n -fu n c tio n . T h e d e fin itio n ju s t given is a so-called ‘in te n sio n a l’ defin itio n : a c c o rd in g to it tw o p re d ic ate s r e p re s e n t th e sam e c o n c e p t if a n d only if they have th e sam e m e a n in g .g.Predicates 149 e x p re ssio n ‘saying d o w n u p o n ’ we speak o f th e application . w h ereas. F reg e o n the o th e r h a n d has a so-called ‘e x te n sio n a l’ c o n c e p tio n o f ‘c o n c e p t’. .Anwenden auf). they sta n d fo r o n e a n d th e sam e c o n cep t. ‘r e d ’ a n d ‘r o u g e ’ . T h is d iffe re n c e h o w e v er is n o t a fu n d a m e n ta l o n e. L o r e n z e n . N ow o n e can a b strac t fro m all p e cu liaritie s o f th e sign a n d re fe r to tw o d iffe re n t predicate-expressions . two d if fe r e n t c o n ce p ts. T h e id en tity -c rite ria o f th e c o n ce p t w ould still re la te to th e a p p lic atio n o f p re d ic ate s.e.to (. A n d F re g e ’s fu n d a m e n ta l logical relatio n o f ‘fa llin g u n d e r ’ w ould th e n be d e fin e d th u s: a n object falls u n d e r a c o n ce p t if a p re d ic a te w hich re p re se n ts this co n ce p t a p p lies to it (auf ihn zutrifft). to avoid a m b i­ guities o n e can as b e fo re re serv e th e w o rd ‘p re d ic a te ’ f o r th e p re d ic ate -ex p re ssion a n d use th e w o rd ‘c o n c e p t’ fo r th e a b stra c tio n ju s t in tro d u c e d . W e can now try to fo rm a m o re precise id e a o f how th e n o tio n o f an object falling u n d e r a c o n c e p t re fe rs back to th a t o f th e applicability o f a p re d ic a te to th e object.o f th e p re d ic ate ! . a cc o rd in g to th e defi­ n itio n we have ju s t given.as the sa m e predicate if th ey a re a p p lie d in acc o rd an c e with th e sam e ru le. T h u s th e q u e stio n s to w hich n o a n sw er c o u ld be fo u n d in F reg e w o u ld now be a n sw e re d by g ro u n d in g th e talk o f co n ce p ts o n th a t o f p re d ic ate s. F or him tw o co n ce p t-w o rd s sta n d fo r th e sam e c o n ce p t if a n d only if ‘th e c o rre ­ s p o n d in g c o n ce p t-e x ten sio n s co in cid e’. Sem antically w hat m a tte rs is n o t th e e x p ressio n b u t th e e m p lo y m e n t-ru le . o n the basis o f F re g e ’s d e fin itio n . T h a t th e n o tio n o f ‘s u b s u m p tio n ’ a n d th e falling o f objects ‘u n d e r ’ concepts seem s m o re plau sib le th a n th e o b jec t-o rie n ta ted n o tio n o f a combination o f th e object w ith a n a ttrib u te is d u e sim ply to th e fact th a t th e fo rm e r re fe rs back directly to th e lan g u ag e-an aly tical e x p la n atio n . T h e r e is o f co u rse a d iffe re n c e b etw een this d e fin itio n o f ‘c o n ce p t’ a n d F re g e ’s co n ce p tio n . only o n e w ould now have to say: two p re d ic a te s r e p re s e n t th e sam e c o n ce p t if they a p p ly to th e sam e object. a re u se d in a c c o rd a n c e with th e sam e a p p lic atio n -ru le .15 O n e can first m ak e clear to o n e se lf that in stea d o f a p a rtic u la r p re d ic a te -e x p re ssio n w hich o n e u ses in a c c o rd an c e with a ru le (w hich o n e h as e x p la in e d by m ea n s o f a d e fin itio n o r by sam ples) o n e can always use o th e r e x p ressio n s in a c c o rd an c e with th e sam e rule. o n e can o p e ra te w ith a n e x te n sio n al d e fin itio n o f ‘c o n ­ c e p t’ in m uch th e sam e way as o n e does w ith th e in te n sio n a l d e fin itio n .

th e second in W ittg e n stein ’s d ic tu m . B ut as soon as o n e explicitly . fo r th ey co n c ern th e q u estio n o f th e m e a n in g o f all linguistic ex p ressio n s a n d th u s rea ch b ey o n d th e special controversy betw een nom in alism an d co n ceptualism . T he dispute continued. T h a t signs are used an d u sed to p e rfo rm a p a rtic u la r fu n ctio n is n o t d e n ie d by th e o b je ct-o rien tate d co n cep tio n . m erely th a t it be m o re fu n d a m e n ta l th a n th e p rev io u s o n e an d h en ce can at least n o t be called in q u estio n by th e latter. an d th e only re a so n why this fe a tu re is n o t m a d e them atic is because th e o b je ct-o rien tate d p h ilo s o p h e r sim ply takes it fo r g ra n te d th a t the fu n c ­ tio n o f th e sign is to sta n d fo r an object. I have a lre ad y show n in th e last le ctu re th a t this is th e case with th e fu n ctio n al co n c ep tio n vis-ä-vis th e o b je ct-o rien tate d co nception.LECTURE 12 T he basic principle of analytical philosophy. Predicates and quasi-predicates B e fo re I b rin g to an e n d th e in te r ru p te d d eb a te betw een th e nom inalist a n d th e co n c ep tu alist we should try to get a c le a re r g rasp o f the m e th ­ odological significance a n d scope o f th e two decisive p erspectives on w hich th e n o m in a list’s a rg u m e n t rested . which was only b ro u g h t in in th e co u rse o f th e d isp u te b u t is in fact fu n d a m e n ta l: T h e m e an in g o f a w o rd is w hat th e ex p lan a tio n o f its m e a n in g ex p lain s.’ In both cases it is a m a tte r o f p e r ­ spectives w hich I h a d a p p lie d specifically to o u r q u estion co n cern in g th e m e an in g o f p red ic ate s b u t w hich are in fact o f u n iv ersal scope. b u t p re su p p o se d as obvious. no lo n g e r ontologically-orienta te d sem an tic con ceptuality. T h e first o f th e se perspectives was co n ­ ta in e d in th e q u estio n co n c e rn in g th e fu n ctio n o f a lingustic expression th a t was in tro d u c e d at th e b e g in n in g o f the prev io u s lectu re. T h e se perspectives co n stitu te o u r first steps in th e d irec tio n o f a new . H ow fa r am I en title d to claim th a t these perspectives h av e so m eth in g intrinsically co m p ellin g a b o u t th e m an d are n o t a rb itra ry altern ativ es to th e o b je ct-o rien tate d co nception? O n e can n o t d e m a n d o f a new way o f loo king at th in g s th a t it be intrinsically com pelling.

th e attrib u te .rem a in ed less clear in th e last lecture. T h u s W ittg en stein ’s re m a rk has fo r analytical philosoph y a significance co r­ re sp o n d in g to th a t w hich th e q uestion ab o u t ‘b ein g as b ein g ’ has fo r ontology. it could n o t m ake th e fu n ctio n o f ch a racterizin g intelligible. W hat is m e an t by this re m a rk is sim ply this: w hen p h ilo so p h i­ cally we ask ab o u t th e m e an in g o f linguistic expressio n s we a re asking w hat th a t is in gen eral (‘as su ch ’) ab o u t which we ask w hen pre-p h ilo sophically we ask ab o u t th e m e an in g o f an in divid u al expression. O n e co uld th e re ­ .ca n n o t be carried th ro u g h . It alread y em erg ed in th e H usserl-critique th a t the co n cep tio n o f th e m ean in g o f a pred icativ e sentence as com posite o r . so too fo r analytical philo so p h y w hat is m e a n t by ‘m e a n in g ’ ca n n o t be a m etaphysical o r scientific co n stru ct: w hen philosophically we ask how we use linguistic exp ressio n s we a re asking ab o u t th e sam e th in g we ask a b o u t w hen pre-p h ilo so p h ically we ask how an in dividual ex p ressio n is used.this always so u nds b e tte r . T h e m ethodological significance o f th e second persp ectiv e which is co n tain ed in W ittg e n stein ’s re m a rk . In reality th e o b ject-o rien tated co nception has h e re p ro jec ted a fu n ctio n w hich is only intelligible as a fu n ctio n o f signs back in to th a t s tru c tu re which was th e only o n e avail­ able to it. in fo rm a l generality. B u t we have alread y seen th a t. only now it is a qu estio n o f m o d e o f em p lo y m e n t as such. It now em erges th a t even if it could. J u s t as ontology did not m e an by ‘b ein g ’ a m etaphysical co n ­ stru ctio n b u t was asking w hat th e beings with w hich we h ave to d o p rephilosophically a re as beings. in th e special case o f p redicates at least.‘T h e m e an in g o f a w ord is w hat th e ex p lan atio n o f its m e a n in g ex p lain s’ . W ith w hat w o n d erfu l capacities th e trad itio n al p h ilo so p h er finds it necessary to en d ow his objects! A re we n o t in d u lg in g in m ythology if we say o f objects th a t they characterize o th e r objects? A n d this th ey are su p p o sed to accom plish by a d h e rin g to th e o th e r objects. O f course th e objecto rie n ta te d p h ilo so p h e r m ay say th a t we can n o t conceive o f any o th e r fu n ctio n fo r a sign th a n th a t o f sta n d in g fo r an object. by b eing co m b in ed with th em . O f co u rse h e h ad to qualify this adm ission by saying th a t this is m erely a fu n ctio n th a t the p red ic ate also has a n d th a t it can only fulfil it by p e rfo rm in g its alleged basic fun ctio n o f sta n d in g fo r an object: it characterizes th e object o f th e subject-term o f th e sen ten ce by sta n d in g fo r an object .The basic principle of analytical philosophy 151 retrac es th a t step th e p a rtic u la r fu n ctio n o f sta n d in g fo r an object tu rn s o u t to be m erely one possibility a m o n g others.as a ‘synthesis’ o f two objects . it is n o t d if­ ficult to get him to ad m it th a t a p re d ic a te has th e fu n ctio n o f c h a racter­ izing the object fo r w hich a singular te rm stands.w hich itself ch aracterizes th e object in a p rim a ry sense.

I do n o t know w hat a rg u m e n t o ne could use to cast d o u b t on W itt­ g en stein ’s p rin cip le so long as it is u n d e rsto o d in this fu n d a m e n ta l g e n ­ erality. So th e ob ject-o rien tated p h ilo so p h er could n o t evade W ittg en stein ’s p rin cip le eith er. how philosophical sem antics could be d istinguished fro m linguistic sem antics. i. viz. N ow how is this second p erspective co nnected w ith th e first. etc. as th o u g h this w ere th e only possible answ er. b u t th e second proves to be m o re fu n d a m e n ta l an d g en eral.. fo r o n e w ould th e n have to d etach the m e an in g which th e w ords ‘m e a n in g ’. viz. W ittg en stein ’s p rin cip le th e re fo re also lays dow n th e limits o f a possible philosophical sem antics. have in linguistic th eo ry fro m the m e an in g they have in th e ir p re-th eo retica l em ploym en t.e. fo r p h i­ losophy only seeks to m ake explicit w hat we alread y u n d e rsta n d prephilosophically. H ow ever. and this also co n tain s a first clue to th e answ er to th e question I left o p en . So fro m th e p o in t o f view o f m e th o d we have th e sam e situation as we h ad in th e case o f th e first perspective: a question is posed which h a d no t b ee n m ad e explicit in th e o b ject-o rien tated tr a ­ d itio n but which th e object-o rien tated p h ilo so p h e r im m ediately accepts an d m o reo v er im m ediately answ ers in an o b je ct-o rien tated way. h e w ould im m ediately . A p h ilo so p h ­ ical sem antics how ever w ould lose its p u rp o se if this h a p p e n e d . ‘u n d e rs ta n d in g ’.an d rightly ex p lain th a t w hen h e says th a t every expression (or at least every ‘categ o rem a tic’ expression) stands fo r an object he also m eans th a t in each ind ividual case w hen o n e is asked a b o u t th e m e an in g or th e use or the ex p lan atio n o f an expression o ne is to indicate th e object fo r w hich th e ex p ressio n stands. th e fu n d a m e n ta l p rin cip le o f th a t philosophy w hich conceives itself as a question ab o u t th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f o u r linguistic ex p ressions an d w hich seeks to win th e conceptuality in w hich it poses this questio n fro m this q u estio n itself. as o p p o se d to the first p erspective it does n o t p re su p p o se th a t th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f a linguistic exp ressio n belongs to a teleological co n tex t. T h e re are con­ ceptions of linguistic th eo ry fo r which this is a possibility. th at o f th e function o f linguistic expressions? T h e first p ersp ectiv e yielded th e m axim : if you w ant to clarify th e m e an in g o f a fo rm o f linguistic expressions th e n ask: w hat a re expressions o f this fo rm used f o r ? T h e second perspective yields th e m axim : if you w ant to clarify th e m e an in g o f a fo rm o f linguistic expressions th e n ask: how a re exp ressio n s o f this fo rm used? T h u s both perspectives em phasize th e m o d e o f e m p lo y m en t o f an expression. W e h o w ev er can ask: are th e re no t o th e r possible ways o f ex p lain in g an e x p re ssio n ’s m ode o f .Analysis o f the predicative sentence 152 fo re call W ittgenstein’s d ic tu m the fu n d a m e n ta l p rin cip le o f analytical philosophy. th e co n tex t o f an in ten tio n al action.

H o w ev er all this p roves is th a t th e intersu b jectiv e e x p la n a tio n is n e v e r a d e q u a te to th e g rasp in g . In re sp o n se to th e challeng e to p ro d u c e his own positive con cep tio n o f the m e a n in g o f a p re d ic a te th e n om inalist. h e w ould say. as a lim iting case. th e possibility o f th e re b ein g m ean in g s o r m eanin g -co m p o n en ts o f ex pressions th a t so m e o n e can only ex p lain to h im ­ self. 143). H ow ever W ittg e n stein ’s d en ial o f th e possibility o f a so-called p riv ate la n g u a g e 1 rests on a rg u m e n ts th a t a re d isp u te d in analytical p h ilo so p h y . b u t th a t one m u st d istinguish b etw een th e g e n u in e ex p lan a tio n an d g ra sp in g o f m e a n in g an d th e in te rsu b jec tiv e e x p lan a tio n . ‘th a t a p re d ic a te can only be e x p lain e d in te rsu b jec­ tively in th e way d escrib ed by th e n om inalist. W e can now take u p ag ain th e co n tro v ersy betw een th e no m in alist an d th e conceptualist. D id we n o t alre ad y see in th e p r e ­ vious le c tu re th a t this p rin cip le by no m ean s m erely ties th e p h ilo s o p h ­ ical analysis o f m e a n in g to th e an sw e rin g o f in d iv id u al qu estio n s o f m e an in g but. a sensation o r re p re se n ta tio n . W e m ust take it in a fo rm in w hich it is ad m itte d by everyon e. T h e la tte r w ould clearly be th e case if so m e th in g th a t is only inw ardly accessible. red u ces m e a n ­ ing to th e intersubjectively available m o d e o f em p lo y m e n t o f th e ex p ression? A nd if th e p rin cip le is u n d e rs to o d in this way it clearly c a n n o t be ac know ledged by th e o b je c t-o rie n ta te d p h ilo so p h e r as being m erely trivial. N ow o n e could object th at in to d a y ’s elu cid atio n s I have unjustifiably sim plified W ittg e n stein ’s p rin cip le. W ittgenstein did in fact u n d e rs ta n d his p rin cip le in this n a rro w e r sense a n d d isp u te d th e possibility o f an in tro sp ectiv e fixing o f m eanings. p. T a k in g acco u n t o f th e distinctions I hav e ju s t m a d e th e co n cep tu alist co uld now reply th a t h e has n o objection to W ittg e n stein ’s p rin cip le.2 I f we a re to re g a rd W ittg e n ste in ’s p rin c ip le as th e fu n d a ­ m ental p rin cip le o f analytical p h ilo so p h y th e n a t th e p re se n t stage o f o u r reflections w h ere we a re only g ettin g a fo o tin g in analytical p h ilo s­ op h y we sho u ld n o t b u rd e n it with this n a rro w in te rp re ta tio n . in its stress on th e explanation o f m e an in g . ‘It is p erfectly tr u e ’. co n stitu tes o r partly co n stitutes th e m e a n in g o f an ex p ressio n .The basic principle o f analytical philosophy 153 em plo y m en t? In th e p a rtic u la r case o f p red ic ate s it seem s obvious th a t we c a n n o t ex p lain th e use o f a n ex p re ssio n in th e way th e objectth e o rist claim s we can (cf. h ad r e f e r re d us to th e e m p lo y m e n t-ru le w hich is ex p lain e d a n d can only be ex p la in e d by m ean s o f positive an d n eg ative exam ples. invok­ ing W ittg e n stein ’s p rin cip le. W e o b tain such an u n d o g m a tic in te rp re ta tio n o f th e p rin cip le if we allow n o t only th e p o s­ sibility o f som eone e x p lain in g an e x p re ssio n ’s m o d e o f em p lo y m e n t to h im self in th e sam e way th a t h e w ould ex p lain it to so m eo n e else b ut also.

it is som etim es stated th a t it is only th ro u g h lan g u ag e . For such an ex p lan atio n o f the em p lo y m e n t-ru le by exam ples still leaves o p en w hat it really is th at d e term in e s the ru le. W e ca n n o t leave it like this. A nd to th e ex ten t th a t p e r ­ . this is an im plausible thesis w hich can be show n to be ab su rd by th e fact th a t we perceive linguistic signs them selves (w h eth er acoustically or optically) as typical. As we shall see th e re is an elem e n t o f tru th in this statem en t. how ever. an d it is only because he can also p erceive this com m on fe a tu re in new objects th a t h e can apply th e p red icate correctly beyond th e exam ples given to new cases. B ut this can only m ean th a t th e p e rso n to w hom we explain th e p red ic ate by m eans o f ex am ples form s a m ental co rrela tio n betw een the p red ic ate an d som e­ th in g th a t is com m on to th e positive exam ples b u t ab sen t fro m th e n eg ­ ative ones. o r a d e te rm in a te r a n g e o f sim ilar stim uli. Secondly. T h e re are two do g m atic a rg u m e n ts with w hich th e conceptualistic line o f a rg u m e n t ju s t p re ­ sen ted is som etim es p a rrie d . W e m ust settle th e co ntroversy in a convincing m a n n e r. Every stim u lu s-re sp o n se schem a. n o t ju s t h u m a n p erc ep tio n . Firstly. T h u s it fre q u e n tly looks as th o u g h in th e en d th e re is again ju s t o n e view co n fro n tin g a n o th e r. we react to th e in d iv id ­ ual sou n d in so fa r as it is a re p re se n ta tiv e o f a type o f so u n d . O n e m ust first take seriously th e co n c ep tu alist’s a rg u m e n t in o rd e r to establish precisely w hich aspect no lo n g e r belongs to sem antics an d why it does not d o so.th a t o u r e x p e rien c e is stru c tu re d into types. o n e occasionally h ea rs it said th a t such an a rg u m e n t refers to psychological co n d itio n s with w hich sem antics has n o th in g to do. it is unaccep tab le. I f fo r ex a m p le we h e a r th e so u n d ‘r e d ’ we resp o n d to it in so fa r as it exhibits a p a rtic u la r stru c tu re . it can only m e d iate it. T h e ind iv id u al exam ples do n o t suffice for this for we only say o f so m e o n e th a t h e has u n d e rsto o d th e ex p lan atio n if he is able to apply th e p red ic ate correctly to new exam ples. In this vague fo rm . T h u s th e positive ex p lan atio n given by th e nom inalist c a n n o t p re se n t itself as a g en u in e altern ativ e to the o b je ct-o rien tated e x p lan a tio n b u t m ust itself ultim ately fall back on the la tte r.’ T h e r e a re analytical p h ilo so p h ers w ho are sim ply closed to this a rg u ­ m ent. T h e co n c ep tu alist’s rep ly thus violates th e prin cip le o f th e ‘impossibility o f going b e h in d la n g u a g e ’ (‘U nhint ergehbarkeit. w h e th e r co n d itio n e d o r u n co n d itio n e d is such th a t th e sam e so rt o f re sp o n se follows th e sam e so rt o f stim ulus.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 154 o f a m eaning. B u t now th e sam e is tru e o f all p e rc e p tio n . der Sprache’)* H ow ever. fo r it is not clear in advance w hat the b o u n d arie s betw een sem antics a n d psychology are.an d m o re precisely p red ic ate s .

4 carried with it a d o g m a acco rd in g to which p erc ep tio n . T h a t th e re a re rep rese n tatio n s o f individuals a p p e a re d u n p ro b lem atic to both sides in th e dispute. w ith o u t ex cep ­ tion. n ev e r d o u b te d in psychology. it is a logical p h e n o m e n o n . Does this n o t m ean: with so m eth in g typical given in consciousness? A n d w ould n o t th e co n ­ cep tu alist’s view be vindicated by th e typicality o f p ercep tio n s ju s t described? B u t in th a t case the p u rp o se fo r w hich th e co n cep tu alist . T h e con cep t o f a universal is correlative to th a t o f an in dividual. W hat distinguishes the u n i­ versal fro m th e typical is th a t we only call universal w hat is com m on to m any individuals (an attrib u te) o r can be ap p lied to m any individuals (a predicate). W hat follows from all this re g a rd in g the evaluation o f th e a rg u m e n t b ro u g h t by th e conceptualist against the nom inalist? T h e co rrec t a p p li­ cation o f th e p red ic ate to exam ples according to th e co n cep tu alist’s th e ­ sis is only possible on th e basis o f a m ental-correlatio n o f th e p red icate w ith so m eth in g th a t is com m on to all exam ples. T h u s th e con trast is n o t betw een th e in dividual and th e universal an d typical b u t betw een th e typical on th e o n e h a n d an d th e individual an d the universal on th e o th er. typical. F ro m the p o in t o f view o f linguistic analysis th e consciousness o f w hat is individual is no m ore a sensuous p h e n o m e n o n th a n consciousness o f a universal.o r linguistic . is as reg a rd s its con ten ts n ev er u n iq u e. O ne m ust h e re note a rem a rk a b le confusion which th ro u g h o u t th e centuries has b u rd e n e d th e en tire discussion o f nom inalism . ra th e r a specific sh a d e o f red is perceived as o ne th at can be perceived as the sam e on any n u m b e r o f occasions. th a t p erc ep tio n relates to th e typical. In reality how ­ ever p e rc ep tio n relates n e ith e r to individuals n o r to universals.5 It h ad to acco m m o d ate th e category o f the individual som ew here an d as it d id n o t reflect on th e fo rm o f sentences all th a t rem a in ed was to assign th e in d ividual to sensibility. since A ristotle. fo r exam ple. th u s if th e re a re also re p rese n tatio n s o f universals o r types this m ust be a n o n -sensuous m ode o f cognition.relates to individuals.‘sensibility’ . ju s t as p redicates are essentially expressions w hich su p p le ­ m e n t sin g u lar term s. r a th e r it is typical. A co lo u r-p ercep tio n . T h is p rem ise was p re su p p o se d by both sides in th e nom inalism controversy.an d rep rese n tatio n -co n te n ts are.co nstitu tio n o f re fe re n c e to individuals poses m uch g re a te r p roblem s o f analysis th an does th e co n ­ sciousness o f universals which in consciousness o f types h as a sensuous p rec u rso ry fo rm .The basic principle of analytical philosophy 155 ceptual p h e n o m e n a a re introspectively accessible we can likewise ascer­ tain th a t o u r sensation. A nd on th e o th e r h a n d we can now u n d e rsta n d how trad itio n al philosophy could fail to notice th e evident fact. A n d as we shall see th e logical . T ra d i­ tional philosophy.

In o r d e r to attain clarity h e re we m ust d istinguish b etw een th e behaviouristic an d introspective conceptions o f th e psychological p h e n o m e ­ no n o f th e typicality o f perceptions. fro m an in trospective sta n d p o in t. ‘tria n g le ’). introspectively c o n d u c te d discussion o f nom inalism . W h e th e r we call th e various stim uli.7 th e re m ust be a re p re se n ta tio n o f th e sim i­ larity o f th e sensuous rep rese n tatio n s. fo r w hat m a tte rs from an in tro ­ spectionist sta n d p o in t is th a t consciousness recognizes th a t th e sim ilar rep rese n tatio n s are sim ilar. th e sam e o r m erely sim ilar .6 B u t in th a t case. T h e ra n g e o f sim ilarity o f th e stim uli to w hich the o rg an ism re sp o n d s in th e sam e way can be w idened o r n arro w e d . In this sam eness o f reaction to sim ilar stim uli behaviouristic psychology o f p e rc e p tio n has a p rese n tab le d atu m with which th e in tro sp ectio n ist co n ception has n o th in g com parable. H u m e a rg u e d th a t one does n o t need th e re p re se n ta tio n o f so m e th in g identical th a t is com m on to all sensuous re p re se n ta tio n s w hich c o rre ­ sp o n d to th e em p lo y m e n t o f a p redicate. o r all form s o f triangle. T h e situation is d iffe r­ e n t fo r th e behaviouristic conception. W hereas in th e introspective concep tio n th e re is no sen ­ suous re p re se n ta tio n co rresp o n d in g to all colour-sh ad es th a t a re n o t m erely th e sam e b u t sim ilar.Analysis of the predicative sentence 156 fo u n d it necessary to po stu late an ab stract object w ould alread y be achieved by sensuous re p rese n tatio n s them selves. B u t if o n e adm its th e re p re se n ta tio n o f sim ilarity th e n why n o t r e p r e ­ sentations o f any relations a n d attributes? T his difficulty does n o t arise in th e behaviouristic conception which is n o t co n c ern ed with re p re s e n ­ tations an d is able to p o in t to th e physical p h e n o m e n o n o f th e sam e . in th e behaviouristic co nception this dis­ tinction no lo n g er applies. th e nom inalist th ereb y finds h im self com ­ pelled to again ad m it at least the re p re se n ta tio n o f one ab stract object. a specific triangle-shape) does n o t c o rre sp o n d to th e em p lo y m en tra n g e o f o u r o rd in a ry p redicates (‘r e d ’. every­ th in g th a t is called ‘r e d ’. For nom inalism . T h e typical sensation o r th e typical m ental im age th a t we en c o u n te r in in tro sp ectio n (a specific sh a d e o f red . T h a t an org an ism perceives ty p ­ ically is d e te rm in e d by its re sp o n d in g to stim uli o f a certain kind in th e sam e way. it suffices th a t th e re p re s e n ­ tations g ro u p them selves in to circles o f sim ilarity. For ex am p le th e o rg an ism can le arn to re sp o n d in th e sam e way to all colo u r-sh ad es o n e calls ‘r e d ’.if th e .o rg an ism is a p p ro p ria te ly co n d itio n ed th e n it re sp o n d s to th em in th e sam e way. F o r precisely this reason th e conceptualist fo u n d it necessary to p ostu late a n o n -sen su o u s re p re se n ta tio n o f so m eth in g th a t is com m on to all sh ad es o f re d . T h e pro b lem o f sim ilarity played a larg e role in th e trad itio n al. it was a rg u e d ag ainst H u m e .

C learly he was n o t if th e m e a n in g is w h at we ex p lain w hen we ex p lain th e m e an in g o f th e ex p ressio n . this is to sh ift th e p ro b le m to a n o th e r level. fo r a fte r all h e is claim ing th a t th e psychological fo u n d a tio n o f th e u n ifo rm ity in th e em p lo y m e n t o f a p re d ic a te is n o t a p e rc e p tio n . th e le arn in g -ca p acity o f in telli­ g e n t org an ism s is itself ju s t as p u zz lin g a n d in n ee d o f e x p la n a tio n as th e special capacity fo r le arn in g p red icates. I h ad co n c ed e d to th e la tte r th e possibility th a t a linguistic ex p re ssio n is u sed (and h en c e also ex p lain ed ) in such a way th a t it is assig n ed to a r e p r e ­ sen tatio n o r stands fo r so m e th in g th a t is only inw ard ly accessible. by th e o b je ct-o rien tate d p h ilo so p h e r.The basic principle of analytical philosophy 157 resp o n se w h ereas th e in tro sp ectiv e co n cep tio n is u n ab le to p o in t to any c o rre sp o n d in g psychic p h e n o m e n o n . th a t o f causal e x p lan a tio n . B ut. B u t w hat follows fro m this? A t p re s e n t only this: o n e can only a p p e al to th e typicality o f p e rc e p tio n as th e psychological fo u n d a tio n o f th e u n ifo rm ity in th e em p lo y m e n t o f a p re d ic a te if o n e takes as o n e ’s basis th e behav io u ristic co n c ep t o f p e rc e p tio n . u nless o n e also w ants to a ttrib u te th e capacity fo r re p re s e n tin g ab stra ct objects to m ice an d fish (always assu m in g th a t th e re p re s e n tin g o f ab stract objects could in any way explain th e capacity fo r a u n ifo rm resp o n se to sim ilar stim uli). th a t th e ex p re ssio n m u st sta n d fo r so m e th in g id entical th a t we in w ard ly r e p r e ­ sent. o n e m u st p o in t o u t to th e co n c ep tu alist th a t if th e le a r n ­ in g o f p red ic ate s is only o n e case o f such a u n iv ersal b eh a v io u ral p h e ­ n o m e n o n as th e learnin g -cap acity o f in te llig en t o rg an ism s th e n th e re q u ire d e x p la n a tio n can only be conceived as a physiological o ne. B u t if th e b ehaviouristicallyin te rp re te d p e rc e p tu a l m echanism can even be c o n s id e re d as th e psy­ chological fo u n d a tio n o f th e u n ifo rm em p lo y m e n t o f p red ic ate s. in its m o st g e n e ra l in te rp re ta tio n . T h e co n c ep tu alist may a g re e w ith this. T h is is co rrec t. a n d . firstly. secondly. th e n m u st n o t th e re c o u rse to ab stract objects. W e can now use W ittg e n stein ’s p rin c ip le as a c rite rio n fo r d e c id in g w h e th e r th e co n c ep tu alist was r e fe rrin g to th e m e a n in g o f an ex p ressio n a t all w h en he asserte d th a t ex p lan a tio n by ex am p les is n o t e n o u g h . o n th e c o n tra ry . w hich I assu m ed w ould be accep ted . w hich only b eco m es necessary fro m th e in tro sp ectiv e perspective. F o r even if we d isre g a rd in te r- . is n o t a m erely sen su o u s re p re se n ta tio n . a p p e a r su sp ect (especially w hen we recall th a t th ese re p re se n ta tio n s a re no t fo u n d in in tro sp e c tio n b u t m erely postu lated )? T h e co n c ep tu alist m ay rep ly th a t n o th in g is ex p lain e d by th e re fe re n c e to th e s tim u lu s-re sp o n s e sch em a a n d its co n ditionability.8 W e arriv e at a definitive clarification o f th e situ atio n if we now re tu r n to W ittg e n stein ’s p rin cip le. th at.

O f co u rse th e re is no law th a t o n e m u st accept W ittg en stein ’s p rin ci­ ple. So it now becom es clear th a t w hat th e co n cep tu alist m issed in e x p la n a tio n by exam ples was n o t so m eth in g th a t b elo n g s to th e q u estio n o f m e a n in g b u t so m e th in g th a t co ncern s th e causal ex p la­ natio n o f u n d e rs ta n d in g . I t is easy to see how th ese two d efin i­ tions a re co n n e cted : we ex p lain w hich ch aracterizatio n . A n d we have ju s t seen th a t if w hat interests us is causal e x p la n a tio n th e n physiological hypo th eses a re p referab le to th e in tro sp e ctio n ist hypothesis. (2) we ex p lain a p red ic ate o r th e m e an in g o f a p re d ic a te w hen we show (or know ) th e use o f th e p re d ic a te by m ean s of positive a n d n egative exam ples.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 158 subjective e x p la n a tio n an d assu m e th a t a p erso n exp lain s th e w o rd ‘r e d ’ to h im self in trospectively he can clearly only do so by placing b e fo re his in n er-ey e. by m ean s o f . By o rie n ta tin g ourselves tow ards W ittg e n stein ’s p rin c ip le we can also see th a t o ne does n o t over-step the limits o f a specifically sem antic en q u iry sim ply by b rin g in g in psycho­ logical p h e n o m e n a . in his critiq u e o f th e n o m inalist. I f o n e accepts W ittg en stein ’s p rin cip le (in its w idest in te rp re ta tio n ) th e n h y p o th eses co n c ern in g th e causal e x p la n a ­ tion o f u n d e rs ta n d in g no m o re b elo n g to th e philosophical ex p lan atio n o f u n d e rs ta n d in g th a n they b elo n g in th e individual case to ex p lain in g how a p a rtic u la r ex p re ssio n is used. B u t this thesis h a d to be ab a n d o n e d rig h t at th e b eg in n in g o f th e d e b a te with th e nom inalist. I f th e con cep tu alist n o n eth eless holds on to the in tro sp e c tio n ist s ta n d p o in t this is because he was originally m oving w ithin th e limits o f W ittg e n stein ’s d ictu m an d was n o t th in k in g o f a causal e x p la n a tio n at all. b u t exam ples. H e h a d sta rte d o u t from th e assu m p tio n th a t o n e exp lain s an in d iv id u al p re d ic ate -ex p ressio n to o n eself by assigning it to th e c o rre sp o n d in g a ttrib u te . th a t th e re must be such an object did he slip u n n o tic e d in to tre a tin g th e q u estio n as o n e o f hy p o th etical causal e x p lan a tio n . fo r in tro sp e c ­ tion fails to reveal such an object. classification-) fu n c tio n a p re d ic a te has by d e m o n stra tin g . o n e only does so if th e en q u iry assum es th e c h a r­ acter o f an e x p la n a tio n why. n o t th a t a ttrib u te o f which th e re is no sensuous re p re s e n ta ­ tion. So we can now finally re g a rd th e o b je ct-o rien tated co n cep tio n o f p red ic ate s as h av in g b een disp o sed of.(distinction-. B u t have we alread y achieved a new co n c ep tio n o f th e m e a n in g o f pred icates th a t is fu n d a m e n ta l e n o u g h a n d precise en o u g h to replace th e object-o rien tated co n c ep ­ tion? W h a t we have so fa r re a c h e d are two definitions: (1) to ex p lain (or u n d e rsta n d ) a p re d ic a te is to ex p lain (or u n d e rsta n d ) w hat ch aracteriza tio n -fu n ctio n it has. B u t if o n e does n o t accept it one m u st be clear w hat it is o n e is really asking ab o u t. O nly w hen th e co n cep tu alist asserted .

b u t is itself g ro u n d e d on this u n d e rsta n d in g . T h is can be show n by th e follow ing consid eratio n . is ex p lain ed by ap p lying it to a p p ro p ria te objects given in p erc ep tio n . o r ‘co rrec t app licatio n to ex am p les’. F or it is n o t yet clear w h at precisely is m ean t by ‘m ode o f em p lo y m e n t’. o f the attrib u te c a n n o t g ro u n d th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f th e p red icate. I am u sin g th e q u asi-p red icate m erely as a th o u g h t-m o d e l o f an expressio n co m p arab le to a p red ic ate b u t se m an ­ . W e a re n o t now co n ­ c e rn e d w ith w h eth e r it is a c o rre c t hypothesis o f d ev elo p m en tal psy­ chology to say th a t th e ch aracterizatio n -ex p ressio n s w hich ch ild ren first le arn are q u asi-predicates. T h e ex p lan a tio n o f a p red ic ate is su p p o sed to consist in th e d em o n stratio n by m eans o f exam ples o f its co rrect a n d in co rrect em p lo y m en t. o n e can th e re ­ fo re call it a specifically language-analytical conception. fo r exam ple. a n d th a t h e a n d only h e correctly u n d e rsta n d s th e w ord ‘ra in ’ w ho uses it if an d only if it is rain in g ? W e can o f course imagine a p rim itive la n g u ag e in w hich expressions a re used in this way.The basic principle o f analytical philosophy 159 positive a n d negative exam ples. positively a n d negatively. T h a t th e p r e d ­ icate stands fo r an a ttrib u te is n o t d isp u ted by the new co nception. it m erely asserts th a t th e existence. its m ode o f em p lo y m en t. W ere h e to use it d iffe ren tly a n d w ere we still to say th a t he is u sin g it correctly this w ould m ean th a t th e ex p lan a tio n was incom p lete. o r we u n d e r ­ stand w h at ch a racteriza tio n -fu n ctio n the p red ic ate has i f we can u se it correctly. F or this concep tio n o f th e m e an in g o f predicates th e use o f th e linguistic sign fo r characterizatio n is essen ­ tial an d does not m erely m ed iate this characterizatio n . I shall call expressions u se d in this way quasi-pred­ icates. B ut th e n it w ould seem th a t a m o d e o f em p lo y m e n t o f p redicates w ould resu lt th a t does n o t at all co rre sp o n d to th e ir actual m o de o f em ploym ent. A child learn s to say ‘bow-w ow ’ w hen it sees a dog. W ould it n o t th e n follow th a t he a n d only he has correctly u n d e rsto o d th e w ord ‘r e d ’ w ho uses it if an d only if so m e th in g red is p re se n t in th e p erc ep tu a l situation. T h a t th e p erso n to w hom a p r e d i­ cate has been ex p lain ed has u n d e rsto o d th e ex p lan atio n is show n by th e fact th a t h e uses it a n d only uses it as it was ex p lain ed to him . we could n o lo n g er claim th a t w h at was being exp lain ed was th e m e an in g o f th e expression. notions th a t a re fu n d a m e n ta l to th e new ex p lan atio n . As re g a rd s fu n d am e n tality this ex p lan atio n o f th e m e an in g o f p r e d ­ icates can co m p are w ith th e o b ject-o rien tated ex p lan atio n . T h e p red ic ate ‘re d ’. O n e can p robably say th a t th e characterizatio n -ex p ressio n s chil­ d re n learn in th e first stage o f lan guage-acquisition are u sed in this way. ‘m a m a ’ w hen th e p e rc e p tu a l p a tte rn o f th e m o th e r shows itself. o r know ledge. b u t n o t yet as reg a rd s clarity a n d distinctness.

T h e questio n which now arises is: if the use o f linguistic expressions is no t re g u la te d by re fe re n c e to objects th e n by re fe re n c e to w hat is it reg u lated ? T h e answ er th a t m ost readily suggests itself is: by refe re n c e to th e circum stances o f use. is m o re com plicated th a n could have been g a th e re d fro m th e acco u n t given so far. T h u s we re a d in W ittgenstein th a t w hen o n e asks fo r th e m ean in g o f a linguistic expressio n one sho u ld ask o n eself in w hat so rt o f circum stances it is u se d .fro m th e in n e r-p ersp e ctiv e so to speak .9 N ow it is precisely this con cep tio n w hich breaks dow n w hen ap p lied to predicates.th e n th e only altern ativ e is to assign th e m to the circum stances o f use . it is clearly ch aracteristic th at th e ir n o rm al em p lo y m en t-situ atio n is n o t o f th e sam e kind as th e ir e x p la n a ­ tion-situation. T h e n otion o f th e use (or em ploym ent) an d o f th e rules o f use is. is to be u n d e rsto o d . T h e ex p lan a tio n shows in w hat situation th e expressio n is to be used. a n d hence too its m o d e o f em p lo y m en t. o r m o re correctly: so far w hat has b een exp lain ed has n o t b ee n th e m e an in g o f p redicates. T h e characteristic fe a tu re o f q u asi-predicates is th a t in th e ir case em ploym ent-situation a n d ex p lan atio n -situ atio n are o f th e sam e kind.in the o u te r-p ersp e ctiv e so to speak. In th e case o f predicates. It looks as th o u g h if o n e does n o t assign linguistic expressions to re p re se n ta tio n s o f objects .they are to be used. I f predicates ca n n o t be u n d e rsto o d in this way an d if it sho u ld e m erg e th a t th e o th e r expressio n s ca n n o t be u n d e r ­ . b u t th a t o f quasi-predicates. T h e difficulty we h e re com e u p against is no m ere q u estio n o f detail. O f q u asi-predicates we can in d e ed say th a t to ex p lain th e m is to explain in w hat circum stan ces . for it concerns th e fo u n d a tio n o f th e sem antic th e o ry th at is to be w orked out. as we have seen. As I have so fa r described th e m e an in g o f p red icates it rem ain s in d e te rm in a te w h e th e r we a re speaking o f predicates o r q u asi-p re d i­ cates. It still also fits th e objectual conception. an d h en c e th a t o f th e o th e r expressio n s o f o u r lan g u ag e.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 160 tically very m uch sim pler an d re fe r to child-langu ag e sim ply by way o f illustration. It concerns the questio n o f how th e m o d e o f em p lo y m en t o f p redicates. still extrem ely vague. It can n o t be dealt w ith by m erely su p p le m e n tin g w hat has been said so far. I f th e n we wish to hold on to th e view th at w hat is ex plained w hen an expression is ex p lain ed is its m o d e o f em p lo y m en t (and we m u st hold on to it fo r this connection is analytically co n tain ed in th e m e an in g o f th e w ord ‘ex p lan a tio n ’) th e n it follows th a t the ex p la­ n ation o f a p red ic ate .in w hat situ ­ ation . fo r it results in th e ir b eing ex plained as quasi-predicates. by co n trast. a n d th at a sp e ak e r o f th e q u asi-p red icate lan g u ag e u n d e rsta n d s such an expression is show n by his using it in th e co rrect circum stances.

certainly. to this su p p o sitio n w ould c o rre s p o n d th e h y p o th esis th a t th e m e a n in g o f whole sen ten ces.e. a n d h e n c e th a t o f w hole p red ic ativ e se n ­ tences. B ut h e r e two o p p o sin g h y p o th e ses a re conceivable. initially in th e p a rtia l are a o f th e p red ic ativ e asserto ric sentence. T h is d if ­ fe re n c e b etw een p re d ic a te an d q u a si-p re d ic a te is so ch aracteristic th a t w e can ex p e ct th a t w h e re v e r a w o rd fu n ctio n s an alo g o u sly to a p r e d i­ cate (nam ely as a ch a racteriza tio n -ex p ressio n ) b u t is u se d in d e p e n ­ d en tly it is a q u asi-p re d ica te. Y ou will alre ad y h av e g a th e re d fro m th e way in w hich I have c h a r ­ . T h e q u asi-p re d ica te ‘r e d ’ also d iffe rs fro m th e p r e d i­ cate ‘r e d ’ in th a t it is used as an in d e p e n d e n t linguistic ex p ressio n . By way o f p re p a ra tio n fo r the n e x t steps I w ould to d ay ju s t like to d ra w y o u r a tte n tio n to a f u rth e r d istinction betw een p red ic ate s a n d q u asi-p red icates. an d th e n o th e rs. p red ic ativ e sen ten ces. can be u n d e rs to o d com pletely by re fe re n c e to th e circu m stan ces o f th e ir em p lo y m e n t. If th a t is so th e n only if we ap p ro a c h th e q u estio n co n c e rn in g th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f sin g u la r te rm s in th e sam e specifically language-analytical m a n n e r in w hich. in th e last two lec­ tu res.10 w hereas th e p re d ic a te req u ires s u p p le m e n ta ­ tio n . it is a o n e-w o rd se n te n c e . A new concep tu ality d o es no t sim ply fall fro m h eav en . taking as o u r sta rtin g -p o in t p rev io u s c o n c ep ­ tualities an d th e ir d efects revealed in th e a tte m p t to ap p ly them . situation-independent. W e can only w ork it o u t ste p by step.The basic principle of analytical philosophy 161 sto o d in this way e ith e r th e n th e q u estio n arises: w hat o th e r possible way is th e re o f u n d e rs ta n d in g th e ir m o d e o f e m p lo y m e n t if it is to be n e ith e r by re fe re n c e to re p re se n ta tio n s o f objects n o r by re fe re n c e to circu m stan ces o f use? O u r f u r th e r analyses o f th e sem antics o f p red ic ativ e sentences m u st b e o rie n ta te d tow ards this question. W h at is at issue is th e fo rm a tio n o f a co n c ep tu ality a d e q u a te to th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f o u r lin g u istic e x p re s ­ sions. W h a t follows fro m this fo r th e m e a n ­ in g o f p red icates? T h a t it will only be possible to u n d e rs ta n d th e m in th e co n tex t o f th e su p p le m e n tab ility by sin g u la r term s. a ch a racteriza tio n -ex p ressio n w hose e m p lo y m e n t is situ atio n -rela te d . we h av e a p p ro a c h e d th e q u estio n co n c e rn in g th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f p red ic ate s can we a rriv e at a new u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e m e an in g o f p red ic ate s w hich relates n e ith e r in trospectively to th e re p re s e n ta tio n o f objects n o r b eh aviouristically to th e circum stances o f em p lo y m en t. in the sim plest case su p p le m e n ta tio n by a sin g u lar te rm . T h e second possibility w ould be th a t it is precisely th e su p p le m e n ta tio n o f p red ic ate s by sin g u lar term s w hich m akes th e e m p lo y m e n t o f p red ic ate s. Firstly o n e could s u p ­ p o se th a t it is only becau se p red ic ate s ca n n o t be em p lo y ed in d e p e n ­ d en tly th a t they ca n n o t b e u n d e rs to o d by re fe re n c e to th e situ atio n o f th e ir em p lo y m e n t. i.

Such a co n cep tio n ca n n o t be ach ieved at a stroke. . to ex a m in e th e first hypoth esis first a n d will n ot ex a m in e th e second till m uch later. F o r it will e m e rg e th a t fo r a p ro m ­ ising clarification o f th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le s o f th e two co m p o n en ts o f a p red ic ativ e se n ten c e we re q u ire a te n ab le p relim in ary co n cep tio n o f the e m p lo y m e n t-ru le o f the w hole sentence. I in te n d .Analysis o f the predicative sentence 162 acterized these two h y p o th e ses th a t I h o ld th e second to be th e co rrect on e. how ever.

. A is building with b u ilding-stones: th e re a re blocks. . B efore we reject th e thesis th a t th e m ean in g o f an ex p ressio n consists in th e circum stances o f its u se we m ust subject it to a m o re fu n d a m e n ta l ex am inatio n .’ W ittgenstein adds: ‘conceive this as a co m p lete p rim i­ tive la n g u a g e ’. Dispute with a behaviouristic conception I f th e m e an in g o f a linguistic sign can n o t be u n d e rsto o d in term s o f th e sign’s sta n d in g fo r an object th e n th e view w hich m ost readily suggests itself is th a t to u n d e rs ta n d a sign is to know in which circum stances it is to be used. By way o f ex p lan atio n h e presen ts. S om ew hat later we read : ‘W e can also th in k o f th e w hole process o f using w ords in §2 as o n e o f tho se gam es by m ean s o f w hich ch ild ren le arn th e ir native language. . “slab”. F o r this p u rp o se they u se a lan g u ag e consisting o f the w ords “block”. has m e an in g fo r him .LECTURE 13 T he meaning of an expression and the circumstances of its use. A n exam ple. th e n he should ask h im self in w hat p articu la r circum stances this sen ten ce is actually u se d . how ever I also raised th e question o f w h e th e r this conceptio n m ig h t nev erth eless be c o rre c t in the case o f all in d e p e n d e n t u tte ran ce s a n d h en ce in th e case o f w hole assertoric sentences. a n d th a t in th e o rd e r in w hich A n ee d s them . In §117 o f his Philosophical Investigations W ittgenstein writes: ‘If. at th e b e g in n in g o f th e Investigations. B has to pass h im th e stones.’ A n d as W ittgenstein says in a n o th e r place the use is th ereby co n n e cted with o u r o th e r activities. I will call these gam es “lan g u ag e- .B b rin g s th e sto n e which h e has le a rn t to b rin g at suchan d -such a call. som e exam ples o f ‘la n ­ guages m o re p rim itive th a n o u r ow n’ (§2). A t th e e n d o f th e last lectu re I trie d to show th a t as re g a rd s th e use o f p red icates at any ra te this con cep tio n will n o t do. . is d escribed in §2: ‘Let us im a g ­ in e a la n g u ag e . fo r ex am ple. . w hich is f u r th e r elab o rate d in th e follow ing p a ra g ra p h s. pillars. w hich is m e a n t to serve fo r com m u n icatio n b etw een a b u i l d e r a n d an a s sista n t# . A calls th e m out. slabs an d beam s. “pillar”. “b e a m ”. som eone says th a t th e sentence .

as W ittgenstein him self em phasized o n e can h ard ly speak o f ‘ex p la n a tio n ’ in th e case o f child-language in the first stage o f its d ev elo p m en t. T h e lan g u ag e o f §2 is a m ore realistic m odel o f a situ atio n -rela te d lan guage th a n th e quasi-p red icate lan g u ag e I p rese n ted in th e last lec­ tu re . are d irec ted to th e p ro d u c tio n o f ex tern al stim uli. it is m o re a p p ro p ria te to speak o f ‘tra in in g ’ (§5). O f course this in no way affects th e usefulness o f th e q u asi-p red icate lan g u ag e as a th o u g h t-m o d e l. I shall also call the w hole. T h u s th e q u asi­ p red ic ate is used both quasi-indicatively a n d q u asi-im p erativ ely -o p tatively. an d th e im p e rativ e -o p tativ e m ode o f em p lo y m en t is clearly p u r ­ poseful. consisting o f la n g u ag e an d th e actions into w hich it is w oven. T h u s h e learn s a ru le to which h e conforms. Its existence am o u n ts sim ply to this: th a t certain actions can be called ‘co rrec t’ a n d o th e rs ‘in c o rrec t’. h e learns th e m o d e o f em p lo y m e n t th a t is co rrec t relative to an actio n -n o rm . In b o th cases th e ex p lan atio n has th e fo rm : ‘if such-and-such circum stances o btain. m ore realistic because this lan g u ag e-g am e fulfils an intelligible com m unicative p u rp o se. . unless it rep rese n ts (as we can assum e in th e case o f child-language) a ru d im e n ta ry stage o f a h igher-level language.) I f th e m o d e o f em p lo y ­ m e n t is n o t being explained th e n we are d ea lin g sim ply with a causal co nnection th e m echanism o f w hich can be u n d e rsto o d p u rely in term s . . (For th e exis­ ten ce o f an actio n -n o rm it is n o t necessary th a t it be cap ab le o f bein g fo rm u late d . H ow ever. th e “lan g u ag e -g a m e” ’ (§7). how ever. I f the e m p lo y m e n t-ru le o f ex p ressio n s sim ply consisted in all m em bers o f th e linguistic com m unity u tte rin g such-andsuch an expressio n in such-and-such circum stances this w ould have no obvious com m unicative significance a n d o ne could n o t explain how such a la n g u ag e dev elo p ed in a biological species. th e only d iffe ren ce w ould be th a t in o n e case th e circum stances consist o f th e p erc ep tu a l situ atio n an d in th e o th e r case o f th e need-situ atio n .Analysis o f the predicative sentence 164 g am es” . suchand -such an ex pression is u se d ’. in th e one case they are ex tern al stim ­ uli in th e o th e r in te rn a l stim uli which. it le arn s to say ‘m a m a’ n o t only w hen its m o th e r is th e re b u t also w hen it w ould like h e r to com e. T o speak o f ‘ex p lain in g ’ p resu p p o se s th a t th e o n e to w hom an ex p ressio n is ex p lain ed already u n d e rsta n d s th e w ords ‘co rrec t’ a n d ‘in c o rre c t’. H ow ever. T h e p a tte rn o f ex p lan atio n o f such expressions rem ains in p rin cip le th e sam e a n d we can th e re fo re also speak o f q u asi-p red icates th a t are u se d both indicatively a n d im peratively. even fo r th e child -lan g u ag e it is m o re realistic to conceive o f its sem antics as b ein g en ric h e d in th e follow ing way: the child does n o t only u tte r a p a rtic u la r so u n d w hen a p articu la r p erc ep tu a l situation is given b u t also w hen it w ishes it to be given.

how ever.The meaning o f an expression 165 o f th e b ehaviouristic th e o ry o f le a rn in g . In so far as such a ru le . In th e case o f th e im p e ra ­ tively em plo y ed q u asi-p re d ica te th e re w a rd consists in th e p ro d u c tio n o f th e stim ulus associated w ith th e ex p re ssio n . a w id er a n d a n a rro w e r c o n c ep t o f m ean in g ). w ith p a rtic u la r perceived circu m stan ces o r conditio n s.p ro d u c e a positive stim u lu s o r p re v e n t a n eg a tiv e one. w h e th e r it be c o n stru e d as a causal ru le o r a n o rm ativ e ru le. o r a causal ru le .which in o th e r co n tex ts is fu n d a m e n ta l b ecause th e im p o rta n t p o in t in o u r co n te x t is u n a ffe c te d by it. a m e re objective re g u la rity w hich can be n o te d by an o b serv er .th u s w h e th e r th e ru le is o f th e fo rm ‘if such an d such conditions obtain this ex p re ssio n is to be u s e d ’ o r ‘if such an d such co n d itio n s o b ta in this ex p re ssio n is u s e d ’ . i.w h e th e r h u m a n o r an im al . on th e o th e r h a n d o n e sh o u ld n ev e r g et b o g g ed d o w n in such v erbal questions: r a th e r o n e sh o u ld leave o p e n th e possibility o f th e re b ein g .g. it is also d irec ted to so m eo n e (or . F or o u r p u rp o ses. W h e th e r th e ru le in q u estio n is a normative ru le . T h e q u e stio n o f w h e th e r th e m e a n in g o f o u r linguistic expressio n s consists in th e circu m stan ces o f th e ir use can th e re fo re also be fo rm u la te d th u s: a re th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le s o f o u r linguistic expressio n s to be c o n s tru e d as in this sense co n d itio n al rules? T h e lan g u ag e -g a m e w hich W ittg e n stein p re se n ts in §2 is also d istin ­ g u ish e d fro m th e q u asi-p re d ica te la n g u ag e e n ric h e d by th e q u asi­ im p e rativ e e m p lo y m e n t-fo rm in th a t it takes a c co u n t o f th e communica­ tive aspect o f all n a tu ra l .languages.th e u tte rin g o f a p a rtic u la r so u n d . A sign is n o t only used by som eone. assigns th e use o f th e sign to c e rta in circum stances (conditions) I shall call it a ‘co n d itio n al r u le ’. we can d isre g a rd th e q u estio n o f w hat m oti­ vates th e association betw een circum stances (in te rn a l o r ex tern al) an d th e use o f th e sign. in d e e d we can ig n o re a lto g e th e r th e q u estio n o f w h e th e r this association is explained o r causally p ro d u c e d by co n d itio n ­ ing. a ru le w hich th e sign-user follows. th a t in su c h -an d -su ch ex te rn a l o r in te rn a l circum stances (in th e e n v iro n m e n t o r th e o rg an ism ) it can th ro u g h such-an d -su ch an activity . th ro u g h socalled ‘in stru m e n ta l co n d itio n in g ’. in th e case o f its in d ica­ tive em p lo y m e n t it consists in th e p leased re a c tio n o f th e adults. We can th e re fo re also ig n o re th e q u estio n o f w h e th e r o n e can sp e ak o f th e meaning o f a sign an d understanding a t all w h e re th e use o f th e sign is le a rn e d by c o n d itio n in g (clearly n o t if o n e can only speak o f ‘m e a n in g ’ a n d ‘u n d e r s ta n d in g ’ w h ere o n e can also speak o f ‘e x p lan a­ tio n ’.e. T h e child learns. T h e positive stim u lu s fu n ctio n s as a so-called ‘re w a rd ’ o r ‘re in fo rc e m e n t’ which causally m otivates the co n d itio n e d resp o n se . W e can d is­ re g a rd this distinction . e.e..m b o th cases it is a m atter o f th e association o f th e use o f a sign w ith a p a rtic u la r p e rc e p tu a l situation. i.

T h e latter is th e case. In W ittg e n ste in ’s ex a m p le it is only in resp ect to th e sp e ak e r th a t o n e can say th a t th e sign is associated with th e circum stances o f its use. H en ce th e e n tire b eh av ­ io u ristic th e o ry o f la n g u a g e takes its d e p a r tu re fro m th is schem a. fo r ex a m p le . b u t also fo r th e o n e to p erc eiv e fo r th e o th e r.on th e o th e r h a n d . as in the la n g u ag e o f bees. m o re g enerally. I t is only in this m o d el th a t we h av e a realistic m odel o f a prim itive la n g u ag e. In fact o n e can say th a t all actual p rim itiv e la n g u ag e s w hich in c o n tra st to child-lang u ag e are n o t p re lim ­ in a ry stages b u t alre ad y fu n c tio n purp o siv ely in th e ir ow n rig h t.1 T h u s in W ittg en stein ’s ex a m ­ ple A n eeds a p a rtic u la r b u ild in g -sto n e an d in stead o f p e rfo rm in g th e a p p ro p ria te actio n h im se lf h e p e rfo rm s a substitute-action w hich fo r its p a rt ex erts a stim ulus o n B w hich b rin g s it a b o u t t h a t # p e rfo rm s th e action. w ith w arn in g o r feeding-signals: o n e p a rtn e r perceives th e situ atio n a n d does n o t h im se lf re s p o n d (or is n o t th e only o n e to re sp o n d ) b u t r a th e r p e rfo rm s an actio n w hich serves as a su b stitu te stim ulus fo r th e o th e r p a r tn e rs such th a t they can re sp o n d a p p r o p r i­ ately to th e situ atio n w ith o u t p erc eiv in g it them selves. T h is ru le can also be c o n s tru e d b oth no rm ativ ely a n d causally. W e m u st th e re fo re distinguish betw een sp e ak e r a n d h e a r e r or. c o n fo rm to this schem a. W e can call signs w ith this so rt o f com m unicativ e fu n ctio n ‘signals’. A cco rd in g to this c o n c e p tio n th e fu n ctio n o f th e sign is to m ed iate b etw een stim u lu s a n d re sp o n se a n d in this way to m ake it possible th a t th e one c o m m u n ic a tio n -p a rtn e r has o r receives th e stim u lu s an d th e other exhibits th e a p p r o p r ia te re s p o n s e . In re g a rd to th e h e a r e r . h en ce all an im al-la n g u ag e s. fo r it is only in this m o d e l th a t an in tersu b jectiv e p u rp o se o f sig n -em p lo y m e n t becom es evident. H o w ­ ever. th e only d iffe ren ce is th a t now th e co n d itio n is th e sig n -ev e n t its e lf: if th e sign is h e a rd such a n d such an activity is c a rrie d out. T h e r e are a u th o rs 2 w ho only call signs o f this k in d ‘signals’ if th e ir e m p lo y m e n t bo th by th e em itte r a n d th e receiver is n o t le a rn e d b u t in n a te . betw een th e em itte r an d th e receiver(s) o f th e sign. w h e th e r o r n o t h e u n d e rsta n d s th e sign is show n by w h e th e r w hen h e perceives th e sign h e p e rfo rm s a p a rtic u la r act. T h u s th e sign m akes it possible fo r th e o n e to act fo r th e o th e r. in th e c o n te x t o f o u r in v estig atio n the distinction betw een th e le a rn e d a n d in n a te e m p lo y m e n t o f such signs is n o t im p o rta n t. T h is te rm in o lo g y is n o t u n d is p u te d . th e h e a re r-ru le is also a co n d itio n a l rule.in th e exam p le th e assistant .Analysis o f the predicative sentence 166 several persons). p a rtic ­ u larly as I shall also be ig n o rin g th e (m uch m o re fu n d a m e n ta l) d istin c­ tio n b etw een th o se signs o f this k in d w hose ru les a re causal an d those w hose ru les a re n o rm a tiv e a n d w hich we m ust u n d e rs ta n d as co n v en ­ . H o w ­ ev er.

th o u g h with a n o r­ m ative ra th e r th a n a causal in te rp re ta tio n o f rules. A nyw ay it is this thesis . assum e b o th th e ro le o f th e sp e a k e r an d th a t o f th e h e a re r an d o n e can th e re fo re say th a t so m eo n e only u n d e rsta n d s th e ex p ressio n if he know s both co n d itio n al rules.h e a re r relatio n .3 A ttem pts have b een m a d e to gloss o ver this fact. is a q u estio n we can leave o pen. w h e th e r W ittgenstein h eld a c o rre sp o n d in g view. T h e r e is h e re revealed a pecu liar co n tra st betw een th e two th eo ries o f m e an in g th a t I have so fa r discussed. O r p u ttin g it m o re cautiously: it at least does not c o rre sp o n d w ith o u r o rd in a ry u n d e rs ta n d in g to say th a t a sen ten ce does n o t have o n e an d th e sam e m e an in g fo r sp e ak e r an d h e a re r. T h e thesis th a t o u r lan g u ag e is a signal-language a n d th at it is to be u n d e r ­ stood o n the m o d e l o f co n d itio n e d responses (only in a m o re com pli­ cated way) is p ro p o u n d e d by th e b eh a v io u rist th e o ry o f lan g u ag e. as it did n o t expressly reflect on the fact th a t an ex p ressio n is used it was also able to overlook the s p e a k e r. A lth o u g h W ittgenstein says th a t th e la n g u ag e-g am e that h e describes is le a rn t th ro u g h ‘tra in in g ’ it em erges clearly fro m later p arts o f th e Investigations th a t he u n d e rs ta n d s th e rules as n o rm ativ e a n d th e signs as conventional. T h e first is th a t the m e an in g o f a signalsign is not th e sam e fo r sp e ak e r an d h e a re r. I w ould first like to p o in t o u t tw o fu n d a m e n ta l difficulties which im m ediately becom e a p p a r e n t if on e a ttem p ts to co n stru e th e sentences o f o u r la n g u ag e as signal-signs. B u t even so this co nception does n o t fit th e sentences o f o u r lan g u ag e. p o in tin g o u t th a t every m e m b er o f a linguistic com ­ m u n ity can. T h e o b ject-o rien tated th e o ry o f m e an in g h ad sim ply ig n o re d th e com m unicativ e fu n ctio n o f la n ­ g u age. It is th e m o re g en e ral a n d m o re fu n d a m e n ta l fo rm o f th e thesis th a t th e m e an in g o f an ex p re ssio n consists in th e circu m ­ stances o f its em ploym ent.th a t o u r linguistic ex p ressio n s fu n c tio n as signals o r th a t th e ir rules a re conditio n al rules . F ro m this p o sition th e fact th at an ex p ressio n has only one m ean in g fo r sp e ak e r a n d h e a re r a p p e a rs entirely u n p ro b lem atic .The meaning o f an expression 167 tio n al signals. A m o re serious u n ce rtain ty co n cern in g th e in te rp re ta tio n o f W ittgenstein’s lan g u ag e-g am es has to d o with the qu estio n o f w h e th e r he in te n d s to c o n tra st th em as ‘prim itive lan g u ag es’ with th e lan g u ag e we actually speak o r w h eth e r h e in ten d s th e m to be u n d e rsto o d as a sim ple m o d el o f how even o u r la n g u ag e fu nctions. T h u s th e b eh av io u rist lang u ag e -th eo rist L eo n a rd B loom field w rites th a t th e ‘m e a n in g ’ o f an ex p re ssio n is ‘th e situation in w hich th e sp eak er u tte rs it and th e reac­ tion w hich it calls fo rth in th e h e a r e r ’. d e p e n d in g on th e situation. T h e b eh av io u rist co n c ep ­ tio n on th e o th e r h a n d rig h tly took th e com m unicativ e situ atio n as its .th a t we have to exam ine.

4 In stea d o f sim ­ ply taking th e iden tity o f m e an in g fo r g ra n te d as in th e o b ject-o rien ­ ta ted conception one sh o u ld . Is a b ee-d an ce to be co n stru e d as in fo rm in g th a t th e re is h o n ey in a p a rtic u la r place o r as a co m m an d to fly there? Is a w arning-cry to be co n stru e d as in fo rm a tio n th a t th e re . th a t each o f th e p a rtn e rs in te r­ nalizes th e ro le o f th e o th e r. I f th a t is correct. b u t precisely because b o th in te r p re ­ tations are possible both a re o u t o f place. T h is th e o ry . M e ad . F o r a signallan g u ag e clearly o ffers n o ro o m fo r assertoric sentences.th en we find ourselves im m ediately facing a second difficulty. an d we will th e re fo re have to ask how this identity o f m e an in g is co n stitu ted fro m w ithin th e s p e a k e r.a n d h e a re r-ro le s beco m in g explicit fo r sp e ak e r an d h e a re r them selves. to a signal-sign o n e can in te rp re t th e signal b oth as a sta te m en t th a t so m e th in g is th e case an d as an im p e ra ­ tive th a t so m eth in g is to be do n e. acco rd in g to M ead. I f o n e seeks to ap p ly th e distinction b etw een indicative a n d im p erativ e sentences. T h is is a way o f fo rm u la tin g th e q u estio n which is sim ilar to th e way in w hich it h ad alre ad y been fo rm u la te d in the first th ird o f this ce n tu ry by th e A m erican social-psychologist G eo rg e H .pred icativ e assertoric sentences . B u t we can re ta in his co n cep tio n as a h y pothetical p ersp ectiv e fo r o u r f u r th e r analysis. in th a t each o n e in th e p e rfo rm a n c e o f his role cop e rfo rm s th a t o f th e o th e r. th e n an identical m e an in g which is in d e p e n d e n t o f th e specific com m unicatio n -ro les o f sp e ak e r a n d h e a re r w ould only be co n stitu ted by th e division o f th e co m m u n icatio n -ev en t in to speaker. th a t sentences have only one m e an in g . I f d espite this obvious d iffe ren ce betw een senten ces an d signals viz. A ccording to M ead this is only possible if th e sp e ak e r im plicitly cop e rfo rm s th e resp o n se o f th e p a rtn e r a n d likewise th e h e a re r th e action o f th e speaker. M e ad ’s th eo ry rem a in ed p ro g ra m m a tic . w hich is essential to o u r lan g u ag e. H ow ever. A satisfactory analysis o f th e m e an in g o f o u r linguistic ex pression s can ig n o re n e ith e r th e com m unicative aspect o f la nguage n o r th e id e n tity o f m e an in g fo r sp e a k e r an d h e a re r. how it is th a t som eone can talk to him self. we ex a m in e th e thesis o f th e sig n al-ch aracter o f o u r la n g u ag e in relatio n to th o se sen ten ces which a re o u r im m ed ia te co n cern .h e a re r situation. H ow ever.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 168 startin g -p o in t. also explains. its o rien tatio n tow ards sig n al-lan g u ag es led to sp e ak e r-m ea n in g a n d h e a re r-m e a n in g bein g se p a ra te d . ac co rd in g to M ead. H e did n o t show how th e im plicit co -p e rfo rm an ce o f th e p a r tn e r ’s resp o n se in o n e ’s ow n action is concretely to be conceived. tak e as o n e ’s startin g p o in t th e biologically m o re prim itive an d th eoretically u n p ro b le m a tic signal-languages an d ask w hat in th e way o f b e h a v io u r m u st be ad d e d fo r sp e ak e r a n d h e a re r to be able to re fe r to so m eth in g identical.

to re p ly to th e sen ten ce.g. we m e an it as o n e th a t can be d e n ie d . in c o n tra st to th a t to a signal. T a k e a situ atio n in w hich a signal co u ld also be given (e.The meaning o f an expression 169 is d a n g e r o r as a c o m m an d to ru n away? Such a d istin ctio n w ould clearly only be m e a n in g fu l if it b e lo n g ed to th e ru le s o f th e lan g u ag e g am e th a t th e re c ip ie n t does n o t m erely re sp o n d w ith th e resp o n se a p p r o p r ia te to th e e m itte r’s stim ulus b u t also has th e possibility o f re s p o n d in g to th e e m itte r’s giving o f a sign as su ch . B u t this p e rfo rm a n c e o f th e actio n is to b e u n d e r ­ sto o d as a ffirm a tio n . th e alarm -cry ‘fire ’). so m e th in g essentially d if fe r e n t fro m th e m e re r e s p o n s e . It m ay be su rm ise d th a t th e two fe a tu re s w hich alre a d y a t first glance seem to d istin g u ish th e sen ten ces o f o u r la n g u a g e fro m signals b elo n g to g e th e r. In th e case o f th e im p e rativ e th e p e rfo rm a n c e o f th e actio n is also a possible resp o n se . to ta k e u p a p o sitio n to w ard s it. T h e a p p r o p r ia te re sp o n se o f th e p a r tn e r to a sen ten ce. is n o t th e p e rfo rm a n c e o f a n action b u t th e a ffirm atio n o r d en ial o f th e sen ten ce. is im plicitly co -p e rfo rm e d by th e em itte r. In yes/no p o sitio n -tak in g . as in th e o th e r p o sitio n -tak in g s such as q u estio n in g . o n e w hich is a lre ad y a n tic ip a te d in th e e m itte r ’s u se o f th e sign. T h e possibility o f re sp o n s e to th e giving o f th e sign itself is in o u r se n ten c e-la n g u ag e co n ta in e d in th e p h e n o m e n o n o f p o sitio n -tak in g (Stellungnahme). th e re c ip ie n t is clearly re f e r rin g to the same thing as th e e m itte r. th e n th e e m itte r is alread y re fe rrin g to th e sam e th in g as th e possible . T h e sim plest fo rm o f p o sitio n -tak in g is d en ial a n d d e p e n d in g on how th e w o rd ‘n o ’ is used a n d w h at it is to w ard s w hich a positio n is ta k en th e se n ten c e is rev e ale d as an im p e r­ ative o r an indicative. instead o f re sp o n d in g . A n d if th e ru le s fo r th e e m p lo y m e n t o f th e se n ten c e by th e e m itte r can be show n to be such as re la te its e m p lo y m e n t to th e possible p o sitio n -tak in g s o f th e recip ien t. It w ould now seem plausible to look u p o n th e position-taking o f th e re c ip ie n t as th a t re sp o n se o f th e p a r tn e r w hich. W h e n we u tte r a sentence w h e th e r asserto rically o r im p e r­ atively. A lth o u g h we are n o t yet able to say w hat th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le s a r e w hich d e te rm in e w h e th e r a se n ten c e is asserto ric o r im p e rativ e this m u c h at least is clear: a sign can only be u se d assertorically o r im p e rativ e ly if th e re c ip ie n t has th e possibility o f re sp o n d in g to th e giving o f th e sign as an a sserto ric o r im p e ra tiv e giving o f a sign. F o r th e n eg ativ e o r affirm ativ e p o sitio n -tak in g o f th e re c ip ie n t is a re sp o n se o f th e kind b ein g looked fo r. albeit in a d iffe re n t way. T h e re c ip ie n t can re sp o n d to th e se n ten c e in th e sam e way th a t h e can re s p o n d to th e signal. B u t it is also possible fo r him .5 fo r in stea d o f p e rfo rm in g th e action o n e can re p ly w ith a ‘n o ’. d o u b tin g a n d so on w hich a re g ro u n d e d in th e possibility o f yes/no p o sitio n -tak in g . ac co rd in g to M ead.

I w ant to co n d u c t th e discussion w ith re fe re n c e to an ex am ple.6 A sen ten ce ca n only have a practical m e an in g . fo r o n e w ould first have to show th a t an d how yes/no p o si­ tio n -ta k in g belongs to th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le o f sentences. I shall choose an ex a m p le w hich because it is a p p ro p ria te to a co n tex t o f action is as acco m m o d atin g as possible to th e theory to be criticized: th e se n ­ te n ce ‘T h e tow n-hall is on fire. Initially we a re only co n c ern ed w ith assertoric sentences an d in p a r ­ tic u la r with pred icativ e assertoric sentences. S u p p o se so m eo n e com es h e re into th e le c tu re -ro o m a n d u tte rs th e se n ten c e ‘T h e tow n-hall is on fire.’ O n e can easily im ag in e situations in w hich it w ould be ju s t as a p p ro p ria te to use this sen ten ce as th e signalex p re ssio n ‘F ire !’ N ow ac co rd in g to th e th e o ry to be ex am in ed th e m e a n in g o f th e se n ten c e consists o f two conditio n al ru les: the co rrec t u n d e r s ta n d in g o f th e h e a re r is show n by th e fact th at h e resp o n d s to th e se n ten c e in a specific way. a n d th e co rrec t use by th e sp e ak e r is sh o w n by th e fact th a t h e uses th e sen ten ce in specific circum stances. o ne m ig h t say. F o r it is only by m eans o f th e p recise critical e x a m in a tio n o f existing theo ries th a t we can h o p e to m ake new positive ap p ro a ch es. o th e rs w o uld ask th e m an to leave us in peace. specifically. th e se n ten c e ‘T h e tow n-hall is on fire’ does n o t have a p ractical m e a n in g if so m e o n e u tte rs it h e re in th e le ctu re-ro o m b u t it d o es if so m e o n e is rin g in g th e fire-b rig ad e. So if th e th eo ry is c o rrec t it m u st be possible to specify th e p articu la r re a c ­ tion o f th e h e a r e r an d th e p a rtic u la r situation o f th e sp e ak e r w hich to g e th e r a re su p p o se d to co n stitu te th e m e an in g o f this sentence. F o r ex am p le. o th e rs w ould ask him how h e know s this. T h e g en e ral difficulties ju s t re fe rre d to d o n o t r e n d e r a d etailed ex a m in a tio n su p erflu o u s. T o avoid this m anifest n o n se n se to which th e theo ry seem s to lead b eh av io u rist th e o rists in tro d u c e d th e concept o f an actio n -d isp o sitio n . A fte r th ese very g en e ral a n d an ticip ato ry reflections I com e now to th e p ro m ised ex am in atio n o f th e thesis th a t th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le s o f pred icativ e sentences can be u n d e rs to o d as co n d itio n al rules a n d . o th e rs w ould p e rh a p s lau g h a n d o th e rs m ig h t ru n o u t with v arious aim s.’ H ow w ould we react? P robably m any o f us w ould n o t react at all. in acco rd an ce with th e sch em a o f a signal-language. in sh o rt th e re is no q u estio n o f a ru le-g o v ern ed co n n ex io n b etw een th e h e a rin g o f th e sen ten ce an d p a rtic u la r actions. T o escape th e objection th a t we n ev e rth ele ss u n d e rs ta n d th e se n ten c e w hen it is u tte re d h e re in th e le c tu re -ro o m a n d we do n o t b elo n g to th e fire -b rig a d e it is ex p lain ed . O f co u rse these reflections a re them selves still p r o ­ g ram m atic. in c e rta in situations. In this way M e a d ’s p ro g ra m m a tic hypoth esis w ould be given d efin ite c o n ten t. I shall b eg in with th e h e a re r.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 170 recipients.

B u t in w hat th e n does th e m e an in g fo r th e h e a re r consist? O n e could p e rh a p s th in k th a t the ru le w hich in signal-languages is th e h e a re r-ru le fits im peratives ra th e r th a n assertoric sentences. action-disposition o r b u n d le o f action-dispositions. In both cases th e n th e m ean in g fo r sp e ak e r a n d h e a re r w ould be th e sam e. T h is disqualifies th e th e o ry at least as re g a rd s th e h earer-sid e. w ould be th e a p p ro p ria te reactions to th e senten ce ‘T h e tow n-hall is r e d ’ o r ‘T h e tow n-hall dates fro m th e eig h tee n th c e n tu ry ? W e will th e re fo re have to su p p o se th a t th a t with w hich the h e a r e r connects th e sen ten ce acco rd ­ ing to a ru le is so m eth in g o th e r th a n an action. an d re tu r n to th e m uch m o re n a tu ra l co nception th a t th e action o r action-disposition w hich th e h e a rin g o f an ex pression effects is a re su lt re q u irin g th e com bin ed o p e ra tio n o f th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e expression and o f th e action-m otivations o f th e p erso n co n c ern ed . p articu larly w hen o n e considers th a t in this w eaker fo rm th e behaviouristic th e o ry w ould also be able to cope with both o f th e diffi­ culties to w hich I r e fe rre d a t th e b eg in n in g . I w ould also like to p o in t o u t once ag ain th a t 1 have chosen an exam ple w hich is specially fav o u rab le to th e th eory. W hat. T h e r e are any n u m b e r o f d iffe re n t situations in w hich this se n ten ce can be practically relevant. So in th e case o f th e sentences w ith which we a re at p re se n t con­ . th a t we h e re a n d now u n d e rsta n d th e sentence ‘T h e tow n-hall is on fire’ m eans th at it aw akens a disposition in us such th a t if we w ere th e fireb rig a d e we w ould rush o u t to extinguish the fire. fo r exam ple. it can be used as an a n n o u n c e m e n t o f success. a n d th at th e ru le we have to follow in using assertoric sentences is th e ru le w hich in th e sig nal-language is th e sp e ak e r-ru le. sen ­ tences w ould be e ith e r indicative o r im perative. A m o n g arsonists. fo r if th e re are indefinitely m any m eanings o f a linguistic ex p ressio n th en th e m e an in g o f th e expressio n cannot be som eth in g th a t o n e can learn acco rd in g to a ru le (or several rules).The meaning o f an expression 171 th a t th e m e an in g consists n o t in an action b u t in an action-disposition. T h is is certainly an attractiv e su g ­ gestion. B u t o n e could ju s t as well say th e m e an in g consists in th e disposition to ru n o u t in to th e street if o n e w ere an o cc u p an t o f th e tow n-hall. T h e a tte m p t to co n stru e an assertoric sen ten ce as a signal th u s leads to th e re su lt th a t n o t ju s t two m eanings m u st be a ttrib u te d to it b u t in n u m e ra b le m eanings. In co n trast to signals. In th e case o f m ost assertoric sentences it is difficult to th in k o f any kind o f a p p ro p ria te reactions. fo r exam ple. T h e m e an in g o f th e indicative se n ten c e w ould be d e te rm in e d even fo r th e h e a r e r by th e sp e ak e r-ru le a n d th e m e an in g o f th e im perative sen ten ce w ould be d e te rm in e d even fo r th e sp e a k e r by th e h e a re r-ru le .

o r in its n o rm ativ e fo rm u latio n : w h en ev er it is p erceived th a t th e tow n-hall is on fire o n e is to say ‘T h e tow n-hall is on fire. fo r ex am ple. T h is in te rp re ta tio n is th e re fo re elim inated. p e rfo rm th e ir la n g u ag e -d a n ce n o t in th e p re se n c e b u t in th e im m ed ia te a fte rm a th o f certain p ercep tu ally receiv ed factors. th a t h elp is n e e d e d to p u t o u t th e fire. signals too a re som etim es sto red a n d tra n sm itte d n o t in th e p e rc e p tu a l situation. (2) H e re too o n e can in tro d u c e th e co n c ep t o f a d isposition an d say: fro m th e m o m e n t o f th e rele v an t p e rc e p tio n th e sp e ak e r is in a c o rre ­ . T h e second a n d m o re plausible in te rp re ta tio n o f th e re fe re n c e to circum stances o r em p lo y m en t-situ atio n is th a t w hich c o rre sp o n d s to th e re fe re n c e to th e stim ulus in th e b eh av io u rist m odel: th e circum stances to w hich the m e a n in g -ru le ties th e use o f th e se n ten c e a re d efin e d by th e p e rc e p tu a l situ atio n o f th e speaker. e. T h is com plication can be easily in c o rp o ­ ra te d in to th e b eh a v io u rist th e o ry by m eans o f th e follow ing ad d itio n s: (1) th e no tio n o f p e rc e p tu a l circum stances can be e x te n d e d to in clu d e p erc ep tio n s w hich co n tin u e to exercise an influ en ce th ro u g h m em ory.g. C an o n e say th a t th e m e an in g o f an asserto ric se n ten ce consists in th e circu m stan ces in w hich it is used? T h is thesis fo r its p a rt allows o f two in te rp re ta tio n s. A pp lied to o u r exam ple th e sim ple version w ould be: always (or in m ost cases) w hen it is p erceiv ed th a t th e tow nhall is on fire o n e says ‘T h e tow n-hall is on fire’.’ O n e could also re g a rd this ru le fo r th e use o f th e p redicative sen ten ce as a specification o f a ru le fo r th e use o f th e predicate. B esides we w an ted to assim ilate th e h e a re r-ru le to th e sp e ak e r-ru le an d n o t vice versa. it is th e in fo rm a tio n -re q u irin g p a rtn e rs th a t first trig ­ g e r o ff th e la n g u ag e -d a n ce . T h is ex p lan a tio n w ould be an e x p lan a tio n o f th e p re d ic a te as a q u asi-p red icate.Analysis of the predicative sentence 172 c e rn ed (i. b u t only w hen they can be rele v an t to a p a r t­ n e r.e. fo r n o rm ally we use n e ith e r p red ic ate s n o r pred icativ e sentences in th e c o rre s p o n d in g p e rc e p tu a l situ ation. Bees. It is obvious th a t this ex p lan a tio n is in a d eq u a te. asserto ric sentences) ev e ry th in g d e p e n d s on w h e th e r at least th e sp eak er-sid e o f th e signal-schem a fits. O f course. w hich w ould th e n be: w h en ev er it is p erceiv ed th a t so m e th in g is o n fire o ne is to say th a t it is on fire. Firstly o n e could try to co n stru e th e circum stances practically. T h is ex p lan a tio n how ever am o u n ts to a rep e titio n o f th e ex p lan a tio n th a t was previously given fo r th e h e a re r a n d it w ould be subject to th e sam e w eaknesses. T h e m e an in g o f th e se n ­ ten ce ‘T h e tow n-hall is on fire ’ w ould th e n be d efin e d by th e circ u m ­ stances which give p o in t to th e u tte ra n c e o f th e sen ten ce. T h is view can be h eld in a sim ­ ple a n d a revised version.

h e m ay h av e in fe rre d it o r le a rn t it fro m so m eo n e else. T h e co n d itio n a l ru le is now an e x te n d e d situ atio n ru le a n d can be fo rm u la te d so m e th in g like this: if xy was p erceiv ed an d a p a r tn e r P is p erc eiv e d . E ven if o n e ig n o res th e fact th a t o n e can also significantly u tte r a se n te n c e w ith o u t an a d d re sse e b ein g p re s e n t it is n o n e th e le ss tr u e th a t o n e can u tte r it to any p a r tn e r j . only m u ch m o re com p licated . we a re n o t e n q u irin g a b o u t a m e ch a n ism u n d e rly in g th e u se o f th e se n ten c e b u t a b o u t th e ru le s o f its u se w hich o n e m u st be able to ex p lain to som eo n e. fo u n d e rs fo r r e a ­ sons o f p rin cip le. you m ay ask. th e p a r tn e r is th e n h im se lf a fa c to r th a t b elongs to th e circum stances. S is (or in th e n o rm a tiv e fo rm u la tio n : ‘is to b e ’) u tte re d . As in th e case o f th e h e a re r-ru le th e e m p lo y m e n t-ru le th re a te n s to b eco m e so co m p licated th a t it ceases to be d e te rm in a te . T h e thesis th a t th e m e a n in g o f a p re d ic a tiv e se n ten c e can be d efin e d in te rm s o f th e situ atio n o f its use. why s h o u ld n ’t a se n ten ce w hich is easy fo r us to u n d e r s ta n d re st u p o n a co m p licated m ech an ism ? H o w ­ ever.The meaning of an expression 173 sp o n d in g d isp o sitio n w hich is only ac tu a liz ed if he en c o u n te rs a p a r tn e r n e e d in g in fo rm a tio n . I can b rin g th e se two aspects in to re lie f by se ttin g th e m a g a in st th e tw o ad d itio n s in th e revised v ersion o f th e b eh a v io u ristic th e o ry . _ 1. T h e se w ere (a) to th e p r e ­ sen t circu m stan ces w ere a d d e d th e p ast circ u m sta n ce s w hich co n tin u e to e x e rt an in flu e n ce th ro u g h th e m e d iu m o f m e m o ry (b) th e p re s e n t circ u m sta n ce w hich calls fo rth th e actu al use o f th e se n ten c e is th e p re s ­ ence o f a p a r tn e r n e e d in g in fo rm a tio n . T h is revised v ersion o f th e b e h a v io u ristic ex p la n a to ry sch em a can easily lead o n e to su p p o se th a t th e lack o f situ a tio n -re la te d n e ss w hich is c h a racteristic o f th e use o f a p red ic ativ e se n te n c e is in p rin cip le n o th in g b u t th e e x te n d e d situ a tio n -re la tio n th a t a lre a d y h o ld s fo r b ee -lan g u a g e. h o w ev er e x te n d e d . In o r d e r to show this I w ould like to d raw a tte n tio n to two aspects o f th e use o f p red ic ativ e se n ten ces w hich co n tra d ict th e ac co u n t w hich rela tes use to circu m stan ces. I shall begin w ith th e seco n d o f th e se tw o p o in ts. th e actu al u se at a p a rtic u la r tim e a n d a p a rtic u la r place w o u ld n o t be g o v e rn e d by th e circu m stan ces at all. B u t now an asserto ric se n te n c e is n o t g o v e rn e d by a ru le w hich ties its use to a specified p a rtn e r-s itu a tio n .a n d this in th e case o f so sim ple a sen ten ce as ‘T h e to w n-hall is on fire ’! B ut. I t is essen tial to th e view th a t use is d e te rm in e d by circu m stan ces fo r if th e re is no p r e ­ sen t fa c to r w hich calls fo rth th e actual use. T h e sp e a k e r n e e d n o t have p erceiv ed th a t th e tow n-hall is on fire. B u t we d o n o t n e e d to dw ell on this in d e te rm in a c y a rg u m e n t. All th e se possibilities w ould have to be in c o rp o ra te d in th e e x te n d e d situ a tio n -ru le . o th e rw ise we a re n o t e n q u irin g a b o u t m e an in g .

who m ay o r m ay n o t be in te re ste d to h e a r it. fo r ex a m ­ ple. T h is re fe re n c e to th e situ atio n fro m a n o th e r situ atio n is so m e th in g fu n d a m e n ta lly d iffe re n t fro m a n e x te n d e d situ a tio n -re la tio n in th e sense o f situ atio n -d e p en d ence. even if n o t a p e rc e p tu a l one. 2. H o w ­ ever it is easy to see th a t this assu m p tio n is m istaken. So th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le w hich d e te r ­ m ines th e m e a n in g o f a p red ic ativ e se n ten c e ca n n o t be a co n d itio n al ru le o f w h atev er co n te n t. as iden tical a n d in this way m akes it possible to r e f e r to th e p e rc e p tu a l situ atio n fro m any o th e r situation.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 174 at any tim e in any place w ith o u t its m e a n in g chan g in g . Y ou m ig h t even . .’ O f co u rse if th e m an in A laska d oes u se this se n te n c e th e re will be ce rtain circum stances in his situ atio n w hich occasion his re p e a tin g of-this sen ten ce. . (T his o f co u rse does n o t apply to sentences w ith deictic ex pression s. I will la te r go into this p ro b lem th o r ­ oughly. use se n ten c e “ ” H o w ev er to rec o g n ize th e situ a tio n -in d e p e n d e n c e o f a p p red ic ativ e se n ten c e is n o t yet to u n d e rs ta n d it. T h e elu cid atio n o f this p ecu liarity o f p red ic ativ e se n ten c es is in my o p in io n o f decisive im p o r­ tan ce fo r th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e u se o f predicativ e sentences an d o f asserto ric la n g u a g e generally. In th e case o f th e e m p lo y m e n t o f a p red icativ e sen ten ce th e re a re n o t only n o p re s e n t circu m stan ces w hich b elong to its m ean in g . an d som eb o d y so m ew h ere in A laska o r in A fg h a n ista n can tell som e p eo p le.) B u t this m eans th e n th a t th e use o f th e se n ten c e is n o t ju s t less situ a tio n -re la te d th a n a signal b u t p o si­ tively situ a tio n -in d e p e n d e n t. F o r th e tim e b ein g h o w ev e r I can at m ost claim plausibility for th e thesis th a t it is th e sin g u la r te rm s in pred icativ e sentences w hich m ake possible this situ a tio n -in d e p e n d e n c e . ‘H e id e lb e rg tow n-hall is on fire . S om e e x p e rie n tia l fo u n d a tio n . T h is ex a m p le m ay at first a p p e a r so m ew h at artificial. It m ig h t at first seem th a t alth o u g h th e significant use o f th e se n te n c e ‘H e id e lb e rg tow n-hall is on fire ’ by th e m a n in A laska d id n o t re q u ir e a ca llin g -fo rth fa c to r th a t b elongs to th e m e a n in g it d id re q u ire th e circ u m sta n ce th a t h e h e a rd this se n ten c e on th e rad io . th e re a re no past circu m stan ces e ith e r. th a t H e id e lb e rg tow n-hall is on fire. it is only la te r th a t 1 shall sp eak a b o u t th ese ex p re ssio n s. seem s to be re q u ire d fo r th e significant use o f th e sentence. b u t th ese circum stances a re c e rta in m otives a n d in te rests a n d h av e n o th in g to do with th e m e a n in g o f th e se n ten ce. W hat d istin g u ish es th e sen ­ ten ce ‘H e id e lb e rg tow n-hall is o n fire’ fro m th e q u asi-p re d ica te ‘fire’ is th e fact th a t th e sin g u la r te rm h o ld s on to th e p e rc e p tu a l situ atio n . or so m e th in g in it. T h e m a n may fro m w h ate v er m o tiv e have g o t it in to his h e a d to sta rt a false ru m o u r. It can be re p o r te d on th e rad io . w hich in th e co n tex t o f o u r dis­ cussion possess a special significance. it c a n n o t be a ru le o f th e fo rm ‘if .

136f). B u t o u r u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e sta te m e n t is in d e p e n d e n t o f w h e th e r we take it seriously o r not. th e fu n c tio n o f characterizin g . It was still conceivable th a t th e re sho u ld be a co n d itio n al ru le w hich fixes th e m e an in g w hich concerns th e sp e a k e r’s p ast circu m ­ stances a n d re p re se n ts at least a necessary co n d itio n o f th e use o f th e p redicative sentence. A nd w h en we ask fo r th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le o f so m e th in g th a t has a fu n ctio n we a re n o t asking u n d e r w h at circ u m ­ stances it is to be u sed b u t how it is to be u se d if o n e wishes to achieve th e p u rp o se fo r w hich it exists. it b ecam e clear. T h is n egative resu lt raises once m o re th e questio n : w h at sh o u ld be th e d irectio n o f o u r en q u iry into th e m e an in g o f a p red icativ e sentence? I f we ca n n o t c o n stru e th e m e an in g as an object a n d if it does n o t consist in th e circum stances o f use w hat th e n rem ains? In p a rtic u la r you m ay ask: if th e circum stances o f use a re irre le v an t to th e m e an in g th e n m u st we n o t also a b a n d o n th e p resu p p o sitio n th a t to u n d e rsta n d a linguistic ex p ressio n is to know its em p lo y m en t-ru le? B u t to arg u e th u s w ould be to assum e th a t it is only to th e circum stances o f its em p lo y m e n t th a t so m e th in g can be re la te d by its em p lo y m e n t-ru le .’ W e u n d e rs ta n d this sta te m en t im m ediately alth o u g h we do n o t know w hat ex p e rien tial basis th e m an has fo r it. W h e n I first in tro d u c e d th e question a b o u t use it e m e rg e d th a t w hen we sp eak o f th e use o f so m eth in g it is norm ally so m e th in g th a t has a fu n ctio n (p. B u t th in k once m o re o f the m an w ho com es in h e re an d cries: ‘T h e tow n-hall is o n fire. It has now b ee n show n th a t the m e an in g c a n n o t ' be c o n tain e d in a conditional ru le at all. have a fu n c ­ tio n .The meaning o f an expression 175 be inclined to say th a t if som eone uses the sen ten ce in this way th e n he is using it in a way th a t is co n tra ry to th e ru le an d th a t uses w hich are co n tra ry to th e ru le do n o t n ee d to be. in c lu d ed in th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le . so it is plausible to su p p o se th a t . T h e conclusion is th u s un av o id ab le th a t n o t only th e p re se n t circ u m ­ stances b u t also th e p ast circum stances o f a se n ten c e’s em p lo y m e n t a re com pletely irre le v a n t to th e m e an in g o f th e sentence. I f we ask ourselves o r ask him w hat a re th e circum stances w hich have occa­ sio ned his u tte ra n c e o f this se n ten ce o r w h at g ro u n d s h e has fo r it we a re p re su p p o sin g th a t fo r him a n d fo r us in d e p e n d e n tly o f these c ir­ cum stances o r g ro u n d s th e m e an in g o f th e sen ten ce is alread y fixed. o n e could still su p p o se th a t a co n d itio n al ru le w hich fixes its m e an in g is m erely not sufficient fo r th e actual use o f a p re d ic a ­ tive sentence. In re g a rd to th e first point. in d e e d may n o t be. P redicates. an d th is w ould be a m istake. th e situ a tio n -in d e p e n d e n c e o f th e em p lo y m e n t o f a p r e ­ dicative sentence. N atu rally we will only take his sta te m e n t seriously to the e x te n t th a t we su p p o se it to be w ell-founded. in d e e d we d o n o t know w h e th e r h e has any ex p e rien tial basis at all.

T h e em ploym e n t-ru le s o f th e se n ten c e w ould on this view be ru les co n c ern in g how th e sentence is to be used to achieve th e in te n d e d effect.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 176 on e can also speak o f a fu n ctio n in th e case o f th e w hole sentence. . W e shall th e re fo re have to ex a m in e th e h y pothesis th a t th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le s o f asserto ric sentences a re n o t to be co n stru ed as conditional rules b u t r a th e r as in stru m en tal rules. on e can call ru les o f this kind instrumental rules. B u t in w hat sh o u ld th e fu n ctio n o f a sentence consist? D oes th e use o f a sen tence have a p u rp o se ? Do we use a se n ten c e with th e in te n tio n o f b rin g in g so m e th in g about? T h is w ould be th e sim plest way o f in te r ­ p re tin g th e idea th a t th e use o f a sentence has a fu n ctio n .

F o r precisely this re a so n how ever I stressed th a t o n e can u n d e r s ta n d th e c o n d itio n a l ru le n o t only as a causal ru le b u t also as a ru le w hich th e p e rso n w ho uses th e sign follow s a n d w hich o n e can th e re fo r e ex p lain . has beco m e a p p a re n t. My c ritiq u e o f th e co n d itio n alru le th e o ry was n o t specially d ire c te d a g a in st its causal v ersio n a n d can th e re fo re also be u n d e rs to o d as a c ritiq u e o f a th e o ry w hich takes W itt­ g e n ste in ’s p rin c ip le as its basis.LE CTURE 14 T he employment-rule of an assertoric sentence. h en c e d o n o t re q u ire to . A rgum ent with Grice and Searle ‘T h e m e a n in g o f a w o rd is w h at th e e x p la n a tio n o f th e m e a n in g e x p lain s.) F u rth e rm o re it still seem s trivial to say th a t to ex p lain th e m e a n in g of an e x p re ssio n can only b e to ex p lain th e r u le o f its em p lo y m e n t. I f u n lik e the o b je c t-o rie n ta te d p h ilo s o p h e r o n e starts n o t with re p re s e n ta tio n s b u t w ith m o d es o f b e h a v io u r a n d if f u r th e r ­ m o re o n e takes into ac co u n t la n g u ag e s m o re p rim itiv e th a n sen ten cela n g u ag e . P re d i­ cates have a p re -fo rm w hich I h av e called q u a si-p re d ic a te s an d w hich a lre ad y fu n c tio n as in d e p e n d e n t e x p re ssio n s. I b eg an th e analysis ö f th e m e an in g o f p re d ic a tiv e se n ten c es with th e e n q u iry in to th e m e a n in g o f p red ic ate s. In th e m e a n tim e a se co n d rea so n fo r this o r d e r o f p ro c e e d in g . T h e se q u en c e was as follows: in analysing th e p red ic ativ e se n te n c e it se e m e d n a tu ra l to sta rt w ith p red ic ate s b ecause it was this p a r t o f th e p re d ic a tiv e se n te n c e on w hich th e o b je c t-o rie n ta te d co n cep tio n o f th e m e a n in g o f p red ic ativ e se n ­ tences fo u n d e re d . a n d we h av e so fa r seen n o re a so n fo r n o t c o n tin u in g to a d h e r e to it. a n d on e m o re closely re la te d to th e m a tte r in h a n d . th e n it becom es clear th a t c h a ra c te riz a tio n -e x p re ssio n s a re th e linguistic ex p ressio n s which a r e th e easiest to u n d e rs ta n d . (In th e last le c tu re it re c e d e d in to th e b a c k g ro u n d inasm u ch as it could n o t fo rm th e basis o f th e b e h a v io u r­ istic version o f th e thesis th a t th e m e a n in g o f an e x p re ssio n is d e te r ­ m in e d by a co n d itio n a l rule.’ I hav e called this d ic tu m o f W ittg e n ste in ’s th e fu n d a m e n ta l p rin cip le o f analytical philo so p h y .

h o w ever. T h is account p ro ce ed ed in accordance w ith th e m o d el a p p r o p r ia te to quasi-predicates: to ex p lain an ex p re s­ sion is to show in w hich circu m stan ces it is to be used. I f p red icates a n d singular term s a re expressions w hich essentially co m p lete each o th e r th e n th e ir m e an in g can only co n ­ sist in th e c o n trib u tio n w hich each o f these types o f ex p ressio n m akes to th e m e a n in g o f th e w hole sentence. B u t su b seq u en tly th e re is no reaso n fo r n o t also calling signals qu asi-p red icates. T h e ir ex p lan a tio n is u n p r o b ­ lem atic fo r it is achieved by m eans o f exam ples by sim ple assig n m en t to p a rtic u la r circu m stan ces (perceived by the sign-u ser o r to be b ro u g h t a b o u t by th e recipient). Since this has b een d o n e in th e last le ctu re we could r e tu r n to th e discussion o f p red icates. th o u g h close to quasi-p red icates. B u t if this is so th e n it w ould be advisable b e fo re sta rtin g th e discussion o f the tw o se n ten ce-co m p o n en ts to achieve a t least a p r e lim in a ry ‘co n cep tio n (Vorbegriff) o f th e em p lo y ­ m e n t-ru le o f th e w hole sentence.as I have so far only b ee n able to su ggest . N ow th e c o m b in ed analysis o f th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le o f p red icates an d sin g u la r te rm s is sim ply th e analysis o f th e pred icativ e sen ten ce in its p red ic ativ e s tru c tu re . rea l cru x in th e analysis o f th e sem antics o f pred icativ e sentences. O n e can th u s th in k o f p red ic ativ e sentences as arising o u t o f quasi­ p red ic ate s th r o u g h th e a d d itio n o f sin g u lar term s. fo r I w ished to avoid con fu sio n in th e ex a m ­ in a tio n o f th e q u estio n o f w h eth e r predicative sentences can be co n ­ s tru e d as signals. 160). N ow it is becau se p red ic ate s. are n o t q u asi-p re d ica tes (for th ey a re essentially incom p lete ex p ressio n s an d this is so m e th in g th a t w ould also have to be em b o d ied in th e ir em p lo y ­ m e n t-ru le ) th a t my first account« o f th e way in which p red icates a re e x p la in e d f o u n d e re d (p. It h a d to be show n th a t it is useless n o t only fo r th e ex p la n a tio n o f predicates b u t also fo r th a t o f w hole sentences. h a d to be fu n d a m e n ta lly criticized.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 178 be s u p p le m e n te d by sin g u la r term s. T h e analysis o f sin ­ g u la r term s w hich to th e o b je ct-o rien tated p h ilo so p h e r a p p e a re d so u n p ro b le m a tic co n stitu tes fo r th e b e h a v io u r-o rie n ta te d a p p ro a c h th e . It is th e sin g u lar te rm s by m ean s o f w hich . A nd ac co rd in g to w h at has ju s t b e e n said a satisfactory ac co u n t o f th e ex p lan a tio n o f p red icates w ould now at th e sam e tim e have to in clu d e th e ex p lan a tio n o f sin g u lar term s. Since th e objectual a p p ro a c h (which a ro se fro m a o n e-sid e d co n c ern with sin g u lar term s) an d now th e thesis th a t m e a n in g consists in th e circu m stan ces o f em p lo y m e n t (which arose fro m a o n e-sid e d co n c ern w ith signal-signs fu n ctio n in g like p red icates . T h is m odel. In the last lecture I d id n ot d irectly re fe r to signals as q u asi-p re d ica tes.th e use o f pred icativ e sentences becom es situ atio n -in d e­ p e n d e n t.

if this w ere hisTuncti'on. O f cou rse if we sh o u ld be able to discover som e­ th in g a b o u t its use as a senten ce before th e elucidatio n o f th e sentenceco m p o n en ts a n d hen ce o f th e stru c tu re o f th e p red icativ e sentence. o n e is n o t sim ply d escrib in g o n e th a t is already know n. T h e question o f how th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le o f an assertoric sen ten ce is positively to be u n d e rsto o d was raised at the e n d o f th e last lectu re. for.The employment-rule o f an assertoric sentence 179 m ade in d e p e n d e n t) a re to be re g a rd e d as having fo u n d e re d we at p re ­ sen t lack a positive perspective th a t could guide an analysis o f p re d i­ cates a n d sin g u lar term s. T h e ex p lan atio n . In an investigation such as th e p re ­ sent o n e an are a has first to be o p en e d u p . C o u ld it be th a t th e em p lo y m en t-ru les we are seeking are ru les which som ehow rela te th e em p lo y m en t o f th e sentence to th e ad d ressee? I f so th e n this clearly ca n n o t be in such a way th a t th e ad d re ssee is u n d e rsto o d sim ply as a trig g e rin g -fac to r. th e n he w ould m erely be a n o th e r item in the circum stances. C onsequently such going to a n d fro is h ard ly to be avoided. th e n w hat we can find o u t ab o u t th e use o f th e assertoric sentence in gen eral b efo re th e analysis o f th e p redicative stru c tu re can only be re g a rd e d as a provisional account which can itself only becom e fully intelligible later th ro u g h the analysis o f th e p red icative stru c tu re . a fte r we h a d a rriv e d at th e negative resu lt th a t it ca n n o t be u n d e rsto o d as a conditional rule. O u r only reliable g u id e in this q u est is th e p rin ci­ ple th a t we can only c o u n t as th e m e an in g o f a sen ten ce th at o f w hich o ne can significantly say th a t we explain it w hen we ex p lain to so m eo n e how th e sentence is to be used. to w hich all o th e r form s. th e n obviously this can only co n cern th e sentence as an asserto ric sen­ tence in gen eral. A n d since o u r aim in th e co u n ter-m o v e to those one-sided ap p ro a ch es is to u n d e rs ta n d both p red icates a n d sin­ g u la r term s in th e ir m utually su p p le m e n tin g fu n ctio n we can only ex p ect to find such a g u id in g -p e rsp e ctiv e in th e e m p lo y m e n t-ru le of th e w hole sentence. A n d if th e pred icativ e se n ten ce-fo rm is th e m ost elem en tary se n ten c e-fo rm . as we have seen. as h igher-level form s. N ow if th e p re se n t circum stances h av e n o th in g to do with th e m e an in g o f th e asserto ric senten ce th en th e ad d re ssee o f th e in fo rm a tio n is th e only elem e n t p re se n t in th e situ atio n th a t could have so m eth in g to do with the m e an in g o f th e sentence. n o t as a predicative sentence. B ut how else is th e rela tio n o f th e use o f th e senten ce to th e ad d re ssee to be u n d e rsto o d ? I f th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le in which th e m e an in g is su p ­ posed to reside does no t rela te th e em p lo y m en t o f an asserto ric sen ­ tence to so m eth in g given (the p re se n t a n d past circum stances) a n d if . we saw. re fe r back. is n o t achieved by giving exam ples o f th e em p lo y m e n t o f th e sen ten ce in p a rtic u la r circum stances.

fo r th e sam e reasons. th e n th e only th in g left is to relate it to certain consequences o f th e se n ten c e’s em ploym ent. can in te n d to p ro d u c e in a p a rtn e r with an assertoric sentence a re so m u ltifario u s th a t they can n o t d e te rm in e its m eaning. a lth o u g h in itself it has no function. O ne possible way o f rela tin g th e m eaning o f a sen ten ce to an effect in the ad d re ssee w hich th e sen ten ce-u ser in te n d s w ould be this: th e sentence is used to b rin g ab o u t a p articu la r action o r action-disposition o f th e p a rtn e r. I am th u s taking u p the suggestion m a d e at th e en d o f the last lectu re th a t o n e sh o u ld tak e as o n e ’s sta rtin g -p o in t th e fact th a t linguistic expressions have a fu n ctio n an d en q u ire w h eth e r th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le w hich we explain w h en we ex p lain th e m e an in g co u ld be co n stru e d as an instrumental rule.at least as re g a rd s assertoric sentences . So w hen we ask w h eth e r th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le o f sentences relates to a p u rp o se we a re not asking w h eth er we use th e m fo r p u rposes: R ather we a re asking w h eth e r a sen ten ce has a s ta n d a rd p u rp o se. T h a t by u tte rin g a sen ten ce we n o rm ally in te n d to b rin g so m e th in g ab o u t is trivially tr u e . T h e p re se n t suggestion is . we d o so in o rd e r to achieve various o th e r p u rp o ses. u n ten ab le. So this possibility is excluded. th a t th e h e a re r u n d e rsta n d s th e sen ten ce if h e resp o n d s to it by acting in a p articu la r way. A nd th e sim plest way to co n stru e this w ould be as follows: th e em p lo y m en t-ru le o f th e sen ten ce relates to a purpose. T h e actions we. T h e relatio n betw een th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le an d th e p a r tn e r w ould th e n be this: w hen we say so m e th in g to so m eo n e we th ereby in te n d to b rin g so m eth in g about in him .like th e p rev io u s o n e a n d . I f th e re is any q u estio n at all o f an in te n d e d effect on th e p a rtn e r d e te rm in in g th e m e an in g th e n it can only be a disposition w hich co rresp o n d s to th e indicative sense o f th e . T h e qu estio n o f w h eth e r th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le o f an assertoric senten ce relates to a p u r ­ pose sho u ld n o t be co n fu se d with th e trivial q u estio n o f w h e th e r we use sentences to achieve p u rp o ses. B ut first we m ust dispose o f a m isu n d ersta n d in g .b u t we can in te n d to b rin g a b o u t all sorts o f things so it ca n n o t be this which d e te rm in e s th e m eaning o f th e sentence. an d even w hen we use it f o r t h e p u rp o se fo r w hich it ex ists.in its ow n p r o p e r fu n ctio n . in th e way th a t a h a m m e r has an d a sto n e has n o t an d w h eth e r this sta n d a rd p u rp o se is w hat we explain w hen we ex p lain its m eaning. re fu te d in th e last le ctu re.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 180 m o reo v er we wish to avoid relatin g it to so m eth in g in w ard ly r e p r e ­ sen ted . T his conception w ould be very close to th e con cep tio n .. A n d we can also use a sto n e for all sorts o f p u rp o ses. to an intended effect. As well as using a h a m m e r fo r th e p u rp o se fo r w hich it exists we can also use it for various o th e r p u rp o ses.

G rice. A ccordingly w hat is u n d e rsto o d is n o t th e sign b u t th e actio n o f th e sp e a k e r or.has th e fun ctio n o f in fo rm in g th a t so m e­ th in g is th e case. th a t h e believes th a t p. T h e fu n d a m e n ta l im p o rta n c e fo r sem antics o f ‘m e a n in g ’ in th e sense o f vouloir dire becom es clear w hen o n e realizes th a t th e action w hich so m e o n e p e r ­ fo rm s w hen he uses a se n ten c e consists in m e a n in g som ething-w ith th e sen ten ce. P. in a n o th e r p fo rm u la tio n . uses an asserto ric sen ten ce *p’. A sym p to m is a so-called n a tu ra l sign. F o r ex am p le. in o r d e r to b rin g it a b o u t th a t a p e rso n believes so m e th in g o n e can g et th e p e rso n in to th e a p p ro p ria te p e rc e p tu a l situ atio n o r o n e can see to it th a t h e perceives a sy m p to m (Anzeichen) o f its being th e case. vis-ä-vis a p a r tn e r. o f m e a n in g (vouloir dire) if o n e in te n d s. A n d o n e could r e n d e r this m o re precisely by saying: if so m eo n e. hold so m e th in g to be tru e . a n d a c o r­ re s p o n d in g o n e fo r im peratives. G rice show s th a t we can only sp eak o f in fo rm ­ in g or. W e m u st sharp ly d istin g u ish th e two m e an in g s o f th e G erm a n w o rd 'meinen’ w hich play a ro le in G rice’s th eo ry a n d fo r w hich in E nglish th e re are tw o d iffe re n t w ord s: (1) to m ean so m e th in g w ith a sign: E nglish: was meinst du ' ‘m e a n ’. W h e n I p o in t o u t to so m e ­ o n e th e p a w -p rin t o f a b e a r this can have th e significance th a t I in te n d to b rin g it a b o u t th a t h e believes th a t a b e a r is in th e vicinity. G rice’s p ro g ra m m e consists in a tte m p tin g to c o n stru c t th e co n ­ c e p t o f th e m e a n in g (sense) or u n d e rs ta n d in g o f linguistic ex p ressio n s o n th e basis o f th e c o n c e p t o f m e a n in g (vouloir dire). w hat is d o n e w ith th e sign. F re n ch : ‘vouloir dire’ (in G e rm a n too in stead o f £ damit?’ we can equally well ask ‘was willst du damit sagen?’) (2) to believe th a t so m e th in g is th e case. a state o f affairs w hose existence enables o n e to in fe r th e existen ce o f a n o th e r state o f affairs.The employment-rule o f an assertoric sentence 181 asserto ric se n ten ce. O n e could say: th e use o f an asserto ric se n ten ce th a t is to say th e sta te m e n t . h e in te n d s to b rin g it a b o u t th a t th e p a r tn e r hold s ‘ ’ to be tru e . m o re generally. o r. b e tte r. O n e could now b u ild th e co n c ep t o f in fo rm in g in to th e G ricean co n cep tu ality by saying: in fo rm in g is a special case o f m e a n in g (Meinen) nam ely th a t w hich consists in th e e m p lo y m e n t o f an asserto ric senten ce. N ow G rice shows t h a t w hen o n e d o es so m e th in g with th e in te n tio n o f b rin g in g it ab o u t th a t o n e ’s p a r t­ n e r believes so m e th in g this ca n n o t always be u n d e rs to o d as in fo rm in g o r as m e a n in g (in th e sense o f vouloir dire). P reviously I said th a t th e fu n ctio n o f th e asserto ric se n ten c e can be u n d e rs to o d as in fo rm in g (Mitteilen). H . in an in flu en tial p a p e r . B u ild in g o n this thesis. a n d o n e can now also u n d e rs ta n d th e ‘u n d e r s ta n d in g ’ o f th e h e a r e r as a c o n c ep t co rrelativ e to this m e a n in g (Meinen): th e h e a re r u n d e rs ta n d s w h at th e sp e a k e r m eans. in a . b u t such an act is n o t in fo rm in g .1 d ev e lo p e d a th e o ry a b o u t w hat it is to mean so m e th in g w ith a sign.

H ow ever. h e clearly does p n o t d o so in o r d e r to b rin g it a b o u t t h a t # believes that/?. firstly. an assertoric sentence ‘ ’ I d o n o t necessarily in te n d to b rin g p it a b o u t th a t he believes th a t p. A pupil. I shall deal only with this last p o in t w hich fo r us is th e m ain one. how ever h e c o n tin u e d to h old th a t th e e m p lo y m e n t-ru le o f an assertoric se n ­ te n ce consists in its b ein g used to b rin g it a b o u t th a t a p a r tn e r believes so m ething.in w hatever m o re precisely d efinable way . fo r w hat has first got to be d ec id e d is w h eth e r it is at all co rrect to say th a t so m eo n e who. T o this it can be objected. th a t o n e c a n n o t u n d e rsta n d / .to b rin g it a b o u t th a t th e p a rtn e r believes that/?. O r if A u tte rs. w ho answ ers th e te a c h e r’s q u estio n does n o t in te n d to in fo rm th e teach er. fo r exam ple. b u t I d o necessarily in te n d to b rin g it ab o u t th a t he believes th a t I believe th a t p (even if I’m lying I in te n d to b rin g it a b o u t th a t he believes th a t I believe that/?). B ut above all it does n o t follow fro m th e co rrectn ess o f th a t sta te m en t th a t th e m ean in g o f th e sen ten ce is co n tain e d in th e fu n ctio n o f an assertoric sen ten ce as this is h e re d efin ed .2 a b a n d o n e d his th e o ry fo r ju s t such reasons. vis-a-vis a p a rtn e r. o r th a t this is th e fu n ctio n o f th e sentence.3 T h is sta te m e n t seem s to m e to be correct. A ccording to th e new theo ry : w hen A uses. W h en I u tte r. A lth o u g h this is certainly m ost o fte n th e case. in a later p a p e r . to b rin g it a b o u t th a t o n e ’s p a rtn e r believes that/?. it does n o t follow fro m th e correctn ess o f this statem en t th a t th e in te n tio n to w hich it refers is th e p rim a ry in te n tio n co n n ected w ith th e use o f an assertoric sentence. nam ely in such a way th a t th e p a r tn e r (1) recognizes th e in te n tio n an d (2) th e recognizing o f th e in te n tio n is fo r him th e g ro u n d fo r th e fo rm atio n o f th e belief. I f we ap p ly W ittg e n stein ’s p rin cip le to G rice’s suggestion th en we w ould explain to so m eo n e th e m e a n in g o f an asserto ric sen ten ce ‘?’ by / telling him th a t it is used to b rin g it ab o u t th a t a h e a re r believes th at th e sp e a k e r believes th a t p. O n e w ould th u s explain th e m e an in g o f th e se n ten c e ‘ ’ by m eans o f a lo n g e r se n ten c e ‘q’ w hich contains th e e x p re s­ p sion ‘th a t/? ’ as a p art. th a t *q’ is clearly n o t synonym ous with ’?’. secondly. It is conceivable th a t this in te n tio n is m erely a conseq u en ce o f th e p rim a ry in te n tio n w ith which an assertoric sentence is used an d by re fe re n c e to w hich its fu n c tio n is to be u n d e rsto o d . vis-ä-vis so m eone. it is n o t always th e case. vis-ä-vis B. vis-ä-vis B. G rice him self. an assertoric se n ten c e *p\ th e n he in te n d s (in th e m o re precisely d efin ed way) to b rin g it ab o u t t h a t # believes th a t A believes th a t/? . F o r o u r p u rp o se s how ever we can ig n o re th ese refin em en ts. uses an assertoric sen ten ce ‘ ’ p always th e re b y in ten d s .Analysis o f the predicative sentence 182 particular way. an d . an assertoric sen ten ce ‘ \ know ing th a t # is convinced o f th e opposite.

I do not wish to suggest th a t G rice’s p roposal is w orthless. G rice attem p ts p r e ­ cisely to defin e a com prehensive con cep t o f m e an in g (in th e sense o f vouloir dire) w hich goes b eyond m e an in g in sentences an d also em braces signals. G rice’s th e o ry does n o t o ffe r an alternative to th e a p p ro a c h which has reco u rse to ideas a n d the behaviouristic ap p ro a ch . T o ap p eal to a sentence ‘q’ which p resu p p o ses th e u n d e r ­ sta n d in g o f a sentence in exp lain in g a signal x is n o t circular. th a t it has a fu nction. It w ould be ab su rd to suppose th a t w hen I say som eth in g to m yself I in te n d to b rin g it ab o u t th a t I believe th a t I believe th at so m eth in g is th e case. B u t in G rice’s th eo ry this is no t so. H ow ever. c a p tu re w hat is specific to assertoric speech. a so-called m eta-language. those nam ely w hich are n o t to be u n d e rsto o d causally. it sim ply leaves th e p ro b lem open. N onetheless it does seem th a t one uses th e linguistic sign to som e end. as we shall see. W h at distinguishes the G ricean th eo ry fro m th e o thers is th a t it n o t only p resu p p o ses th a t th e m e an in g -th e o rist u n d e rsta n d s m eta-linguistic sentences b u t also th at he alread y know s w hat it is to believe that p. at least not if th e latter re g a rd s itself as fu n d a m e n ­ tal. I believe th a t such a use o f signals only occurs w h ere the basic lan g u ag e o f those who u se th e signals is already a sentence-language.The employment-rule of an assertoric sentence 183 such an ex p lan a tio n unless one already u n d e rsta n d s th e m ean in g o f ‘th a t p ’ an d h en ce the m e an in g o f B ut even if we w ould o r could explain. B u t precisely because G rice’s concept o f m ean in g {vouloir dire) is so co m p re­ hensive. T h e re a re various types o f such circu lar m eta-linguistic theories o f m eaning. b u t o f w hich o ne can say th a t so m eth in g is signified by them . In th e case o f signals o f this kind it is in d e e d tru e th a t they a re ex plained in th e way envisaged by Grice. So if my suggestion th a t the em p lo y m e n t-ru le is to be u n d e rsto o d as som ehow related to th e ad d re ssee is to w ork th en this can only be if th e role o f th e ad d re ssee can also be in tern alized . an d with no chan g e o f m e an in g . W h en one speaks to o n eself one is clearly no t try in g to b rin g som ething about. th e m ean ­ ing o f a sen ten ce in this way this w ould not be a possible basis for a th e o ry o f m ean in g . h e can n o t. 1 w ould like to m ention o n e m o re difficulty. . in a p articu la r case. B ut this is to p re su p p o se every­ th in g th a t is to be explained. thus in explaining th e m ean in g o f sentences is n o t co n te n t to p re ­ su p p o se th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f c o rresp o n d in g sentences in an o th e r lan­ gu age. Finally. n o th eo ry o f m e an in g can be satisfactory which does n o t allow fo r th e fact th at we can also use assertoric sentences. w hen talking to oneself. Even if we re g a rd th e intersubjective em p lo y m en t o f sentences as basic. th e im p o rta n ce o f his co n trib u tio n lies elsew here.

im p e rativ e a n d in te n tio n a l sentences.b u t only believes so m e­ th in g . b u t th e re a re no actions o u tsid e th e use o f asserto ric sentences in w hich a belief-disposition could m an ifest itself in d e p e n d e n tly a n d n o t as a m e re co m p o n en t. we sh o u ld sta rt with th e actual m odes o f b e h a v io u r with w hich an ad d re ssee re sp o n d s to th e u tte ra n c e o f an assertoric sentence. i. th e cat ru n s tow ards th e sp o t b ecause it believes th a t th e re is so m e th in g th e re th a t has th e p ro p e rtie s x y w hich it can perceive and because it desires th in g s which h av e these p ro p e rtie s. an d p e rh a p s th e re is a way o f rela tin g th e em p lo y m en t-ru les to th e ad d re sse e which does n o t involve re g a rd in g th e la tte r as th e object o f an in te n d e d effect. a fu n ctio n . an d . th e n we c a n n o t m ak e use o f th e con cep t o f belief in ex p lain in g th e m o d e o f em p lo y m e n t o f an asserto ric sentence. T w o lin ­ guistic resp o n ses to a sta te m e n t th a t a re always possible a re th e u tte r ­ .b u t r a th e r th a t th e only actions o f th e h e a r e r w hich a re rela ted in a ru le -g o v e rn e d way to th e sta te m e n t o f th e sp e a k e r a re them selves speech-acts a n d consist in th e use o f a linguistic ex p ressio n . W hat d istin g u ish es th e p a r tn e r ’s re sp o n se to an assertoric sentence fro m th e resp o n se to a signal is not th a t th e p a r tn e r does n o t re sp o n d . assertoric. b u t th a t th e fu n ctio n does n o t relate to th e p ro d u c tio n o f an effect. F o r exam ple. T h a t th e cognitive a n d th e v o lu n tativ e factors are co n tra ste d w ith one a n o th e r at all in behaviour seem s th u s to be a co n sequence o f th e use of. if this is so. T h e in te n tio n a l action is th e exp ressio n o f a b elief and a d esire.e.to an assertoric sentence. A bove all we m u st sta rt at a m uch low er level a n d n o t o p e ra te fro m th e o u tse t with such high-level w ords as ‘believe’ a n d suchlike. on th e o th e r h a n d . itself re q u ire s to be ex p lain e d . P e rh a p s th e re is a n o th e r way o f u n d e rs ta n d in g th e fu n ctio n o f a sen tence. if correct. on th e o n e h an d .in w h at­ ev er m o re precisely d efin ab le way . In ste a d o f p re su p p o sin g th a t only a belief can c o rre sp o n d . I t is tru e th a t we speak o f th e actions o f in tellig en t anim als as being d e te rm in e d by beliefs a n d in te n tio n s. I f in seeking to u n d e rs ta n d th e w ord ‘believe’ we d o n o t wish to re s o rt once m o re to in te rn a l re p re se n ta tio n s th e n we m u st be clear th a t outsid e th e use o f sentences th e re a re no actions o r action-dispositions th a t o ne can sim ply d escribe as th e ex p ressio n o f a belief.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 184 T h is w ould su ggest th a t we should c o n tin u e to be g u id e d by th e id ea th a t th e se n ten c e has a sta n d a rd p u rp o se . T h a t th e p rim a ry effect o f an asserto ric sen ten ce o n an a d d re sse e is n o t an action b u t a belief is so m e th in g w hich. b u t. Is this conceiv­ able? In any ev e n t ev e ry th in g seem s to fav o u r a b a n d o n in g th e sugges­ tion th a t we sh o u ld rela te th e m e a n in g o f asserto ric sen ten ces to an in te n d e d effect a n d in te r p re t th e ir em p lo y m e n t-ru le s as in stru m e n ta l ru les.

I f h e says ‘n o ’ this d oes n o t m e a n th a t h e do es n o t believe th a t so m e th in g is th e case b u t th a t h e positively believes th a t so m e th in g is n o t th e case. B u t if you th in k th a t in saying this I am alread y a sse rtin g to o m u ch it d o e s n ’t m a tte r. W e w ould now have a new h y p o th e sis as to w h at th e actio n o f th e sp e a k e r a n d th e fu n ctio n o f th e se n te n c e consist in. E q u iv a len t to th e se a re th e re p e titio n o r d en ial o f th e sta te m e n t. S hall we th e n say th a t so m e o n e w ho rep lies with ‘n o ’ th e re b y m akes it know n th a t h e believes th e o p p o site o f w h at th e sp e a k e r believes? B u t th e n h e a r e r a n d sp e a k e r w ould n o t be c o n tra ­ d ic tin g o n e a n o th e r. th a t h e accep ts th e b elief o f th e sp e ak e r. T h e tw o se n ten c es ‘A believes th a t p ’ a n d ‘B believes th a t n o t-p’ d o n o t c o n tra d ic t each o th e r.The employment-rule of an assertoric sentence 185 ances ‘yes’ an d ‘n o ’. a n d o f c o u rse this is eq u ally tr u e o f th e sen ten ces A in te n d s to b rin g it a b o u t t h a t # believes th a t A believes that/> ’ an d *B in te n d s to b rin g it a b o u t th a t A believes th a t B believes th a t not-^>. C learly ‘n o ’ a n d ‘yes’ a re n o t ju s t two possible resp o n se s. H ow can a th e o ry such as th a t o f G rice a c co m m o d ate such facts? T h e ‘yes’ reactio n co u ld be a c c o m m o d a te d relatively easily: th e h e a re r th e re b y m akes it know n. In this ‘ca n ’ is g r o u n d e d every o th e r linguistic re sp o n se to th e u tte ra n c e o f th e sp e a k e r (a) in th e sense th a t th e re a re o th e r p o sitio n -tak in g s a n d equally th e possibility o f ab stain in g fro m ta k in g a p o sitio n a n d th ese possible re sp o n se s a re all g r o u n d e d in th e u n d e r s ta n d in g o f th e yes/no a lte rn a ­ tive (b) in th e sen se th a t every o th e r linguistic re sp o n se w hich can be r e g a rd e d as a re p ly to th e s p e a k e r’s u tte ra n c e p re su p p o se s explicitly o r im plicitly o n e o f th e p osition-takings. I f we ask ourselves w ith o u t p re c o n c e p tio n s w h at is it th a t is d e n ie d by th e h e a r e r th e an sw e r is th a t clearly it is th a t w hich th e sp e a k e r a sserte d . B u t w h at ab o u t ‘n o ’? C learly o n e c a n n o t say th a t th e h e a r e r is th e re b y m ak in g it know n th a t h e d o es n o t a c ce p t th e b elief o f th e sp e ak e r. r a th e r they b elo n g to g e th e r: th e h e a r e r can an sw e r w ith ‘yes’ or ‘n o ’. I f w hat th e sp e a k e r is d o in g is to be in te r p re te d as try in g to b rin g so m e th in g a b o u t th e n it re m a in s u n in te llig ib le w hat it is th a t th e h e a r e r is co n tra d ic tin g o r w hat it is th a t is d e n ie d o r affirm e d by th e h e a re r. o n e m ig h t say. w h at th e sp e a k e r is d o in g w hen h e uses an asserto ric se n te n c e is asserting so m e th in g an d . W e m u st first clarify w h at it is th a t so m e o n e is d o in g w ho uses an asserto ric se n te n c e if th e p e rso n to w hom he speaks can re s p o n d to it w ith ‘n o ’ a n d this u tte ra n c e is to be u n d e rs to o d in such a way th a t th e h e a r e r is c o n tra d ic tin g th e sp e ak e r. it is e n o u g h if you a d m it th a t th e h e a r e r can always rep ly w ith ‘n o ’ o r ‘yes’. likew ise th e u tte ra n c e s ‘t h a t p is t r u e ’ a n d ‘t h a t p is false’.’ W e have now a first im p o rta n t clue to th e e m p lo y m e n t-ru le o f an a sserto ric se n ten ce.

th a t it is asserted th a t it is tr u e th a t p p. In th e case o f an action w hich contains its p u rp o se in itself this division in to two stages does n o t apply. F o r ex am p le I p e rfo rm a ce rtain h a n d -m o v e m e n t on th e w indow catch in o r d e r to o p en th e w indow . so m eth in g about.th e em p lo y m en t o f th e sign this is n o t an act th a t can be d efin e d as b ringing . th e assertion. O f co u rse w h eth e r . T h u s en d s a re p u rs u e d w hich in tu rn a re in te n d e d as m eans to f u rth e r ends.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 186 th e fu n c tio n o f th e sen ten ce consists in its being u sed to assert so m e­ th in g o r to m ake an assertion. It derives fro m th e fact th a t an act is d efin ed by th e in te n tio n which gov­ ern s it. L. is n o t to be defin ed in term s o f th e in te n tio n o f p ro d u c in g an effect o rig in ates fro m J. etc. O n e can th e n ask fo r th e ru le which th e action . T h e q u estion is: if th e fu n ctio n of th e se n ten c e is so d efin ed th e n how a re the em p lo y ­ m e n t-ru le s o f th e se n ten c e to be u n d ersto o d ? N egatively we can say: w hen^f asserts th a t p this is an act. in o rd e r to let fresh air in. B ut o f course this im m ediately raises th e question: w hat does it m ean to assert so m ething? W e have alread y seen in th e provisional c h a ra c te r­ ization o f assertoric sentences in th e in tro d u c tio n th a t th e assertio n of a sen ten ce ‘ ’ contains a tru th -claim . In th e case o f an action th a t is d irec ted tow ards an effect on e first d eterm in e s th e in te n d e d effect.m u st follow in o rd e r to achieve th e p u rp o se. the assertoric sen tence.o r th e em p lo y m e n t o f m ean s . B ut we ca n n o t be co n te n t with such explanations. As Searle has show n. As th e assertion-act is n o t d efin ed by re fe re n c e to an in te n d e d effect it can only be defined by th e actio n -ru le itself (which o f co u rse is always to be u n d e rsto o d as th e em ploym entru le o f th e sign) a n d again this m eans th a t th e em p lo y m en t-ru les are n o t to be co n stru e d as in stru m e n ta l rules. A nd this m eans: I let fresh air in (act C) by o p e n in g th e window (a c t# ) an d I do this by m oving my h a n d in a p a rtic u la r way (act A). by its p u rp o se . o r try in g to b rin g . b u t co n tra ry to G rice’s way o f d efin in g th e speech-act . a n d th a t bodily acts are p e rfo rm e d in o r d e r to achieve so m eth in g . so m eth in g he does.5 T o speak o f d iffe re n t acts w hich a re fo u n d e d in o n e a n o th e r is sta n d a rd in ac tio n -th eo ry an d co rre sp o n d s to o u r o rd in a ry way o f speaking. A ustin. th e act w hich Grice called m e an in g (in th e sense o f vouloir dire). in o r d e r to achieve so m e th in g f u rth e r . A ccordingly we can also say o f th e sign. B u t now w hat so rt o f rules a re they? T h e thesis th a t th e g e n u in e speech-act. A ustin d istinguishes th re e acts w hich a re p e rfo rm e d in u sing a se n ten ce. a n d th e n by m eans o f this one defines th e action.4 th e rules m u st b e rules th a t are co nstitutive o f an action. th a t th e p u rp o se fo r w hich it is used is sim ply th e act itself.

it is tru e . has subsequently b ee n d eveloped as a th eo ry o f m eaning by A lston an d S earle.w hich S earle calls the ‘sincerity ru le ’ an d th e ‘essential ru le ’. .’ . ‘he asserts th a t p in o rd e r to convince th e p a r tn e r ’ (in o rd e r to b rin g it a b o u t th a t th e p a rtn e r believes th a t p)\ o r p u ttin g it th e o th e r way ro u n d : ‘he seeks to convince the p a rtn e r by assertin g th a t p ’. Back now to speech-acts. w hat h e m eans by ‘u n d e rta k in g to th e effect th a t’. I shall deal w ith th e first p a r t o f S earle’s fo rm u latio n o f this rule . th e central concern o f w hich lay else­ w h ere (tho u g h I n ee d n o t go into this here).The employment-rule o f an assertoric sentence 187 it is correct to speak h e re o f several acts ra th e r th an several ways of d escribing o ne an d th e sam e act is d isp u ted in actio n -th eo ry :6 b u t we do n o t n ee d to b o th e r ab o u t this here. and h en c e for th e em p lo y m en t o f an asser­ to ric sentence: (1) th a t an assertoric sentence fp* is only to be used w hen th e sp eaker believes th a tp an d (2) th a t th e em p lo y m en t o f this sentence ‘counts as an u n d e rta k in g to the effect that/? rep rese n ts an actual state o f affairs’. A ccording to A ustin we are to distinguish (1) th elocutionary act.9 S earle. F u rth e rm o re it is n o w h ere show n w hat th e connection is betw een these two rules . an d th e sem antically relev an t o n e.11 So it rem ain s u n clea r w h eth e r these a re two in d e p e n d e n t conditions which m u st b o th be fu l­ filled or w h e th e r th e o n e is th e consequence o f th e o th er. th e u tte ra n c e o f certain stru c tu re d sounds (2) th e illocutionary act. th e relation betw een these two acts is such th at on e can say: h e u tte rs th e sentence ‘ y in o rd e r to assert th a t p o r a lte rn a ­ p tively: he asserts that/? by u tte rin g o r em ploying th e sen ten ce ‘ ’ an d (3) p th e perlocutionary act. these how ever have rem a in ed u n d ev e lo p e d . th e m e an in g (in th e sense o f vouloir dire). th u s in o u r case the asserting. A u stin ’s line o f th o u g h t. .7 A ustin ’s co n trib u tio n consists in having h ig h lig h ted th e illocutionary act as a distinct act o r act-description. n o r does S earle ex p lain . 199). it m u st som ehow co n cern th e ac t-ch aracter o f assertion.la ter (p. I shall re tu r n to this difficulty later (p. It is th e second p a rt o f th e fo rm u latio n (‘th a t p rep rese n ts an actual .10 H ow ever.g. it is n o t clear.‘an u n d e rta k in g to th e effect th a t . 214ff) a n d fo r th e p re se n t confine my a tte n ­ tio n to the ru le w hich S earle obviously reg ard s as th e fu n d a m e n ta l o n e: th e ‘essential r u le ’. th a t act o r those acts which in te n d effects an d w hich one seeks to achieve by m eans o f th e illocutionary act e.8 b u t in n e ith e r o f these a u th o rs do we find a satisfactory characterizatio n o f th e em ploym ent-rules o f this act. as against th e perlocutionary act tow ards which G rice’s th e o ry is o rie n ­ tated. T h u s h e gives the follow ing rules fo r th e illo­ cu tionary act o f assertion. has co n stru cted a w hole system o f rules in g ra n d style an d in th e process has p ro d u c e d a n u m ­ b er o f ideas which can serve as guidelines.

rem ains com pletely em pty. how ever we m u st dem olish p se u d o -e x p lan a tio n s to clear th e way fo r real ex p la ­ nations. fo r th e q u estio n o f w hat an assertion is can be n o th in g b u t th e q u estio n : in ac cordance with w h at rules is this act p erfo rm e d ? L et m e recall: th a t th e use o f an assertoric sen ten ce is to be c o n s tru e d . you may ask.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 188 state o f a ffairs’) th a t is crucial. o f know ing th a t so m eo n e w ho asserts th a t/? asserts th a t it is tr u e th at/?? In th e first place.I have n o t sm u g g led in th e w ord ‘tr u e ’. T h e inevitable c o u n te r­ q uestion is: w hat a re states o f affairs a n d how does o n e tell w h e th e r they a re ‘actu al’? N ow because S earle uses *p' to re fe r n o t to th e asser­ toric se n ten c e b u t to th e p ro p o sitio n al c o n te n t . I can now be accused o f w h at I always accused th e o th e rs o f d o in g : n am ely o f sm uggling into th e ex p lan a tio n a w ord w hich itself has first to be ex p lain ed : th e w ord ‘tr u e ’. you will perceive. (2) th a t th e w ord ‘a ssert’ occurs ag ain in th e ex p lan a tio n shows th a t this sta te m en t can at m ost re p re se n t a first step tow ards an ex p la ­ n ation. A n d as we also*have to o m it th e ex p ressio n ‘wishes to say’ (‘m e a n s’) in exp lain in g th e use we can say even m o re sim ply: w hen a sp e a k e r uses an assertoric senten ce ‘?’ h e asserts th at/? / an d w h en h e asserts th at/? h e asserts th a t it is tru e that/?. T h is ex p lan a tio n . m o reo v e r with its re fe re n c e to actual a n d n o n ­ actual states o f affairs it w ould lead stra ig h t back to th e o b ject-o rien ­ tated a p p ro a c h . (3) . B u t th e state o f affairs that/? actually obtains w h en it is tru e th at/? (above p. T o this I sho u ld reply: (1) S earle’s sta te m en t do es in d e ed lose its a p p a re n t e x p lan a to ry value as a resu lt o f this sim plification.an d this is th e crucial p o in t . its sim plified fo rm how ever is in te re stin g fo r us b ecause it b elongs directly to th e co n tex t o f m odes o f b eh a v io u r reflection on w hich has led us to conclude th a t th e use o f an asserto ric sen ten ce is to be co n stru e d as assertion. It is obvious th a t o ne ca n n o t explain th e use o f a se n ­ ten ce to som eo n e by saying th a t som eone w ho uses p ’ wishes th e re b y to say th a t ‘p ’ re p re se n ts an actual state o f affairs. In th e second place. W hat is th e use.th u s as I have used ‘*p*’ _ We m u st re fo rm u la te S earle’s ex p lan a tio n in th e follow ing way: so m eone w ho uses ‘ ’ wishes th e re b y to say th a t th e state o f affairs th a t p p actually obtains. r a th e r this w ord belongs to assertoric speech itself. fo r in it ev e ry th in g th a t sh o u ld be ex p lain ed is sim ply p re su p p o se d . 44). It is these m odes o f b eh a v io u r them selves to w hich we m ust tu r n if we w an t to know w hat an assertio n is. th e w ord ‘asserts’ occurs again in th e ex p lan atio n . N e ith e r S earle’s com plicated sta te m en t n o r its sim plified fo rm have any v alue in them selves. You will p e rh a p s find this a tte m p t to sim plify S earle’s ‘essential ru le ’ rid iculous a n d say th a t all it achieves is th a t this ru le loses all e x p la n a ­ tory force.

In th e m o st im p o rta n t tra d itio n o f m o d e rn ph ilo so p h ical sem antics (a tra d itio n w hich ex te n d s fro m F re g e th ro u g h W ittg e n ste in ’s Tractatus to T arsk i. W h a t can b e said h e r e a n d now is: (1) th e rep lies by m e an s o f (a) ‘n o ’. th e yes. 4 7 f). th e sp e a k e r too in stea d o f sim ply a sse rtin g th at/? can assert th a t it is tr u e th at/? (it was precisely this th a t m y sim plified v ersion o f S e a rle ’s sta te m e n t b ro u g h t out). above all o th e r speech-acts. enab le us to take a first step to w ard s such a n analysis. A n d as ‘it is tr u e th a t/? ’ is eq u iv ale n t in m e a n in g to the o rig in a l sta te m e n t ‘ ’ th e sp e a k e r’s s ta te m e n t alre ad y im plicitly co n tain s p a d en ial o f th e possible d en ial o f th e h e a re r (cf. a re clearly eq u iv ale n t in m e an in g . in d e e d we shall see th a t th e analysis o f th e use o f th e w o rd ‘tr u e ’ coincides w ith th e analysis o f th e u se o f asserto ric sentences.g. B u t this m ean s th a t since th e . p. (c) ‘th a t is false’.o r n o -re sp o n se . th e o rig in a l use o f th e asserto ric se n ten c e by th e sp e a k e r is also re la te d in a ru le -g o v e rn e d way to th e y es/n o -reactio n o f th e h e a re r. H ow th e fact th a t th e use o f th e w ord ‘tr u e ’ belo n g s to asserto ric sp eech is to be in te r p re te d is so m e th in g th a t will c o n tin u e to occupy us fo r a lo n g tim e. a signalla n g u a g e ). a n d in sem an tic th e o ry th e w o rd ‘tr u e ’ can also be u se fu l w h e re a la n g u a g e is th e m a tiz e d in w hich th e w ord ‘tr u e ’ does n o t o cc u r (e. it d o es. O n e can th e re fo r e say th a t a lth o u g h th e yes/no reply has a w id er field o f ap p lica tio n th a n asserto ric se n ten ces th e analysis o f ‘yes’ an d ‘n o ’ as u sed in th e co n tex t o f assertoric speech is id e n tic al w ith th e analysis o f th e w ords ‘tr u e ’ a n d ‘false’. Likew ise th e rep lies by m eans o f (a) ‘yes’ (b) th e re p e titio n o f th e assertio n (c) ‘th a t is tr u e ’.re la te d in a ru le -g o v e rn e d way to th e s p e a k e r’s u tte ra n c e . F o r now we can at least say: (1) N o t only a re th e speech-acts w ith w hich th e h e a r e r re sp o n d s to th e sp e a k e r a n d . b u t only as a w ord w hich th e sem an tic th e o rist uses.The employment-rule o f an assertoric sentence 189 as assertio n re su lte d fro m th e fact th a t th e h e a r e r can rep ly to th e sp e a k e r’s u tte ra n c e w ith ‘yes’ (or ‘th a t is tr u e ’) o r ‘n o ’ (o r ‘th a t is false’) a n d th a t th e u tte ra n c e ‘n o ’ is to be u n d e rs to o d as m e a n in g th a t th e h e a r e r is co n tra d ic tin g th e sp e ak er.12 O n th e o th e r h a n d th e fact th a t asserto ric sp eech is a fo rm o f speech in w hich th e u se o f th e w o rd ‘tr u e ’ itself has a co n stitu tiv e ro le has so fa r b e e n m o re o r less ig n o re d w ith th e re m a rk a b le ex c ep tio n o f M ichael D u m m e tt’s re c e n t book o n F rege. C a rn a p a n d D avidson a n d to w hich I shall be re f e r rin g again) th e w o rd ‘tr u e ’ o ccupies a c e n tra l place. (b) th e d en ial o f w h at is asserte d . h o w ever. B u t in so d o in g h e h im self is d e n y in g th e possible n eg ativ e rep ly o f th e h e a re r. N ow this does n o t yet enab le us to give an analysis o f th e em p lo y ­ m e n t-ru le s o f an assertio n . (2) It is n o t only th e h e a r e r w ho can say ‘th a t is tr u e ’.

h e n c e p re s u p p o s e d en ial as a possibility.to th e sam e th in g : th e o n e denies what th e o th e r affirm s. as re g a rd s th e ru le -g o v e rn e d relatio n to th e u tte r ­ an ce o f th e sp e a k e r. It is n o t ju s t th a t th e act o f th e h e a r e r reacts u p o n th e sp e a k e r o r his act. a n d likewise th e q u es­ tio n in g ..anticipates a d en ial o r is itself th e . B u t th e n th e fo rm e r is equally th e d en ial o f th e la tte r.th o u g h o f co u rse in a way th a t has yet to be e x p la in e d . th e affirm ing. nam ely as d iffe re n t position-takings to th e sam e th in g w hose n eg atio n is asserte d in th e d en ial. O n e can call all th e se speech -resp o n ses w hich p re s u p p o s e th e possibility o f denial. 46 f) th e re is n o absolute distinction b etw een affirm ativ e a n d n egative statem ents. W e can only say th a t th e la tte r is th e d e n ia l o f th e fo rm e r. at any ra te in its basic fo rm s o f ‘yes’ a n d ‘n o ’. as w e saw e a rlie r. I f we co n fin e o u r ­ selves to th e possibility o f an sw e rin g ‘yes’ or ‘n o ’ as th e basic possibility th e n th e only ch a racteristic o f th e use o f an asserto ric sen ten ce so fa r to e m e rg e is th a t it . d o u b tin g . resp o n se s o f th e h e a r e r re fe r back to th e s p e a k e r’s u tte ra n c e in fu n d a m e n ta lly th e sam e way as denial. r a th e r b o th acts clearly relate . If th e h e a r e r resp o n d s with ‘n o ’ th e d istin ctio n red u c es to this: th a t th e o riginal sp e ak e r m akes so to sp eak th e first ‘m o v e’. T h u s in so fa r as th e rela tio n betw een sp eak er a n d a d d re sse e is n o t a one-w ay stree t it c o rre sp o n d s n e ith e r to th e stimu lu s -re s p o n s e sch em a n o r to th e G ricean co n cep tio n o f a p u rp o sere la te d act. (p. B u t th e re is an essential d iffe re n c e betw een this k ind o f h e a r e r ’s re sp o n se a n d th e o th e r th in g s o n e w ould describe as responses. is itself an asser­ tion. can equally well re sp o n d w ith ‘yes’ o r ‘n o ’ o r an a b ste n tio n a n d th a t h en c e th e re is a specific a re a o f fre e d o m h ere. It is n o t ju s t th a t th e h e a re r. etc. F o r all these resp o n se s tak e place ag a in st th e b a c k g ro u n d o f th e possibility o f d en ial. T h is resu lts in a fa r-re a c h in g relativization o f th e d istin ctio n b etw e en sp e a k e r a n d h e a re r. A n d in d e ed this co u n te r-u tte ra n c e o f th e h e a re r is re la te d to th e sp e a k e r’s u tte ra n c e in precisely th e sam e way th a t th e s p e a k e r’s u tte ra n c e is re la te d to th e h e a r e r ’s u tte ra n c e . M o reo v er. r a th e r th e ch a racteristic f e a tu re at an y rate o f d en ial is th a t it refers back to th e u tte ra n c e o f th e speak er. (2) T h e h e a r e r ’s re sp o n se . W h a t have we th e re b y achieved? Still very little.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 190 e m p lo y m e n t-ru le s o f th e asserto ric sen ten ce re la te n e ith e r to th e cir­ cu m stances o f u se n o r to an in te n d e d effect it can now be ex p ected th a t th e em p lo y m e n t rules w hich we a re seeking a re som ehow m ed iated th ro u g h th e possible co n tra d ic tio n o f th e h e a re r. in c lu d in g d en ial itself. A nd becau se all o th e r possible resp o n ses by m eans o f speech-acts also p re ­ su p p o se one o f th e se p o sitio n -tak in g s they too a re n o t m e re resp o n ses to th e sp e a k e r’s u tte ra n c e .as an a ssertio n . this is b ecause. answers in stead o f resp o n ses.

47). I t is conceivable how ever th a t this c o n fro n ta tio n o f two o p p o sed assertions p rovides an initial basis on w hich to co n d u c t o u r search for th e ru les which d e te rm in e th e em p lo y m e n t o f an assertio n . B ut w hat is ‘tr u th ’ an d how can the relatio n to it be reflected in em ploym ent-rules? . a n d this o f course does n o t a m o u n t to an em p lo y m en trule.The employment-rule o f an assertoric sentence 191 denial o f an o th e r assertion. I have already p o in te d th a t o u t in th e in tro ­ d u ctio n (p. As th e two assertions are re la te d to o ne a n o th e r in such a way th a t the o n e calls ‘false’ w hat th e o th e r designates ‘tr u e ’ th e c o n fro n ta tio n clearly con­ cerns th e tru th o f th e statem ent.

H ow ever. B u t th e q u estion was: How? T h e m ost n a tu ra l th in g seem ed to be to view th e act as b ein g d efin e d by an in te n d e d effect an d th e rules as in stru m e n ta l rules. th e co rrect sta te m en t th a t so m eo n e who. even if this basis can itself only be subsequen tly con so lid ated by th e analysis o f th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e co m p o n en ts o f th e p red icativ e sentence. (3) It n e x t seem ed plausible to in te rp re t th e em p lo y m en t-ru les as fu n ctio n al ru les a n d to rela te th em . an d o f the singular term s w hich s u p p le m e n t p red ic ate s so as to fo rm elem e n ta ry asserto ric se n ­ tences. Even this q uestion o f a m erely provisional u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le s o f assertoric sentences tu rn s o u t to be exceedingly difficult. a n d th a t m ean s o f th e m eaning. u tte rs an assertoric se n ten c e *py th e re b y in fo rm s him th a t h e . I will su m m arize th e results achieved so far: (1) A lready in th e le ctu re b e fo re last we w ere able to exclu d e th e behaviouristic o r quasi-behaviouristic conception according to which th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le rela tes to circum stances. on th e o n e h a n d . this con cep tio n led to th e speech-act b ein g d efin ed as an act o f in fo rm in g . on the o th e r h a n d . W e n e e d a reasonably solid conceptual basis fo r th e en q u iry in to th e u n d e rs ta n d in g o f th e co m p o n en ts o f an elem en tary assertoric s e n ­ ten ce. vis-ä-vis a p a rtn e r. th e em p lo y m en t-situ atio n . (2) Likewise excluded is the object-orientated conception which relates th e em p lo y m e n t o f th e sentence to a re p re se n ta tio n o r idea (how ever this is to be in te rp re te d ) o f a state o f affairs o r actual state o f affairs. o f w hole asserto ric se n ­ tences. such an ex p lan a tio n w ould be a hysteron-proteron because th e state of affairs can itself only be identified by m eans o f sentences.LECTURE 15 Positive account of the employment-rule of assertoric sentences in terms of the truth-relation In th e last le ctu re I s ta rte d o u t fro m th e assu m p tio n th a t b efo re we can d eterm in e th e em ploym ent-rules o f predicates. to th e consequences o f th e speech-act. we m u st first possess a p relim in ary con cep tio n o f th e em p lo y ­ m e n t-ru le s. to th e a d d re ssee a n d .

It belongs to th e sense o f an assertion th a t it con tain s a re fe re n c e to an assertio n co n tra d ic tin g it. a n d th a t this m eans th a t in a specific way h e in te n d s to b rin g it ab o u t th a t th e p a r tn e r believes th a t he believes that/?. a p ro c e d u re w hich co n c e n tra te d en tirely on one reply. th a t w ith th e w o rd ‘n o ’. th a t we sh o u ld u n d e r s ta n d th e sem antically re le v a n t act o f em p lo y in g an asserto ric se n te n c e n o t as an act o f c o m m u n ic atio n b u t as an act o f assertion. viz. we co u ld find n o satisfactory answ er in S earle to th e q u estio n co n c e rn in g th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le s o f an assertio n . B u t first I w ould like to deal w ith two d o u b ts th a t m ig h t be raised a b o u t my p ro c e d u re at th e en d o f th e last le c tu re . T h e q u estio n we m u st now ask is w h e th e r this is a possible basis fo r fin d in g th e em p lo y m e n t-ru le s o f asserto ric sen ten ces th e e x p la n a tio n o f w hich co u ld claim to be th e ex p lan a tio n o f th e ir m e an in g . T h is is how f a r we h a d got. also p roved to b e an u n su ita b le basis fo r a rriv in g at th e e m p lo y m e n t-ru le o f th e sen tence. It is only this circ u m sta n ce w hich p erm its o n e to call th e u se o f an asserto ric se n te n c e ‘a sse rtio n ’. (1) Since I have m yself em p h asized th e im p o rta n c e o f th e fact th a t in asserto ric speech th e w o rd ‘tr u e ’ occurs. A n d do we n o t th e re fo re have to p ro v id e a t least a provisional e x p la n a tio n o f th e w ords ‘tr u e ’ an d ‘false’? (2) H ow fa r is o n e ju stifie d in a c c o rd in g such a special p o sitio n to th e n eg ativ e reply? Even if it is clear th a t all o th e r p o sitio n -tak in g s tak e p lace ag ain st th e b a c k g ro u n d o f th e possibility o f d en ial it co u ld n o n e ­ . (5) I f th e e m p lo y m e n t-ru le s can only be re la te d to th e p a r tn e r an d to th e consequences o f th e act then th e only a d e q u a te p ro c e d u re seem ed to b e to ask: w h at a re th e possible resp o n se s o f th e a d d re sse e th a t a re re la te d by a ru le to th e sp e a k e r’s u tte ra n c e ? It e m e rg e d th a t th ese resp o n se s a r e them selves speech-acts a n d th a t u n d e rly in g th e m all a re th e answ ers by m ean s o f ‘n o ’ o r ‘yes’ o r an in te rm e d ia te p o sitio n -tak in g . H o w ev er. a ‘n o ’ w hich is clearly u se d as e q u iv ale n t in m e a n in g to th e ex p ressio n ‘th a t is false’. It is only th e sense o f th ese em p lo y m e n t-ru le s th a t co u ld d e te rm in e ju s t w hat is m e a n t by calling a speech -act ‘a sse rtio n ’ . ap p e a lin g to th e illocutio n ary -act th e o ry .Positive account o f the employment-rule 193 believes th at/?. a n d th a t th e possibility o f ‘n o ’ possesses a fu n d a m e n ta l significance fo r all o th e r p o sitio n -tak in g s. A n d it also b ecam e clear th a t th e ‘n o ’ itself expresses an assertion. it w ould seem necessary th a t th e f u r th e r analysis sh o u ld n o t only be o rie n ta te d to w ard s th e ‘n o ’ b u t sh o u ld also ta k e ac co u n t o f th e fact th a t th e ‘n o ’ o f asserto ric speech has th e specific sen se o f ‘th a t is false’.a d e s­ ig n a tio n w hich so far I have m erely taken as a fact fro m o rd in a ry usage. (4) I th e n su g g ested . o r an ab sten tio n fro m ta k in g a p o sitio n .

But what do we mean by these words ‘true’ and ‘false’? I thus com e to the other point. for exam ­ ple: ‘(I understand what he is saying:) He is asserting that/?. he understands the asser­ tion. A nd as we have seen this means: the assertion is so understood that another assertion can say that what it asserts is false or that it is true. prior to any position-taking. but if what is understood when the linguistic expression is understood is its function. T h e hearer says. But this means: whoever understands the assertion understands it as one which can be true or false. introduced by Grice.Analysis of the predicative sentence 194 theless be argued that. True. prior also to the withholding from any position-taking. however it is not identical with any position-taking. We must o f course accept that this under­ standing o f the assertion already belongs to the context o f possible position-takings towards the assertion. and indeed we can now say: what the hearer understands when he understands the speaker’s assertion is.’ T h e analysis o f the em ployment-rules o f an assertoric sentence will have to pay par­ ticular attention to this understanding on the part o f the hearer. o f m eaning in the sense o f vouloir dire from Grice’s own interpretation o f it as communication and apply it to the present view that it is an assertion. is the under­ standing o f the speech-act. though it does seem to be the primary hearer-correlate o f the speech-act. And this understanding is not just a theoretical assumption that we can make in order to explain the transition from the hearing o f an assertion to the hearer’s taking up his own position. for I pointed out that . and one can then say o f this assertion itself that it is understood. on the basis o f what has now been achieved. the employment-rules o f the assertoric sentence. rather there are also responses belonging to the hearer’s behaviour in which the pure understanding o f the assertion is expressed. for when we ask about the m eaning o f a linguistic expression we are asking what it is to understand it. for the addressee. Before attempting. the reference to the pos­ sible denial o f the hearer is not relativized by this inclusion o f the hearer’s understanding. then we can now also say: the hearer understands what the speaker means. precisely. to look for the employment-rule o f an assertoric sentence must we not first explain the use o f the words ‘true’ and ‘false’? Now one could say that this has already been done. it is merely supplem ented. Som eone who understands an assertion understands it precisely as one to which an assertion denying it can be opposed. However. he understands what he wishes to say. one must distin­ guish between the understanding o f the linguistic expression and the understanding o f the speech-act. then the two things belong together: to understand an assertoric sentence is to understand what assertion it can be used to make. If we free the notion.

Positive account of the employment-rule 195 ‘that p is false* is used equivalently with the denial o f the sentence and ‘that/? is true’ equivalently with the denial o f this denial. e.’2 Since Aristotle thought that there are negative and positive statements.g. I f we ignore this peculiarity o f his definition it turns out to be identical with the Redundancy Theory: a statement that som ething is the case is true if it is the case.. som ething one could perhaps call the statement’s relation to reality. T h e traditional definition o f truth goes back to a definition o f Aristotle: ‘For to say that what is the case is not the case or that what is not the case is the case is false. T h e inde­ terminateness o f the expressions em ployed in this formula led in the philosophical tradition (which for the most part simply took this formula. T o this end the best thing to do would be to start with the way in which this relation to reality was dealt with in the truth-definition o f the philosophical tradition. for only then would thinking com e into contact with the thing itself.the actual understanding o f words . I f the traditional formula permits a m eaningful interpretation at all then it can only be this: since that with which the thought is supposed to agree is construed as an object (as ‘thing’) ‘the thought’ too is to be . rather than the actual use o f the word ‘true’.are clearly not worth debating with. he defined their truth and falsity separately. which merely spin out an uncom prehended traditional formula and have lost contact with the matter itself (die Sache selbst) . Almost everyone who is confronted with this theory for the first time has the feeling that it suppresses som ething essential. in an absolute sense. the unity o f subject and object.5 and that things becom e true by being thought.* for it appears to make the word ‘true’ superfluous: instead o f saying ‘that/? is true’ we can always simply use the original statement 7?’ itself.4 the agreem ent (Übereinstimmung) o f the thought with the thing. but to say that what is the case is the case and that what is not the case is not the case is true. Unbridled speculations o f this kind. that truth is the coincidence (Zusammentreffen) o f thinking and reality. We must try to form a clearer idea o f what underlies this feeling. T h e m eaning o f the word ‘true’ would then be given by the equivalence: that p is true = p. It is customary to refer to the theory that the meaning o f the word ‘true’ is defined by this equivalence as the Redundancy Theory. to the most phantastic theories such as. as its point o f departure). and it would then also seem plausible to suppose that a statement only becomes true by being verified. hence with the original sentence. Aristotle also explained his definition by saying that truth consists in a correspondence between statement and thing3 and this in turn led to the traditional formula o f the adequatio intellectus et rei. However.

B ut this presupposes (1) th at we already u n d e rs ta n d w hat is m e an t by a state o f affairs th at/? b efo re we u n d e r ­ sta n d th e se n ten c e an d (2) th a t th e re is a p ro p erty o f states o f affairs W th a t e ith e r is reality or is th e criterio n o f reality. which in any event som ehow ‘c o rre s p o n d ’ (entsprechen) a n d in th e case o f tru th also ‘a g re e ’ (übereinstimmen) fo u n d e rs on the im possibility o f cashing th e im ages o f c o rre sp o n d e n c e an d ag re em e n t. Since th e objective co rrela te o f a sta te m e n t is a state o f affairs th e re w ould re su lt the follow ing d efinition: (1) the asserted state of affairs. O n e can still call (2) a fo rm u latio n o f th e a g re e m e n t-th e o ry o f tr u th alth o u g h th e w ord ‘a g re e m e n t’ n o lo n g er o ccurs in th e d efinition. T h e only version o f th e fo rm u la w orth discussing is th a t which con stru es th e ag re em e n t as o n e betw een w hat is believed (or w hat is asserted) an d w hat is real. that p. H ow ever. H ow ever. a real state o f affairs on th e o th e r h a n d . that p. thin g s are obviously the o th e r way ro u n d : if we a re to explain to som eone w hat th e p ro p e rty in q u estio n is all we can say is: th e state o f affairs asserted by m eans o f a se n ten c e ‘?’ is real (a fact) if an d only if it is tru e th a t p. n o r w herein th e relatio n o f a g re e m e n t is su p p o sed to consist. W hat is d efin ed by w hat? T h e claim o f th e object-o rien tated a g re e m e n t-th e o ry is th a t th e w ord ‘tr u e ’ is ex p lain e d by re fe re n c e to th e reality o f th e state o f affairs. is true if and only if it agrees with the corresponding real state of affairs. a believed o r asserted state o f affairs on th e o n e h a n d . it is th e sam e state o f affairs th a t is b ein g asserted th a t in th e case o f tru th is real an d w hich we th e n call a fact.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 196 co n stru ed as an object an d n o t in the sense o f ‘th in k in g ’. a n d th at we have to e x a m in e states o f affairs w ith resp ect to this p ro p e rty in o rd e r to decide w h e th e r th e assertio n th a t/? is tru e. the corresponding fact. W e can h o w ever re -fo rm u la te (1) in such a way that th e referen c e to a co rre ­ sp o n d e n c e o r an a g re e m e n t is d ro p p e d b u t w hat was in te n d e d by th e fo rm u la tio n is p rese rv e d : (2) the asserted state of affairs. such that w hat is believed is th e objective correlate o f the actual statem ent a n d w hat is real is the objective co rre la te o f th e tru e statem en t. T h e r e is now no lo n g e r any talk o f tw o states o f affairs. / I f we now d ro p the object-orientated com ponents o f (2) we can attem p t to c o n s tru e th e rela tio n to reality to w hich the w ord ‘tr u e ’ is su p p o sed . th e question now arises w h eth e r we sh o u ld so to sp eak rea d this equivalence from left to rig h t o r fro m rig h t to left. is true if and only if it is a real state of affairs (a fact). In p articu la r it can n o t be specified w hat th e real state o f affairs ‘c o rre sp o n d in g ’ to th e asserted state o f affairs is su p p o se d to be w hen th e assertion in qu estio n is false. T h is con cep tio n o f two states o f affairs.

viz. W hen S says ‘th e tow n-hall is on fire’ th e resp o n se o f the h e a re r in which his u n d e rsta n d in g w hich p recedes his own position-taking is ex p ressed is th e sentence ‘it is asserted th a t th e tow n-hall is on fire’. etc. T o explain th e m ean in g o f the w ord ‘tr u e ’ is to explain th e differen ce in the m e an in g o f ‘?’ an d ‘th at /?’ which is essential to th e use o f assertoric sentences. It only ap p e a rs trivial if o n e overlooks how essential th e d iffe ren ce betw een '/?’ a n d ‘that/* ’ is. W hat is this contrast? T h e o th e r fe a tu re which I b ro u g h t in today by way o f su p p le m e n ta­ tion. T his how ever red u ces th e last-m entioned fo rm u latio n o f the ag reem ent-theory to th e form ula o f the R edundancy T h eo ry . L ea rn in g to u n d e rsta n d it is le arn in g to u n d e rsta n d the co n trast betw een '/?’ and ‘it is asserted th a t /?’ o r m o re generally: the co n trast betw een ‘ ’ an d ‘th at/?’. viz. is a contrastword. H ence th e ex p lan atio n o f th e w ord p ‘tr u e ’ is identical with th e ex p lan atio n o f th e act o f asserting. B u t now it is obvious th a t we can say ‘it really is rain in g ’ if and only if we can also simply say ‘it is ra in in g ’. ‘is false’. . T h e w ord ‘tru e ’.Positive account of the employment-rule 197 to re fe r not as the p ro p e rty o f an object b u t adverbially an d in this way arrive at th e form ulation: (3) that p is true = really p. th e u n d e rsta n d in g o f th e h e a re r which preced es any positiontaking tow ards the assertion o f th e speaker. A n d he can add: ‘is it really on fire?’ o r ‘is it tru e th a t it is on fire?’ T h u s in an assertoric co m m unication-situation we always have th ese two things: th e sp e a k e r’s sentence ‘ ’ an d the h e a re r’s sentence (which does not have to be u tte red p b u t always could be u ttered ): ‘it is asserted th a t /?’.’) th e now m odified expression ‘th a t /?’ loses its assertionm o m e n t an d can th u s serve th e h e a re r as th e basis fo r a position-taking o f his own. . T h e w ord ‘really’ m erely u n d erlin es a co n tra st which clearly alread y belongs to the use o f th e assertoric sentence itself. C o m p ared with th e incom plete expression ‘th a t p p ’ the expression ‘ ’ contains a plus and it is this plus th a t is ex p ressed p in th e su p p le m e n tatio n by ‘is tr u e ’: th e expression ‘is tr u e ’ is th a t ex pression by m eans o f which we are able to so su p p le m e n t th e re d u c e d ex pression ‘that/?’ as to obtain an expression which is again equivalent to the original assertoric expression ‘?\ It is precisely this th a t the fo rm u la / o f the red u n d a n cy -th eo ry states. fo r ‘that/? . is o f help h ere too.’ can now be su p p le m e n ted by ‘is tr u e ’. . ‘is d oubted by m e’. asserting som eth in g by m eans o f th e assertoric expression p \ is u n d e rsto o d a n d possibly stated by th e h e a re r (‘it is asserted . fo r exam ple: ‘(the assertion) th a t it is rain in g is tru e if an d only if it really is ra in in g ’. For this reason th e u n d e rsta n d in g of th e w ord ‘tr u e ’ as this is specified in th e . In asm u ch as w hat th e sp e ak e r is doing. like th e word ‘rea l’. . / W hoever moves fro m ‘(it is asserted) th at /?’ to ( ’ m oves from m erely p u n d e rsta n d in g ‘ ’ to asserting that/?.

acts th e rules o f w hich relate n o t to th e circ u m ­ stances in w hich they a re p e rfo rm e d b u t to th e ir consequences.g. T h e gam e is defined by th e way in which th e moves o f th e two p a rtn e rs a re rela ted by th e ru les o f th e g am e to th e o u tco m e o f th e gam e. th e re fe re n c e to a b et m ay . I f assertion essentially anticipates th e possibility o f a d en ial . Now w h at is th e g am e o f asserto ric speech like? T h e assertio n -act th a t consists in th e em p lo y m e n t o f an assertoric sen ten ce ‘p ’ is th e o p e n in g move. T h a t th e em p lo y m en t-ru les of assertoric sen ten ces can be u n d e rsto o d as rules o f a game is an idea w hich stem s fro m W ittgenstein. B ut now th ese a re consequences n o t in th e sense o f in te n d e d effects. L et us first be clear th a t the m oves in a g am e a re acts o f th e kind we a re looking for. in a bet. T h e ru les also re la te th e acts to a p a rtn e r.6 F ro m D u m m e tt com es th e f u r ­ th e r suggestion th a t assertoric speech can be c o m p ared w ith th e type o f g am e in w hich two p a rtn e rs play against each o th e r a n d th e rules a re such th a t follow ing th e m leads to a final-position which consists in th e o n e having won and th e o th e r h av in g lost. nam ely. how ever. b u t th e o p p o n e n t w ho is essential to th e gam e.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 198 fo rm u la o f th e re d u n d a n c y theory is only trivial if o n e assum es th a t o n e already u n d e rsta n d s th e em p lo y m e n t o f asserto ric sentences. w hich S earle too has ta k en up b u t n o t really explo ited . e. in th e sense in w hich o n e challenges som eo n e to take u p th e co u n ter-p o sitio n in a gam e. o r a ffir­ m ation a n d denial. L et us now r e tu rn to th e p o in t rea ch ed at th e e n d o f th e last lecture.’ By way o f analogy th in k o f bets (th o u g h in fact it is m isleading to speak o f ‘analogy’ h e re fo r a b et can itself only be u n d e rsto o d as a m o d ­ ification o f th e assertoric gam e. In ad d itio n it has now e m e rg e d th a t to th e sense o f ‘tru e T fa lse ’ th e re belongs no t only th e o p p o sitio n betw een these w ords them selves w hich can be re p ro d u c e d in th e affirm atio n an d denial o f th e relev an t senten ce b u t also w hat distinguishes th e se n ten c e ‘ ’ fro m p th e red u ced expression ‘th at p ’. T h e rules o f th e gam e a re such th a t th e p a r tn e r ’s co u n ter-m o v e is already fixed by th e open in g -m o v e. it consists in th e u tte ra n c e o f ‘n o t p . b u t in th e sense o f consequen ces re g a rd in g th e outco m e o f th e g am e which re su lt fro m follow ing th e ru les o f th e gam e.th e n it can be u n d e rsto o d as a challenge. b u t they do so in such a way th a t th e p a rtn e r is n o t th e object o f an in te n d e d effect. a n d which has b een d ev elo p ed above all by D u m m e tt. W hat have we achieved with all this? We h a d alread y seen earlier th a t th e ‘tru e ’/‘false’-response c o rresp o n d s to the ‘yes7‘n o ’-resp o n se.a c o u n te r­ assertion . T his co ntrast-m om en t which is expressly m an ifested in th e w o rd -p air ‘tr u e ’/Talse’ th e re fo re also alread y belongs to th e assertorically used Y es/No a n d m ust be ta k en into acco u n t in th e analysis o f th e act o f assertion.

. . Now one is saying: if (for w hatever reasons) the expression is used what th en are the conditions u n d e r which it is correct. . if .th at the em ploym entrule relates the em ploym ent to the circumstances of employment. So if that which som eone asserts is to have a truth -co n d itio n we would have to envisage a form ulation of the following kind: ‘that/? is true.’ T h at some­ one who uses an assertoric sentence ‘ ’asserts som ething m eans. Now th e ‘if . the em ploym ent o f the expression* is co rrect’. you will ask. T here we were dealing with a conditional rule. W hat would these conditions be in the case o f the em ploym ent o f an assertoric sentence? Can we say: whoever uses an assertoric sentence guarantees th at the truth-conditions o f his assertion are fulfilled? B ut what. is m eant by this talk of truth-conditions? A condition is expressed in an if-sentence. whoever guarantees som ething guarantees th at certain conditions specified by him are fulfilled.and (2 ) th at those conditions on which the correctness of the use o f the expression depends are those whose fulfilm ent is g u aranteed by . . B ut how is the first p art to be in terp reted ? W hat does ‘counts as an u n d ertaking to the effect that . I have already shown th at the second p a rt o f this form ulation presupposes w hat has first to be explained and is th erefo re useless. .this is the situation-independence of em ploym ent th at I m entioned earlier (but which will only be explained later) . . .which was rejected . T h e re it was said u n d e r what conditions it is correct to use the expression. mean? T his rem ained unclear.Positive account of the employment-rule 199 serve to illustrate what I have in m ind). H owever. His o p p o n en t on the other hand guarantees that it is tru e that not -p. It had the form : ‘if . . This reversed relation to conditions presupposes ( 1 ) th at those conditions in which the expression is used (the em ploym ent-situation) are irrelevant to th e correctness o f its use . As the essential rule for the em ploym ent of an assertoric sentence he o ffered: its em ploym ent ‘counts as an u n d ertak in g to the effect that/? rep resen ts an actual state o f affairs’ (above p. W hat does this mean? Well. .’ And th e thesis ju st m entioned would th erefo re m ean: if som eone uses an assertoric sentence ‘ ’ (if he p guarantees th at it is tru e that p) th en he guarantees that th e condition re fe rre d to in th e protasis o f the above form ula is fulfilled. th at he offers a g u aran tee th at it is tru e that p. 187). T o be able properly to u n d erstan d th e significance o f this suggestion one should com pare it with the idea . Now how is the opening move to be understood? I can now com e back to th at p art o f Searle’s rule whose discussion I had postponed. we m ight p say. .’ appears on the o th er side: ‘the em ploym ent o f th e exp ressio n* is correct (true). if . it becomes sig­ nificant if we in te rp re t it as: ‘stands fo r a g u aran tee t h a t .

So if it is simply a m atter of explaining to som eone the m eaning of a particular . firstly.what is gu aranteed and that it is g u aran teed .Analysis o f the predicative sentence 200 the use of the expression itself. that is m eant by speaking o f truth-conditions. for the u n d erstan d in g of an assertion is also characterized by the second of the above-m entioned features: it is also understood that the person em ploying the sentence is g u aran teein g that it is tru e . secondly. T h e insight that one u n d erstan d s an assertoric sentence if and only if one knows its truth-conditions was first form ulated in W ittgenstein’s Tractatus: ‘T o u n d e rsta n d a proposition (Satz) m eans to know what is the case if it is tru e ’ (4. if he knows th at the speaker is g u aranteeing th at these conditions are fulfilled. This definition is. W hoever gives a g u aran tee does both these things.were not kept apart in his understan d in g . then. 7 B ut now this second feature rem ains the same for every assertoric sentence. In the preceding prelim inary discussion of the word ‘tru e ’ I pointed out that this w ord expresses the contrast between '/?’ and ‘it is asserted that/?’ and th at it is in the h e a re r’s u n d erstan d in g that this contrast first becomes prom inent. that this is so is g ro u n d ed in the essence o f assertion as an act of guaranteeing. A pplied to the u n d erstan d in g o f an assertion this means: someone understan d s the assertion m ade by m eans of an assertoric sentence if. But he would not u n d erstan d the g u aran tee as a g uarantee if these two things . w hat is open for him. Someone who gives a guarantee m ust always do two things: ( 1 ) he specifies the conditions whose fulfilm ent he is guaranteeing. is w hether the conditions are actually fulfilled. W hat he does not know. T he / equivalence ‘ = that/? is tru e ’ is g ro u n d ed in the fact that someone who p asserts som ething is always asserting the correctness (truth) of his asser­ tion. (2 ) he guarantees their fulfilment. We can now see why this is so. It is this. W hat the expression guarantees is that the conditions o f its correctness (truth) are fulfilled. incomplete. Its being open for the p erson who understands the assertion w hether it is tru e is as essential to his u n d erstan d ing as his knowing that the person who makes the assertion asserts that it is true.024). in o th e r words. T h e speech-act of assertion consists in g u aran teein g its own truth-conditions. but th ere would be no act o f g u aranteeing if he did not do both things at once. he knows the truth-conditions of the assertion and. We can now also begin to u n d erstan d how it is that som eone who uses an assertoric sentence ‘?’ can equally well say ‘that/? is tru e ’. however. w hether the assertion is true. Now the person to whom the g u aran tee is given can only be said to understand the g uarantee if he also u n d erstan d s both these things.

Even some­ one who bets ‘m erely for the h o n o u r’ loses the honour that would be due to him were he to win the bet. the purpose of speaking of a ‘guarantee’ and a ‘bet’ can only be to point in the right direction. It presupposes. but. nothing has so far been said about how one can explain what the truthconditions of an assertion or sentence are. T he tradition of semantic theories that was inaugurated by T arski 8 is grounded in this possibility. th at in explaining a sentence one always has at o n e’s disposal another sentence which is already understood or. I would also rem ind you that so far we have seen no reason to abandon the idea that to explain a linguistic expression is to explain its em ploym ent-rule. T h e same is true of the notion of a bet. for the following two reasons. I pointed out in the debate with Grice th at such a meta-linguistic theory is not sufficient for our fu n d a­ m ental question of how linguistic expressions are understood. this can only mean that the first sentence is used in the same way as the second. every act of guaranteeing som ething itself presupposes the use of an assertoric sentence. a so-called m eta-language. Besides. another language. If we specify the truth-con­ dition of a sentence by m eans of another sentence. T h e result so far achieved seems unsatisfactory. by the thesis that the m eaning is given in a conditional rule we did not m ean that the conditional rule is form ulated in words. for it is essential to the concept of guaranteeing that in the event o f the anticipated condition not being fulfilled the g uaran to r must reckon with certain negative consequences from the side o f the partners. if it is a question of the m eaning of a whole system of sentences. such term s must now be put aside. One possibility would be (as the reference to an if-sentence suggests) that the truth-condition of a sentence is itself given by means of a sentence. that it is shown under what conditions the sentence is used.Positive account of the employment-rule 201 sentence and it can be assum ed that he knows that it is an assertoric sentence. for two reasons: firstly. I used the word ‘g u arantee’ in order to describe the act of assertion as the opening-m ove in a game. T hese two defects belong together. and that means: its m ode o f em ploym ent. rather. T h e explanation by m eans of the term ‘g u arantee’ would thus be a pseudo­ explanation. A nd clearly we must now hold on to the same theoretical claim. Secondly. one can also simply say: the m eaning of the sentence is explained by giving its truth-conditions. But if we want not merely to nam e the opening-m ove of a gam e but to . o f course. Firstly. it does not mean that the m ode of em ploym ent itself is shown. the notion of a guarantee involves something more than the anticipation contained in an assertion. We would again be committing a hysteron-proteron. Secondly.

This system of rules ended precisely where it should have begun. This state of affairs could be expressed in the com plicated form ulation: the person who asserts that p in guaranteeing that its truth-conditions are fulfilled guarantees that the fulfilm ent of the truth-conditions. and that means: that following its verification-rule will lead to success. it will be established that it is tru e. viz. though he does not know w hether it is tru e does know how it can be established w hether it. in o th e r words he knows how it would be decided w hether the asserted truth-conditions are fulfilled or not. for in his general prelim inary reflections Searle him self com pared speech-acts with game-acts and pointed out that a game-act is regulated by its consequences in the gam e . If the truth-condition consists in the fact that following the verification-rule will lead to success. th at one understands an assertion if and only if one knows how it is to be verified. namely with the m ere nam ing of the opening-m ove of the game. This step is crucial for it removes the unclarity that has so far su rro u n d ed the question of what one is to und erstan d by the truth-conditions of an assertion and how one can explain them to som eone. then giving the truth- . Som eone who understands a guarantee knows the criteria by reference to which it is decided w hether it is fulfilled o r not. This is no merely external criticism. if it is tested as to its tru th . It is essential to a guarantee that there are decision-criteria for its fulfilment. But the interm ediate clause now becomes superfluous and there is no reason fo r not regard in g the verifiability itself as the tru th condition of the assertion. or the opposite assertion. A nd only by defining an assertion in term s of the rules of the game-moves that follow it can we expect to be able to explain the truth-conditions guaranteed by the assertion by ref­ erence to em ploym ent-rules. T h e estab­ lishing of w hether an assertion is tru e is called its justification or verifi­ cation. T hus from a completely differen t starting-point we arrive at a thesis m ade fam ous by Logical Positivism. Likewise som eone who u nderstands an assertion. then the assertion m ust consist in the g u arantee that. It is only now that the crucial defect of Searle’s system of rules becomes clear. and that means: if one knows its verification-rule. is true. 9 By what rules then is the game of assertoric speech defined? Although I want to d ro p the notion o f a guarantee we can still be guided by it. and th at means: how it is related by the rule of the gam e to the outcom e of the game.Analysis of the predicative sentence 202 define it. and hence the tru th of the asser­ tion. is verifiable. this can clearly only be done by specifying the consequences it has in the gam e. Now if the person who u n d er­ stands the assertion knows how one establishes whether it is true.

the function of being used to p e rfo rm a particular assertion-act. o r that th e application of the verificationrule will have a positive outcom e for him . R em em ber I only appealed to the notion o f assertion for the p u rp o se o f defining anew the use of an assertoric sentence. A nd now we can say: one u n d erstan d s an assertoric sentence if one knows what function it has.leads to a resu lt the consequence o f which is that th e o p p o n en t agrees with the speak er or vice versa.Positive account of the employment-rule 203 condition o f an assertion will consist in d em o n stratin g its verificationrule or. W hat it m eans to guarantee a positive outcom e shows itself in the way in which the consequence of the gam e-outcom e is connected with the opening-m ove by the verification-rule.the verification-rule . such that if som eone refused to draw the consequence which results from following the ver­ . From th e outset o u r p u rp ose was to find the em ploym ent-rules which we explain (or u n d erstan d ) w hen we explain (or u n d erstan d ) th e m eaning o f an assertoric sentence. after it h ad becom e clear th at the use of such a sentence can be defined n eith er by the circum stances of its use n o r by an in ten d ed effect. to p u t it m ore simply. viz. T his act or the use o f the sentence is defined as the open­ ing-m ove of the gam e ju st described. T h e gam e-outcom e is defined by the consequence that an agreem en t is reached betw een speaker and opp o ­ nent such that eith er the speaker assents to the o p p o n e n t’s original assertion or vice versa. T h e act o f assertion can now be defined. subsequently. R ather it is a consequence which is draw n by the players in accordance with th e rule of th e gam e. T h e gam e is like this: a speaker utters an assertoric sentence ‘ \ T h e p h e are r is free to re g a rd him self as a m ere spectator o r as a p a rtn e r in the gam e. T h e specifi­ cation o f the com plex of rules and actions (the ‘g am e’) to which the use of an assertoric sentence belongs spells o u t what was m erely h inted at by describing som eone who uses an assertoric sentence as guaranteeing that its truth-conditions are fulfilled an d . In the latter case he assumes th e role of o p p o n en t by u ttering the negation of ‘ However. know th at the h e a re r (or som eone o r other) could assum e the role of oppo n en t. So instead of speaking o f a ‘g u a ra n te e ’ we can now specify the rules of the gam e whose opening-m ove is the use of an assertoric sentence. T h e verification-rule is such th at following it leads to a positive result either for the speak er o r fo r his oppo n en t. T h e consequence o f the gam e-outcom e does not have the character o f an effect. it is also en o u g h if speaker and h earer p*. T h e rule of the game consists in th e verification-rule. as guaranteeing that his assertion is verifiable. in show ing how it is verified. A nd that means: following a certain rule .

T o fu rth e r characterize the gam e-outcom e by saying that the speaker has won if the o p p o n e n t has to agree with him and otherwise has lost seems at p resen t to be superfluous. Isn’t this circular? We m ust first try to get a clearer picture than so far achieved o f the connection betw een the result of following the verification-rule and the gam e-outcom e.by being rules of justification. Following the verification-rule obviously leads to a situation in which no one who understands the assertion is any longer free to affirm it or to deny it. But is it possible to treat the use of an assertoric sentence which occurs at the end o f the gam e as itself an assertion if I define assertion as an act o f guaranteeing.at th e end o f the game . For the present we can say that th e rules o f this gam e are not such as lead to an outcom e which consists in a player having won o r lost but ra th e r in an assertion proving to be true o r false. We m ust allow the limiting-case of a trivial act o f guaranteeing. nam ely the agreeing statem ents of the two opponents.e. T h e assent of the o p p o ­ n en t forced u p o n him by the rules of the gam e is expressed in the sentence ‘Y our assertion has tu rn e d out to be true. T h a t there actually are such rules the following o f which has a result that one can characterize by saying th at the assertion turns out to be true (or false) could o f course only be show n by the actual explanation of these rules and so far I have not done this.’ V erification-rules are distinguished from o th e r gam e-rules . So far all we can say is: that following the verificationrule leads to such a situation is shown by the fact that playing through the verification-rule has the consequence that one of the two opponents sees him self compelled to accept the assertion of the other. m ine false. it is only in a later connection that we will see how far this description is necessary. o r the trivial case in which opening-m ove and concluding-m ove coincide.without laying oneself open to the charge o f n o t u n d erstan d in g it. i. T h is is exactly how the outcom e of the game is described by the opp o n en ts in the gam e itself. T h e assertion at the en d o f the gam e thus has a pre-em inent character: one cannot contradict it in this situation . or as the opening-m ove in the game? I think it is. I say obviously it leads to such a situation.and this constitutes th eir u n iq u e character . It could be objected to my analysis that I have defined an assertion as the opening-m ove o f a gam e at the end o f which there are again asser­ tions. for th ere is no o th er way o f interpreting the fact that even the person who denied it m ust now affirm it. or th a t it showed that although he u ttered a sentence he did not u n d e rsta n d its m eaning.Analysis of the predicative sentence 204 ification-rule we would say that he did not u n d erstand what an assertion is. rules the following o f which decides w hether the assertion of the speaker .

where the word ‘correct’ has the sense of ‘tru e ’. So the next step would seem to be to set about the task of clarifying the employment-rules of predicates and singular terms. sense of ‘tru e ’.conditional rules. If the conception now arrived at is correct then the em ploym ent-rule of the singular term and the em ploym ent-rule of the predicate together constitute the veri­ fication-rule of the predicative sentence.prelim inary conception of the em ploym ent-rules of assertoric sentences as a foundation for the enquiry into the em ploym ent-rules of the com ponents of a predicative sentence. that the verification-rule of the predicative sentence is founded in two other rules. has so far rem ained undeveloped. instrum ental rules and o ther kinds of gam e-rules . no longer rule-relative. But nothing can be said about this in general. ra th e r it is only the correct following of the rules that decides w hether the original act is correct in the absolute. which is clearly central and of decisive im portance for particular explanations. I have not yet shown how a verification-rule is explained. viz. In the refutation o f the thesis that the employment- . B ut precisely this aspect o f the p resent theory.Positive account of the employment-rule 205 or th at of his opponent is correct . w hen it is only a m atter of explaining the m eaning o f a particular sentence and one can assume that it is known that it is an assertoric sentence. one can simply say: the m eaning of the sentence is explained by showing how it is verified. the most elem entary form of assertoric sentence (p. In contrast to all the rules so far re ferred to . to und erstan d an assertoric sentence is to know its verification-rule. My im m ediate aim was simply to arrive at a . Similarly I can now say: as all other features o f the verification-game are the same for all assertoric sentences then. W hen I provisionally characterized the em ploym ent of an assertoric sentence as guaranteeing that its own truth-conditions are fulfilled (a characterization which of course continues to be valid. From this fact alone. 179).necessarily hypo­ thetical . Consider also the following point.the character­ istic feature of justification-rules is th at the correctness of an act does not simply consist in its following the rule. How an asser­ toric sentence is verified is som ething th at must be shown separately for each form of assertoric sentence. O ne cannot get fu rth er than the result so far achieved so long as one speaks about assertoric sentences in gen­ eral. it is clear that the elucidation o f the verification-rule of the p re­ dicative sentence-form will present peculiar difficulties. it was merely insufficient) I pointed out that when it is simply a m atter of explaining the m eaning of a particular sentence to som eone and it can be assumed that he knows that it is an assertoric sentence one can also simply say: the m eaning of the sentence is explained by giving its truth-conditions.

Sentences em ployed in this way are the com plex sentences form ed by means of ‘a n d ’ and ‘o r’. How this situa­ tion-independence is constituted is som ething that the analysis o f the most elem entary sentence-form would have to show. 161). So far I have p resupposed this aspect of the em ploym ent of the word ‘tru e ’. not explained it. I will therefore postpone once again the treatm en t o f predicates and singular term s in o rd e r first to show by reference to simple cases how the m eaning of a sentence can be explained by giving its truth-conditions and how these can be explained by dem onstrating the sentence’s m ode of verification. T h e analysis o f the verification-rule o f predicative sentences is thus m ade even m ore difficult. It is this situation-independence of em ploy­ m ent which makes it possible for the em ploym ent to be determ ined by rules o f an o th er kind (with which we have now becom e acquainted). T hese simple cases are those in which th e truth or falsity of an assertion depends simply on the tru th or falsity o f o th er assertions. I have already hinted that it is the function o f singular term s to make possible this situation-independence (p.Analysis of the predicative sentence 206 rule of assertoric sentences relates to the circum stances of em ploym ent we encountered the peculiar situation-independence of the employmentrule of assertoric sentences. In particular this situation-independence is clearly essential to the fact that one can use not only the w ord ‘correct’ b u t the w ord ‘tru e ’: an assertion is once and for all true or false. T h e discussion of these sentence-form s will also provide an o p portunity to dem onstrate. the inadequacies of object-orientated semantics. from an o th er angle. and so-called general sentences. .

if one knows w hat belief the person who uses it com m unicates to a hearer. /. if one knows in which circum stances it is to be used. if one knows w hat its verification-rules are. if one knows w hat its truth-conditions are.L E C T U R E 16 Supplements T h e m ultiplicity of sem antic theories I have touched on in the last two lectures in the process o f trying to achieve w hat seems to me to be a tenable prelim inary concept o f th e m eaning o f an assertoric sentence may have left b ehind a certain confusion.s.) are as follows. T his will enable me to say som ething about the connections betw een the various positions an d to add a su pplem ent th at will be im p o rtan t fo r w hat will follow. (7) O ne u n d e rsta n d s an a. So before taking up the p ro b ­ lem to which the line o f th o u g h t o f the last lecture led it seems to m e to be necessary to in se rt a lecture devoted to surveying what has been achieved.s. You could say: .s. (2) O ne u n d e rsta n d s an a. if one knows which assertion-act a speaker can p e rfo rm with it (illocutionary act theory). if o ne knows the verification-gam e whose opening-m ove is p e rfo rm e d with it. if one knows fo r which state of affairs it stands. T h e various theses ab o u t the m eaning of assertoric sentences (a. T h e m ost striking thing both about the line o f thought as it has turned out and abo u t virtually all im p o rtan t m o d ern theories is the central position which the concept o f tru th suddenly acquires.s. (3) O ne u n d e rsta n d s an a. (5) O ne u n d e rsta n d s an a.s.s. (1) O ne u n d e rsta n d s an a. (6 ) O ne u n d e rsta n d s an a. (4) O ne u n d e rsta n d s an a.s.s.

the sense . is hopelessly inadequate. both those who have regarded the form ula of the Redundancy T heory as an answ er to the question of the m eaning of ‘tru e ’ ra th e r than m erely a starting-point. B ut how is this tru th that is no longer gro u n d ed in an orientation tow ards objects to be understood? T h e re is a great tem ptation simply to presuppose the concept of tru th as an unanalysed basic concept. in the question o f the m eaning o f an assertoric sentence. T h e th ree great conceptual alternatives for understanding the realityrelation o f a sign thus seem to be ( 1 ) the relation to an object (2 ) the relation to circum stances of use (3) the relation to truth. If one is w ondering w hether th ere is an alternative to the objectorientated approach .of a sentence by means of its truth-conditions. however. according to (3). to u n d erstan d a sentence is to . as the R edundancy T h eo ry claims. have been content with thesis (3). but this relation always rem ained pre-defined as a relation to things (res). Before Frege. Thesis (2). for this m ust either itself have recourse to the concept o f tru th or revert to the object-orientated approach. so too the tru th -o rien tated approach includes the relation to objects as a necessary com ponent. whereas. And in fact this is precisely what most analytical philosophers do. We shall see that ju st as the object-orientated approach took some account o f the truthrelation. T hese two views. T h e only alternative seems to be the conception represented by (2 ) which relates the sentence to the circumstances of its employment. and also those who. contradict one anoth er.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 208 that statem ents can be tru e or false is som ething one has always known. we have seen. Despite a ra th e r dangerous ambiguity which the w ord ‘circum stances’ thereby acquires we can contrast theses (2) and (3) by saying that according to (2 ) to understand a sentence is to know in which circumstances it is to be used. to beings. th en it is clear th at this is not provided by the actiontheoretical account given in (5) or (6 ). as was done with the concept of an object in traditional philosophy. It is only when one is prim arily orientated towards sentences ra th e r than towards nam es that it seems natural to start with the possible tru th of a sentence and by reference to this u n d erstan d even its m eaning. is incom patible with the idea that it is indispensable to the determ ination o f the m eaning o f a sentence. T h e ‘reality-relation’ of statem ents was also understood as tru th in the philosophical tradition.thesis ( 1 ) .and the orientation towards the con­ cept o f tru th . For th e idea that the word ‘tru e ’ is eliminable. Now that we have arrived at the tru th -o rien tated conception we can also see why it is. which are often held simultaneously. no one had hit upon the idea o f defining the m eaning . It is of course a cru d e simplification to speak o f alternatives here.

Admittedly Wittgenstein’s principle. which thesis (3) does not meet. Besides. hold for both expressions. rem ains empty so long as one does not explain the word ‘true’ itself.that an assertoric sentence is used to make an assertion. T herein lies the supe­ riority of thesis (4) over thesis (3). It is only on the basis o f (7) that it becomes intelligible how by explain­ ing the verification-rule one explains the em ploym ent-rule o f the sen­ . A nd one can say that we explain the m eaning of a sentence by giving its truth-conditions. But such an explanation is bound to be circular so long as one is unable to explain the truth-conditions themselves. It is only thesis (7) which does justice to this aspect of the m eaning of a sentence. the explanation it gives would apply ju st as much to the reduced expression ‘th a t// as to th e assertoric sentence itself. does not go quite as far as this. both in general and in reference to a particular statem ent. B ut whereas if one only says ‘that p ’ one leaves it open w hether the truth-conditions are fulfilled. if one uses the sentence ‘ ’ one asserts that the truth-conditions are p fulfilled or that following the verification-rule will lead to success. thesis (2). A nd this can only be done by showing what one has to do to justify the statem ent or. and this is precisely what is m eant by saying that we know what its truth-conditions are. w hether following the verification-rule will lead to success. or the same verification-rule. which is correct. that the m eaning of an expression m ust be explained by explaining how it is used. It meets the require­ m ent. Why this was hopeless can now easily be seen. Employmentgrounds and tru th -g ro u n d s are two entirely different things. by showing how one verifies the statem ent. putting it another way. and this one can only do by showing how one recognizes that a statem ent is true. which I called the fundam ental principle of analytical philos­ ophy. In this thesis I have given a precise m eaning to thesis (6 ) which as it stands is vague . T h e p ro p o n ent of thesis (2) found it necessary to re-in terp ret what we can now recognize as the grounds o f the truth o f a statem ent as the conditions u n d er which the statem ent is used. T h e con­ dition of o ur significantly using a statem ent is not that we have grounds for its truth but only that we know what they are. *p\ T h e same truth-conditions. From a methodological point of view. by combining it with (4) and hence also with (3). however. a superiority one can also describe by saying that to speak o f tru th . Thesis (4) is superior to (3) inasm uch as it explains truth-conditions by reference to a rule o f action. which is false. but it does not show in what sense this rule o f action is the em ploym ent-rule of the sentence itself. It says only that the m eaning is what the explanation of the m eaning explains. has an advantage over (3).Supplements 209 know in which circumstances it is true.

the thesis which agrees with (7) inasm uch as it too starts out from the assum ption that the em ploym ent-rule of an assertoric sentence relates to its function but which interprets this function as com m unication. w hat the speaker ‘m eans’) . I m ust th erefo re supplem ent the critique o f (5) from the standpoint o f my own conception by placing the two conceptions into a positive relationship to one another. T h e em ploym ent-rule is not identical with the verification-rule the em ploym ent-rule is the rule which relates the em ploym ent via the verification-rule to the game-outcome . Accordingly if (7) is a correct analysis o f the em ploym ent-rule o f ‘ ’ th en this statem ent must p follow from (7). R ather we are showing him w hat som e­ one who uses it is guaranteeing and how he does this. however. the statem ent th a t / 2 when. or does not u n d erstand. II We have already seen th at thesis (5) is incorrect because it founders on W ittgenstein’s fundam ental principle (p.Analysis of the predicative sentence 210 tence. that com ponent o f the em ploym ent-rule o f an assertoric sentence that distinguishes it from the em ploym ent-rule of another assertoric sentence. (6 ) is correct but indeterm inate and all three are in corporated in my thesis (7). if this means: what motivates or somehow causes its use. 182). B ut the em ploym ent-rule o f som ething which has a func­ tion is not w hat ‘determ ines’ its use. he u tters *p\ intends to bring it about that B believes th at A believes that/?. A nd w hen we explain to som eone the use of an assertoric sentence we are not explaining what the occasions.the verification-rule is. It is not the verification-rule. is correct. Perhaps it still strikes you as strange th at the rule which concerns the verification o f a sentence should be its em ploym ent-rule. C oncerning Grice’s ‘m eaning’ (vouloir dire) th e re are two possibilities: Either the notion of m eaning is understood as being correlative to that o f un d erstan d in g (such that one can say: the h e a re r u n derstands. Sum m arizing we can say: thesis (1) commits a hysteron-proteron. circum ­ stances or motives o f its use are.and this appears to be the m eaning which ‘m ean’ or vouloir dire (and the G erm an meinen) actually has in ordinary linguistic . W hat we are looking fo r u n d e r the heading ‘em ploym ent-rule’ is what we explain to som eone when we explain to him the use o f a lin­ guistic expression. T h e re rem ains (5). o r what determ ines in which circumstances it is used. (2) is false but contains an im p o rtan t methodological principle. which determines the use of a sentence. vis-ä-visB. B ut first a rem ark about term inology. (3) and (4) are correct b ut insufficient. you m ight say. O n the o ther hand. C ertainly not.

T h e ph en o m en o n o f speaking to o n eself presents no difficulty for this co n ­ ception. on the o n e hand. w hereas in my account it is in trin ­ sically reciprocal: the speaker addresses th e h e a re r as som eone who can take up a position tow ards what h e says. o r the intention with which such a sentence is used. its com m unicationfunction. A nd now to business. T his m eans (1) that in G rice’s account the com m unication-act is one-sided. even if we are speaking to ourselves the use o f an assertoric sentence consists in an assertion in the sense described. whereas in my account he is a p a rtn e r in a game. Both in Grice and in my in terp retatio n the use o f a sentence is u n d e rsto o d intersubjectively.. It is only this conception which m akes it possible. B ut in that case it is false th a t w hat a sp eaker m eans by ‘ ’ is that p he wants to bring it about. o n the o th e r hand. Even if my thesis th at the com m unication-function does not belong to the m eaning of the sentence is correct I m ust still be able to explain this function. etc. however.’ W hat he m eans by u tterin g ‘ ’ is to p assert that p. W hen I u tte r a sentence ‘p ’ I do not norm ally do so with the in tention o f challenging the h e a re r to a verification-gam e. As the notion of believing th a tp is clearly essential in the form u latio n o f the com m unication-function we m ust first ask: w hat is m ean t by belief. it follows th at (2) in my in te rp re ta tio n the speaker can assum e the role o f the addressee in the capacity o f ‘N o ’-utterer. n o r do I know w hether th e re is a satisfactory explanation o f this word. he said ‘I want to bring it about. viz. Or I g ra n t Grice his terminology. the addressee is th e object o f an in te n d e d effect. etc. is not that o f m eaning som ething with it b u t ra th e r th a t o f asserting som ething with it. to take account o f the intersubjective ch aracter o f speech and. r a th e r this is w hat he would m ean if. that p or at least that I believe that p. has so far been om itted. 1 O n the o th e r h an d I m ust now ad m it th at in my account an essential function o f intersubjective assertoric speech. how ­ ever. From this. O ne of the chief difficulties is this: we also speak o f belief in reg ard to beings which do not speak and in re g a rd to ourselves in contexts in which we do not . by m eans o f my assertion. to avoid the absurd consequence th at a sentence does n o t have the same m ean ­ ing in soliloquy as it has in conversation with a n o th e r .S upplements 211 usage. T his anticipation of positiontaking belongs to the m eaning o f an assertoric sentence (cf. I then have to say that th e function o f an assertoric sentence. an d in w hat relation does it stand to assertion? I am n o t in a position to give a definition o f ‘belief’. but ra th e r with the inten tio n o f informing him (bringing it about in a specific way th at he believes). p. It is this th at the o th e r perso n un derstands. 189f). A ccording to Grice.

So here we do find it necessary to speak o f losing and w inning the game. In describing the verification-game in the last lecture I ignored this question. 4 One can call this in tention in the em ploym ent o f an assertoric sentence. It is this purely theoretical intention which enters into the definition o f ‘opining’ through the qualifying clause ‘if he has no intentions going beyond th e gam e-outcom e’. O pining. that in its actions it presupposes that p. 184). the inten­ tion o f w inning the gam e can equally well be described as a truth-intention: the speaker intends to assent to an assertion that is tru e . T his qualifying clause can also be expressed thus: ‘in so far as the p erso n ’s speech-act is d eterm in ed only by the intention that the gam e should have a positive outcom e for him ’. In contrast to this b ro ad concept o f belief (Glauben) we can define a n arro w er concept. to g eth er with th e voluntative or instinctual disposi­ tions. We say o f a being that it believes that p if in its actions it takes account of the fact that p. is defined as a specific act-disposition. if A is presented with the question ‘ o r n o t-p?’. This concept thus refers to the tendency or readiness o f a person to guarantee the truth of the assertion that/? in so fa r as he has no intentions which go beyond the outcom e o f the game. a purely theoretical intention. which is concerned only with the positive outcom e of the verification-game. he will assert that p. and. A lternatively one can say that it relies on o r banks on that p. B ut here the act consists only in the em ploym ent o f an assertoric sentence with the purely theo­ retical intention ju st described. But this means that if we now consider the game from the point o f view of the intentions o f the players. o r th eir readiness to take one side or the other. I was able to do so because one can explain the gam e to som eone w ithout reference to the question of the m otivation for playing on one side o r the other. d eterm ines intentional action. O ne can therefo re call this act a purely . p rio r to the use o f sentences there is no action in which this disposition is m anifested by itself (so it can only be an external description w hen we speak o f a belief o f an anim al by means o f the expression ‘that p ’ which refers to a sentence). as I have already pointed out (p. like belief. 204).as Peirce was the first to em phasize 2 . using for purposes of term inological contrast the term opine (Meinen):3 A opines that p = def. an d if he has no intentions which go beyond the p gam e-outcom e. I said in the last lecture that the outcom e o f the gam e does not consist in a player winning or losing but rather in an assertion p roving to be tru e or false (p.Analysis of the predicative sentence 212 speak and hence do not use an expression such as ‘ ’ or ‘that p \ ‘B elief’ p .refers to an act-disposition. for the reason that h e re it is a question o f th e m otivation for taking one side or the other o r for abstaining. Belief is the cognitive disposition which.

th e re belongs the contrast with the possibility of undecidedness. however. T h e purely cognitive disposition o f opining outlined by the definition ju st attem pted is an in d ep en d en t disposition whose definition contains the concept o f assertion. be a mistake not to differentiate actions and lin­ guistic utterances.Supplements 213 theoretical act.g.in oth er words assertoric belief can now be subsum ed u n d er the broad concept of b elie f: som eone who without reg ard to fu rth e r intentions has a tendency to assert that/? will also take account o f thatp in his actions. O n the other hand one cannot say that. o f animals). (3) At the other end o f the scale. However. inasm uch as the acts in which it is m ani­ fested are determ ined solely by the intention o f truth. if the opinion is com bined with consciousness of the indubitability (and that means: the com plete verification) of what is believed then the person concerned says not only th at he opines that/?. W hereas the broad concept o f belief refers to a cognitive disposition which can only be extrapolated as an item co-existing with voluntative dispositions to explain in ten ­ tional acts. T h e definition I have given would then be the consequence o f the definiens that has now been given. he also opines that/?. O f course it is n o t these labels which m atter. through the connection thereby given with the verification-game it acquires certain differentiating and con­ trastive features which do not belong to non-assertoric belief. It would. However. we have a belief-disposition which represents an isolable cognitive disposition. however. whenever A believes that/?. what m at­ ters is that in opining. A expects that the assertion that/? can be shown to be true. in the case of the disposition o f opining one can speak o f a purely cognitive disposition. But that is another concept . Doubt too concerns the justifiability of the assertion. or of d o u b t w hether the assertion that p is tru e or false. O ne m ight even be tem pted to substitute the following defi­ nition fo r the one I have given: A opines that/? = def. thus to opinion. (2) T h e readiness to assert that/? is grou n d ed in an explicit or implicit decision between the assertion that p and the assertion th at not-p. We also make a distinction between belief and knowledge in the case of non-assertoric belief (e. but simply regard them as manifestations of one beliefdisposition. as thus defined. clearly does hold: if he does not believe that p then neither does he opine that p. (1) W hereas in the case of any belief one can speak o f its causes. for ‘expects’ is simply an o th er w ord for ‘opines’. but that he knows that p. hence one can convict som eone on the basis of his actions of the untruthfulness o f his assertorically expressed opinions. as a definition this suggestion would be circular. opining as thus defined . unlike non-assertoric belief. opinions also have grounds. T he contra­ position o f the previous sentence.

A nd. cannot say ‘ b u t I do not opine that /?’. of course. thus for instance: ‘a sentence “p ” is used to express the opinion that /?’ . In fact th ere is a clear alternative here. H ow ­ ever. or o f the em ploym ent of an assertoric sentence. T he syncretism o f Searle’s theory here reaches its high-point. the connection o f this rule —which he calls the ‘sincerity ru le’ with the in any case inadequately developed main rule (‘essential ru le ’). the h ea rer can receive the sp eaker’s assertion in such a way that he says: ‘H e asserts th a tp. Clearly. com m unication and the m eaning of an assertoric sentence.’ T h e speaker himself.that it is not possible to assert that p and at the same time openly adm it that one does not opine that/? . this connection is bound to rem ain unclear so long as one has not decided w hether opining is to be defined by reference to assertion or vice versa. i. but he does n o t opine th at/?. Searle has attem pted to p.cannot be a com ponent of the employmentrule of *p\ R ather it would have to follow from the m eaning of ‘opine’ .by reference to opinion.e. in place o f which I have p u t thesis (7). belief. in terp ret this featu re . the classical definition of knowledge as a belief that is not ju st true but also adequately g ro u n d e d 5 clearly fits only assertoric belief. Or one assumes that /?’ this is not possible and defines opinion as I have done. rem ains unclear.a definition that would be unobjectionable if only it were possible to give an explanation o f the w ord ‘opine’ and o f the m eaning of the expression ‘that/?’ which did not have to appeal to the em ploym ent-rule o f the sentence ‘ defined by the verification-game. to opining. Either one defines assertion the em ploym ent o f an assertoric sentence . the em ploym ent o f a sentence ‘ ’ is p supposed to consist in the speaker’s taking the ‘responsibility’ for opining that p. I f we now retu rn to the question o f the relation between assertion. O n the one hand. by reference to assertion.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 214 of knowledge according to which knowledge is correct belief. T h e definition o f opining I have given defines this connection in a specific way. th en clearly as regards belief we can restrict ourselves to the n arrow er concept o f assertoric belief. on the o ther hand. We can now test the adequacy of this definition by reference to the way in which assertoric speech itself expresses itself. T h en the fact that when one uses the sentence ‘?’ one expresses / that one opines that p . the speech-act which consists in th e em ploym ent of an asser­ toric sentence is characterized as assertion and determ ined by the ‘essential ru le’. b u t we are not told anything about th e m eaning of ‘opine’. O n the other han d .or in o th e r words: cannot openly adm it that one does not believe that/? .as one of the rules o f assertion. I shall begin with the connection between opining and assertion.

and th at m eans: ab o u t his opinion.Supplements 215 as I have ju st defined this word. But this circum stance does not belong to the sentence’s em ploym ent-rule. how ever. N onetheless he has m ade a m ove which has its significance with referen ce to the gam e-outcom e in d ep en d en tly o f the player’s intention o f winning. take the assertion seriously. F or if som eone asserts th a t p. W h eth er or not th e speaker stands behind his assertion is im p o rtan t to the h e a re r as regards the question of w hat weight he gives to th e sp eak er’s utterance. and hence gu ar­ antees th at it is tru e th at p. his opening-m ove is the opening-m ove o f one who w ould have chosen this opening-m ove with the intention of w inning the gam e. which is defined by referen ce to the gam e-outcom e. b ut ra th e r in an assertion’s proving to be tru e o r false. In this gam e o n e and th e sam e move can be p er­ fo rm ed by several persons. T h e sam e is tru e of th e opening-m ove. T h a t it does in d eed follow from this definition is easy to see. they would clearly not both be com m unicating the sam e thing to me if one w ere to say ‘I believe th at a m an is waiting o u tsid e’ and th e oth er w ere to add ‘I believe so too. If th e latter notices that the speaker does not opine what he asserts th e n for the h ea rer this m eans th at th e player has m ade his m ove w ithout the intention of win­ ning.’ T h e one assertion w ould thereby acquire g re a te r w eight for me. and this m eans: he deceives his p a rtn e r about his gam e-intention. W hat is cancelled out if . O therw ise expressed. Someone who asserts th a t p w ithout opining th a t p p erfo rm s the opening-m ove o f th e verification-gam e w ithout the intention o f w inning the game. which in the previous lecture I described by saying that the outcom e of th e gam e does not consist in a play er’s having won or lost. nonetheless h e has m ade the assertion. I will say ‘I ’ve already h eard . it m eans fo r the h e a re r that the speaker does n o t stand beh in d his assertion. B u t now w hat does this m ean for the act o f assertion? L et us look at the m atter fro m the perspective of th e hearer. T h e h e a re r will not now take th e speaker seriously. then he cannot at the same tim e openly adm it that it is not his intention to assert som ething that is true. O n the basis o f the definition o f opinion we can also fo rm u late this as follows: he expresses by his assertion an opinion which is not his but that of a person who asserts the same with the inten tio n o f asserting som ething true. one an d th e same g u aran tee can be given by several persons. he can. If o n e of you says to m e ‘T h e re ’s a m an waiting outside for you’. T h e re is m anifested h e re a peculiar in d ep en d en ce o f the gam e from the players. W hy do you say it again?’ O n th e o th er h a n d . and im m ediately afterw ards a n o th e r p erson uses the sam e sentence.

It may seem strange th at although it started o u t from the intersubjec­ tive em ploym ent-situation. W hen one explains to som eone how an assertoric sentence is used it is presupposed that the p artn er is an arbitrary person. I m ust also in ten d to bring it about that this person notices that I am asserting that/?. inasm uch as th e com m unication is always a com m unication to specific persons.e. In the same way. This ancillary intention is realized .Analysis o f the predicative sentence 216 som eone openly adm its that he does not opine what he asserts is not the assertion.in the assertoric gam e as in chess . th en . if I am playing chess with someone and make a certain move. the rules of which) is fam iliar to his part- . is g rounded the practical significance of assertoric speaking to oneself.by the player (a) seeing to it that his p artn er perceives which sign he is using and (b) . though o f course in this case . so long as he knows the same employmentrules. in the broad sense of this word. how are we to u n d erstan d the com m unication-function em phasized by Grice? W hat I have so far said about the connection between assertion and opinion also applies to speaking to oneself.trivially . but the dispositional participation of this individual in the guarantee. we must ask: given that this is so. an d in the fact that all opinion is always also a belief. my description of the em ploym ent-rules of sentences does not so far contain the aspect of communication.choosing a sign or signsystem (a language) which (i. the guarantee. In precisely the same way. when the rules of chess are explained to someone it is assum ed th at o n e’s p artn er is an arbitrary person who knows the sam e gam e-rules. If I wish to be understood by a particular person. in addition to having the intention which governs th e move and is related to the outcom e of the game. Now th at the connection between assertion and opinion has been explained an d it has been m ade clear that the recourse to opinion is not necessary to explain the m eaning of an assertoric sentence. This arbitrariness of p artn er is a reason (though not the only one) why one can also play the verification-game with oneself (one cannot play chess with oneself).on the assum ption that th ere are several signs or sign-systems for the same game-act . I m ust also intend to bring it about that my p artn er notices that I have m ade this particular move. then. in addition to intending to assert that/?. but that ra th e r the dependence is the o th er way ro u n d . not arbitrary persons.th e possibility of asserting som ething one does not opine no longer applies. In every monological employment o f an assertoric sentence there is expressed an opinion of the person. T o u n d erstand how a sentence is used to com m unicate involves m ore than knowledge of the employmentrules. It is im p o rtan t to be clear what the reason for this is.

However. that the partners reciprocally know o f one an o th er that they are using the same signs in accordance with the same rules. his opinion is m ore or less wellfounded. and this means that I opine that/?. also has a reason (even if not a sufficient reason) to opine that I opine that/?. I use an assertoric sentence *p' the rules o f which he knows. by means of conventional rules. therefore. in som eone’s perceptual range. som eone who asserts that/? also opines that/?. to a potential dialogue. if he knows that I am asserting that p. an objectual com ponent in my own conception? No doubt this is so. if I have occasion to intend that the o th er knows that I am asserting that p. and hence doubt. It is to this same thing that the other position-takings relate and it was this too of whose truth-conditions I afterw ards spoke. the effect is only achieved to the extent that the p artn er regards the o th e r’s assertion as justified. For what is here called communication (Mitteilung). then he knows that I am asserting that/?. O f course I cannot bring it about that he knows that I opine that/?. for the most part. Now. But. W hen I drew attention to the Yes/No response of the hearer there seem ed no way o f avoiding having to say: there is something that is affirm ed or denied. when som eone opines th at /?. And since. if he knows that I am asserting that/?. that he opines som ething. no more belong to the em ploym ent-rules of linguistic signs than they do to the em ploym ent-rules of other game-signs. W hat we have to ask ourselves is (1) . but that one intends to bring it about. it is not only essential that one intends to bring it about. that the h earer believes som ething (which is what Grice’s theory essentially comes down to). and belongs. then I also have occasion to intend that he opines that I am seriously asserting that/?.Supplements 217 ner. my partner. for the most part. since. also has reason him self to opine that/?. however. and that they use the signs in such a way that each notices which sign the other is using). Ill With this I conclude the debate with thesis (5) and would now like to indicate a difficulty which has probably been troubling you for some time and which will give me the opportunity to make a few supplem en­ tary rem arks. Is there not revealed here. by means of an assertion. A nd this was even clearer when the same response was expressed in the utterance ‘that is true/false’. If. these presuppositions of communication (viz. This m eans that the communication is essentially exposed to the possibility of denial. my p artn er. you will have asked yourselves. T hus by seeing to it that someone notices that one is asserting that/? one can inform (mitteilen) him that/?.

To this distinction there corresponds an analogous distinction on the part of the sign. and the one sign that occurs several times as the sign-type. that is.Analysis of the predicative sentence 218 how should we in terp ret this objectual element? (2 ) how far can I none­ theless claim that the recourse to it does not rep resent a reversion to the object-orientated approach? Following ordinary linguistic usage I have called that which is true or false ‘the assertion’. T h e distinction ju st indicated corresponds not only to linguistic usage (we do not say of the speechact that it is tru e or false) but also to a distinction we encountered in describing assertion as an act of guaranteeing: someone who uses a sen­ tence ‘ ’ (1) indicates what he is guaranteeing and (2) guarantees it. O ne m ight th erefore be inclined to think that the objectual elem ent that we have h ere encountered . several physical occurrences o f the same structure.that which is true or false . B ut we m ust distinguish a fu rth e r am biguity in the expression ‘the assertion’. the use o f an assertoric sentence. It is only the assertion in this third sense .in the sense of what is asserted which is th at which we call true or false. In both (1) and (2) it is t h e a ^ r tion-act that is referred to. For it was this that I have called assertion. T h e ambiguity in speaking o f the assertion-act corresponds m ore o r less exactly to this ambiguity in speaking o f a sign. O ne can assert . This p distinction is a necessary one.’ Can we still say that what ‘the assertion that/?’ refers to is the assertionact (in the sense of the act-type)? Clearly we have to distinguish the assertion in the sense o f the asserting (the assertion-act w hether as acttype or act-event) and the assertion in the sense of what is asserted. B ut we can also say (and this is the m ore usual way of speaking) that it is o n e sign that occurs or is used several times.thus towards th at which he guarantees .occurs m ore than once.is the speech-act. or is used m ore than p once.or any o th er sign . We have seen that one can automatically supplem ent the sen­ tence ‘This assertion is tru e ’ as follows: ‘This assertion that/? is tru e . the sign-event is referred to as the sign-token. However. it is easy to see that the expression ‘the assertion’ is am biguous and th at I have also in fact used it am biguously : 6 ( 1 ) we can call an individual assertion-act one assertion (2 ) in ordinary speech we say that som eone repeated one assertion or that several people m ade the same assertion. W hen an assertoric sign ‘ ’ . we can say that th ere are several signs (sentences). but obviously we m ust distinguish between the act-event and the act-type. for it is possible to take up a position towards that which the sign-user asserts . It is clear that when we enquire about the rule o f the em ploym ent of a sign we m ean the sign in the sense o f the sign-type. Following Peirce.which is o th er than that of guaranteeing.

T h e explanation o f the ontological status of a state o f affairs we have ju st given . T h e assertion-act which som eone p erform s when he employs the sentence thus consists in this: it asserts something. above p. that which is called . T h e objects which we h ere enco u n ter u n d e r the title ‘that which is asserted’ are of course the same as those we m et earlier u n d e r the description ‘states o f affairs’ or ‘th o u g h ts’ o r ‘propositions’ (p. there belongs to assertoric speech a basic relation to som ething identifiable. 43). and that means: takes u p a position towards the same thing towards which a differen t position can also be taken u p . w hereas a state o f affairs that/? can only be identified by saying: it is th at which is asserted w hen one uses the sen­ tence . because th e Yes/No relates to tru th . inasm uch as spatio-tem poral objects are iden­ tifiable in space and time. circum stances-related language. For the explanation as it stands is peculiarly elusive and invites the fu r­ ther question: w hat is that which is asserted when the sentence * * is p used? With this I take up a question which I left open in the introductory reflections on form al sem antics (p. of course.the same thing that had been asserted .is false or doubtful. etc. which are taken for gran ted and reg a rd e d as unproblem atic. In that case. but to which. in contrast to a m ore prim itive. its char­ acteristic feature is th at it relates to tru th and by virtue of this to objects. clearly in the sense o f sentence-type. T he problem o f these objects which can be tru e or false is usually treated by contrasting them with spatio-tem poral objects. O ne m ust th erefo re say that the prim ary objects o f assertoric speech those to which it relates qua assertoric speech . W ithin a limited enquiry such a pro ced u re is justified. 44). This implies that. not satisfactory as it stands. If one considers assertoric speech. the same position can be taken. * it can merely serve to indicate the direction in which we have to enquire. equally.that an object th at p is identified as th at which is asserted when the sentence *p is used . H erein lies p the difference from the object-orientated position (the explanation of the em ploym ent-rule of the sentence does not have to refer to the object that p. cf.Supplements 219 that it . So although talk o f objects th at can be tru e or false is as fu n ­ dam ental as the use o f assertoric sentences (as became clear in the analysis o f the em ploym ent-rule of assertoric sentences in the last lecture) the identification o f such an object that p presupposes the understanding of the em ploym ent-rule of th e co rresponding sentence ‘ ’. T h e simplest answ er to this question would be: it is the sentence itself.is. 2 0 2 ). and this means: a relation to an object.are those of which it can be predicated th at they are tru e or false.

O n the surface even linguistic usage speaks against this identification o f sentence and state of affairs. I f we can only explain the m eaning o f a sentence by giving its truth-conditions. be subject to at least the following qualification: it is the sen­ tence-type in so fa r as it is em ployed in a particular way. would be the sentence. If the same sentence were em ployed differently (e.Analysis of the predicative sentence 220 true or false.both for the sentence-type and for what is asserted by means o f a sentence-type. 207). we do not m ean th a t he used th e English sentence ‘T h e earth revolves around the sun’. b u t ra th e r som e sentence o r o th er th at has the same m eaning as this sentence. T his idea. thus have the same m eaning. hence th at it is sentences which can be tru e or false. one could still hold that the state of affairs that/? . if that were all.o r script-structure. but also that dif­ feren t sentences stand for the same state o f affairs if they are used according to the sam e rule. T h e state of affairs would thus be the sentence-in-a-particular-m ode-of-employment. even with this qualification the view that the state of affairs is the sentence is not tenable. It is tru e that in G erm an. as a sentence o f another lan­ guage) then it would have d ifferent truth-conditions. th en this m eans that it is sentences that have truth-conditions. W hat lies p behind this surface difference? In the first place it is easy to see that (as I have previously pointed out) not only can the sam e sentence stand for different states of affairs when. it is used according to d ifferen t rules. would. nam ely. the word ‘Satz is used in both m eanings . This view would n o t only be sim ple. th at the so-called tru th -b earer is the sentence. but seems also to be presupposed by a widely-held thesis to which I too have appealed.g. p H ow ever. in contrast to o th e r languages. So this conception am ounts to equating the identity-criteria for states of affairs . what I ju st asserted in general would also hold for this conception: the identification o f the state of affairs presupposes the u n d erstanding of the em ploym ent-rule an d is thus g ro u n d ed in the u n d erstanding of m eaning.like the sentence-type ‘ / . of course. Hence. T h u s the identity-criteria for the state of affairs that p and for the sentence * * overlap. we speak o f the Satz ‘ \ on the o th e r hand o f the Satz that p. O n the one h and. in the case of the proposition th at p it is th e em ploym ent-rule. If we say ‘C opernicus asserted th at the earth revolves aro u n d the sun’. I am referring to thesis (3) (above p. However.is som ething by reference to which / we identify many sentence-events as one Satz. and to which position-takings relate. T h a t th ere are two m eanings here is shown by the fact th at the term is com pleted differently. In the case of the sentencetype the unifying-principle is th e form of th e sound.

If a sentence contains deictic expressions. we can now say. but they do have the same truth-conditions. for the state o f affairs that/? lacks the assertion-m ode that belongs to the m eaning of'/?’ and which.Supplements 221 with those for em ploym ent-rules. and sentence-occurrences with d ifferen t m ean­ ings can have the same truth-conditions. depending on the employmentsituation. In this way we retu rn to the beginning of the present reflection where I started from the idea that the object th at p is the assertion . the view that the state of affairs that/? is the m eaning of the sentence ‘?’ collapses when applied to those sentences that contain deictic / expressions. that we m ust regard as the elem entary unit which provides the basis for the truth -b earer. but by the m eaning of the sentence together with the situation in which it uses it. I f one cannot speak of the truth-conditions of a sentence at all. d ep en d in g on the situation in which they are used (by which speaker. For sentenceoccurrences with one and the same m eaning can have different truthconditions. H ere we can no longer say that all sentence-occurrences with the same m eaning stand for a proposition that p. then it is only th ro u g h the com bination o f a sentence used according to a certain rule with a certain em ploym ent-situation that th ere arises som ething that can be tru e or false. in the case o f the expres­ sion ‘th a tp ’. clearly. then. A nd the speechact. However. or stand for the same state o f affairs that I am hun g ry now. and this m eans. It is not the sentence-occurrence. the definition of the m eaning o f a sentence as given by me in the last lecture by spec­ ification of truth-conditions or the dem onstration o f its verification-rule is also untenable. T h e consequence of this for the m eaning of the sentence is that to understand a sentence ‘?’ that contains / deictic expressions cannot be to know its truth-conditions. if the first sentence is used by me now and the second by you tom orrow . is not identified simply by the m eaning of the sen­ tence which it uses. but rather . is only added by the supplem entation ‘is tru e ’. both difficulties can be rem oved by an app ro p riate supple­ m entation.and represents an abstract elem ent of the assertion in the sense o f the speech-act. A nd this means that the state of affairs that/? would be the m eaning o f ‘ \ Now we have already seen (p. T h e two sentence-occurrences ‘I am h ungry now’ and ‘You were hungry yesterday’ do not have the same m eaning. but the speech-event. Besides.in a particular sense of this word . T h e consideration of deictic expressions calls in question not only the attem p t to construe the tru th -b earer as in some way the sentence or as a classification-principle of sentence-occurrences. for the m eanings of sentences. at what time). 118f) that this conception p cannot be correct.

It is also true. it is not im m ediately clear what it is in virtue o f which the many speech-events. in their different ways. i. th ro u g h the use of differen t sentences in different situa­ tions. T h e one assertion is thus the unifying principle relative to the many speech-events determ ined by the m eanings of the employed sentences and the situa­ tions.o r script-structure. in the same way that the sentence-type and the proposition that/? were. that it is only through the combination o f a sentence em ployed according to a particular rule with a particular em ploym ent-situation that th ere results som ething that can be tru e or false. m ust be correspondingly supplem ented. The assertion —both in the sense of the speech-act-type and in the sense o f what is asserted (the state of affairs that/?) . the unifying principles relative to the many sentence-occurrences. Consequently what I ju st said. In the case of the sentencetype this condition was the form o f the sound. W hat is m eant by ‘unifying principle’ is that we count the many occurrences or events as one sentence-type. and such a fleeting event is not the identifiable situation-independent som ething that can be tru e or false. that sentences with different m eanings.is rath er the identical som ething whereby all speechevents which.Analysis of the predicative sentence 222 what the truth-conditions o f the speech-act are which uses it in situation x. T o say that they have the same truth-conditions would be correct. which have neither the meaning of the em ployed sentence n o r the situation in com m on. con­ versely (as was shown by the exam ples ‘I am h u n g ry ’ and ‘You were h u n g ry ’). However. stand for one and the same assertion with the same truthconditions. For the question is precisely: how . But this would be to invoke as the g round of explanation the very thing that has to be explained. are counted as one assertion. N ot only does the em ploym ent of a sentence with one and the same m eaning have different truthconditions.e. This can also be expressed in somewhat technical x’ language as follows: the m eaning o f the sentence is a function whose argum ents are the em ploym ent-situations of the sentence and whose values are assertions. d ep ending on the em ploym ent-situation. where ‘ is a variable. we m ust go a step furth er. if they fulfil a certain condition. have the same truth-conditions are united into one class. In the case of the assertion. in the case of the Satz that/? it was the em ploym ent-rule. or as one Satz that/?. employed in different situations. objects which have determ inate truth-values (or have determ inate truth-conditions for the person who has identified them on the basis of the m eaning o f the sentence employed and the em ploym ent-situation). T h e combi­ nation just described would characterize only an individual speech-event. on the oth er han d . viz.

in the context o f the usual m eta-linguistic sem antic theories. the use o f these objective expressions.Supplements 223 is it that we can a p p re h e n d differenr. T h e n atu re o f o u r enquiry clearly rules out p resu p p o sing the un d erstan d in g o f any meta-linguistic expressions. speech-events as having the same truth-conditions? T h e following conjecture. whereby the identical elem ent required for assertoric speech is constituted. and which. It will em erge . and whose values are truth-conditions. You may perhaps find strange this conjecture th at it is o f all things the function of situationrelated expressions to m ake the use o f linguistic expressions situationin d ep en d en t. this can only m ean th at the em ploym ent-rules o f the various sentences which. I f we view assertoric speech against the background of m ore prim itive. In the m eta-language the em ploym ent-situation can be re fe rred to by m eans o f expressions which locate the situation in an already p resupposed objective system o f objects in space and time. suggests itself: if the m eanings of sentences are functions whose argum ents are the em ploym ent-situations.that far from it being the case th at the use of situation-related deictic expressions can be explained by means of such objective expressions. m ust figure in the specification of the truth-conditions o f sentences with deictic expressions. m ust be the specific achievem ent of the em ploy­ m ent-rule o f those sentence-com ponents which relate the use of sen­ tences to the situation: the deictic expressions. in their respective situations. A nd what is th en m ore n atu ral than to suppose that this situation-independence is m ade possible by those expressions which expressly relate to the situation? T h a t this positive function o f deictic expressions in the constitution o f identifiability has h ith erto not been seen is connected with the fact that. T his systematic reciprocal relation. this system atic relation between the expressions m ust belong to th eir em ploym ent-rule. We shall have to ask how the use of expressions which locate the situation in an objective system of objects is itself to be explained. as som ething obvious. as everyone adm its. and with it . one did not have to worry about how the expressions which refer to situa­ tions.this too I can now merely anticipate as a thesis . But it can really only a p p e a r strange if one takes for gran ted th e situation-independence of assertoric speech. rep resen t the sam e truth-conditions recip­ rocally re fe r to one another. which we m ust later examine. situation-dependent languages th en we m ust ask: what are the linguistic means w hereby the em ploym ent o f expressions is m ade in d e p e n d e n t o f situation in the m an n er p resu p posed in speaking of ‘tru e ’ and ‘false’. are themselves explained.

In the case of sentences which contain no deictic expressions one can speak o f the truth-conditions of the sentence and say th at to u n d erstan d the m eaning of the sentence is to know its truthconditions or its verification-rule.Analysis of the predicative sentence 224 the use of all singular term s which refer to spatio-temporal objects. . w ithout which there could not be assertoric speech. And correspondingly. Now if the identifiability of these objects is g rounded in the use o f deictic expressions. con­ cerns those objects which can be true or false. T h e difference between my position and what I call the object-orientated position consists simply in this: the latter presupposes the object-relation as som ething self-evi­ dent. it emerges that a relation to objects is as basic as the u n d erstan d in g o f assertoric sentences. my opposition to the object-orientated tradition should not be in terp reted as implying that a relation to objects is no longer essential. This suggests a whole new perspective for the problem of propositional objects and spatio-tem poral objects. If the hypothesis regarding the positive function of deictic expressions for th e identifiability of states of affairs. o r it views objects as correlates o f the pseudo-concept of represen­ tation (Vorstellen) and then puts them in place of the meanings of lin­ guistic expressions. the basic question is: to what extent is som ething like a relation to objects essential to assertoric speech (in contrast to m ore prim itive. and if the deictic expressions make possible the situation-independence essential to this identifiability by producing through their reciprocal relation a prim ary level o f identifiability in space and time. as is usual in metalinguistic semantics. whereas what we really have to do is to show how som ething like an object-relation is only constituted in the rule-governed use of linguistic expressions. In the course of a fundam ental discussion of the m eaning of assertoric sentences. can only be explained by recourse to the deictic expressions. and this means: in the understanding of their m eaning. is correct. in the case of these sentences. however. we can also regard the state of affairs th a tp as a classification-principle of sentence-occurrences (as the ‘Satz that/?’). H itherto in analytical philosophy this problem has been regarded simply as one of identifiability and the two kinds of object have been discussed only in contrast to one another. situation-dependent languages)? A nd the prim ary object-relation. then one must conclude that a reference to objects in space and time is the condition of the possibility of the use o f the expressions ‘tru e’ and ‘false’. and hence for the possibility of using the words ‘tru e ’ and ‘false’. as a special case or as an unavoidable complication of socalled natural languages. On the contrary. So you see. then clearly we can no longer regard sentences with deictic expressions.

the truth-condition. T hus in the case of such sentences it is a m ere illusion that one. It is much simpler in the case of a second form of reference-back. it now seems desirable to regard this case as the special case and view the state of affairs that/? in all cases as a classificationprinciple of speech-events. disappears as soon as one attem pts to explain the employ­ ment-rule. then the use of an assertoric sentence . deictic sentences and other sentences. can specify their truth-conditions without deictic expressions. In the special case in which there are no situation-com ponents of the truth-condition the speech events can be identified by the rule of the sentence that is used. if the thesis referred to is correct. If it is only through deictic expressions that the identity required for the use o f the word ‘tru e ’ is constituted. trivially. can itself not be explained without the use of deictic expres­ sions. and which. Thus no situation-com ponents enter into the truth-conditions of these so-called truth-functional sentences or assertions. In other words. Secondly.a sentence with a truth-claim . If we disregard more complicated sentences . But this is only because they already have a situation-independent stratum of assertions that can be true or false as their foundation. an illusion that can persist only as long as one spec­ ifies the truth-conditions by means of a m eta-language. and hence the verification-rule of the sentence. the use of an elem entary sentence is a speech-act which. firstly. even if it employs a sentence without deictic expressions. then this means that in the case o f all elem entary sentences . truth-functional sentences I will begin the concrete presentation of the employmentrules of assertoric sentences with this most simple case and only then . only stands for a particular assertion that p if it belongs to a class of speechacts which all have the same truth-conditions. we can clearly no longer assume that the two cases. T h ere are sentences which are such that the tru th or falsity of the asser­ tion depends simply on the truth o r falsity of o th er assertions. are of equivalent status. reducible to the truthconditions of the sentence-occurrences.all predicative sentences in which concrete (perceptible) objects are referred to . So because it is essentially simpler to explain the verification-rules of these higher-level.that does not refer back in one way or the o ther to deictic sentences is simply inconceivable. and the truth-condi­ tions of the speech-events are therefore. and of which some use sentences with deictic expressions.5 upplemen ts 225 B ut. as we shall see.those for instance which refer to abstract objects .then we must envisage two form s of such a reference-back: If it is correct that the use of all singular term s refers back to deictic expressions.

we could only achieve a prelim inary concept of the general essence of assertoric sentences (cf. 179). and thus an essential aspect o f the m eaning of the words ‘tru e ’ and ‘false’. prior to the discussion of predicative sentences.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 226 come back to predicative sentences. is constituted at the level of elem entary sentences. T h e situation-independence and identity fu n d a ­ m ental to the use o f all assertoric sentences. At the sam e time it has now become clearer why. . p.

So far we have only been able to d eterm in e in a general way what this m eans. but ra th e r in know ing what its function is. O nly by doing this will we be able to .) T h e account given so fa r is thus not only abstract.LECTURE 17 A nd’ and ‘o r’ In the lecture b efore last we arrived at a first. better: different sentenceform s are distinguished precisely by having different sorts o f verificationrule. prelim inary result in the enquiry into th e m eaning o f assertoric sentences. T h e re are two m utually negating opening-positions. T o assert som ething is to p erfo rm the opening-m ove in a veri­ fication-game. It becam e clear th at the u n d erstan d in g of its em ploym ent-rule consists not in know ing in what circum stances it is used. In the last lecture I related this result to o th er possible conceptions and then supplem ented it in an essential respect. T h e rules of the gam e are verification-rules. T hey m ust be shown separately fo r th e d ifferent sentence-form s or. It was this question th at rem ained open an d to which we m ust now tu rn . Such a gam e has the following defining features. because in g eneral nothing can be said abou t the verification-rules o f assertoric sentences. I had started from the assum ption that to understan d a linguistic expression is to u n d erstan d its em ploym ent-rule. and th at this function consists in asserting something. it is also incom plete so long as it has not been shown how the verification-rules of specific sentence-form s can be explained. (Should th at prove to be correct then we would have a basis for re n d e rin g precise the concept o f sem antic form that has h itherto rem ain ed vague. T h e outcom e o f th e gam e is characterized thus: on the basis o f following th e verification-rule the one assertion turns out to be tru e the o th e r false o r one assertion m ust be w ithdraw n in favour of the other. It followed from this general characterization of the em ploym ent-rules o f assertoric sentences that the explanation of the use o f such a sentence m ust consist in the explanation of its verificationrule. It had to rem ain open.

How could the m eaning of the word ‘an d ’ be explained from an objectorientated position? It would clearly be absurd to claim that this word stands for an object. T h a t which can be said to have truth-conditions or a ver­ ification-rule is in general not the sentence but what is asserted. or verification-rule. thus sen­ tences whose em ploym ent-rule does not contain a situation-reference. In the case of these sentences. traditionally known as general sentences. B ut it is not necessary for traditional semantics to do so. At this point.e. T h e simplest type o f such sentence-form s are the so-called truthfunctional sentences. 109). F or it had at its disposal the concept of a syncategorematic expression (p. H ence. the explanation of the m eaning o f the sentence is reducible to the explanation of this verifi­ cation-rule. but again take as our starting-point the traditional object-orientated conception. we can disregard this complication. i. It would th erefo re seem to me worthwhile not to begin immediately with the truth -o rien ted analysis of these sentence-form s. one can say that the truthcondition. though of course they were interpreted there in an object-oriented way. Now we saw at the end of the last lecture that the view that the em ploym ent-rule (m eaning) o f a sentence is its verification-rule must be corrected. and. in particular sentences of the form ‘ or q an d (b) the sentences. T o know its em ploym ent-rule is not to know its verification-rule. sentences whose tru th or falsity depends on the tru th or falsity o f oth er sentences. the traditional idea of thinking included these forms as well as the predicative form. th erefore. In this way we can give the confrontation o f the language-analytical approach with the traditional position a b ro ad er basis. for I w anted to begin with sim pler. In both cases one has to do with expressions or sentence-form s which had also been taken account of in the tradition. together with that o f the simple pre­ dicative statem ent. however. T he sentence as such has in general no specific truth-condition or verificationrule. Sentences of this kind are (a) certain form s of com plex sentences. of the assertion is also the truth-condition or verification-rule of the sentence. but ra th e r the verification-rule of the assertion which uses the sentence in situation*. forms of sen­ tences which do not necessarily contain deictic expressions. played an essential role not only in m odern logic but also in traditional logic (the en tire A ristotelian syllogistic is exclusively concerned with general sentences). R ather it is characteristic of the traditional view . though higher-level. T hese form s. as a result.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 228 see how far this conception really provides a basis for the explanation o f the m eaning of individual sentences and sentence-parts. p in which words like ‘all’ and ‘som e’ occur.

just as it cannot be represented pictorially. This is probably no accident. cannot be grasped with one’s hands or a p p re ­ hended with some sense. From this it follows that the ‘and’ that occurs between assertoric sentences represents a combination of states o f affairs in the same way that the ‘a n d ’ between names represents a com bination o f objects. e. .‘ And’ and lor 229 to regard the ‘an d ’ as standing for an ‘aggregate’ (Zusammen) of objects. namely. But what then do we mean? If it is a m atter of composition at all it can only be a composition in ‘th o u g h t’ of the kind contained in H usserl’s concept of categorial synthesis. by this he would appear to mean the same abstract object which in logic is usually called a ‘set’. the analysis is only carried out for ‘an d ’. in a painting . W hen we say ‘Peter and Paul and Sim on’ we do not mean that the three are joined together or in some way really (real) connected. this can hardly be a m atter of real composition (Zusammenset­ zung). Now in the case of ‘a n d ’ Husserl speaks o f the ‘conjunctive combination of names or statem ents’.g. 119). T h e them atic discussion o f ‘a n d ’ and ‘o r’ takes place in §51 of Inves­ tigation VI of Logical Investigations u n d er the heading ‘Collectiva and Disjunctiva’. . for on his view the transference of this explanation to the other case follows automatically. and in fact in constructing his theory of categorial synthesis Husserl from the outset had also this case in mind. . he treats the case in which the word ‘and’ occurs between names and that in which it occurs between statem ents as analogous. However. states o f affairs (above p.’ In the first sentence H usserl rejects a conception o f ‘an d ’ as the representative of a real combination. In other words. an act of conjunction. H usserl calls this object a ‘collectivum’ or a lter­ natively an ‘aggregate’ (Inbegriff). To this act there corresponds ‘a unitary object which can only be constituted in this act-com bination’. . H e gives the following explanation: ‘T h at which corresponds to the words “a n d ” and “o r” . for it is difficult to im agine what an object-orien­ tated in terpretation o f ‘o r’ could look like. This led to Husserl only explaining ‘conjunctive com bination’ with reference to names. then Husserl’s theory of categorial synthesis seems tailor-m ade for this purpose. . This is a logical consequence of his view that assertoric sentences also stand for objects. In the second he gives his positive explanation which grounds the synthesis in a ‘new’ (categorial) act o f a special kind. So if there is any possibility at all of interpreting the meaning o f the word ‘and’ in an object-orientated way. However. T h e re is h ere only the one possibility which is always open to us: that we perform a new act o f conjunction (collection) on the basis of the two individual acts o f perception and thereby mean the aggregate o f the objects^ and B .

B ut H usserl has rightly ruled this out in rejecting the idea of a ‘real’ combination. T h e one may be in Australia.is by re fe r­ ring to the synthetic act in which. Now the question is: is this description intelligible? Do we understand what it really means to mean the ‘aggregate’ of several objects? W hat is m eant by this ‘aggregate’? T h e first thing we think of when we hear this word is some kind o f spatial proximity.Analysis of the predicative sentence 230 Is it an intelligible explanation of the word ‘and’. B ut then the prior question . Now H usserl by no means m erely presupposes this. he tries to explain w hat a set . as he thinks. at least as far as it occurs between nam es.au aggregate . On the contrary. But now the question once m ore arises: how is an act o f collection char­ acterized? How do I tell that I am perform ing such an act and not some other synthetic act? H usserl is clearly moving round in circles: an act of collection is one which means the aggregate of objects and this aggregate is precisely what is constituted in such an act. Now how is this act described? As one which ‘m eans’ ‘the aggregate o f the objects’. T he explanation that thro u g h the w ord ‘an d’ several objects are combined to form a set explains nothing so long as we do not know what a set is. W hen we say ‘Peter and Paul’ no spatial proxim ity is implied. B ut what then is positively m eant by the ‘aggregate’? H usserl would no doubt reply: we are here dealing with something entirely sui generis which can only be understood by p erform ing the relevant act. the other in Costa Rica or no longer be alive. B ut if we can only explain the ‘aggregate’ by means of ‘an d ’ we must be able somehow to understan d the latter. We must in terp ret the question about the m eaning of the word ‘an d ’ as a question about the explanation o f its use. we shall have to try to find the step back which we took in the case o f predicates. Perhaps you will say: what enables one to tell that one is dealing with an act of collection is the fact that it is expressed in the word ‘an d ’. But how do we u n d erstan d it? Since the object-orientated in te rp re­ tation has turn ed out to be a gam e with em pty words. the word ‘a n d ’ is expressed. ‘If we want to make clear to ourselves the m eaning of the word “an d ” then we m ust actually perform an act of collection and in the thus genuinely presented aggregate bring to fulfilm ent a m eaning of the form “a and b” ’ (Investigation IV §9 (b)). But th at would m ean that what we are to u n d erstan d by ‘aggregate’ is explained by means of ‘a n d ’. This description is H usserl’s explanation of the m eaning o f the w ord ‘a n d ’. whereas H usserl wanted to explain the m eaning of ‘a n d ’ by reference to the ‘aggregate’. to say that the objects that are designated by the names connected by the word ‘a n d ’ together constitute a set? We should not let ourselves be im pressed by the scientific respectability of the word ‘set’.

And we would thereby have included a real relation. P erhaps you th in k one could keep rearran g in g the three objects until it is understood th at one is to abstract from the specific m an n er in which they are placed together. So long as we only use the expression ‘a and b\ then although we can say th at a and b are elem ents of a set. we say of all objects to which a predicate is applicable th a t they are elem ents of a set. e. ‘a and b an d c are in this circle’. for the expression ‘a and b’ leaves open the possibility that the set also contains o th er elements. an expression of th e form ‘a and V does not rep resen t a set at all. and this can be expressed by means o f a m ore com plex predicate by saying: all objects to which th e predicate ‘identical with a or W is applicable constitute the intended set. not the word ‘and\ but the word ‘or\ You could m ake th e following objection: from the fact that ‘a and b’ . contrary to H usserl’s opinion.‘Peter and Paul’ —w ithout this w ord-sequence being supplem ented by a predicate.g. So we would have to say: the elem ents of this set are a and b an d no object that is not identical with a or b. W hat we would then have explained would already include a certain predicate. namely by having it simply stand between nam es . B ut it is an illusion to think th at we could in this way bring som eone to u n d ersta n d that we m ean ‘a n d ’. B ut there is no reference to such a being together or spatial proxim ity in ‘a and b\ T h u s the expectation th at one could explain the use o f the word ‘a n d ’ purely in connection with names turns out to be an illusion. For how could we explain the use o f such a part-expression ‘a and b and c’ by means o f examples? Suppose we try to do so by somehow placing the objects together. You m ight ask: why sh o u ld n ’t one also be able to form a set consisting only of the elem ents a an d b? Clearly one can do this .‘ A n d ’ and ‘or ’ 231 immediately arises of w hether the use of the word ‘and’ can be explained at all in the way proposed by the object-orientated conception. som ething which H usserl has already rightly ruled out. Sets can only be determ in ed with the aid of predicates. Notice th at to introduce a set consisting only o f a and b one has to use. we cannot say th at together they constitute a set. I believe it can be shown th at such an explanation o f the w ord ‘an d ’ is simply incon­ ceivable. I f we introduce the concept o f a set in this way th en it should also be noted that.b u t not by m eans o f the m ere expression ‘a and b\ I f we wish to speak o f the set consisting only of a an d b then o u r form ulation m ust express the exclusion from this set of all oth er objects. we will rather be understood to m ean that the objects are somehow together. A nd it would be a corresp o n d in g illusion to suppose that one could explain what is to be u nderstood by a set w ithout m aking use of predicates. or by draw ing a circle and placing them in it.

th eir completion to form a whole sentence shows th at ‘an d ’ as it occurs between nam es refers back to ‘a n d ’ as it occurs betw een whole sentences. B ut if this is correct then we can spare ourselves the whole d e to u r into set-theory and say m uch more simply: the sense o f that ‘ag g reg ate’ consists in this. then the sentence ‘Paul is next to P e te r’ is also true. What ‘connects’ a and b is that they are both elem ents of a set which has been left open and has yet to be specified.Analysis of the predicative sentence 232 does not stand for a set in the sense of set-theory it does not follow that H usserl’s idea o f an ‘aggregate’. B ut elem ents of which set? For this set is not already defined by these two elem ents. for which the expression ‘a and b* is supposed to stand. this result requires qualification. T his sheds new light on the pos­ sibility o f explaining the use o f the expression ‘a n d ’ by means of exam ­ ples. but merely that they are elem ents of a set.g. In the case o f symmetrical relations this requirem ent no longer applies. precisely that set that is defined by the predicate that follows the sentence-part a and b\ I believe this to be the only rem aining sense for H usserl’s idea of an ‘aggregate’. However. N atural languages do this in two ways: by inflection and by w ord-order. Only in the case of nonsymmetrical relations (e. in the sense that they are to be understood as sentence-fragm ents.’ With this we would have reached an im portant interm ediate result: not only do expressions of the form ‘ and b’ involve a a reference Verweisen) to sentences. H ence in English we have the sentence-form in which . We have seen that one cannot understand the expression (a and b’ to m ean that a an d b constitute a set. In such a case one is dealing with symmetrical relations.’ We m ust reg ard this sentence-form as a special case. Obviously. T h a t is correct. However. perhaps it is precisely on the basis o f this excursus into set-theory th at we can now have a better idea of w hat possible m eaning can be connected with this ‘aggregate’.‘Peter and Paul are F ’ . that a predicate that has yet to be specified applies to both a and b. ‘P eter hits Paul’) is it necessary for there to be a syntactical indication which shows the o rd er of the two term s of the relation.clearly has the same m eaning as the complex sentence ‘Peter isF and Paul is F. It points forw ard to a predicate F and the thus com pleted sentence . A relation is term ed ‘sym m etrical’ if w henever it holds between a and b it also holds between b and a. T h e expression ‘Peter and Paul’ should be understood as merely a sentence-fragment. is not m eaningful. If the sentence ‘P eter is next to Paul’ is true. Not every sentence of the form ‘ and b are F ’ has the same m eaning as ‘a is F and b is F\ We a cannot convert a sentence such as ‘Peter and Paul are standing next to each o th e r’ into ‘Peter is standing next to each other and Paul is standing next to each o th e r.

what is mistaken in the object-orientated conception is not its view of what is connected by the predicate with the object of the subject-term of the sentence. If it were really a m atter of a synthesis between states of affairs then we should expect. ‘T h a t it is raining and that it is warm is pleasant. not the expression ‘ and q\ but rather p ‘th a tp and th at^’.’ But with regard to this expression we would now have to say that it is equiv­ alent to the higher-level complex sentence ‘T h a t it is raining is pleasant and that it is warm is pleasant. T o accept it is to have already given up the object-orien­ tated interpretation of ‘an d ’ and ‘o r’. Such expressions do actually occur and they are indeed analogous to ‘a and b\ for they too require to be supplem ented by a predicate. as we saw in our treatm ent of predicates. We can thus ignore this special case and tu rn our attention to the em ploym ent of the word ‘an d ’ as it occurs between sentences. It consisted in the assum ption that som ething is com bined with som ething at all. T h e m ode of em ploym ent of this ‘and’ therefore requires no special explanation. It is in any case obvious that when ‘o r’ occurs between names (e. T h e erro r was m ore deep-seated. and this would result in the same difficulties as before. the relation between objects analogous to the ‘aggregate’ o f ‘and’.g.g. W hat o th er interpretation is conceivable? Someone coming from the object-orientated tradition will now be inclined to pose the question like this: if the word ‘a n d ’ combines neither objects nor states of affairs what then does it combine? However. e. From his objectorientated position he would have to say that the ‘an d ’ and the ‘o r’ stand for certain syntheses between states o f affairs. ‘Peter Paul stand next to each o th e r’ would have the same m eaning. A disjunction between objects? W hat could that be? Suppose H usserl had followed me up to this point and would adm it that the words ‘a n d ’ and ‘o r’ m ust be understood prim arily in their role of com bining sentences to form complex sentences. T h e same . We can now also include the word ‘o r’ in the discussion. I do not know how Husserl may have conceived. So H usserl could not even have accepted the interm ediate result reached so far.’ We would thus find ourselves in an infinite regress. ‘Peter or Paul’) the expression requires to be supplem ented by a predicate and that the sense of the ‘or that occurs between names is reducible to the ‘o r’ that occurs between sentences.'And’ and ‘or 233 the o rd e r of the nam es of the two terms of the relation before the pred­ icate is optional. But this would be simply to tran sfer the interpretation-schem a which Husserl applied to the ‘an d ’ of names to the new level. T h a t the word ‘an d ’ also occurs between the two names has no additional semantic significance. in the case o f ‘o r’.

q is somehow composed of the other two states o f affairs similar to the way in which the sentence ‘ and q is p com posed o f the sentence ‘ \ the w ord ‘a n d ’ and the sentence ‘q. likewise to the constituent sentences *p' and ‘q the states of affairs that p and that q)\ ra th e r its e rro r consists in thinking th at the state o f affairs that p and. in what sense does it depend on them? T h e move from the concept o f composition to the m ore general one of depen­ dence. T h e e rro r in the objectorientated conception of ‘an d ’ is not that it speaks of states of affairs (clearly th ere corresponds to the complex sentence ‘ and q a state of p affairs that p and q. how then is it used? Sim­ ilarly we could now ask: what o th er function or m ode of em ploym ent does the w ord ‘an d ’ have? However. like th at to the m ore general concepts of function and mode of employment. W hen dealing with predicates I introduced the con­ cept of function and then that of m ode of em ploym ent: if the predicate does not have the function of com bining. p As in the case of predicates we again req u ire a m ore general concept which. Now let us recall that som eone who uses an assertoric sentence Y not only som ehow refers to a state of affairs but also asserts th at it has the p roperty o f truth. though em bracing the possibility of composition. we will m ake m ore progress from a theoretical point o f view if we ask this question not of the sentencep art but of th e sentence-whole or the corresponding state of affairs. Now if this dependence 7 does not consist in the one state of affairs being com posed of the others then the m ost natural thing would be to assum e that the state of affairs that p and q has some p roperty which depends on some properties of the states of. Som eone who uses the sentence ‘ and q’ says the same as som eone who uses the sen­ p tence ‘It is tru e that p and q. if that is not its m ode of em ploym ent. then w hat function does it have. It is uncontroversial that what som eone asserts when he employs the sentence ‘ and q m ust p somehow d ep en d on w hat he asserts when he uses the sentence ‘ ’ and p on what he asserts when he uses the sentence ‘<’. is still entirely uncontroversial and the object-orientated philosopher would have no reason to resist it. We m ust free ourselves completely from the presupposition that the m eaning o f these w ords consists in their com ­ bining in some way som ething with som ething.affairs that p and that q. In th at case the question would have to be: if the state of affairs that p and q does not d ep en d on the states of affairs that p and that q in the sense th at it is com posed of them . T h e question: on what does the tru th of an assertion depend? . also leaves open oth er possibilities.Analysis of the predicative sentence 234 holds for ‘a n d ’ and ‘o r’.’ It is therefo re at least very plausible to suppose th at the pro p erty of the state of affairs that p and q which depends on certain properties of the states of affairs that p and that q is its truth.

. . th e re follows from the p hypothetically assum ed d ep en d en ce o f the truth -value of the state o f affairs or assertion that p and q on the truth-values of that p an d that q a co rresp o n d in g d ep en d en ce o f the truth -v alu e o f the sentence ‘ and q p on the truth-values of the sentences ‘ * an d ‘q\ A nd we can now say: we p u n d e rsta n d the m eaning of the sentence ‘ and q if we u n d e rsta n d the p m eaning of ‘ ’ an d u n d e rsta n d the m eaning of ‘q’ and if we know that p the truth-value o f ‘ and q depends in a specific way on the truth-values p of ‘ ’ and ‘q\ O r if we u n d e rsta n d ‘ ’ an d ‘q as m ere variables. In logic one abstracts from sentences with deictic expressions. p and since th e re fo re the truth-value o f the state o f affairs that p and q is also the truth-value o f th e sentence ‘ and q’.’ (where \ . Now in the last lecture we saw that if a sentence contains no deictic expressions we can ju st as well speak of the tru th and truth-conditions of the sentence as o f the tru th and truthconditions o f th e assertion chat can be m ade with it.’ is clearly the sam e w h eth er the sentences we substitute for ‘ ’ and ‘ ---. . In th at case the truth-value of th e assertions th at can be m ade by m eans o f ‘ ’ and ‘q\ hence the p truth -v alu e o f that p and o f that q is also the tru th-value o f ‘ * and ‘q .’ contain deictic expressions o r not.an d hence the m eaning of the p w ord ‘a n d ’ .’ and ‘----. B efore exam ining this hypothesis I would like. B ut th e m eaning o f ‘ . a n d ---.is to know how the tru th -v alu e o f ‘ an d q depends on the p truth-values o f ‘ * and ‘q\ I said b efore th at this all holds provided ‘ * p p an d ‘q’ contain no deictic expressions.’ a re em pty p places for arb itrary assertoric sentences) then we can now simply say: to u n d e rsta n d th e m eaning of ‘ and q .’ is to know in a com pletely general way how the truth-value of an assertion that p and q depends on the truth-values o f the assertions that p and that q: and in the specific case in which *p’ and ‘q’ do not contain any deictic expressions this depen d en ce on the truth-values o f assertions is equally a d ep endence on th e truth-values o f sentences. . on the assum ption that it is correct. . to take a step fu rth e r. . and that in this case to u n d e rsta n d th e m eaning of the sentence is to know its truth-conditions. Let us fo r the p resen t assum e th a t the constituent sentences ‘ ’ p and ‘q’ also contain no deictic expressions. . For . a n d ---. thus if p p we in te rp re t ‘ an d q as ‘ . a n d ---. We can th erefo re say: to u n d e rsta n d the m eaning o f ‘ . T h e w ords ‘an d ’ an d ‘o r’ are obviously not deictic expressions. b u t it would at any rate be the sim plest hypothesis.‘ nd’ and 4 f A o 235 is clearly ju st a n o th e r form ulation o f th e question: what are its truthconditions? T h a t the pro p erties o f th e states o f affairs that p an d that q on which the tru th o f that p and q d ep en d s are likewise th e ir tru th or falsity is not self-evident.

M eta-linguistic semantics has taken over this definition as a general definition of the words ‘an d ’ and ‘o r’. T h e definition is: the sentence ‘ an d q is tru e if and only if ‘ ’ is tru e p p and ‘q is tru e and it is false in the o th e r three cases. ‘ o r q’ is tru e if one o f them is tru e or both are true and p false only if both are false. In reg ard to ‘o f one distinguishes w hether the word is u n d ersto o d in the exclusive sense o f the Latin aut or in the sense of ‘a n d /o r’ (Latin vel). So the thesis now is th at the m eaning o f ‘a n d ’ and ‘o r’ is explained by giving. to W ittgenstein’s dictum : ‘T h e m eaning o f a word is what is explained by the explanation o f its m eaning.Analysis of the predicative sentence 236 this reason the words ‘a n d ’ and ‘o r’ are defined in m odern logic in term s of a d ep en d en ce of the truth-value of the com plex sentence on the truth-values o f the constituent sentences. I shall start with the second objection. and in specifying u n d e r w hat conditions . You will object to this (1) that it has not yet been shown that this explanation explains th e actual m ode of em ploym ent of these words. an d they belong together. precisely because the m eaning of ‘a n d ’ and ‘o r’ is itself situation-inde­ p end en t. and (2) th at the explanation I have given is circular. By referen ce to the concrete definitions of the words ‘a n d ’ and ‘o r’ th a t are given in logic o r m eta-linguistic semantics we can now exam ine the hypothesis th at the d ep en d en ce o f the state o f affairs thatp and q on the states o f affairs thatp and that q is one o f truth-value on truth-values. the truth-conditions of com ­ plex sentences form ed by m eans o f ‘a n d ’ and ‘o r’.’ We have seen th at we cannot explain that supposed aggregate. Both objections are justified. thus if ‘ * or ‘q or p both are false. it is false if both are false o r both are true. hence that th e object-orientated con­ ception is false and the tru th -o rien tated conception correct. This substitution o f th e special case for the general case is harmless. If you now ask how I can prove th at it is so. an d the form of tru th -d ep en d en ce rem ains the same w hether one regards the assertion o r the sentence as the truth-bearer. In the form er case. then I m ust re fe r back to the foundation of th e entire discussion. In the latter case. D oesn’t this explanation in fact correspond to our und erstan d in g of these words? If som eone says ‘It is raining an d it is w arm ’ the person who u n d erstan d s this assertion does not rep resen t to him self some ‘aggregate’ o f the two states o f affairs. on the o th er h an d it is clear that we can explain the m eaning o f these w ords in the way ju st described. rather he knows that the assertion is tru e if it is both tru e th a t it is rain in g and th a t it is warm. in this way. T he circularity-objection points out that in specifying u n d e r what conditions ‘ and q is tru e one again p makes use o f the w ord ‘a n d ’. ‘ or q is true if only ‘ ’ is tru e p p or only ‘q is true.

T h e verbal explanation of the m eaning of a word m ust be analytic.e. as in the case of the word ‘a n d ’. it is a basic word. the fact that the word to be explained occurs in the expla­ nation does not ren d er the explanation worthless. *p and q is false if and only if ‘ ’ is false or (and/or) p ‘q is false. T h o u g h the words ‘an d ’ and ‘o r’ do not appear the tables are so con­ structed that they m ust be supplem ented by these words when we read them . However. by recourse to the equivalence ‘T h at p is tru e = p ’ (W). You could point out that th e explanation that has been given can also be achieved by m ere substitution. a word th at is not definable by m eans of o th er words. we can sub­ stitute ‘T h a tp is tru e ’ for ‘ ’ and ‘T h a t q is tru e’ for ‘q’. within this expression. T h e explanation shows that and how the tru th o f a complex sentence. and this means: tautologi­ . for otherwise it would be false. B ut this regress does nothing to alter the content of the original statem ent that we u n d erstan d the word ‘a n d ’ if and only if we know in what way the truth-value o f the complex sentence form ed with it (or o f what is asserted by means o f this sentence) depends on the truth-values o f its constituent sentences (or of what is asserted by means of them ).‘ nd’ and ‘o f A 237 ‘ and q is false the word ‘o r’ is used: ‘ and q is tru e if and only if ( ’ is p p p tru e and ‘q is true. T h e expla­ nation says: that p and q is tru e = thatp is tru e and that q is true. And in specifying the truth-conditions o f ‘o r’ the situation is analogous. with the result p that the left side o f the equivalence is now exactly the same as the right side. Certainly there is a regress here.1 B ut this is clearly only an illusion. Now on the basis of W we can substitute ‘ and q for the left side of this equiv­ p alence and. i. depends on the truth and falsity o f its constituent sentences. or what is asserted with it. It also holds for the sentence ‘T h a t p is tru e and that q is tru e ’ that it is true if and only if it is true that it is true th at p and tru e that it is tru e that q. as is the prac­ tice since W ittgenstein’s Tractatus. B ut that the explanation reveals itself to be tautological is precisely what we would expect. A nd the thesis that to u n d erstan d this dependence of the truth-value on the truth-values of the constituent sentences is to u n d erstan d the m eaning of the word ‘an d ’ does not lose its content because of the reapp earan ce of the word ‘a n d ’ in the speci­ fication of the truth-conditions. For if you now ask: ‘W hat does this “and” m ean?’ the answ er is: obviously the same. or of what is asserted with them . T his circularity is not so evident when the truth-conditions o f complex statem ents are given in so-called ‘truth-tables’. again on the basis of W. a verbal explanation of this word can only be effected by m eans of this word. and thus proves itself to be tautological. A nd when.

or that predicates stand for attributes. the objectorientated conception foundered.by oth er verbal m eans. 3 W hen Davidson says that it cannot be the task o f a semantic theory to explain our linguistic expres­ sions with m eans which are not themselves contained in the latter this corresponds to W ittgenstein’s statem ent that the m eaning is what we explain when we explain the m eaning o f the sentence. T h e tautology ‘ “ and q” is tru e if and only if “ and p p q” is tru e ’ is em pty. a n d ---.because it gives the truth-condition of sentences o f this form and thus says what it is to u n d erstan d this word. T he tautology ‘ * p and q ’ is tru e if and only if “ ” is * p true and “q” is tru e ’ explains the m eaning of ‘. T h a t the dependence of the m eaning of a sentence on that of its parts is to be construed as a dependence of its truth-value. O ne m ust distinguish between illum inating and em pty tautologies. once it is recognized that to understand a sentence is (if for the sake of sim­ plicity we think only of sentences w ithout deictic expressions) to know its truth-conditions. . I would thus like to emphasize that although a semantics that confines itself to giving truth-conditions and does not go beyond this and ask about the employment-rules of sentences does not achieve much. This at any rate is Davidson’s thesis.has recently been developed by Donald Davidson . . It is this requirem ent on which.truth-definitions which can be form ulated not in an o th er language but in the same language whose semantics is being explained .) T h a t the above definition o f ‘ and q is tautological does not m ean that p nothing is gained by it. as we saw. or a conjunction. W hat is special . or an act of collection.g. A theory according to which it is the task of semantics (or at any rate that of the semantics of assertoric sentences) to give for all sentence-forms ‘Tarskian truth-definitions’ of the kind whose simplest case we have now become fam iliar with . H e regards it as the special virtue of this truth-definition m ethod that it enables one to analyse the semantic structure of sentences without using words not themselves contained in these sentences . His conception is directed against attem pts to explain the m eaning of words and the way in which they are com bined to form m ore complex expressions thus the form s . e.Analysis of the predicative sentence 238 cally. that the w ord ‘an d ’ stands for an aggregate. (T here is it is tru e a possibility o f defining the word ‘a n d ’ by means o f ‘o r’ and ‘not’. but then we are still left with one o f the two expressions. 2 Davidson starts from the now generally acknowledged requirem ent that a satisfactory semantic theory m ust be capable of showing how the m eaning o f sentences depends on the m eaning of the sentence-parts. it does achieve something.. attem pts which lead one to say. is a plausible hypothesis. and can thus be presented for the relevant sentenceform in the shape of a truth-definition.

Nevertheless. T h e re fo re I will not proceed as though it had already been settled th at the em ploym entrules o f these sentences can only be verification-rules. can achieve. hence th at the em ploym ent-rule that is explained is to be construed as a verification-rule. but also w hat it does n o t achieve. W hat it is n o t able to do is to explain an expression w ithout using the expression itself (or a corresponding one in a m eta-language). namely. confines itself to giving th eir truth-conditions. this case should serve to confirm them . T h e two objections raised against explaining the w ord ‘a n d ’ by m eans o f truth-conditions thus belong together. is only explained by examples (though it subsequently tu rn e d out that w hat was explained in this way was not predicates at all. A nd when we ask how we can explain the m eaning of a word. T h e truth-definition of ‘a n d ’ an d ‘o r’ has enabled us to see what a semantics which. Only it is now clear that such an explanation can no longer be accom plished by words. but quasi-predicates). the charge o f circularity is clearly justified. In the m eantim e we have seen th at the explanation of th e em ploym ent of an assertoric sentence can only consist in the explanation of its being used to m ake an assertion. we saw earlier. for if an expression cannot be explained by means of a n o th e r expression it can only be explained by dem onstrating its m ode o f em ploym ent. Notice th at we are now applying to the exam ple o f ‘a n d ’ . such a suggestion seems extrem ely . It can only be an explanation in which we dem onstrate the w ord’s m ode of em ploym ent by m eans o f exam ples.and ‘o r’ sentences the various theories which in previous lectures I discussed in abstracto. by m eans of this word itself. A nd what it equally cannot do is to give an expla­ nation o f the expression’s m ode of em ploym ent. Could they not also be conditional-rules which relate th eir em ploym ent to circum ­ stances? In the case o f ‘a n d ’ at least. on the contrary. clearly we want to know how we can explain it to som eone who does not yet know this word (or a corresponding one in an o th er language). and that m eans of its being used to make th e opening move in a verifi­ cation-gam e. But I do not w ant merely to apply those abstract theses about the m eaning o f assertoric sentences to the case of ‘a n d ’ and ‘o r’. ju s t as the m ode of em ploym ent of predicates.‘ And’ and ‘or’ 239 about the truth-definition is th at although it explains such a form -w ord as ‘a n d ’ in the only possible verbal way. for only som eone who already u n d erstan d s the w ord ‘a n d ’ can u n d erstand the analysis of its m eaning given in term s of the truth-definition of the word ‘a n d ’. the definition nonetheless has a cognitive value in that it clarifies the sem antic form designated by this word. in explaining the m eaning o f (non-deictic) sen­ tences.

and this m eans: he has u n derstood the em ploym ent-rule that was explained to him . Could one not say th at one explains the use o f the word ‘a n d ’ to som eone by teaching him always to use the sentence ‘ and q if p and p if q and always to deny it if n o t-p or n o t-q? T h e objection of circularity does not apply here. B ut in that case it is clear that the m ode of em ploym ent of the word ‘a n d ’ explained th ere does not correspond to the actual m ode of em ploym ent of this word. B ut does the em ploym ent-rule which was explained to him in this way co rrespond to the m ode o f em ploym ent of o u r word ‘a n d ’? I described what is explained by saying that/4 teachesB always to use the sentence ‘ and q if p an d if q. this was also presupposed in the exam ple I gave. We at least get closer to the actual use if instead o f saying ‘always if we believe’ we say ‘only if we believe’. A denies the sentence ‘It is warm and it is raining. in the explanation itself they would not be used. Let us suppose that it is warm and it is raining. 7 This explanation already seems m ore closely connected to the expla­ nation by m eans o f truth-conditions. T his step corresponds to the decisive step we took in the general discussion of the em ploym ent-rules . b u t w henever he believes that p and believes that <. not A.g. T hink. Eventually B will be able to im itate him in regard to o ther exam ples. A teaches B always to use the sentence ‘ and q not only p when he perceives. It would seem plausible to widen the suggested explanation in the following way.’ In an o th er situation in which it is warm. because although I can only describe the expla­ nation o f the w ord’s em ploym ent by again using the words ‘a n d ’ and ‘o r’. We n eith er only use the sentence ‘ and q if p we perceive th a tp an d that q n o r always use it if we perceive th a tp and that q. A only says ‘It is w arm and it is rain in g ’ in the ap p ro p riate situation.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 240 plausible. But. for ‘believe’ (meinen) means the same as ‘hold to be tru e ’. and besides it is not clear how 7 the explanation by m eans of exam ples that corresponds to this concep­ tion should look.. this would not correspond to the actual use o f the w ord ‘a n d ’ either. It is I who am now giving this description of the situation. for we do not always say ‘ and q p when we believe th a tp and believe that <. but not raining. firstly. o f a person A who wants to explain the word ‘an d ’ to a person B who does not yet know it. In so doing he can assum e that B already u n d erstan d s the constituent-sentences ‘It is w arm ’ an d ‘It is rain in g .’ In this way h e goes th ro u g h the fo u r possibilities by means of this and o ther exam ples. e. B ut if the em ploym ent is to relate to the p circum stances then this ‘i f p and if q can only mean: ‘if B perceives that p and he perceives th at q.

so on this account there /?’ would never be any occasion to use the word ‘o r’. Let us take as an exam ple the sentence ‘A hippopotam us is sitting at the fron. when it became clear that the em ploym ent-rules are not conditional rules.are true. But how should a corre­ sponding m ode of em ploym ent of the word ‘o r’ have looked? Something like this perhaps: one can always say ‘ or q if one perceives that/? or p perceives th at q? But th ere is always less said with the sentence ‘ or q’ p than with one o f the two sentences ‘ or ‘q’. they have reached agree­ m ent on their tru th and falsity. and p th at means: verifiable.the one who affirms and the one who denies . not in which circumstances the sentences are used. T h e explanation takes the form of showing what attitude each of the two speakers . and that means: verifiable.takes to his assertion and that of the other when.situational or cognitive . He implies only that he is p rep ared both to assert that /? and to assert that q. With this word it could never have occurred to us th at its em ploym ent-rule could relate to circumstances.that p and that q . ra th e r they are such as determ ine what the use of an expression implies if the expression (for whatever reasons or from whatever causes) is used.‘ nd’ and ‘o f A 241 of assertoric sentences. H e is precisely not p rep ared to assert one or the o th er by itself. whoever says ‘? or q’ asserts that one of the two / assertions is true. b u t in which circum stances the assertions m ade with them can be upheld against the assertions negating them . not retrospective. T h e em ploym ent of ‘o r’ is clearly prospective.t-door or a lion is lying in the . B ut now it is also plainly false th at som eone who asserts that/? and q implies that he believes th at q and believes that/?. However. So far in the discussion I have neglected the ‘o r’.the em ploym ent of the expression occurs. but only that one or the oth er is true. But prospective towards what? Is there any alternative but to adm it that it is verification? In that case we would have the following explanation: whoever says ‘ and q’ asserts that both assertions . Som eone who asserts this at any rate does not imply that he is prepared to assert th a tp or to assert that q. In the case of ‘an d ’ one could at least give this sort of explanation of the m ode o f em ploym ent of a word that by analogy with quasi-predicates we could call a quasi-‘a n d ’. T h e use o f the sentence-form and that of its denial are explained at the same time. it is not immediately clear what the corresponding explanation would be for the assertion that/? or q. or m ust be withdrawn. on the basis of the verification of the two constituent sentences. T h e rules are not such as determ ine u n d er what conditions . W hat this m eans can be explained by means of examples by showing.

But the boy will perceive that. T hus the conception that was developed abstractly in the lecture before last has been confirm ed in a simple concrete case. T o g eth er they go outside with the boy and look around. . 158). thus once he has understood on which verification-rules the outcom e of the game depends. by m eans of this exam ple. Once he has u n d e r­ stood on what the withdrawal o f the assertion depends. We were able to give the truth-conditions for a specific form o f sentence. and these truthconditions were then explained in term s o f the dependence of the with­ drawal (or upholding) of the affirmative (or negative) assertion on the tru th (or falsity) o f the constituent assertions.clearly the same as those already distinguished in giving the truth-conditions.’ M r and M rsX want. either the father or the m other will withdraw the assertion they previously made in favour of the o th er’s assertion. the idea that these words stand for som ething else is revealed as absurd as soon as one has become clear about how the m eaning of these words is explained. . to explain the use of the word ‘o r’ to their little boy who. If we com pare the conception of the words a n d ’ and ‘or’ that has em erged with the object-orientated conception.or . Mrs X denies it. Now as far as the verification and falsification of the constituent sentences is concerned there are four possibilities . A nd this explanation also explains the m ode o f em ploym ent of sentences of this form w ithout making renew ed use o f the words that determ ine this form . understands the two constituent sentences but does not yet u n d erstan d ‘o r’. . this understanding is not expressed in some meta­ language . we can say that it is a specifically ‘language-analytical’ conception in the sense that the sign no longer appears as a m ere in ter­ m ediary by means of which som ething in ‘th o u g h t’ is represented which could also be achieved without language. . he has u nderstood the em ploym ent-rule o f ‘---. T o explain the truth-conditions in this way is to explain how the truth-value of sentences or assertions of this form is established.and ‘o r’-sentences in the same way. let us assume. then.for what should this be? .and .’). . d ep ending on the result o f the verification of the constituent sen­ tences. and this means: how they are ver­ ified. It will not be difficult for father. T o understand the words ‘and’ and ‘o r’ is to be m aster of a particular kind of sign-em ploym ent. as in the case of predicates (p.. However.’ (or ‘. Mr X affirms the sentence. m other and son to reach agreem ent about the truth or falsity of the two constituent sentences.but simply by the boy him self now using ‘a n d ’. In doing this neither the word ‘o r’ nor the word ‘and’ is used.Analysis of the predicative sentence 242 yard.

‘T h e bus crashed because the driver was d ru n k . T h e distinction betw een truth-fu n ctio n al (so-called extensional) and non-truth-functional (so-called intensional) com plex statem ents stems from Frege.in the case of the counter-factual conditional .th e n ’ form . T h e discussion of the d ifferent form s of intensional complex statem ents in Frege’s p ap er ‘O n Sense and R eference’ is probably still the most com prehensive.or the assertions m ade with th em . those namely whose truth-value is determ ined by the truth-values o f their constituent sentences. the bus would have crash ed ’ and ‘If the driver is d ru n k . only now it is presupposed .in the o th e r case . T hus.L E C T U R E 18 General sentences. for exam ple.th at the constituent sentences are false or . B ut this is not sufficient. T h e re are o th er form s of com plex sentence whose truth-value (or that of the co rre­ sponding assertions) does not d ep en d . T h u s the tru th of such an assertion does not only d ep en d on the truth-value o f its constituent assertions. or does not only depend.’ Clearly such a sentence can only be tru e if both its constituent sentences are true. the bus will crash. In this case th e re is clearly in addition a certain g rounding-relationship betw een the two constituent assertions. I shall n o t go into it .th at the truth-value is left open. It can be tru e that the bus crashed and that the driver was d ru n k .’ A connection of g ro u n d and consequence is also asserted in statem ents o f the ‘if . T h e situation is similar in the case o f the form s ‘If the d river had been d ru n k . on the truth-value o f their constituent sentences (or constituent assertions). b u t false that the bus crashed because the driver was drunk. the form s ‘q because/?’ and ‘i f p then q. thus sentences . Resumption of the problem of predicates T h e two form s of com plex sentence I dealt with in the previous lecture belong to a particularly sim ple an d sem antically tra n sp a re n t species of com plex sentence. T h e sem antics of intensional com plex statem ent-form s is still today a m atter o f controversy.g.which are truth-fu n ctions of their constit­ u e n t sentences (or of the assertions m ade with them). e.

‘some’) can occur m ore than once in a statem ent (e. Two kinds of general statem ent were distinguished. etc. does not am ount to an answer. W hether th ere exists a concrete attem p t at carrying out an object-orientated explanation of intensional com plex statem ents. It does not follow from the fact that the truth-value of these form s of sentence does not depend.. the universal (e. and because the so-called quantifiers (‘all’.g. O f course. . for the question im mediately arises: on what then does the truth-value of these complex sentences depend. At the m om ent I am only concerned that you do not draw too far-reaching conclusions from the fact that intensional complex state­ m ents are not truth-functional. . Nonetheless one can say th at the positive universal statem ent and the positive particular statem ent are the two simplest forms of general statem ent.g. T h e distinction is problem atic. We have no reason to think th at this extrem ely general characterization of the m eaning o f assertoric sentences should not hold for intensional com plex sentences.g. . according to which the m eaning o f ‘because’.Analysis of the predicative sentence 244 here. it does indicate the only direction in which the enquiry can proceed. however. not m uch is thereby achieved. because the denial of a universal statem ent is a particular statem ent (‘it is not the case that all’ = ‘some are n o t’) and vice versa (‘it is not the case that some’ = ‘none a re ’ = ‘all are not'). th en ’. to u nderstand them is to know what their truth-conditions are. I do not know. ‘Some ants are violet’). However. I also w anted to exam ine the statem ents which in the traditional logic were called general statem ents. in contrast to singular predicative state­ ments. ‘All ants are poisonous’) and the particular (e. ‘if . if it is not the truth-value of their constituent sentences? Is it the m eaning of the constituent sentences? Is it their m eaning together with th eir truth-value? Is it the truth-value of other assertions which are not expressed in the constituent sentences of the com plex sentence but are im plied by it? So the hypothesis that it is also true of intensional complex sentences that. or does not only depend. it should be possible to recognize in advance the senselessness of such an attem pt now th at we have shown by reference to the exam ple of extensional com plex sentences the absurdity o f the idea of the composedness (Zusammengesetztsein) of a state of affairs. ‘All ants have some ancestors’). on the truth-value of the constituent sentences that it is not tru e of these forms o f sentence th at to u n d erstand them is to know what the truth-conditions are o f the assertions m ade with them. would have to be conceived as a certain combination of the states of affairs for which the constituent sentences stand. H ere too the alternative would be an object-orientated con­ ception.

But does this m ean a determ inate sub-set? If. So long as one has a purely grammatical. ‘some F’ stand for som ething. ‘a lii7’. . In traditional logic however the notion of the sentence-subject was an undifferentiated syntactical-semantic one. . does this m ean that there is a determ inate sub-set of ants which are not violet? Clearly not.are poisonous. the predicate is valid for the ‘whole extension’ of the subject-term . and that means: as com po­ nents o f predicative judgm ents. for an object . copula and predicate. 2 T hus. the general ju d g m en t was conceived on the model of the singular ju d g ­ ment.General sentences 245 How should we conceive the semantics o f such statements? W hat is it to understan d a sentence of this form? T h e traditional view was that they are a species of predicative sentence. What then do we m ean by the expression ‘some ants’? If we free ourselves from the idea that such an expression must be understood as somehow analogous to a singular term (‘this an t’). It becomes even m ore difficult in the case of ‘some ants’. there are none whose elem ents are violet.’ ‘Some ants are violet’ clearly means the same as ‘T h ere are violet ants. if. the relation between predicate or concept and that for which a singular term stands became the model for the relation between p red i­ cate and th at for which the expression ‘all F ’ or ‘some i7’ stands. syntactical concept o f ‘sentence-subject’ there is nothing wrong with this.’ This equivalence . Thus not only in gram m ar but also in logic expressions of the form ‘so m e/7’. Occasionally the singular ju d g m en t was subsum ed u n d er the universal because in both cases. that is: the expressions ‘some ants’ and ‘all ants’ were construed as subject-expressions. however. were construed as subjects. and hence does not stand for som ething at all. T h e singular. am ong all sub-sets of ants. then there is no longer any necessity to articulate the sentence semantically on the model of a singular predicative sentence: ‘Some ants/(are) violet.a class cannot be poisonous .but that ants all ants . the statem ent ‘Some ants are violet’ is false. for example. It used to be said that this expression stands for a sub-set of the class of ants. the universal and the particular ju d g m en t were then distinguished as three species. is simply an elaborate form ulation of ‘there are some ants . ‘T h e re is a certain sub-set . T he traditional conception thus presupposes that the expressions ‘all F’. In the traditional logic books 1 it was customary first to introduce ‘th e’ predicative judgm ent in general as consisting of subject. 3 But what sort of an object can this be? In the case of ‘all ants’ one might say it is the class of ants. But when we say ‘All ants are poisonous’ we do not mean that the class of ants is poisonous . T h e sentence is false. and in contrast to the particular judgm ent. .’ T h e expression ‘an (indeterm inate) sub-set of F’ does not stand for a (deter­ minate) sub-set of F.

’ T h e word ‘everything’ does not stand for som ething. as an u n d e r­ standing o f the truth-conditions o f this sentence. and the parallel. T h e word ‘every’ does not stand for som ething.’ C orrespondingly. however one can easily see that a reference to all is indeed contained in o u r understanding o f ‘some’.’. such that the sentence ‘Every ant is poisonous’ is true if and only if in every case in which one can say o f som ething th at it is an an t one can also say that it is poisonous.’ This clearly m eans som ething like: ‘Everything : if it is an ant then it is poi­ sonous. rath er it refers to other sentences. ’ We can in terp ret the particular statem ent in exactly the same way: ‘(take in turn) everything: (then you will find) one or some of them that are F and G\ H ere too the assertion refers one to singular predicative assertions. But because the question. namely. It may surprise you that the reference to all (‘take everything in tu rn ’) is now also taken up with the paraphrase of the particular statem ent. But this is only because its structure makes explicit precisely th e semantic structure o f the general statem ents o f natural lan- . but in this case in such a way that the assertion is true if any singular sentence ‘T his is F and it is G’ is true. . as thus posed given the suggested articulation . between universal and particular statem ents we could paraphrase thus: ‘of all every: . we are forced to pose the question differently. . and to this directive is connected the assertion: ‘If it is F. This is so as long as we ask what the expressions stand for.’ This interpretation o f general statem ents stems from Frege .Analysis o f the predicative sentence 246 suggests that we should articulate the sentence as follows: ‘Some//ants/violet. Instead of ‘all’ we can also say ‘every’. ‘Some’ m eans ‘some o f all’. . Rather it contains a directive:-‘T ake everything in tu rn ’. and hence that o f a universal sentence. T h e syntax o f this calculus only seems artificial because looked at from the standpoint of the syntax of natural language it is unusual. T o make clear the contrast.makes no sense.’ T his opens u p the possibility o f conceiving the understanding o f the word ‘every’.and developing the general predicate-calculus o f m odern logic. 4 With it Frege succeeded in breaking out o f the narrow confines of traditional predicate-logic . . all singular predicative sentences ‘T his is an ant.the Aristotelian syllogistic . ‘o f all some (a): .’ Does this get us any fu r­ ther? If we isolate the words ‘som e’ and ‘all’. then it is G. we would have to articulate the universal sentence thus: ‘All//ants/poisonous. If we write ‘every//ant/poisonous’ we are rem inded that there is also a sentence with the corresponding grammatical structure: ‘Everything that is an an t is poisonous. then their m eaning seems to become even m ore unintelligible.

they are also poisonous. that the u n d erstan d in g o f these sentence-form s consists in know ing how th eir truth-value depends on the truth-value of other sen­ tences. refers stand for all objects o f a presupposed dom ain o f objects. I have only m entioned this difference in o rd e r to m ake clear that what is decisive in the context o f o u r enquiry is com m on to both conceptions. as I have ju s t done.General sentences 247 guage which does not become visible in their own syntactic structure. they stand only for the objects th at are F. as equivalent to ‘Everything that is an an t is poisonous’. 5 T h e universal statem ent is w ritten thus in m odern logic: \x){Fx-*Gx)' or in words: ‘for all x: if x is F th en it is G\ T his is ju s t an o th er form ulation o f the sentence I ju st proposed: ‘everything: if it is F then it is G\ Now it seems m uch m ore natural to in te rp re t a statem ent like ‘All ants are poisonous’ not. but thus: ‘every ant: it is poisonous 5 and. the particular statem ent thus: ‘some one o f all F: it is G\ T h e difference is that the singular term s o f the predicative statem ents to which the general statem ent. nam ely. and in that case we cannot finally verify the all-sentence. the universal statem ent is still true. corre­ spondingly. T hus in reg ard to general sentences we reach a result analogous to th at reached in the case o f truth-functional com plex sentences. if there are no ants. T h e only difference is that the assertions on whose truth-value the truthvalue o f a general sentence depends are not expressed in the components o f this sentence. . A nd a fu rth e r differen ce is connected with this: the assertions on whose truth-value the truth-value o f a general sentence depen d s can be o f an unlim ited nu m b er. It is only in one detail th at the sem antic conception of m odern logic seems not to correspond to the semantics of n atu ral language . according to the o th e r conception. according to the second conception the directive is restricted to the totality o f ants. i f they are ants. whereas it w ould cor­ respond to the semantics o f natural languages to say that if there are no ants the question o f w h eth er or n o t all ants are poisonous cannot be m eaningfully raised and th at a co rresponding statem ent is n eith er true n o r false. In those cases w here we are dealing with a finite nu m b er o f objects we can convert the universal statem ent into an and-statem ent and the particular statem ent into an or-statem ent. It is a consequence o f th e first conception that. A ccording to the first conception the verification o f the statem ent ‘All ants are poisonous’ would consist in the exam ination of all real objects with respect to w hether. w hereas. in F rege’s in terp retation. However. T h u s Frege has at this point been p re p a re d to d e p art from the semantics of natural language in the interests o f logical system.

‘that an exception may not be m ade’ .) T h e exercises which train one in the use o f this word. . In his Remarks on the Foundation of Mathematics W ittgenstein writes: ‘O ne learns the m eaning o f “all” by learning that from “(x)Fx” ‘F a ” follows. equivalent to the sentence ‘A nt 1 is poisonous and ant 2 is poisonous . T he universal statem ent is tru e if every insertion of a singular term yields a true p re ­ dicative statem ent. . How can we explain this . We can now say: two sentences are to be term ed equiv­ alent when they have the same m eaning. the particular statem ent is tru e if one such insertion yields a true predicative statement.to som eone who does not yet u n d e r­ stand it? F or exam ple. (A nd this m eans that if any statem ent “This is F ” is false then the universal statem ent is also false. and that means: the same truthconditions. A fter it becam e clear th at the isolated discussion of predicates leads ju st as m uch into a blind-alley as the orientation towards names it seemed natural to look for the m eaning o f the two components of the predicative sentence-form in their contribution to the m eaning of the whole pre- .Analysis o f the predicative sentence 248 T h e sentence ‘All ants in this box are poisonous’ is. Clearly the explanation by means o f truth-conditions that I have given of the form s o f general sentences is circular in the same way as the corresponding explanation of ‘an d ’ .’ I have already spoken m any times o f the ‘equivalence’ o f statem ents without having defined this expression.and ‘or’ . we have beans in a sack and assert that all are black and d ep en d in g on what em erges we will uphold the statem ent or w ithdraw it o r say it has been shown to be tru e or false. always aim at showing that an exception may not be m ade’ (§10). A nd h ere too we can take the fu rth e r step and avoid the circle by explaining th e em ploym ent of such sentence-form s by means of exam ­ ples. As the quantifiers refer not to objects but to the insertions o r the sentences which result from such insertions th ere is again no m ere circle. and ant n is poisonous.the predicative sentence-form . In o u r case one can see immediately that the truth-value of the two sentences d ep en d s in the sam e way on the truth-value of the sam e sentences ‘A nt 1 is poisonous’. I postponed th e discussion o f the predicative sentence-form for the first time when it had becom e clear th at neither the m eaning o f predicates n o r that o f whole predicative sentences can be understood by relating them thro u g h their em ploym ent-rule to the circumstances of their use. if the num ber of ants in the box = n. T h e truth-definition shows how the truthvalue of the sentence depends on the truth-value of oth er sentences. etc. teach one its m eaning. With this I conclude the discussion o f the semantics of truth-functional sentence-form s and can now move on to the tw ice-postponed treatm ent o f the form o f elem entary sentences .sentences.

by the fact that the withdrawal. What makes this case so simple is not only the fact that in dealing with it we can disregard deictic expressions. In the truth-definition this was expressed by the reappearance of the word ‘tru e ’ in the definiens . of the assertion depended on the with­ drawal. and hence the distinction between sentence and assertion and hence the whole problem of the identifiability of what is asserted which is basic to o u r speaking of ‘tru e’ and ‘false’. or its verification-rule. T o u n d erstan d a sentence of this form must be to know its truth-conditions. or that following its verification-rule will lead to confirm ation of the assertion. T h e tru th and verifiability of truth-functional sentences refers (verweist) to the tru th . or verifiability.General sentences 249 dicative sentence. or upholding. it has not yet been . T h e peculiar simplicity of the explanation of truth-functional sentenceform s is g rounded in the fact that it makes the tru th of these assertions dep en d en t simply on the tru th and falsity of other assertions. T he explanation of the em ploym ent of truth-functional sentences presup­ poses that the word ‘tru e ’ o r the em ploym ent of o th er sentences is already understood. in the explanation o f the mode o f em ploym ent. or upholding. But this required that before resum ing the discussion of predicates and the treatm ent of singular terms we should arrive at a prelim inary conception of the m eaning of assertoric sentences. This can be m ade particularly clear by reference to the word ‘tru e ’. At this point I again postponed the discussion of the predicative sentence-form in order to illustrate the abstract notion of truth-conditions or verification-rules by reference to the simpler case of truth-functional sentence-forms. I have already m ade ample use of this word. With this a basis was achieved for the analysis of the semantics of the predicative sentence-form . However. or verifiability. In the end this abstract explanation can only be m ade concrete by being applied to the em ploym ent o f elem entary predicative sentences. 179) that what can be said about the m eaning of assertoric sentences in general prior to the analysis of the semantics of the predicative form of sentence can only be regarded as provisional. of other sentences and hence ultimately to the truth. of o th er assertions. So one can now understand my earlier claim (p. Such a conception was reached in the explanation that to use an assertoric sen­ tence is to assert that its truth-conditions are fulfilled.in the specification of the truth-conditions and. But then this m eans that my exemplification of the abstract explanation of the employm ent-rule of assertoric sentences and of the notion of truth-conditions and verification-rules by means of the truth-functional sentence-form s does not stand on its own feet. of the assertions m ade by m eans of elem entary predicative sentences.

W hat it means for truth-functional assertions to be tru e is already fixed by their truth-definitions. and that means: how their tru th can be recognized. If som eone wishes to object th at it is explained by the redundancy-form ula I would rem ind you that the redundancy-form ula itself presupposes that one already understands the difference between ‘(it is asserted) that p ’ and ‘ and this difference is only understood if the p verification-game whose rules are verification-rules is understood.as a function o f its application to the elem en­ tary assertions. to u n derstand an assertion is to know its truth-conditions. T hus one could only dispense with an explanation of the word ‘tru e ’ that goes beyond the redundancy form ula if one were to omit the first step in the explanation. If the entire previous p ro ced u re has not been a blind-alley then the next step m ust follow automatically once we bring together the various lines of . However. T hese truth-definitions can only be com pleted by explaining the word ‘tru e’ that occurs in their definiens by means o f a truth-definition of predicative assertions.as in the case of truth-functional statem ents . to u n d erstan d an assertion is to know how it is verified.we see im mediately how far we still are from an u n d erstan d in g of the word ‘tru e’.Analysis of the predicative sentence 250 explained. viz.at any rate those we have so far become acquainted with . For whereas in the explanation of what it is for a truth-functional assertion to be tru e the word ‘tru e ’ ap p eared again it cannot figure in the explanation of what it is for a predicative assertion to be true. How should we approach the question of the truth-condition of a predicative assertion? A re we not once again at one of those dangerous places on our path at which no definite direction is prescribed for our enquiry. and at which I can only make some suggestion or o th er which would be bound to app ear m ore or less arbitrary? I think not. so it is here that we must expect the explanation o f the word ‘tru e ’ that has so far been lacking. this cannot be taken to m ean that a general m eaning o f the word ‘tru e’ would be arrived at which could then be transferred to the tru th o f truth-functional assertions. If we again begin at the level of the first explanation-step . T h e predicate ‘tru e ’ is defined in such a way that it is first defined for the class o f elem entary assertions and is then defined for the others . the word ‘true’ does not have to be used here but it is natural to use it (together with the expression ‘that p'). viz. Thus one can only reg ard the word ‘tru e’ as having been explained by the redundancy-form ula if one presupposes that one already understands how assertions can be verified. and pro ­ ceed immediately to the next. W hat results in this way is a so-called recursive truth-definition o f the kind first developed by Tarski.

If we attem pt a form ulation o f this alternative analogous to the one for truth -fu n ctio n al sentences (and for the sake of simplicity let us continue fo r the time being to d isregard deictic expressions) we can again say: the e rro r of the object-orientated conception is not that it speaks o f objects that can be tru e or false . It thereby becam e clear th at the m eaning of the predicate can only be u n d ersto o d by reference to the m eaning of the sentence-whole.that are relevant to the p resen t enquiry. unlike the untenable synthesis-theory. B ut because predicates were treated in isolation the attem pt failed to overcom e the am biguity between predicates and quasi-predicates. A nd since in the m eantim e it has em erged th at to u n d e rsta n d an asser­ toric sentence (if we disregard deictic expressions) is to know its truthconditions we are now in a position to u n d erstan d th e alternative to the object-orientated conception o f the predicative sentence in term s o f the sentence-whole. O f course the object-orientated position also u n d erstood the question in this way. this. and fu rth e r we can F now again say: the d ep en d en ce of the assertion is to be construed not as com position but as a depen d en ce o f truth-value.but that it thinks of a predicative state o f affairs. and th at means: as the question o f how the m eaning of the whole sentence results from the m eaning of its two com ponents. . H ow ever. B ut when we a ttem p t to say what it is on which the truth-value is d e p e n d e n t we get into difficulties. or assertions .states of affairs.’ T h e truth-value of truth-functional assertions did not d ep e n d simply on assertions but on . ra th e r we req u ire a com plete form ulation of the form: ‘the assertion th at a is F is tru e if and only if .General sentences 251 thought . From th e outset th e question concerning the semantics of predicative sentences could only be u n d ersto o d as the question concerning the p re ­ dicative form . . in p art b roken-off .in p art carried th ro u g h . If we were to say th at the truth-value of the predicative assertion is d e p e n d e n t on the object for which the singular term ‘a stands and on the attrib u te o r the class for which the predicate ‘ ’ stands. its attem p t to construe the m a n n er in which the m eaning o f the sentence-w hole arises out o f the sentence-parts as com ­ position fo u n d ered . would F be correct but (a) following o u r discussion of the nom inalism -problem we know that such an explanation can at most have a secondary justifi­ cation an d that th e prim ary explanation by recourse to the attribute or class would re p re se n t a hysteron-proteron and (b) it is clearly not suffi­ cient to say that the truth-value o f the predicative assertion depends on this and that. As this conception was conditioned by the objectual in terp retatio n o f predicates I tried to w ork out a new conception of predicates. that a is F. as composed of a an d that for which the expression ‘ ’ stands.

however. and it will probably have to be a relation if the if-sentence which has ju st been left open thus the truth-condition . Initially I shall leave open the question of how the problem o f the explanation of em ploym ent is to be conceived from the p resen t perspective. T his relation of th e legitim ate applicability of a predicate to an object is what . and since we are now re tu rn in g to it from the perspective of the question of the truth-condition of the assertion the result achieved at that time loses the am biguity which led us into the blind-alley of quasi-predicates. for I want to keep to the same sequence which em erged in the abstract description of the m eaning of assertoric sentences and which I also followed in the explanation of the m eaning o f truth-functional sentences.is to yield a coherent formulation. to which the predicate is applied .in the em ploym ent of a predicative sentence is the object for which the singular term which supplem ents the predicate to form a sentence stands. p u ttin g it m ore abstractly. In introducing this characterization-function it seemed wholly natural to say: that which is characterized by m eans of the predicate or. So it would now seem plausible to ask: is th ere a relation between the predicate ‘ and the object for which ‘a stands which is such that one F* can say: the assertion that a is F is true if and only if this relation obtains? We can h e re refer back to the result of o u r earlier investigation into the function and m ode o f em ploym ent of predicates (p. T h e re is no question of this in the p resen t case. Only after this shall I move on to the crucial question of the explanation o f em ploym ent-rules. 135). the above-m entioned hysteron-proteron is to be avoided then at any rate in the case o f the predicate the object concerned can only be the sign itself. T h e purpose for which a predicate is used was shown to be characterization (p. T his p roperty was that of truth. An assertion that a is F is tru e not when the predicate *F' is merely applied or is applicable b u t when the predicate can legitimately be applied to it. So ignoring for the tim e being this wider question we can tackle the question of how the characterization-relation is to be u nderstood relative to the object if it is to be u n d ersto o d as a truth-condition. If. 135 f). but we m ust still expect the tru th of the predicative assertion to dep en d on certain properties of the objects concerned or on a relation between them .Analysis of the predicative sentence 252 a p ro p erty of these assertions. It is not enough merely to speak in an unqualified way o f a characterization of the object by the predicate o r an application of the predicate to the object. It was then the question o f the explanation of the use of the predicate which as it were led to the relation of the predicate to the employment-situation taking the place o f the relation to the object and so gave rise to the am biguity with quasi-predicates.

This is a significant result in the following two respects: (1) T h e truth-definition of the predicative sentence enables one to give a first. W hat is m eant by the word ‘applies’ can only be defined by saying: a predicate F ’ applies to an object a if and only if the assertion that a is F is true. However. W hat we now have to do is to see exactly what is achieved with this definition. namely by reading the truth-definition ju st given in the opposite direction. T h e truth-definition suggests that w hat is asserted by an elem entary sentence can only be tru e or false because the elem entary sentence is not only structured {gegliedert) but so structured that the two components have different and m utually supplem enting functions of a kind which make possible such a thing as a truth-condition: an assertion is true if the predicate applies to an objectfo r which the subject-expression 5 to<i$. but also what it is about it that leaves us unsatisfied. You will point out to me that I have only been able to do this by bringing in the unexplained w ord ‘applies’ (‘zutrijft’). it is the sort of triviality we m ust expect from any truth-defi­ nition of a sentence-form . as was thought in the object-orientated tradition. from right to left. we can say: to understand a predicative sentence is not. even worse I do not believe it is possible to give a verbal definition o f the w ord ‘applies’ o th er than by means o f the word ‘tru e ’. (2) It is a significant result to have succeeded in giving a definition of the word ‘tru e ’ for the form of elem entary sentences in whose definiens the word ‘tru e ’ no longer occurs. At the level o f predicative assertions then we move in a circle between the two words ‘tru e’ and ‘applies’. This is a far from negligible result at that level of semantic theory which corresponds to Davidson’s conception. no longer object-orientated answer to the question of what it is to u n d erstan d a predicative sentence. C ontinuing for the time being to ignore deictic expressions. Nonetheless this represents a first step towards an analysis o f the condition o f the possibility of the truth of elem entary statem ents. Historically it was Plato who first showed that the possibility of sen­ .General sentences 253 is denoted by the word ‘applies’ (‘Zutreffen ). T h u s we arrive at the fol­ lowing truth-definition for predicative assertions: the assertion that a is F is true if and only if the predicate F ’ applies (zutnfft) to the objectfo r which the singular term ‘a’ stands. rather it is to know th at the sentence (or the assertion m ade with it) is true if and only if the predicate applies to the object for which the subject-term of the sentence stands. Perhaps you will find this result ridiculous. for it appears so trivial. O f course I adm it this. to represen t a synthesis between two objects which correspond to the two sentence-com ponents and for which these stand.

or in a language o f the use o f the word ‘tru e’ . T h e m ore radical question of the conditions o f the possibility of a relationship to truth . through lack of reflection on the relation of their own position to the philosophical tradition. not only to the two-place semantic predicate ‘applies’. Of course until now this question has not been recognized in analytical philosophy either.could not be posed at all.Plato’s insight became. In this levelled-down form . but also to the two-place semantic predicate . (Statements other than predicative were not considered. For the characterization-expression to be able to apply to som ething such expressions must first be supplem ented by singular terms which have the function of standingfor objects to form predicatively structured expressions. This again shows why the question o f the condition of the possibility of a relation to truth lies outside the horizon of traditional philosophy: the traditional phi­ losopher took the relation to objects for granted and. 8 Both the truth-relation and the object-relation were thus taken for granted and treated as unproblem atic. And in the tradition this fact was not seen because it was taken for granted that both sentence-com ponents have the function of standing for objects. analytical philosophers confined themselves to the traditional problems. in the present enquiry it is a language consisting of more primitive characterization-expressions (quasi-predicates) of the kind we actually encounter in signal-languages and in the first language-acquisition o f children. In reg ard to this question the fact that the two com ponents have different functions could be ignored.the condition of the possibility of being tru e or false is the synthetic form of the statem ent . 7 a perm an en t item in the philosophical tradition. It has also become clear that the one-place sem antic predicate ‘tru e’ in the truth-definition of predic­ ative sentences involves a reference (verweist). fo r the simple reason that. the problem was simply that of explaining the pos­ sibility o f falsity (how it is possible to assert and believe som ething that is not) and he could solve this problem by exhibiting the complex struc­ ture o f the (predicative) statem ent. B ut whereas for Plato this was the fiction of a language consisting only of names. however.) T he foil against which Plato and Aristotle posed the problem of falsity was the idea of a representation (Vorstellen) of objects th at could only be tru e . 6 For Plato. was unable to see it as a problem .Analysis of the predicative sentence 254 tences being true or false is grounded in their predicative stru c tu re . Like Plato’s question this question too is posed against the foil of a m ore primitive language which lacks the specifically predicative struc­ ture. T hus what makes possible a relation to truth in a language is the addition of expressions which make possible a relation to objects. via A ristotle . given his orien­ tation.

We can now also say what rem ains unsatisfactory about the explanation of the m eaning of predicative sentences by m eans c f the truth-definition. then. we find that if . From th e question o f how a predicate is explained. 150). Let me rem in d you again that I have so far d isregarded deictic expres­ sions. we were re fe rred to the question of how a p re ­ dicative sentence is explained. In the present line of th o u g h t such a separation which is m ade in the usual meta-linguistic sem antic theories is not possible. one cannot u n d erstan d what is m eant by a p redicate’s ‘applying’ w ithout at the sam e time u n d e r­ standing w hat is m eant by saying that an expression .General sentences 255 ‘stands fo r’. It is true that one can om it the latter expression from the truth-definition by simply saying . . the truth-definition is. H ere. how ever. if it is to be an explanation of m eaning. In this (philosophical) question one is only asking about what in general happens w hen the m eaning of a particular predicate is (prephilosophically) explained (p. A nd if the answ er to this question is: ‘by giving its tru th -co n d itio n ’ and if doing that involves using the words ‘applies’ and ‘stands fo r’. Rem em ber that I started out fro m the question of how one explains a predicate.‘stands fo r’ an object. B ut that a predicate applies to an object means that the assertion m ade by means of a sentence form ed by the supplem entation o f the predicate by an expression th at stands for the object is true. if the predicate “F ” applies to a*. A nd since. If we now recall W ittgenstein’s principle: ‘T h e m eaning is w hat the explanation o f the meaning explains’. ju st as in the case of tru th -fu n ctio n al sentences. equally depen d en t on a non-verbal explanation o f w hat is m eant by an expression’s standing for an object. this means th at the explanation eith er rem ains circular or is dependent on a non-verbal explanation of what is m eant by a predicate’s ‘applying’.which for this reason is called a singular term . We were thus able to speak o f the tru th-condition of the sentence and to say that to u n d erstan d a predicative sentence is to know the truth-condition which is given in the truth-definition. as we have ju st seen. But since a verbal definition o f the w ord ‘applies’ is only possible by m eans of th e truth-definition read in the reverse direction. It would be a m istake to suppose that I would now suddenly transfer the d em and for the explanation o f m eaning from the prim ary level of expressions o f natu ral language to a meta-level o f expressions of semantic theory. we have no alternative b u t to explain these words themselves. if the explanation is not to rem ain in the air. then it is clear that if we w anted to explain to someone the m eaning of a predicative sentence by m eans of this truth-definition we would have to assum e that he already u n d erstan d s the expressions ‘applies’ and ‘stand fo r’.

But now if it is correct th at singular term s and predicates are com plem entary expressions such th at a p red icate’s applying to the object for which a singular term stands constitutes the truth-condition of an elem entary statem ent. and this can only be done by explaining the em ploym ent-rule of singular-term s. in th at p art o f its recursive definition that has so far been given. then we m ust also expect ( 1 ) that the explanation of the em ploym ent-rule o f predicates presupposes an understanding of the em ploym ent-rule o f singular term s and vice versa. and (2 ) that by explaining the em ploym ent-rule of predicates.Analysis of the predicative sentence 256 the explanation is not to rem ain circular we must move from the level of the specification of truth-conditions to that of the explanation of m ode of em ploym ent. Now we have already seen in the case of the sem antic predicate ‘tru e ’. one explains the em ploym ent of predicative sentences. A nd in precisely the same way we m ust expect that the expression ‘stands fo r’ can only be explained by explaining how one determ ines fo r which object an expression stands. what is explained is how one establishes w hether an assertion is true. O r to p u t it an o th er way: by explaining what it is for predicates to apply and what it is for singular term s to stand fo r objects one explains what it is for an elem entary statem ent to be true. and this can only be done by explaining the m ode of em ploym ent of the corre­ sponding form o f sentence. together with that of singular term s. and this can only be done by explaining the employm ent-rule of predicates. Likewise we must expect that one can only explain the word ‘applies’ by explaining how one establishes that a predicate applies. . that one cannot explain such a word in abstracto.

Transition to singular term s ‘T he assertion that a is F is tru e if and only if the predicate “F” applies to the object for which the singular term “a” stands. But that the truth-definition.LECTURE 19 T he mode of employment of predicates. and it would have to do this both in general and for the explanation of particular predicates and particular singular terms. But this means that it would also have to provide the fram ew ork both for the explanation of the m eaning of predicates and for the explanation of the m eaning of sin­ gular term s. will prove much m ore difficult in the case of predicative sentences than in the case of truth-functional sentences. allows for an explanation of the sentence-com ponents could at best be claimed for the singular term . O f the latter one could say that one understands it if one knows for which object it stands. You will th e re ­ fore not be p rep ared to und ertak e the lengthy analyses that are now required unless I am able to convince you that this first level of expla­ nation o f m eaning does not suffice for the fundam ental analysis o f the m eaning o f predicative sentences we are h ere aiming at. But we can also see the inadequacy of this explanation from an o th er angle.’ With this truthdefinition a start is m ade in the analysis o f the m eaning of predicative sentences. as it now stands. But it is only a start. T h e truth-definition with variables F ' and ‘a ’ is of course m eant to provide a fram ew ork for the specification of the truthcondition of any actual assertion by the substitution of a particular predicate and a particular singular term . T h e transition from this first level of semantic analysis to the crucial second level. But what would it be. which consists in the expla­ nation o f use. In the last lecture I explained the inadequacy of this explanation by saying that it presupposes that we already und erstand what it is for a predicate to apply to an object and what it is for an expression to stand for an object. to u n d erstan d the predicate? T h e best I can think of is: to und erstan d a predicate ‘ ’ is to know what it is for it to apply to an F . in term s of this tru th definition.

depends only on which class the predicate d e te r­ mines. ju st as the previous definition presupposed that one already understands the term ‘applies’.Analysis of the predicative sentence 258 object. Now th ere is a possibility of modifying the truth-definition in a way that removes this difficulty. In the usual meta-linguistic semantic theo­ ries the truth-definition for a predicative assertion goes roughly as fol­ lows: ‘the assertion that a is F is tru e if and only if the singular term “a ” stands for an object which is an elem ent of the class for which the p re d ­ icate “F ” stands’. A variant of this would have been to say that the assertion is true if the attribute for which the predicate stands belongs to the object. to determ ine the truth-conditions of all the sen­ tences which can be form ed by all com binations of the singular term s and predicates on the list. H ence if one is introducing som ething objectual for the p re d i­ cate at all then the situation is m ade clearer if one speaks of the class than if one speaks o f the attribute. It is im portant that we realize the extent to which this truth-definition is even less satisfactory than the previous one. This definition can then be supplem ented by a speci­ fication in a m eta-language o f the object to which the expression ‘a* is assigned and a specification of the class to which the predicate F” is assigned. Firstly. But this of course is to say nothing so long as one does not explain what it is. as we have seen on an earlier occasion (p. But this also makes it clear what the limited theoretical interests are within which such a truth-definition has a value. O n this score th en neither of the definitions has any advantage over the o th er except that. Secondly. the explanation of predicates which was lacking in the p re ­ vious truth-definition is achieved in the p resent one at the cost of a relapse into the object-orientated position. the truth-value of the assertion. if one has a list on which all singular term s and predicates of a language are assigned to specific objects and classes. however. Since. in place of a predicate’s applying to som ething one has the inclusion of an object in a class. determ ine the same class if they apply to the same objects. T h e inadequacy of such an explanation becomes immediately clear w hen one considers how one would explain the m eaning of particular predicates within the fram ew ork o f the general explanation. the present definition p resu p ­ poses that one already understands what it is for an object to be an elem ent of a class. This truth-definition enables one. the inclusion o f an object in a class can be defined in terms o f the predicate’s applying to the object (an advantage which of . two predicates which stand for d ifferen t attributes. if it depends on the predicate’s applying to the object. 231). or have different m eanings.

We already know in a general way that the transition from the first level of sem antic explanation of the form o f an assertion by means of a truth-definition to the second level. T h e advantage o f the first truth-definition is that although it does not give an answ er it does put the question concerning the m ode o f em ploym ent of predicates and th at concerning the m ode of em ploym ent of singular term s on the right track. what the first truth-definition left open. on the o th er han d . T h e second truth-definition. For from the outset it reciprocally relates predicates an d singular term s to one an o th er and both of them to the tru th of the assertions m ade with them . m ust take the fo rm of presenting the verification-gam e betw een an assertion o f this form and its denial. This p o int is. o f course. and in essence this means: showing how the assertion is verified. in which the m ode o f em ploym ent o f such sentences is explained. a m ere consequence o f the first. is unsatisfactory in the wholly d iffe re n t sense that. we can say that the first tru th-definition was only unsatisfactory in the sense that it did n o t go far enough. Fourthly. as they are explained in this second truth-d efin ition.The mode of employment of predicates 259 course will only become effective if we can find an explanation of a p red icate’s applying which is in d ep en d en t o f the truth-definition). T h e assignm ent is really only an assignm ent o f the object-language expression to th e meta-linguistic expression. H ence it is presupposed that the one to whom a singular term or predicate is explained in this way already u n d erstan d s the corresponding expression in the o th er lan­ guage. T hirdly. it left open the explanation both of the sem antic expressions in th e definiens and. what is directly connected with this. are not explained as com plem entary expressions. So we can expect th at the explanation of the m ode of em ploym ent o f predicates. will at the same tim e be an explanation o f the m ode o f em ploym ent of whole predica­ tive sentences. hence. and. of the m eaning of th e word ‘tru e ’ in its ele­ m entary m ode o f em ploym ent. In the case of predicative assertions this can only m ean th at the verification-rule of the sentence is fo u n d ed in the em ploym ent-rules of the two sentence- . of the sentence-com ponents themselves. w hat makes the new truth-definition totally unacceptable within o u r line o f th o u g h t is that it assigns the singular term to an object and the predicate to a class by m eans o f a m eta-linguistic expression. Sum m arizing. the relapse into the object-orientated position. it answ ers with a pseudo-explanation given in a m eta-language and in this way merely covers up the problem facing us. and are not explained as essentially com ponents o f the predicative sentence. I would also point out th at predicates and singular term s. and that o f singular term s.

and which in the second form is covered up by speaking of an assignm ent. You could object th at I could have already reached this result in connection with the truth-definition. W ould it not have been easy to supplem ent this as follows: to u n d e r­ stand a predicate is to know how it is established that it applies to an object? How ever the question is not w hether such a supplem entation would have been easy but ra th e r what its methodological significance is. A nd this means that the em ploym ent-rules of the two com ponents must consist in their contri­ bution to the sentence’s verification-rule. . and that means: to the context of verifica­ tion. I said there that in the fram ework of the truth-definition one cannot und erstan d in what the explanation or u n d erstan d in g of the predicate consists. T hus o u r understanding of each o f the two sentence-com ponents is not ind ependent of its being the com ponent o f a predicative sentence. Talk o f establishing that a predicate applies already belongs to the con­ text o f establishing the truth. then one knows the verfication-rule of the sentence com­ posed o f this singular term and this predicate.Analysis of the predicative sentence 260 com ponents. if one knows the em ploym ent-rule of a particular singular term and that of a particular predicate. in term s of m ethod it would seem correct to begin the analysis with the explanation of the em ploym ent-rule of . H ow ever. We shall see that in the case of the singular term too by asking how one establishes for which object the expression stands a perspective is opened up which was not yet contained in the truth-definition in its first form . Now since knowing a sentence’s verification-rule consists in knowing how its truth is established .it follows from the truth-definition that the verification-rule of the assertion m ade by m eans of a predicative sentence ‘ Fa is grounded (a) in the knowledge o f how it is established fo r which object of arbitrary predications the singular term \ . viz. For the em ploym ent-rules of the two sentence-components this m eans that they m ust be so constituted that. at best one can say that to u n d e rsta n d a predicate is to know what it is for it to apply to an object. a stands and (b) in the knowledge of how it is estab­ lished that the predicate ‘F — ’ applies to an arbitrary object.this is simply a verbal definition . W ith this we have now achieved at the level o f the explanation of m ode o f em ploym ent what was lacking in the truth-definition (at any rate in its first form which fo r us is the only relevant one). a question about the explanation of the two sentence-com ponents that is inte­ grated into the question about the explanation of the predicative sen­ tence. though ou r understanding is in d e p e n d e n t of its being com bined in a sentence with precisely this p ar­ ticular expression of the com plem entary semantic class.

since. if it is not explained by means of other words. but there would seem to be no harm in also using the term ‘verification’ for this purpose. because in such an analysis we can appeal to the description of the explanation of the m ode of em ploym ent of predicates that I have already presented but have broken o ff on account of the resulting ambiguity with quasi-predicates. according to the truth-definition. This rule we can now call the ‘verificationrule’ o f the predicate. the explanation of the m ode of em ploym ent of predicates should also give us a perspective for tackling the question of the mode of em ploym ent of singular terms. And. This is not only because it presents fewer difficulties.e. N othing is prejudiced by this transference beyond what is asserted in the truth-definition. How can this be done? I can here refer back to the description which I gave o f the explanation of the mode of em ploym ent of a classificationexpression. we cannot avoid taking account of the fact that a predicate is an expression that requires to be supplem ented by a singular term . we saw. W hat is achieved with the transferred terminology is m erely a handy term for speaking about a rule for establishing w hether a predicate applies. T ran sferrin g the term in this way seems natural because the procedure of establishing w hether a predicative assertion that a is F is true is. Accordingly. (The concept o f a ‘classification-expression’ provides a generic concept for predicates and quasi-predicates. putting it ^another way: by . to u n derstand a predicate is to know its verification-rule. is explained by explaining its m ode of classification by means of positive and negative exam ples in perception. and that means: classification-expressions which characteristically apply or do not apply to objects. to know how it is established w hether it applies to an (arbitrary) object or not.) A classificationexpression. identical with that of establishing w hether the predicate *F' applies to the object a. or. T h ere is no corresponding term for the procedure of establishing w hether a predicate applies to an object or not. finally. but.The mode of employment of predicates 261 predicates. We would also expect from an explanation of how one establishes w hether a predicate applies that it should explain the word ‘applies’ which verbally is only definable by m eans of the word ‘tru e’. i. above all. T h e procedure of establishing w hether an assertion is true is called the verification of this assertion. in describing the em ploym ent-rule of predicates. and that in this way a first step would be taken towards the analysis of the m eaning of the word ‘true’. And. O ur task will now be to see whether this ambiguity is avoided by taking into account the fact that predicates are classification-expressions which essentially require to be supple­ m ented by singular terms. correspondingly. to explain a p re d ­ icate would be: to explain its verification-rule.

Analysis of the predicative sentence 262 em ploying it positively and negatively in app ro p riate perceptual situa­ tions. So what is essential cannot be the m ere fact of supplem entation by ‘this is . However. it would be a mistake to regard the supplem entation of the classification-expression by ‘this is . On the contrary. so that. ra th e r it m ust be the special m ode of . for exam ple.’. in the explanation-situation. It correctly points out that a predicate can only be explained as an expression that supplem ents a singular term .. we can now see. Two questions arise: (1) How is a predicate em ployed outside the perceptual situation if its verificationrule has been u nderstood.is understood now as a quasi-predicate and now as a predicate depen d ing on how the expla­ nation is understood? Is it not rath er characteristic of the explanation o f the predicate that it can only be accomplished by means of a sen­ tence. Clearly the singular term that is of particular relevance here is ‘this’. 159) that if what is explained in this way is the expression’s m ode of em ploym ent. w hat is explained by the exem plary positive and negative em ploym ent in the perceptual situa­ tion when what is being explained is a predicate. If the explanation of the word ‘re d ’ by its exem plary em ploym ent in ap p ro p riate perceptual-situations is understood in such a way that the person to whom it was explained employs it in the same perceptual situations and only in them (thus if and only if he perceives som ething red) then he has in terpreted the word as a quasi-predicate. a m ode of em ploym ent of the expression ‘this is re d ’ can be conceived in which ‘re d ’ still functions as a quasi-predicate. we can only explain the word ‘re d ’ as a predicate by m eans of sentences of the form ‘T his is red/not re d ’? I shall start with question (2). . as a sure sign that the expression is understood as a predicate. is not the expression’s em ploym ent-rule but its verification-rule.e. We saw at the time (p. this description of the difference between predicate and quasi-predicate is still unsatisfactory. . in oth er words. I shall eluci­ date this by m eans of an example.g. O f course. and in what relation does this em ploym ent stand to the em ploym ent in the perceptual situation? (2) Can one really say that the same expression . a term which is characteristically used to stand for an object which is present in the perceptual situation. By contrast he has in terpreted the same explanation o f the word as an explanation of the predicate ‘re d ’ if he also employs it outside the perceptual situation in a way that indicates that he has understood that what was explained to him is not the em ploym ent-rule of the predicate but its verification-rule. then it is a quasi-predicate and not a predicate (or this is precisely what defines a quasi-predicate). if the classifica­ tion-expression is em ployed in the same way in which it is explained. O n the o th er hand. the word ‘re d ’ .

one points at this place and says ‘bow-wow h e re ’. I f o u r criterion for the child’s having understood the explanation is th a t it uses ‘this is re d ’ in co rresponding situations. For the em ploym ent o f such an expression is explained like this: if som ething bow-wow-like appears at a particular place in the percep­ tual situation. it is for o u r purposes irrelevant w hether it be em pirically correct or not). as in the introduction of the notion o f quasi-predicates (p. I can again appeal to how children speak in an early stage of acquiring a language (though again it is only by way o f illustration. T o u n d erstan d it is to know in which circum stances it is to be used. in combi­ nation with which it was n o t explained to us. A nd. sim ultaneously pointing with his finger to a partic­ ular place or in a particular direction. By investigating this question we shall achieve a prelim inary insight into the essence o f th e expressions which supple­ m ent predicates to form sentences. can the possibility o f also using ‘ ’ with o th e r suppleF m entary-expressions have the consequence th at already in ‘this is F ’ it is not fu nctioning as a quasi-predicate? T h e answ er is that we can not only com bine th e classification-expression ‘ ’ with other supplem entary F . then. T his means that when it is com bined with these o th er su pplem entary expressions it is being used in a way which does not co rrespond to the explanation-situation. T h e em ploym ent-rule o f the whole expression ‘ h e re’ (combined F with the co rresp o n d in g gesture) is a conditional rule. 159f). then the w ord ‘re d ’ is functioning as a quasi-predicate. is th at we also use it in com bination with o th er su pplem entary expressions. but ‘bow-wow h e re ’. by the criterion given. T he child has correctly u n d ersto o d the explanation if it uses the expression in th e same way in which it was used in the explanation-situation. for although we also use the classification-expres­ sion ‘F ’ in com bination with the w ord ‘this’ we do not only do so. It w ould thus be conceivable F that we explain th e word ‘re d ’ to a child by exem plary use of the expres­ sion ‘this is re d ’.The mode of employment of predicates 263 em ploym ent of ‘this’. not as a p re d ­ icate. This was the criterion for the classification-expression being a quasi-predi­ cate. But how. the expression ‘bow-wow’ is functioning as a quasi-predicate. viz. not simply ‘bow-wow’. you may ask. singular term s. W hat decides that it is a predicate. As we use th e expression ‘this is F' in o u r language. If a child says. is also used by simultaneously pointing to a p articu lar place in the perceptual situation. T h e expression ‘this is F \ like F h e re ’. T o clarify the distinction with which we are h ere concerned I shall start from the sim pler expression ‘red h e re ’. ‘ ’ is F not a quasi-predicate. and not a quasi-predicate. however. A nd we can easily im agine a language-gam e in which ‘this is F ’ is used in accordance with the same em ploym ent-rule as ‘ h e re ’.

rath er it must be supplem ented by ‘this is .’. T h a t a classifi­ cation-expression which we explain in the perceptual situation by means of exam ples only functions as a predicate if it is supplem ented by an expression which can be replaced by o th er expressions by means of the use o f the identity-sign also follows from the truth-definition. For only if we employ the word ‘this’ in such a way that it stands for an object. or does not apply. 223f ): it is the substitutability o f (situation-related) sin­ gular term s for each o th er such that we can say that in the different situations we mean som ething identical.the object for which the word ‘this’ stands. but always for .’ in such a way that other expressions can be substituted for ‘this’ by use of the identity-sign. to an object . and it is only in this way that the use of the sentence becomes an assertion. T h e criterion for the word ‘this’ in ‘this is F ’ being a singular term is that it is combinable with another expression by means of the two-place predicate ‘is the same as’ (* = ’). W hat we express in the perceptual situation with ‘this (to which I am now pointing) is F’ we can take up again as the same. for som ething identifiable. outside the perceptual situation. and this means: as som ething. viz. For the time being our investigation of singular term s is limited to what is necessary for un d erstan d in g the m ode of em ploym ent of predicates. p. in contrast to the first (where it is analogous to ‘here’). . We are now also equipped to answ er the first of the questions ju st raised. in what relation does th e ordinary use of a predicate stand to its use in the explanation-situation in which one shows how it is ver­ ified? How the predicate is verified is explained by using the sentence ‘this is F (or not F)’ in d ifferen t ap p ro p riate situations. A nd if predicates are expressions which are supplem ented by singular term s to form elem entary sen­ tences then ‘ is not a predicate merely by virtue of being supple­ F’ m ented in the explanation-situation by ‘this is . the situation-item pointed at is m eant as som ething identifiable. (cf. thus where the word ‘this’ stands for a d ifferen t object on each occasion. This provides us with a basis for the inquiry into the m ode of em ploy­ m ent of singular term s on which we can later build. 23) It is only in this second m ode o f em ploym ent o f the word ‘this’ that. the same concrete object.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 264 expressions to say som ething different from what we say with ‘this is F \ but also to say the same thing from an o th er situation. . can one say that the predicate applies. that makes it possible to say som ething identical by means of the sentences uttered in the different situations. . . with ‘that (to which I then pointed) is F \ With this we touch u p o n the decisive point that I anticipated in an earlier lecture (p. as an object.

This means that we now have a specification of the truthcondition o f a predicative assertion that a is F in which the word ‘applies’ no longer occurs: the assertion that a is F is tru e if. in accor­ dance with the verification-rule th at was explained by means of sen­ tences of the form ‘this is F \ that the predicate applies to the object referred to by V . it m eans no m ore than ‘corresponding to the rule’. T h e answer follows automatically. can be correctly used in accordance with the verification-rule of ‘ \ F With this we have achieved two things: (1) it is now clear that the m ode of em ploym ent of ‘ that is explained by the particular employ­ F' m ent of F ’ in sentences o f the form ‘this isF ’ is already the general m ode o f em ploym ent of ‘ ’ in sentences of the form F a . is that in which it is not combined with the word ‘this’. In this way one shows how it can be established in regard to an arbitrary object w hether the predicate applies. T he ordinary use of the predicate. (2) with the description I have given of how the em ploym ent of predicates is explained I have also explained the word ‘applies’. but this means: it is to assert that a certain sentence ‘this is F \ namely that which we can use in the situation in which we perceive a. however. if the em ploym ent that was explained was the particular employ­ m ent of ‘F’ in sentences of the form ‘this is F I This question would be unansw erable if the em ploym ent-rule were determ ined by the employment-situation. For we can now apply the general characterizations arrived at in the abstract analysis of the use of assertoric sentences: to employ a predicate F ’ in combination with a singular term ‘a’ is to assert that it can be established. if to u n d e r­ stand the predicate is to know its verification-rule. For ‘correct’ here does not yet have the m eaning of ‘tru e ’. T h e correct em ploym ent o f the predicate F ’ in the verification-situation is explained in exactly the same way as the correct . For what is F explained when the verification-rule is explained by means of sentences of the form ‘this is F ’ is what is asserted when the predicate is employed in any predicative sentence. I was able to dispense with the word in the explanation I finally gave. in the situation in which one can substitute the word ‘this’ for la (can say ‘a is this’). on the other hand. and this is what it means to explain its verification-rule. b u t with a singular term V where ‘ a stands for an object that need not be given in the perceptual situation. thus when we can at the same time say ‘this = a . one can correctly use the sentence ‘this is F \ in accordance with the presupposed explanation of the verification-rule of ‘ \ F T h ere is no circle here between the word ‘tru e ’ in the definiendum and the word ‘correct’ in the definiens. B ut what then is the em ploym ent-rule of this general em ploym ent of ‘ ’ F in ‘Fa.The mode of employment of predicates 265 one that is given in perception.

and in particular proper-nam es . It might seem paradoxical that a philosophical position should be inca­ . however. as far as it goes. A nd this much has already become clear: the fact that ‘this’ is understo o d as a singular term cannot be disposed of simply by saying that this expression ‘stands fo r’ an object. We have now progressed far enough to begin the enquiry into the semantics of singular terms. and as regards singular terms. is the traditional idea that singular term s . or to ask how they are explained.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 266 em ploym ent of the quasi-predicate ‘ \ T h a t this correct em ploym ent F has now the sense o f establishing that the predicate applies to an object. As regards this category itself. one m ight ask. So one certainly cannot say that the traditional view. that o f an object. Only when this is clarified will we be able to u n d erstan d what it is to establish that a predicate applies and hence what it is for a predicative assertion to be true. is due to the fact that the supplem entary expression ‘this’ is understood in such a way that it is replaceable by o th er expressions by m eans of the identity-sign. the suspicion arises that it does not go far enough.to explain what it is for an expression to stand for an object. R ather we shall now have to ask what it m eans to say that an expression ‘stands fo r’ an object. nothing to find fault with in the tra­ ditional conception. With this we bring the language-analytical critique of the object-orientated position to bear on the latter’s own point of d ep artu re. So far the critique o f the object-orientated position concerned only the tendency of the latter to transfer the only formal category at its disposal. th ere seems.this is som ething we will have to exam ine . and hence o f establishing that an assertion is true. A nd if the criterion for an expression’s being a singular term is that oth er expressions can be substituted for it by means o f the identity-sign (which expressions are then likewise singular terms) then we shall have to ask what the rules are which govern such substitutions. However.stand for objects incorrect? Isn ’t a singular term by definition an expression that stands for an object? Indeed it is. In th at case it may also be surm ised that the object-orien­ tated position cannot explain its own basic concept: that of an object. is not correct. So in what way. to the other linguistic expres­ sions. at first sight. By this I m ean that the objectorientated position is probably not in a position . and to ask this question is to ask about the em ploym entrule of singular-term s. T h at the explanation of the classification-expression is understood as the explanation of a predicate (and this means: as the explanation of how one establishes that this expression applies to something) rests on the fact that in the explanation it is presupposed that the word ‘this’ is understood as a singular term .

I f singular term s are essentially expressions needing supplem en tatio n this means that an object is essentially som ething classifiable an d th at the relation to objects m ust be understo o d .and hence in th e context o f the tru th and falsity o f predicative assertions.that o f standing for objects .1 O ne can. Clearly we cannot say analogously: the singular term ‘a stands for that object which. For then the object a would not be distinct fro m all o th er objects to which the predicate ‘F’ applies. In the case of the predicate we could reverse the truth-definition and say: the p redicate tF >applies to the object for which the singular term ‘a stands if and only if the assertion ‘Fa is true. In very general term s this counter-position is expressed in the idea that singular term s are n o n -in d ep en d en t expressions and that the prim ary sem antic u n it is not th e nam e b u t the sentence. if the predicate ‘F' applies to it. b u t not if you consider that if it starts out from a p articular concept a philosophical position has no dim ension into which it can step back and from which it could explain that concept. H ow ever this form ula cannot do m ore than suggest an essential connection betw een the ‘standing fo r’ o f sin­ gular term s and the applying (Zutreffen) o f predicates and the tru th of assertions. In d eed you could even argue th at this form ula appears to suggest the opposite: w hereas the questions o f w h eth er the assertion is tru e and w hether the predicate applies are m utually d e p en d e n t (cf. B ut then one m ust be clear that. the language-analytical ap p ro ach has at its disposal an explanatory dim ension which co m p reh en d s the relation to objects.is em b ed d ed in th e function of predicates that of classifying objects . it is tru e. w hereas the first . By contrast.The mode of employment of predicates 267 pable o f explaining its own basic concept. T h u s we here en co u n ter an asym m etry reg ard in g the roles o f the predicate and the singular term in the predicative sentence. It does n o t by itself show that o ne cannot explain w hat it is for a singular term to stand for an object in d ep en d en tly of this form ula. p. 253) nothing co rresp o n d in g holds for the question of which object the sin­ gular term stands for. in term s of the relation of assertions to tru th . In the truth-definition o f predicative assertions: ‘T h e assertion th at a is F is tru e if and only if the predicate “F ” applies to the object for which the singular term “a ” stands’ (which I also took as my starting-point in the explanation o f th e semantics o f predicates) we already have a fo r­ mula for expressing the idea th at the function o f singular term s . say that th e tru th o f the assertion d ep en d s both on which object th e singular term stands for an d on w hether the predicate applies to this object. makes the assertion ‘ Fa* true. in a way still to be clarified.

substantive difference. the second cannot be form ulated independently of the first: the question of w hether the predicate applies to the object presupposes that we know to which object. or not apply. ra th e r the question of the tru th or falsity o f the assertion presupposes that we know for which object the singular term stands. thus which object it is for which the singular term stands. W hether the state of affairs should be thus described is disputed. A lthough Strawson and others have m ade m uch of this question of w hether one should in ter­ pret it in this way o r that it is o f only limited im portance. how ever. T h u s from the tru th-definition of predicative assertions we can arrive at n eith er a positive n o r a negative decision regarding the question of w hether what it is for a singular term to stand for an object can be u n d ersto o d in dependently of the context of predication. T h e tru th o f the assertion depends (then only) on w hether the predicate applies to this object. Q ur line o f th o u g h t so far suggests th at the object-relation cannot be u n d e r­ . and is the condition of. I f one describes it thus this has the consequence th at if th ere is no object. the assertion does not count as false. o r m ore than one. We m ust then say either th at it is n eith er tru e n o r false or th a t the person who uttered such a sentence did n o t assert anything. T h e asymmetry between p re d ­ icate an d singular term . W hether the assertion is called false or n eith er true n o r false in such cases is a m atter o f convention an d may vary from language to language. T h o u g h one does not have to. I shall be re tu rn in g to this question (Lecture 22). O n the other h an d it does not follow from this th at what in general it means for a singular term to ‘stand fo r’ an object can be explained in d ep en ­ dently o f the fact th at it is som ething to which predicates can apply. W hereas the question o f w heth er the predicate ‘F' applies to the object a depends on o u r knowing for which object the singular term ‘a’ stands. one can describe this state of affairs as follows (this is Straw son’s view):2 the tru th of the assertion does n o t d ep en d o n which object the singular term stands for and on w hether the predicate applies to it. being able to establish w hether the predicate ‘F’ applies to it. represents a non-conventional. H ow ever. from which this question starts out. the reverse is not the case: the question of which object the singular term ‘a’ stands for m ust be settled independently of. we should not read too m uch into this result.Analysis of the predicative sentence 268 of these conditions can be form ulated independently of the second. for which the singular term stands. All th at fol­ lows from it is th at in the question of the tru th of a particular assertion Fa the question o f which object the singular term ‘a’ stands for must already be decided independently of the question of the tru th of this assertion (or of w hether this predicate applies to this object).

. T h e question can only be decided by applying to singular terms the same basic question which guided us in the case of predicates. and this means: the question of how we can explain the em ploym ent of expressions of this type. We cannot expect that what has been shown for predicates can simply be trans­ ferred to singular terms. the question regarding the mode of em ploym ent of these expressions.The mode of employment of predicates 269 stood independently of the truth-relation. O n the other hand the asym­ metry th at has ju st been described should m ake us cautious. viz.

W ithout . In the case o f singular term s we have to do with expressions which not only have a m eaning but also stand for an object. because it instructs one to fram e the philosophical question about the m eaning of linguistic expressions in a way that exactly corresponds to the pre-philosophical question and in fact merely formalizes the latter. together with the question o f how its m eaning is explained. 15If) called W ittgenstein’s dictum ‘T he m eaning o f a word is w hat the explanation of its m eaning explains’ the fundam ental principle o f analytical philosophy. if the expression stands for an object at all then the question about the expression’s m ode o f em ploym ent m ust em brace. T o explain what it is for a predicate to apply to an object we asked how we would explain how we establish that a predicate applies to an arbitrary object. Likewise we can only explain what it is for a singular term to stand fo r an object by asking how we establish for which object a singular term stands. I earlier (p. In whatever way these two aspects may be connected.L E C T U R E 20 W h a t is it for a sign to stand for an object? T h e traditional account In the enquiry into the semantics o f singular term s there is no reason why we should not follow the traditional philosopher in describing the relation betw een the singular term and the object by saying that the singular term stands fo r the object. as an expression whose sense has yet to be specified. A nd we can only answer the philosophical ques­ tion of what it is for an expression to stand for an object by explaining how pre-philosophically one explains in a particular case which object an expression stands for. that o f how one explains for which object it stands. According to this principle the philo­ sophical question concerning the understan d in g o f a form o f expres­ sion should be construed as the question o f how pre-philosophically we explain expressions o f this form. T h e question ‘How do we establish it?’ is quite indispensable. B ut at p resent we should regard this expression ‘stands for’ as a cipher.

What is it fo r a sign to stand fo r an object? 271 it any explanation of an expression would rem ain in the air. so if the question concerning the m eaning of ‘stands fo r’ assumes this form th ere is n o th in g to p rev en t even the traditional m odern philosopher from going along with us. a nam e in the m eta-language. W hoever refuses to pose the question in this form thereby refuses to enquire into the m eaning of the relation betw een nam e and object at all. ra th e r than explain. O nce again w hat m atters is . T hese theories are m erely logical or linguistic tech­ niques and do not am o u n t to a philosophical position at all. those. and like the latter it rem ains vacuous so long as one does not show how it can be established to which object a singular term is assigned. W hat actually h ap p en s in theories of this kind is th at the singular term is simply assigned to an o th er name. In precisely the same way we were able to see in the case o f predicates th at the m eaning of ‘applies’ can only be explained by asking how it is established th at a predicate applies to an object. This expression ‘assignm ent’ is ju st another w ord for ‘standing fo r’. which in the specifi­ cation of the m eaning o f assertoric sentences rem ain at the level of truth-conditions and specify the latter in a m eta-language. By contrast it is characteristic of both the epistemologically based m o d ern theory o f objects . W ithin semantics this recourse to establishing corresponds to the move we m ade in th e enquiry into the semantics o f whole assertoric sentences from truth-conditions to verification-rules. By merely presupposing. nam ely.and the language-analytical theory of objects that they seek to clarify the object-relation and w hat it means to speak o f ‘objects by recourse to the question o f how objects can be given to us. how we are able to re fe r to objects and what it means to speak of an ‘object’. Such an attitu d e is not characteristic of the traditional position but of certain m o d ern sem antic theories. how ever this relation is designated. W ithin ontology this move corresponds to the epistemological (‘tran scen d en tal’) tu rn which ontology took in m odern times.transcendental philoso­ phy . In these the­ ories the n am e-object relation is so construed th at each singular term is ‘assigned’ to an object. B u t if we do not wish to com m it a petitio principii vis-a-vis the trad i­ tional p hilosopher we cannot ju st assum e th at we can only refer to objects by m eans of linguistic expressions. the language-analytical theory u n d erstan d s the object-relation as a re fe r­ ence (Bezugnahme) which can essentially only be achieved by means of a sign. T h e d iffer­ ence is that w hereas the traditional theory posed this question in d ep e n ­ dently of the question o f the function of the corresponding signs. ra th e r th an explaining. how we are able to assign a sin­ gular term to an object these techniques m erely presuppose.

A nd we can expect that it will be precisely in th e question of how we can establish for which object a sign stands that he will find it natural to have recourse to his pre-linguistic way of referring. . We find such a theory in Jo h n Stuart Mill.Analysis of the predicative sentence 272 that we should so fram e the question that the traditional philosopher has no difficulty in accepting it. can one explain for which object the sign stands unless one is som ehow able to refer directly to th e object? B ut how is this pre-linguistic object-reference to be understood? We shall obtain the answer to this question from traditional philosophy itself by taking as o u r point o f d e p a rtu re a traditional theory of singular term s which can be reg ard ed as representative. they can indicate a direction in which we m ust expect the explanation of singular term s to proceed if our explanation of th e m ode of em ploym ent o f predicates is to be retained. T hese hints cannot have a justificatory function in the investigation of singular term s th a t is now to be u n d ertak en . For how. o r establish. A nd I im agine that you too. H e must agree to it for one cannot see in what o th er way the m eaning of ‘standing fo r’ could be explained. A nd h e can and m ust agree to clarify the question o f what it is fo r a sign to ‘stand fo r’ an object by asking how we would explain. However. though com­ pletely hypothetical and vague. By exam ining his theory we will be able to get a clear picture o f what a pre-analytical object-theory m ust presuppose in asking how we can explain. will find it natural to think that we m ust be able to re fe r to an object in a non-linguistic way. for which object a singular term stands. one m ight ask. He can agree to it because th at th ere are signs which stand for objects is not a m atter of controversy. Nevertheless he too must be capable of explaining this sign-relation. T h e tradi­ tional philosopher would thus not app ro ach the question of the objectrelation as such from the sign-relation.1 B efore I begin the systematic enquiry into the em ploym ent of singu­ lar term s we should recall the hints for the u n d erstanding of singular term s yielded by the analysis o f the m ode o f em ploym ent of predicates. W hat the traditional philosopher wishes to stress is simply th at referrin g by m eans of linguistic expressions is not our only and n o t our prim ary way of referrin g to objects. A n o th er reason for choosing Mill’s theory to debate with is that after having long been reg ard ed by analytical philosophers as disposed of it has recently been finding su p p o rte rs. or establish. for which object a singular term stands. when confronted with this question for the first time. As before if we do not wish to proceed dogmatically we must allow the way forw ard to be determ ined only by the difficulties in which the traditional way of posing the problem itself becomes entangled. in an individual case.

T h ere is thus constituted a speech-act which belongs to a class of speech-acts in o th er situations which all ‘say the sam e’. T hese connections suggested by the explanation of the m ode of em ploym ent of predicates do not correspond to the usual. a situation- . T h e indispensable significance of this distinction arose internally from the requirem ents of an explanation o f the mode of em ploym ent of predicates. T h a t which is classified no longer results of itself from the employmentsituation as in the case o f the quasi-predicate but is taken up into the linguistic expression by being represented by the singular term . if these per­ spectives for the u nderstanding of singular term s should tu rn out to be correct. But since. I then also indicated that it seems plau­ sible to suppose that in the constitution of situation-independence a special role is played by the situation-relative singular term s. a correctness which we call ‘tru th ’. Because an expression which would otherwise be a quasi-predicate becomes a predicate by virtue of its need to be supplem ented by a sin­ gular term it seem ed plausible to suppose that the function of the sin­ gular term must be (a) to m ake the classification-expressions . firstly.What is it fo r a sign to stand fo r an object? 273 T h e distinction between predicates and what I have called quasi-pred­ icates involved no em pirico-genetic hypothesis. T h e explanation o f quasi-predicates enabled us to isolate a first level at which we explain a classification-expression without using words like ‘tru e ’ and ‘applies’. conception o f singular term s which starts out from the relation of singular term s to objects as som ething obvious and requiring no fu rth e r explanation. not even the usual language-analytical. on the other hand. that such a thing as an object-relation is only m ade possible by the situation-independence of speech accomplished by means o f deictic expressions. the deictic expressions. A nd in addition we saw in the last lecture that deictic expressions also have a special role inasm uch as the reference (Verwei­ sung) o f the singular term to the verification-situation is to be u n d e r­ stood as the reference to a deictic expression to be used in this situation. T he correctness of these speech-acts is in d ep en d en t o f the em ploym ent-situation and points for­ ward to a special situation in which this correctness is established. then. but simply the word ‘correct’ in the sense of ‘con­ form ing to a ru le ’.now sup­ plem ented to form sentences .situation-independent and (b) to refer (verweisen) from the em ploym ent-situation to the verification-situation. If we could ignore the fact that a predicate is em ployed outside its verification-situation it would be a quasi-predicate. As was shown in the last lecture this is relatively complex. it can­ not be doubted th at singular term s stand for objects. one would have to be able to show. and it served only inci­ dentally to contrast predicate-language with m ore primitive languages.

e. the em ploym ent-rule o f predicates) and (2) how one establishes for which object a singular term stands (i. However. Secondly. the connection between the semantics o f singular term s and th at of predicates acquired a m ore determ inate form through the truth-definition. Now that it has proved possible to explain this object-relation that is implicit in the notion of applying by. Now in the last lecture I gave an explanation o f what it is to establish th at a predicate applies which no longer depends on an understanding of the word ‘tru e ’ but (a) rests only on an u n derstanding of the word ‘correct’ (in the sense of ‘conform ing to a ru le’) (b) presupposes an und erstan d in g of the em ploym ent o f singular terms. I merely m ade use o f the u n d erstan d in g of the two-place predicate ‘is identical with’ (' = ’). In this explana­ tion I used neither the expression ‘stands fo r’ nor the expression ‘object’. I said that the aim o f the investigation is a non-verbal explanation o f the em ploym ent o f the word ‘tru e ’ in p re­ dicative assertions (and th at could only mean: an explanation of how one establishes that assertions of this kind are true) by means of a non­ verbal explanation of (1) how one establishes th at a predicate applies to an object (i.that objects are essentially som ething identifiable .e. the employmentrule o f singular terms).was simply presupposed as plau­ sible. instead of speaking of a singular te rm ’s standing for an object.or the em ploym ent of the corresponding sem antic classes o f expressions . (1) In the last lec­ tu re the close connection between objecthood and identity . both of which themselves require explanation.Analysis of the predicative sentence 274 independence which at the same tim e makes possible a truth-relation. merely appealing to an u nderstanding o f the identity-sign in connection with .would be explained). T h e following additional perspectives for our enquiry into the em ploym ent-rule of singular terms result from this. (2) W hat is m eant by predicates applying to som ething cannot be understood w ithout at the same time u n d erstan d in g what is m eant by objects. This was an anticipation which can only be justified in the context o f the systematic discussion of singular terms. T h u s what we are looking for is an explanation of the em ploym ent of (elem entary) predicative sentences in which not only the word ‘tru e ’ but also the words ‘applies’ and ‘stands for’ no longer occur (and in this way all th ree words . or what it is for a singular term to stand fo r an object. we would have to expect th at the m ost basic (ursprünglich) objects by reference to which all oth er objects in th eir objecthood are to be understood are the speech-situations themselves. T h e perspectives for the semantics o f singular term s arising from the discussion of predicates to which I have so far referred are relatively vague.

but . As soon as one considers descrip­ tions and p ro p e r nam es the question o f th e ir m utual relationship arises. It does not stand simply and directly for the object. Even for Russell the m eaning of an expression was the sam e as its object. Since th e u n d erstan d in g o f the word ‘tru e ’ in its application to predic­ ative assertions rests on the u n d erstan d in g of ‘applies’ and ‘stands for’ the elem entary use o f the w ord (which recursively underlies the other uses) could be explained purely on the basis of an u n d erstanding of ‘correct’ and the identity-sign.by m eans o f an attribute. In the traditional theory. T h e consequences of this for the concept of tru th would be as follows.such as properties. it would seem natural to expect th a t the standing-for o f singular term s. for in th eir case one m ust distinguish the object and the m eaning o f the expression. or states o f affairs . can be reduced to a corresp onding understanding of the identity-sign. As the classical traditional conception was incapable of dealing with a m eaning that could not be construed as an object it took the p roper nam e to be the prototype of all linguistic expressions. p ro p e r nam es and descriptions. In H usserl th ere is no explicit theory o f p ro p e r nam es. as the use of the definite article ‘the’ implies. which.‘the so-and-so’ . belongs to only one object.seems somehow to refer indirectly to an object. on the . Frege.2 A definite description .w h eth er or not one wants to speak o f a m eaning h e re .What is it fo r a sign to stand fo r an object? 275 singular term s and in p articu lar deictic singular term s.and concentrate on those which stand for concrete (and th at m eans perceptible) objects. a p a rt from p ro p er-n am es only descriptions have played a role. In connection with the interpretation o f H usserl’s theory o f m eaning (p. H aving looked at these hypothetical perspectives for a possible language-analytical explanation o f ‘standing fo r’ suggested by the discus­ sion o f predicates I shall now begin th e systematic discussion of the question o f how one can re fe r to objects by m eans of singular term s with a critical assessm ent o f the traditional conception. 150) I pointed out that o ne can take as one’s starting-point a crude distinction of concrete singular term s into deictic expressions. It was prim arily orien tated tow ards p ro p e r names because these seem ed to exhibit the standing of a linguistic expression for an object in the most sim ple and direct way. I shall for the most p art ignore singular term s which stand for abstract objects . the m eaning o f object­ hood could be u n d ersto o d w ithout re m a in d e r in term s of identifiability. even when it is explained by itself. Like Frege he o rientated him self prim arily tow ards descriptions. Identity would th en not m erely be essential to objecthood (as is generally acknow ledged). A lready influenced by Frege. H usserl h ere d e p arted from th e usual conception.

and their d ifferent m eanings correspond to its d ifferen t ‘modes of presentation’. T hey do n o t refer to their objects as to the sole bearers of an attribute but are ‘attached to the objects themselves’. All these descriptions stand for the same object. in the case of localities. and who died in Chalkis in 322 B. one will object. e. does not consist in its being affixed to the object fo r which it stands. T hough im portant. but as the higher-level expressions: to establish for which object a p ro p e r nam e stands we have to have recourse to descriptions. this can hap p en . But the use of a nam e. (For certain purposes. which could be somehow directly re fe rre d to by means of a p ro p er name.e.e. decisive step of treating p ro p er names. they stand for an object. O f course. and distinguish it from others.g. But only descriptions are in addition ‘connotative’.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 276 other h and. T h e rob b er in the tale of Alibaba m arks a house with a chalk-sign so as to be able to recognize it again as the same.C. T hus underlying the prim acy of descriptions over p ro p er names urged by Frege is the ontological-epistem ological idea that there is no such thing as an ‘object as such’ behind its m odes o f presentation. for which person. this nam e stands. this is how one should think of the func­ tion of p ro p e r nam es. thus all so-called ‘term s’ o f traditional logic.to ‘stand fo r’ an object. are non-connotative.4 Mill calls all categorem atic expressions. if we use the p ro p e r nam e ‘Aristotle’ and are asked for which object. We find such a view in Mill. All individual names according to Mill are ‘de­ notative’.and for Frege this means: a description . as such. i. the teacher of A lexander the G reat. for us how ever it is only im portant in regard to individual names. . one im m ediately asks: what is one to understand by such a direct assignm ent? Unlike the meta-linguistic semantic theorists Mill does not evade this question. we can only give descriptions: A ristotle. does not. that is the person who was born in such-andsuch a place at such-and-such a time. the philosopher who wrote most of the texts that have come down to us u n d e r his nam e. for the tradition which fol­ lowed him . i. singular term s. ships. by contrast. not as the m ore elem entary. this insight.3 For exam ple. explain w hat it is fo r a singular term . T h e for us im portant distinction between connotative and non-connotative names he also applies to gen­ eral term s. Let us now leave this conception and retu rn to a conception which also distinguishes betw een p ro p e r names and descriptions but which regards the object-relation of p ro p e r names as the m ore elem entary. took the revolutionary and. of course. P ro p er names. ‘nam es’ and distinguishes general names and individual names. they stand for their object by means of an attribute which they ‘connote’. the pupil of Plato. which was also taken over by Husserl.

How it is positively to be understood was bou n d to rem ain undecided.6 O ne cannot get a clear grasp of this concept from the outside either for it rests on an uncashable m etaphor. retrospectively. 62 f) that it is characteristic of the object-orientated tradition that it conceives of the object-relation as representation (Vorstellung). a quasi-representa­ tion is a p u re fiction.What is it fo r a sign to stand fo r an object? 277 participants at a congress.is also characteristic of the ancient and mediaeval conception. the relation now understood as direct . Taking this as the basic model for the consciousness-relation in general. . I have already pointed out in the introductory discussions (p. one will only be able to explain those special cases on the basis of an understanding of the general nam e-relation. According to this bro ad er version.5 And of ancient philosophy one can say.to the object is understood as a relation of representation: the object is represented. or image consciousness. T h e point of d ep arture of the m etaphor is a representation in the sense of a perceptual (anschau­ lich) or imaginative (optical) image. At the same time I distinguished between a narrow er version of the representation-theory which is characteristic of the early m odern period and according to which that to which we directly relate is not the object but the represen­ tation as its representative (Repräsentant). one can find no answer to this question in traditional philosophy. that the concept of representation implicitly underlay its distinction between aisthesis and naus. But one would hardly seek to understand the general nam e-relation by reference to these special cases. only this having-before-oneself is no longer to be u n d e r­ stood as sensuous perception (Anschauung).) Mill him self raises this objection and answers it thus: what we ‘m ark’ with a nam e is not the object itself but the idea of the object. the relation to objects was conceived as a having-before-oneself (Vorsichhaben) of an optical image. because the concept of ‘representation’ is a basic concept for m odern traditional philoso­ phy. O n the con­ trary. I do not think this view can be dismissed as a peculiar lapse on Mill’s part. an object is essentially some­ thing representable. For the concept of the object itself the conse­ quence was that it had to be essentially tho u g h t of as the correlate of such a non-sensuous quasi-representation. and a broader version to which even the critics of this theory continued to subscribe and which even if not u n d e r this nam e . for which there was no com prehensive generic concept. If one asks what is m eant by ‘representation’ here. Every representative of tra ­ ditional philosophy will resist this apparently malicious interpretation. T h e only thing we can do is to m ake it clear to ourselves w hat this m etaphor is. for the m etaphor becomes vacuous. A non-sensuous representation.

But in th at case one should ask him how he can explain his special (‘reason’) concept o f identity. nothing is given to us in consciousness but the sensible. without presupposing it. as in G erm an Idealism . It is. that the relation is to be u nderstood as a relation between subject and object. We can ignore this peculiarity. but for its representation (idea). we say that it stands for the represented object. only when we view Mill’s conception as representative of the b ro ad er version of the representation-theory will its fundam ental significance for the whole tradition become evident. A nd for our p art we can see his belief th at he has to appeal to such a special insight or structure inacces­ sible to ordinary h um an understan d in g as a desperate attem pt to escape from the dilem m a o f object-orientated philosophy w ithout su rre n d e r­ ing its basic presupposition which consists in not recognizing that we relate to objects by m eans o f linguistic signs which for this purpose must be em ployed in a specific way. belongs to the narrow er version o f the representation-theory. O f course the advocate of such theories will claim that he is h ere being criticized merely from the standpoint of the ‘u n d erstan d in g ’. etc. . simply nonsensical to say that a = b and ai=b. Mill’s specific conception is m erely a variant of this conception. n o n ­ identity. unless it be one in which one adds to the confusion by saying. It was not an avoidable accident but in­ evitable that traditional philosophy should take the m etaphorical con­ cept o f representation as its starting point. thus for an object as object of an act of representing. fo r if one ignores the logical. His theory can easily be detached from the narrow version of the representation-theory if instead of saying that the nam e does not stand directly for the object. T h erefo re the only alternative to a language-oriented explanation of the relation to objects is an explanation in term s of a m etaphor based on perceptual images. You can read the history of pre-analytical philosophy from Parm enides on from beginning to end and back again and you will find no answer. which we can regard as the traditional conception p u re and simple. W hen we ask what this is we are told: the identity o f the d ifferen t (or: the identity of iden­ tity and non-identity) and suchlike. And even if this were not nonsensical it is impossible to see how this form al ontological relation. the linguistic. Mill’s conception of the object-relation of names. o f course. regardless of how often this twisting is ‘reflected’ and repeated (as in H egel’s Logic)..Analysis o f the predicative sentence 278 But then ask how he positively understands the relation between con­ sciousness and object. according to which what is directly designated is not the object but the idea. simply by being twisted in upon itself can be m ade to yield som ething like a consciousness-relation.

A nd this idea can only be either the pro d u ct of a m ere failure to th in k .and in a harm less. or at any rate can be carried over. F reg e’s conception.What is it fo r a sign to stand fo r an object? 279 W hat follows from this general orientation towards the concept of representation for the nam e-object relation? R epresentations in the nonm etaphorical sense.representable. to ‘th e ’ object. do I not p resu p p o se that at least the signs them selves are representable.o r if it is to be philosoph­ ically justified it implies that objects can be simply given. are sim ple data which can be taken in at a glance. or at least in d e p e n d e n t of. th at o f descriptions implies th at there can be a relation between sign and object which can be understood as simple assignm ent. w here ‘rep resen tatio n ’ has an uncashable m etaphorical m eaning. as simply as the signs to which they are assigned. but som ething which essentially manifests itself in m anifold m odes o f presentation. that is p erceptual images. Let m e again point out that Mill’s theory.as on Frege’s view it m ust . non-m etaphorical sense . as sign-types they are abstract objects. T h e sign-types are indeed represen tab le and m oreover —this is crucial . How ever. a relation which does not involve . a p ro p e r nam e. At any rate I do not know o f any other possible way o f conceiving of objects as som ething simply given as this is req u ired by the assignm ent-theory. and this m eans th a t it is based on a rep resen tatio n -th eo ry o f objects.and we m ust suppose this to be the case with m odern m eta-linguistic assignm ent-theories . presupposes that an object is n o t som ething representable. 1 should h ere m ention a possible objection. by contrast. A nd clearly we m ust also reg ard th em as objects. things in this way. T h u s because objects are u n d ersto o d as what can be rep resen ted it becom es possible to in terp re t them as sim ple data like p erceptual images an d it thereby becomes pos­ sible to conceive of the object-relation o f a nam e as m ere association or assignm ent. w hereas the objects ‘fo r’ which those signs th at are (concrete) singular term s stand are concrete objects. T h e idea th at the object-relation o f p ro p e r nam es is somehow m ore basic than. w hether in his own narrow .in a non-m etaphorical sense.a reference to descriptions. does n o t rule out th at am ong other objects th ere are also objects which are actually . It is this aspect that is carried over in the m etaphorical extension of the concept of rep resen tatio n to the objectrelation. My opposition to the traditional idea th at referen ce to objects is essentially to be u n d ersto o d as representation. an d are n o t the signs also objects? T h e question is to be answ ered in th e affirm ative. A nd it is only if the object is conceived as a simple datum that it is possible to assume a direct relation o f a ‘non-connotative’ name. a simple d atum . You could ask: by p re ­ senting.

This first step in my critique is not conclusive. is a theory o f the object-relation of nam es which implies that o u r relation to objects is as such not a lin­ guistic one. does not involve reference to a sentence-context. consistently. that the assignm ent-theory of nam e and object and the idea of the primacy of p ro p e r nam es are g ro u n d ed in the representation-theory. Secondly. and ref­ erence to objects. that a m etap h o r cannot be cashed. For a representation in the non-m eta­ phorical sense does not belong to such a context. may simply reflect the narrowness of the person who makes it. cannot be explained. that it does not make sense to speak of a non-sensuous or somehow intellectual re p re­ sentation. ju st supposing th at it does make good sense to speak of representations. Although in another place (in the same §5 of C hap ter 2 of his Logic) Mill says it is the function of nam es to distinguish objects. In principle th en I m ust leave open the possibility that som eone will succeed in m aking good sense o f this ex tended use o f the term ‘re p re ­ sentation’. thus representation in the m etaphorical sense an d accordingly what is to be understood by an object does not belong to such a context either. H ere too it seems to me th at the representation-theory is the only possible alternative to u n d erstan d in g the object-relation and what is m eant by objects in term s of the em ploym ent of a species of sign (at any rate the only one with which we are familiar). to that of arousing in the mind those representations of objects with which they are associated. for an assertion that a w ord is m eaningless. And this clearly. As far as the extended. On the other hand it has not been m ade clear on precisely what my hostility to this theory itself rests. It is now also clear why for the traditional con­ ception the sem antics o f singular term s is independent. for a nam e to ‘stand for’ an object. m etaphorical representation-concept as such is concerned I cannot add anything essential to what I have already said. at most. W hat are the criteria for deciding that it is incor­ rect or even impossible? We m ust here distinguish between the doubtful character of the extended representation-concept as such and that of the idea that w hat we m ean by objects is to be construed as rep resen ta­ tions. It m eans that it ‘stands fo r’ a representation of an object in the sense of being associated with it. can we u n d erstan d w hat is m eant by objects. My thesis is th at the m etap h o r cannot be cashed. or som ething representable. for the traditional position. in the place w here he speaks of the relation of nam es to representations (‘ideas’) he restricts the function of names.Analysis of the predicative sentence 280 version or in my generalized version. in term s o f this notion? Let me begin by showing that . is what it m eans. You could object that so far all I have really shown is.

22). I shall come back to this question (cf. it also seems natural to us. think about it . e.singular terms . And how do we arrive at such? Surely not by m ere analysis of the use o f the word ‘object’. However the idea of an over-against seems even then so natural that I say: the object is an over-against. viz. O f course I then immediately said to m yself: it is clearly not this optical view of the object. I shall leave it open w hether this is because we belong to this tradition. pictorial view in which things manifest themselves to us (particularly when we are sitting still).when I am not in the room. B ut we can assum e this much: that one m ust be able to explain how these expressions stand for objects. So I clearly cannot stick to the naive idea of an optical over-against. also p.g. I reflected further that w hat can most indubitably be term ed an over-against is the optical. I assume it could be similar with many of you. A nd without doubt when I do so I m ean the same object. if you do not want to hear anything about talking. act as if there were such a m eaning and ask: could this really be what we mean when we speak o f an object? How can we approach such a question? Clearly only by already having some prelim inary conception of what we m ean by ‘object’. O f course we cannot now understand what in general it is to relate to objects in terms of the use of these expressions. I can also talk about it . I can also perceive it with other senses. We do not need to answer it now for it suffices for o u r present purpose to fall back on one thing which is not a m atter of controversy between the traditional philosopher and his analytical critic. Indeed this seems to be already implied by the words ‘G egenstand’. A nd then I noticed that I was thinking of the relation to objects on this model. W hen I reflected on this I noticed how strong my tendency was to think of an object as som ething over against me (ein Gegenüber). of this desk. ‘ob-ject’.What is it fo r a sign to stand fo r an object? 281 this thesis of the representation-relation to objects is by no means merely som ething we find in the philosophical tradition. that I mean when I m ean the object. I can walk ro u n d the desk.which somehow ‘stand fo r’ objects. We leave this question open. even if this should not be . T hese reflections show that the thesis th at we relate to objects by means of representations in the m etaphorically extended sense can arise quite naturally. namely this desk. the fact that th e re are certain linguistic expressions . O rdinarily one does not reflect on what one means when one speaks of objects. only not a pictorial one. that would be a petitio principii in favour of the language-analytical posi­ tion. T h e doubt w hether this metaphorical sense still has any content should not now disturb us. It will be best if I rem ain subjective and merely relate to you how it was in my own case when I becam e aware of this problem .or.

one can u n d erstand what it m ight m ean intersubjectively to exhibit them . In the case of representations in the non-m etaphorical sense . R epresentations in the m eta­ phorical sense. thus if we ask for its explanation. It is this principle on which the representation-theory appears to founder. T hus it would seem that we cannot conclusively refute the traditional answer until we have given a new positive explanation of what it is to explain which object one means with a singular term. at least as regards intersubjective speech. Now the traditional philosopher could also try to bend this question to fit his conception.images . above p. all we know is what we must ask if we are enquiring about the explanation of singular terms. How this m eaning is to be understood has of course still to be explained. But this question m ust be orientated towards how one actually answers. as we have seen. in a particular case. Regarding the explanation that is now to be given of how it is established what or who we mean with an expression he could say that . on the o th er hand.Analysis of the predicative sentence 282 essential to the sense of the object-relation. we are not asking what (which object) the person who uses it represents to himself. For it would follow from the represen­ tation-theory th at when we are asked to explain for which object a name stands the question concerns what we represent when using this name. If we ask how a singular term is used. that we too can m ean (cf. A nd we can now apply to our problem that basic principle of analytical philosophy. Again this result is not conclusive. W eshall see that the question thus posed leads us to a completely new conception of how we refer to objects and o f what is m eant by ‘objects’. even if there were such things as representations in the extended m etaphorical sense. O f course the following m anoeuvre is still open to the traditional p h i­ losopher. This word does not am ount to an answer to o u r question. the question ‘W ho or what do you m ean by that?’ A nd in fact nobody answers this question by pointing to representations. m ust also be accepted by the traditional philosopher: that we m ust be able to explain how we use a linguistic expression. but rather what (which object) he means. have not been understood intersub­ jectively by traditional philosophy and it is not clear how they could be understood intersubjectively. 63f). which. A nd that the question cannot be thus understood seems clear. H e would say: one can only explain which object one means with a singular term by recourse to the corresponding representation. T h e linguistic object-relation is to be understood as m eaning (Meinen) w here this word is understood not in the sense in which it is supplem ented by a nominal sentence (‘I believe (meinen) that/?’) but in the sense in which it is sup­ plem ented by a singular term (‘I m ean N ’).

What is it fo r a sign to stand fo r an object? 283 this is precisely w hat he m eant by his m etaphorically extended talk o f the rep resen tatio n of an object. T h e word ‘re p resen tatio n ’. is. on the contrary.like any word. harmless . if it is newly defined. H ow ever. of course. this m anoeuvre would re p ­ resen t an abandoning o f the traditional position. we can only explain what is m eant by ‘rep resen tatio n ’ by explaining what it is to m ean an object. . For it would imply the admission that we cannot explain what it is to mean an object by recourse to rep resen tatio n but that.

only false. namely that by means of linguis­ tic expressions (for the present I leave it open w hether it is the only one). which implies th at ‘standing fo r’ is to be understood as simple assignm ent or association. T he traditional conception is thus not shown to be impossible but disregarding the unclarity of its basic concept .LECTURE 2 1 T h e function of singular term s At the end o f the last lecture it again became clear how limited the possibilities of internally refuting a philosophical basic conception are. B efore I begin the positive construction of the new conception I wish to add som ething to what I said about the representation-theory. a re p ­ . It is enough to show that the object-relation which we encounter w hen we exam ine how we actually establish for which object a sign stands is not a representation-relation and that the m eaning of objecthood which em erges from this exam ination cannot be understood in term s of representation. B ut to d em and an internal refutation would also involve an unrealistic view of the extent to which obsolete philosophical ideas can be put out of action. on the representation-theory. it would be false to sup­ pose that the converse holds. I have shown that th e doctrine of the prim acy of p ro p er names over descrip­ tions. O ne cannot show . is gro u n d ed . Sponge-like thoughts have the advantage that they cannot be smashed.assum ing one is p repared to accept the uncashed m etaphor of the representation-concept . T h at it need not do so is particularly well illustrated by the case of H usserl. H usserl’s object-theory is. T h e genuine refutation of the traditional conception cannot be accomplished internally but only by means o f the positive construction of a new conception which right from the start can claim the advantage that it takes its d ep artu re from an actual form o f reference to objects. viz.that a representation-theory is impossible. However. if it has any philosophical fo u n ­ dation. on the one hand. th at the representation-theory neces­ sarily leads to this conception of the nam e-relation and such a simplistic object-concept.

On the other hand.1 Husserl is h ere clearly following in the tradition of Kant. depending on his standpoint and the surrounding circum­ stances.2 However K ant’s talk of the ‘object’ is misleading.and this synthetic objectconsciousness. on the o ther hand.are only acces­ sible to us in a manifold of modes of presentation. the modes of presentation of the object are understood as ‘adum brations’ (Abschattungen).perceptual representations . He would have characterized his problem m ore clearly if. H ere then the problem is in fact a completely different one. we have already seen that H usserl follows Frege in thinking that descriptions are semantically m ore fundam ental than proper-nam es. If a presentation o f the object in a multiplicity of som ething like modes of presentation turns out to be also characteristic of the language-analyti­ cal theory of objects. In H usserl. the question of why it is that we m ust regard the sequence of events as not merely subjective but objective. We shall see that the modes of presentation to which the enquiry into the em ploym ent of singular terms leads us are to be understood as rules for identifying an object. then the language-analytical conception must be distinguished from the traditional conception (in so far as the latter is already able to see the object as a unity of modes of presentation) by what it understands by ‘modes of presentation’. His question is not: how is it possible for us to refer to things. who was the first to develop a theory of this kind. T hese adum brations are thus themselves representations.The function of singular terms 285 resentation-theory: what he calls intentionality is the not linguistically but representationally construed object-relation of consciousness. instead of speaking of ‘objects’. as the mani­ fold perceptual perspectives in which an object presents itself to an observer. moreover. T o imagine that the problem of what makes possible a relation to objects is approxim ately the same as the problem of what . In Husserl this is connected with the ontological-epistemological idea that objects . According to Kant the represen­ tation of an object depends on a ‘rule’ which makes a ‘synthesis’ of m an­ ifold ‘representations’ necessary. to som ething (an object)? R ather it is: how far are the connections of our representations not merely subjective but objective? This can be seen clearly from the fact that the text from which I have just quoted is concerned with the justification of the law of causality. representations in the non-m etaphorical sense. he had spoken of ‘objective connec­ tions’. and that it is only in such modes of presentation that they are constituted as objects. For Husserl all spatial objects present themselves in a rule-governed synthesis of simple data . and. as intentional consciousness.spatial ones at any rate . is itself understood as re p ­ resentation (though now in the metaphorically extended sense).

on the o th er hand.Analysis of the predicative sentence 286 justifies what we refer to to have a claim to objectivity would be to let ourselves be deceived by an accident of language.despite certain beginnings in K ant3 . i. However. but to the proposition. the situation is more complicated. For he holds the view that the relation to objects. If I can call H usserl a rep ­ resentative of the traditional conception of w hat is m eant by ‘objects’. viz.g. W hereas the contrast with ‘subjective’ is essential to ‘objective’. and this means that in this case too the term ‘objective’ refers. if one looks m ore closely. for which his definition serves merely to provide a m ark of identification. On the other hand it is not merely the existence of objects that is objective (or subjective) but also properties of objects (predications) and connections of objects (e. one sees that the problem which he deals with u n d er the heading ‘synthesis of m odes of p resentation’ is one which concerns not the spatial object .4 what he means by ‘object’ corresponds exactly to what we are here concerned with.to see that ‘objective’ is an adverb which qualifies veritative being and whose opposite is expressed by. then I must be able to assume that when he speaks of ‘objects’ he actually means objects and not. Now when H usserl speaks of a synthesis of m odes of presentation he does not m ean objects in general but specifically spatial objects. In so far as he defines ‘object’ as the ‘subject of possible true predications’. objects o f which we dream . not completely indep en d en t of each other. such a term as ‘seem ing’. for instance. on a language-analytical conception of the object-relation. His problem is not the one which concerns us here. som ething for which certain lin­ guistic expressions (which can be supplem ented by predicates) can stand. T h e lack of linguistic-logical reflection in the tradition also explains the failure . and this I have in terp reted as represen­ tation in the m etaphorically extended sense. Even when we speak o f objects as ‘objective’ we m ean their existence. the state of affairs.e. it is true. B ut it is safer if we first separate them oversharply and say that they overlap: thus it makes perfect sense to speak of merely subjective objects . som ething else. how we can refer to som ething (where this means: to som ething for which a singular term can stand). But H usserl does not base this definition. which appeals to the function of singular term s. T h u s when K ant says that a relation to objects becomes possible throu g h the synthesis o f representations that is subject to a necessary rule.g. sequences o f events). T he two problem s are.e. In H usserl’s case. not to the object. no such contrast belongs to the m eaning of ‘object’. what he really means is not objects but som ething objective. and the above definition is a clear indication of this. is grounded in intentionality. like Kant.

for exam ple. this description does not stand for a simple sensation-quality.6 In other words.its form . its colour. T h e m anifold m odes o f presentation which H usserl has in m ind are thus not such as concern the relation o f the singular term to the object. A nd although H usserl occasionally distinguishes between the object as such and its predicative determ inations. for exam ple. we describe this desk as brow n. H usserl explicitly goes into the distinction betw een the m eaning and . is con­ trasted with its m anifold subjective appearance-m odes. thus as what a singular term stands for. spatial objects. following Frege.5 T h a t the m odes of presentation dealt with by H usserl are not m odes o f presentation of the object as such b u t only o f its predicative determ inations is obscured by the fact that he speaks indiscrim inately o f things and properties of things. d ep en d in g on the illum ination and the position of the percipient. or d ream t of. traditionalist position: by construing the object-relation as represen tatio n h e reduces the object as it is given in perception to that in the object which is given representationally in the non-m etaphorical sense. its o th er sensible qualities . H us­ serl starts the problem at a m ore basic level than Kant: the properties of im agined. which vary according to a rule. For H usserl the objective in K ant’s n arro w er sense o f the word is simply a rule o f the same kind though on a higher-level. If. However. Now this problem is on a level with the Kantian problem which concerns not the object qua object b u t the objectivity of properties o f objects: the specifically objective colour-quality. b u t for a m anifold of such qualities. are also objec­ tive unities which are distinct from subjective m odes of presentation and are constituted in the rule-governed sequence of the latter. all that H usserl can say about w hat the singular term as such stands for is that it is a p u re X which underlies the predicative d ete r­ m inations.is constituted in a rule-governed synthesis of adum brations. the object as such he merely calls ‘the p u re X in abstraction from all predicates’.The function of singular terms 287 as such (as the subject of possible tru e predications) but the various predicative determ inations o f this object: every property of such an object . he did not look to an analysis of the em ploy­ m ent o f singular term s for the explanation of the object-relation. It is not surprising that in the enquiry into the constitution o f the object-relation H usserl was not o rientated tow ards these m odes o f presentation. Only in Investigation I of his Logical Investigations w here. For although he defined objects as the subjects o f possible predications. T h at he does so we can again explain by reference to his fu n ­ dam ental. O r p u ttin g it an o th e r way: they are not modes of p resenta­ tion to which a plurality o f singular term s (descriptions) which some­ how all designate the same object correspond. for exam ple.

regardless o f what position one holds. O f course Mill. T h a t these expres­ sions stand for objects is not a m atter of controversy. the concept of representation. and also the majority of analytical philosophers. It may still turn out that the explanation of singular term s requires a non-linguistic . imply any prejudice in favour of a language-analytical conception of the object-relation. a concept which Frege rejected w ithout being able to p u t an o th er in its place. Frege. like Frege. and the constitution of spatial objects. in terms of the concept o f representation. simply took for granted the notion of objects. he dismissed it as psychological and epistemological. how we refer to objects by means of such expressions and what follows from this for the notion of objects as such. namely.Analysis of the predicative sentence 288 the object of ‘nam es’ (by which like Frege he understands descriptions as well as p ro p e r names). It is u n d e r­ standable that in explaining the object-relation the traditional philoso­ p h er did not take the function o f the sign as his starting-point. on the other hand. H usserl. on the other hand. By contrast w here h e investigates the object-relation as such. as such.7 T h ro u g h his enquiry into the m eaning of singular term s Frege p re ­ pared a new way of posing the problem . p. 271 f) to rem ind you that this question does not. But he can have no objection to such a p recedure for however the object-rela­ tion is finally in terp reted it m ust be possible to explain what it is for signs to stand for objects in term s of this in terpretation. Even less did he attem pt to investigate the question o f what it is for a linguistic expression to ‘stand fo r’ an object. had a philosophical concept for the object-relation. by contrast. An explanation of how one establishes for which object such an expression stands is nec­ essary in any case. left open the question of how the differen t modes of presentation of the object which correspond to its descriptions are to be understood. As we now tu rn to the question of the actual mode o f em ploym ent of singular term s I w ould like once m ore (cf. he is not orientated towards the em ploy­ m ent of linguistic expressions at all. and although he did not simply presuppose the existence of an object-relation and a universe of objects. T h u s'alth o u g h Husserl does not have a sim­ ple object-concept like Mill. m ade an attem pt analytically to elucidate the object-relation and with it the m eaning of the term ‘object’. B ut he was not interested in the philosophical question of how such a thing as an object-relation is constituted in the em ploym ent o f such expressions. However. he did so on a pre-linguistic basis. does he en counter those different modes of presentation of an object to which d ifferen t singular term s correspond. his approach is ju st as traditional as that of Mill. Mill and Husserl.

Now this question . But it is precisely when we reflect on the aspect of function that we see how much in need of explanation this characterization itself is.in this case the use of a sign . W hen I distinguished the function of predicates from that of singular terms I characterized the function of singular terms in the same way as it is characterized by the traditional theory: it is the function of a singular term to stand for an object.The function of singular terms 289 object-relation. viz. T he question of function arises as soon as the sign-rela­ tion is brou g h t into connection with an em ploym ent of the sign by p e r­ sons. if he mistakenly believes that the expression stands for an object other than th at for which it in fact stands. and that means: with an action of persons. if not by an individual then by a linguistic community. e. the question concerning their function. Only if it should tu rn out that the object-relation which the explanation of singular term s presupposes cannot be understood independently of a specific use of signs would we have achieved a spe­ cifically language-analytical object-theory.belongs to an action then the act-intention determ ines what we call the function of the thing (what it is used for). 282). If we u nderstand the question of which object an expression stands for in term s of the use of that expression (and this means: its use by someone) then it becomes the question of which object someone means with the expression (above p. I also apply to singular terms the other question I applied to predicates. But since there can be no sign-object relation independently of the use of signs by persons this discrepancy can only mean that in a particular case someone means with the expression a different object from that which is (or was) nor­ mally (or originally) meant with it.‘who or what is m eant with “a”?’ —clearly belongs to the context of whole sentences. Every action is d e ter­ mined by an intention and if the use of a thing . So the question of which object a singular term stands for can only be understood as the question of which object is m eant with it.g. This is all that can be m eant by saying that an expression really stands for a particular object. We can see this if. viz. But we should also be clear that the answer given by a pragm atist— behaviourist tradition. what the standard intention is that determ ines an action which consists in the em ploym ent of som ething with this function. For it rem ains unclear what is achieved by using som ething to stand for an object. in addition to the question about m ode of em ploym ent. T h e traditional theory gives no answer at all to this question. It is of course possible for someone in a given case not to m ean with a singular term the object for which it stands. that the function of the sign consists in its representing (vertreten) the object for which it stands in the sense that it evokes in .

For . and one can in terp ret this relation pragm at­ ically in the sense described. that it is now lightning) leads one to believe that the second obtains or is about to obtain (e. symptoms (cf. O ne cannot respond to a concrete object.g.e. overlooked the sharp distinction between con­ crete objects and states of affairs. We saw earlier (Lecture 13) that we can perhaps u n derstand quasi-predicates in this way (which would then be functioning as signals) but not whole sentences. A sign-theory of this kind is orientated towards so-called natural signs. according to which the sign represents (vertreten) a representation (Vorstellung). Just as the traditional psychological representation-theory. will we become aware of just how little we u n derstand this seemingly so obvious sign-relation. that it will thunder). and the presence of an object (that it is now here) is a state of aff airs. But what about objects? How can we refer to them at all? It thus begins to em erge that we will only u nderstand what is m eant by ‘objects’. and what it is to refer to objects. viz. 181) which are defined in the following way: a state of affairs functions as a symptom of another state of affairs if the belief that the first obtains (e.g. p. One responds then to the perception of the first as one would respond to the second. What one responds to is the presence of this object. by analysing the corre­ sponding sign-relation. i. Only when we simultaneously keep in m ind these two things. T hat one could u n d e r­ stand singular terms in this way is ruled out in advance by the fact that the objects to which symptoms refer are not concrete objects but states of affairs.Stellvertretung)? Doesn’t som ething like a representationrelation belong to the essence of any sign-relation? Certainly not. This applies both to representations (Vorstellungen) and to states of affairs. One can describe this sym ptom -relation by saying that one state of affairs represents the other in a specific fashion. But how. and sought to interp ret the latter pragmatically.Analysis of the predicative sentence 290 the h earer the same (or a similar) response as that which the object itself would evoke8 is incorrect. is the relation of the sign to the object to be understood if it can in no way be construed as rep ­ resentation (. Also from the point o f view of the pragm atist-behaviourist interpretation it is clear that the only objects in question are states of affairs. Those theorists who in terpreted a sign’s stand­ ing for an object as representation (Vertretung). so the behaviourist-pragm atist representation-theory presupposes that what the sign merely represents could also be given to us independently of the signs. and that the behaviourist-pragm atist representationtheory (Stellvertretertheorie) is inapplicable to it. you will ask. that the traditional description o f the sign-object relation as ‘standing fo r’ tells us nothing.

then. A nd at the level of assertoric sentences (to which for the time being the whole discussion is confined) this means: if he supplem ents the nam e with a predicate.a nam e for instance by itself. At the most elem entary level such an act which says som ething about a particular object is the characteriz.The function of singular terms 291 we have already seen in the case of predicates that their function . This is shown by the fact that som eone who utters a singular term . B ut with what intention? If som eone begins ‘T h e so-and-so’ and does not continue we will ask: ‘Well. (The use of names in the vocative constitutes an a p p a re n t counter-exam ple. If an action consists in indicating which object is m eant then it essentially refers {verweisen) to a com plem entary action which says som ething about a particular object and which th erefo re requires an indication o f which object this is. it does not function as a singular term but contains a dem an d to the person nam ed to answer or to come. How­ ever this use is always m ore than a m ere nam ing.has nothing to do with a representation-relation. H e has only said som ething if he supplem ents the nam e so as to form a com plete sentence.) T h at the function of the singular term essentially needs supplem en­ tation becomes clear if we characterize the function of standing for an object as th at of indicating which object is m eant. T h e singular term ’s func­ tion of standing for som ething thus seems to be an essentially non-inde­ pen d en t function. W hen we use a nam e in the vocative by itself it does not ju st stand for the object. T h e act which consists in the em ploym ent of such an expression seems to have no independent intention and hence not to be an in d ep en d en t act. what abo u t it? W hat do you want to say about it?’ Som eone who has merely u tte re d a nam e.ation-act p erform ed by means of a predicate. has not yet said anything.that of characterizing . He has of course done som ething at the level of utterance: he has uttered this sign. A predicate is as we have seen a classification-expression the use of which is such that one cannot tell simply from the situation in which it is used what the expression relates to. But if we view the singular term in isolation the signifi­ cance of this function rem ains unintelligible. T h e singular term is supposed to have the function of standing for a certain object.that is being classified by the predicate. has not done anything at the level of significant speech. In these reflections as well as using the form ulation ‘which object is m eant’ I have also said simply ‘what (which) is m eant’. and finally have .and that means: which o f all . It th erefo re needs a supplem entary expression by m eans of which one indicates what it is (which object) . T his would m ean: one needs signs with this function so that o th er signs can fulfil their function.

thus other things that are also som ething. we m ust conclude that the w ord ‘object’ itself. and then supplem enting this by a p red i­ cate. singular term s and the corresponding pron o u n s: ‘which’ (‘w hat’). . i. Equally we could start. T his implies th a t we cannot achieve the full extension which the term ‘object’ is in ten d ed to have by saying: an object is everything which . u n d ersto o d as a relative pronoun. Since. for something. . fro m the extension of the term ‘object’. as we did at the en d of the last lecture. viz. W hat do these differences imply? As reg ard s the transition from ‘which object' to ‘which’ this step is clearly unproblem atic. . You may think that this is to sm uggle in a language-analytical assum ption. T h ese considerations m ake it ap p ear probable th at the explanation of w hat it is for a singular term to stand for an object . from the traditional admission that every singular term stands for an object. T h e expression ‘w hat’ or ‘which’ can always be replaced by ‘which object’. T h e philosophical tradition was orien­ tated tow ards the equation ens —unum —res =aliquid. ‘this’. . F or by so doing we would exclude o th er things which . the term ‘object’ is not delim itable by a predicate. therefore. . already implies th at one is speaking o f objects. T h e re I started out from the statem ent: everything and anything is an object. in so far as it functions grammatically as a p red ­ icate is a pseudo-predicate. But this means that for that which is h ere in question the expression ‘object’ is as such in ap p ro ­ priate.e. an equation which is not u n problem atic b u t which we may take seriously at least in connection with the word aliquid (‘som ething’). precisely because it does not serve to d e m ar­ cate a class of objects from o thers (and it was this function by reference to which predicates were semantically defined).Analysis o f the predicative sentence 292 also used the locution ‘which o f all’. for only they en su re that the enquiry is carried out at the requisite level of form al generality. This is the reason why I said in the last lecture that we cannot clarify o u r prelim inary conception of w hat we m ean by ‘objects’ by investigating the use of the word ‘object’. B ut this is not so. T h e w ords o f n atu ral language towards which we have to ori­ entate ourselves are ra th e r the p ro n o u n s ju st referred to and singular term s. B u t by using only the expression ‘w hat’ or ‘which’ we m ake sure that the purely form al notion of something is not given an extra m aterial connotation by the addition of the substantive ‘object’.for som ething . T h e expression ‘w hat’. It is m erely th at p redicate that comes closest to what is m eant by words which are never predicates because they are essentially words that su p p lem en t predicates. T h e interrogative or relative pronouns ‘w hat’ or ‘which’ are an even better guide for our enquiry than the word ‘object’. We thus link up again with my original introduction of the term ‘object’ in Lecture 3. ‘som ething’.

This is im plied in the form ulation ‘indicate (pick out) which of all’. For the need to indicate which object is m eant. becomes clear. A sign has this ‘relation’ to an object in so far as som eone who uses it can refer by . thus which object it is that is classified by a classification-expression. that by means of a singular term one indi­ cates which of all is m eant. viz. And now the question to answer will be: how do they achieve it? Establishing the function o f these signs has given a definite direction to the enquiry into their m ode o f em ploy­ ment: the explanation of th eir m ode of em ploym ent m ust show what the em ploym ent-rules of these signs are which make it possible for them to specify an object (pick out which of a presupposed plurality is meant). T hu s it is the function of the singular term to pick out one thing from a plurality as what is m eant .will essentially involve an explanation of how the use of singular terms is connected with the use of the corresponding (definite and indefinite) pronouns. and that it is only when we make this supplem entation explicit that the m eaning of this question. It consists in this: whereas it seemed plausible to construe ‘standing for’ as a relation which holds m erely between the sign and its object. in con­ trast to the not incorrect.e. i. B ut was I justified in supplem enting the characterization of the func­ tion of the singular term in this way. once the function of the singular term is understood as specifi­ cation a relation of the singular term to all objects (of a dom ain) is p re ­ supposed. leads directly to this connection. only arises when a plurality of objects is presupposed. T h e fu rth e r characterization o f the function of singular term s that I have given. this is not yet an answer. O f course. and hence that of the function of the singular term . notion of ‘standing for’. T h e relation of the singular term to the object for which it stands is thus m ediated by a relation to all objects o f the presupposed plurality. I shall call this function of picking out one thing from the presupposed plurality specification. W hat this definition provides is merely a description of the function of singular term s. which. but em pty. T h e broadening of horizon which the question has thereby acquired vis-ä-vis merely speaking o f ‘standing for’ may not be im m e­ diately clear. says what these expressions really achieve.The function of singular terms 293 . by saying not ju st ‘which’ but ‘which o f all’? It seems to me that this supplem entation is already implicitly contained in the question ‘which is m eant?’. T h e function of the singular term is to indicate which of all objects that could come into question is meant.9 We can now describe what happens in a predicative assertion as follows: by means of the predicate that which is specified by the singular term is characterized. and this shows th at in fact it is not a relation at all.and this means: as that to which the p red ­ icate is supposed to apply.

T h e possibility of being able to distinguish objects from one another . and this means . H ow ever this is concretely achieved. T h u s we will not be able to explain the function of sin­ gular term s w ithout at the same tim e explaining this multiplicity-consciousness. then the understan d in g o f the w ord ‘all’ is as basic as the em ploym ent of singular term s. T o distinguish one thing from others. and from this one thing is to be singled out as w hat is m eant. or to the u n d erstan d in g o f singular term s. then essential to the u n d erstan d in g of what is m eant by ‘objects’.b u t in so far as it is an o th er object. T h e d em and for such an indication p resu p ­ poses that it is initially open which o f all is m eant. If this were not so th en there would be no need to indi­ cate which o f all is meant. A nd this reference .if th at were all we could never be sure th at there is not also an o th er thing to which exactly the same predicates belong and exactly the same p re d ­ icates do not belong .I am thereby m erely saying the same thing in d iffe re n t words . and that means: that it could be any one of all. and not ju st in so far as other predicates belong to it . If then the function o f a singular term consists in indicating which of all is m eant. We have a plurality.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 294 means o f it to this object. T hus the use of singular term s also presu p ­ poses an u n d erstan d in g o f the expression ‘is th e same as’ o r ‘is identical with’ (‘ = ’).that it is not the same as the others.as specification . T h u s if to m ean an object with a sign is to m ean an individual object. like the person who u nderstands it. has the presupposed plurality somehow p resent in his consciousness. however. I f it is essential to what we m ean by an object th at it is an individual (or putting it in term s of the function of singular terms: if the specification of which is m eant implies th a t it is specified which individual is m eant).presu p ­ poses that the person who uses such an expression. and the question will arise w hether this too is not constituted in a certain em ploym ent o f linguistic expressions. means to establish that th e one is d ifferen t from the others. the idea of such a specification presupposes that we are able to distinguish one thing from others. It is presu p ­ posed that every thing can be distinguished from every o th er thing as an individual. is an und erstan d in g o f identity and non-identity and the possession of crite­ ria of identity. B ut at the present level o f reflection (where we merely have an abstract description of the function o f singular term s and are not yet clear how they are able to perfo rm this function) there is still m ore that m ust be adm itted to be essentially connected with the use o f singular term s. and if this means: to indicate which of all it is. then an object-relation implies a sim ultaneous relation to a multiplic­ ity o f objects.

T h e term ‘individ­ ual’ is to be u n d ersto o d relative to the term ‘universal’ju st as singular term s are com plem entary to predicates.e. T h ese connections are com pletely general and hold for all singular term s w hether they re fe r to concrete o r to abstract objects. we can and m ust from the outset distinguish those aspects o f the use o f singular term s which distinguish them as singular term s as such . but at p rese n t we are only concerned with the latter. For all that has so far been explained followed com pletely generally from the func­ tion which sin g u lar term s have as expressions th a t supplem ent p red i­ cates. and this m eans th at th ere are also h ig h er-o rd e r sin­ gular terms. Objects are essentially countable.such imply that one is dealing with concrete perceptible objects any m ore than does speaking o f countability. T hese a re quasi-predicates an d as their use is situation-relative those singular term s which su p p lem en t classification-expressions which are analogous as reg ard s content to quasi-predicates (and this means: which are explained analogously to quasi-predicates.states o f affairs . and if (b) specificatory reference to objects by means of singular term s is essential to speaking o f objects. O n th e o th er h a n d there have already been indications th at referen ce to at least one species of abstract object . as we saw in the lecture before last) designate only objects that are specified by reference to situations an d are thus spatio-tem poral objects. it was n o t yet assum ed that the objects th at are specified by means o f singular term s are perceptible objects. Now if (a) the distinction betw een concrete and abstract objects is one which concerns them as objects. T h e re a re classification-expres­ sions whose use does not involve th e com plem entary use o f singular term s. the u n d e rsta n d in g of ‘is identical w ith’ and ‘is not identical with’ an d the ability to co u n t are on all fours with each o th e r and with the possi­ bility of using singular term s.The function of singular terms 295 is th e condition of the possibility o f o u r being able to count them . T h u s even speaking of individ­ uals does not as. T hus quasi-predicates only have analogues am ong predicates which classify concrete objects.is as basic as referen ce to concrete objects (p. H ow ever this may be.from those aspects which specially distin­ guish those singular term s which specify concrete objects. 224). those which classify abstract objects.as expressions which have the function of spec­ ifying wT hich o f all is m ean t . then we m ust also expect that w hat distinguishes that species o f singular term that speci­ fies concrete objects w ithin the genus of singular term s is precisely the . T h e u n d erstan d in g o f ‘all’ and ‘som e’. N o d o u b t one will be able to say th at reference to abstract objects presupposes referen ce to concrete objects. they have no analogues am o n g h ig h e r-o rd er predicates. i. B ut clearly th ere are such highero rd e r predicates.

H aving established the general function of those expressions which by supplem enting predicates distinguish them from quasi-pred­ icates we can now pursue our enquiry into their m ode of em ploym ent by asking how these expressions specify the objects for which they stand.Analysis of the predicative sentence 296 particular form which the general function of specifying takes in their case. and in that case concrete objects themselves would be distin­ guished from abstract objects by the m an n er in which they are speci­ fied. .

288) that such an approach still leaves it open w hether the answer to this question itself results in a specifically lan­ guage-analytical position. A nd in this case that means: how it can be explained. m ust be p u t separately for each type .L E C T U R E 22 Russell and Strawson T o tackle the question of what it means to speak of ‘objects’ and how a reference to objects is possible by asking how we can refer to objects by means of signs is already to adopt a language-analytical approach. As with all signs the question of the m ode of em ploym ent of these signs can only be tackled by asking how they can be explained.) is presupposed and one asks how it is possible to pick out one object as the one m eant from am ong all objects o f this type. This would consist in holding that the re fe r­ ence to objects to which the explanation of such signs points cannot be understood independently of the use of ju st such signs. 270). for which object the expression stands (p. However we have seen (p. T h u s the question left open in the last lecture. Rather a specific type o f object. If we now ask. not about the function. or established. We now know what in general is being asked when it is asked how it can be established for which object a singular term stands: one is asking which object is specified by the singular term . how a singular term can specify an object. w here ‘specify’ means: to pick out what is m eant from a presupposed plurality. or m ode of em ploym ent o f these expressions then precisely because of what we have seen regarding the function of these expressions the question can no longer be posed in a formal. viz. etc. W hat em erged th ere regarding the purpose for which singular terms are used and what it means to speak o f ‘objects’ holds generally for all sin­ gular terms and all objects. general way. a specific plurality (that of perceptible objects or states of affairs or attributes. but about the explanation. To prep are for this question I enquired in the last lecture into the function of these expressions.

as a prem ise that is not fu rth e r ques­ tioned. certain additional distinctions will need to be draw n. In fact.Analysis of the predicative sentence 298 of object (and this is because the d ifferen t types of object . however. though. and by ‘definite descriptions’ Russell u n derstands expressions which have the form ‘the so-and-so’. Russell started out from the traditional view. makes the claim th at the singular term ‘the King of F rance’ stands for an object. In essence this approach derives from P. according to Strawson.though I have not shown this . However. have the following function: some­ one who uses them can by m eans of them refer to an object.2 It is called the ‘theory o f definite descriptions’. both for the explanation of w hat it means to speak of ‘objects’ and for the distinction of objects into what H usserl called ‘regions of objects’. For exam ple some­ one using the sentence ‘T h e King of F rance is bald’ in 1905. A nd because Strawson arrived at his view via a critique o f Russell’s T heory of Descriptions and because the latter theory is p resupposed positively o r negatively by the entire liter­ ature on our them e I shall begin with a brief exposition of Russell’s theory.are distinguished precisely by the m anner in which they are specified).1 This notion of ‘identifying’ roughly corresponds to w hat I have called ‘specifying’. o r the explanation. if it is a relation then it seem ed impossible for the object for which an expression stands not to exist. T ho u g h his views have not rem ained undisputed Strawson is the stan d ard a u th o r for this problem . M einong. as we shall see. this object does not exist. A nd this refe rrin g consists in the singular term ‘identifying’ the object with which the rem aining part of the sentence has to d o . from whom Russell had . It will th erefore be ap p ro p riate in enquiring into the m ode of em ploym ent o f concrete singular terms to take his view o f how objects can be identified by means of such expressions as o u r starting-point. A nd this question is identical with the ques­ tion about the m ode of em ploym ent. Strawson who first introduced it in his p a p er ‘On R eferrin g ’ (1950) in a confrontation with Russell’s T heory of Descrip­ tions and subsequently developed it in his book Individuals (1958). F. he did not ask how this relation is to be understood. and in particular definite descriptions. when Rus­ sell wrote his p ap er. are used which have no object. A nd if som eone corrects him by saying ‘T h e King of France doesn’t exist’ th en his use o f the singular term does not even involve the claim that it stands for an object. B ut now singular term s. T h u s by appealing to the function of expressions a new and specifi­ cally language-analytical approach is achieved. of the type of singular term concerned. Sin­ gular term s. that every sin­ gular term stands for an object.

Russell held fast to the traditional view th at a p ro p e r nam e stands for an object in a m ore genuine sense than a description in that it desig­ nates th e object ‘directly’3 and not. as now form ulated. it is asserted th at th e re is one.g. an d only one. an d only one. as that to which a certain attrib u te uniquely belongs. Strawson 299 taken his d e p a rtu re . T h u s the sentence is not only false w hen the one so-and- . It no longer contains the definite article ‘th e ’. object o f th at kind. o r only one.5In this form ulation th e re no longer ap pears a definite description. the attribute o f being the p resen t King o f France. in the context of o u r enquiry. object which is so-and-so an d this is F ’. had tried to overcom e this difficulty by saying that the expression stands for an object b u t th at an object. an d only one. Russell concluded from this that in the case of expressions which can correctly be called p ro p e r nam es it is not pos­ sible for them not to have an object. such object. W hat follows from this in regard to sentences such as ‘H om er did not exist’ we shall see in a m om ent. Anyway this view led Russell to think th at the problem of how expres­ sions which possibly do not stand for an object are to be understood reduces to the problem o f how definite descriptions are to be u n d e r­ stood. I f we logically analyse it it becom es clear th at it is a general sentence and has the logical form ‘th e re is one. if th ere is not one o r only one such object th en the sentence is simply false. We no longer have an expression th at stands for an object. a n d thus the question arose o f how singular term s which it is possible do not stand for an object are to be understood. object which is King o f France and this is bald. Russell’s answ er to this question is: definite descriptions are not really singular term s at all. the sem antic stru ctu re of a sentence like ‘T h e King o f France is bald’ only becom es visible in the sentence ‘T h e re is one. A ccording to this view. In any event he foun d M einong’s view unsatisfactory. W hat Russell m eans by ‘logical form ’ corresponds to w hat I call ‘sem antic fo rm ’. th e re only rem ains the predic­ ative com ponent o f the definite description (‘King o f France’). T h e case in which the object does not exist no longer presents any difficulties.Russell and. by ‘if we ask how the sentence is u sed ’. and the case where th e object does not exist now reduces to th e case w here th ere is not one. and his phrase ‘if we logi­ cally analyse the sentence’ we can replace. e. need not exist. Since in the sentence itself. th en . Russell gave no conclusive a rg u m e n t to show th at M einong’s view is impossible (this is som ething we will have to clarify). as a description does. A sentence of the type ‘T h e so-and-so is F ’ only seems to be like a singular predicative sentence because of its gram m at­ ical form .

A nd this general statem ent he interprets in term s o f the sem antic stru ctu re which was b rought to light by Frege and which we have already en co u n tered (p. It says: ‘Som e o f all objects are unicorns. 247). such sentences as ‘U nicorns exist’). to sentences of the form ‘T h e so-and-so exists’. th e word ‘exist’ does n o t have the sem antic function of a p re d ­ icate (classification-expression) h e re at all. as K ant taught. thought of as possible. A ccording to the traditional view. and the latter as a general statem ent.4 ‘Existence’ is not only not a real predicate in such a sentence. in my view. A nd one can now easily und erstand the sentence ‘T h e King o f France does not exist.’ A nd this.’ T hus Russell’s solution to the problem consists in in terp retin g the singular predicative statem ent as an existential statem ent. ra th e r we exam ine the objects of the spa­ tio-tem poral world with reg ard to w hether the predicate ‘u n icorn’ applies to some o f them . in other words that one and only one (a single) object is so-and-so.Analysis of the predicative sentence 300 so is n o t/ 7. B ut to establish w hether unicorns exist we do not exam ine the possible unicorns with reg ard to w hether the predicate of ‘existence’ applies to them . has the sense o f a particular sentence. which was first developed by Frege. for only this con­ ception explains the sentence’s sem antic stru ctu re in a way that co rre­ sponds to how we verify such a sentence. object that is King of F rance. This result can be tra n sfe rre d directly from general existential sen­ tences to so-called singular existential sentences.’ It is simply the negation of the sentence ‘T h e re is one.’ This view seems com pelling. th at they exist.e. that is so-and-so. so-called singular existen­ tial statem ents are also not statem ents about individuals but are always general statem ents. or m ore than one. decisive arg u m en t against M einong’s view. R ather the sentence is to be un d ersto o d in precisely the sam e way as the sentence ‘T h e re are uni­ corns. contrary to appearances. T his also provides us with the. but h ad already been anticipated by K ant. A presupposition of Russell’s T h eo ry o f D escriptions is thus the m odern theory of general existential statem ents (i. in a sentence such as ‘U nicorns exist’ one w ould be saying of unicorns. Now this o f course has the consequence that. T his view that we can refer to objects which are merely objects and may or may not exist and of which we can . b u t with the following difference: such a sentence not only says th at at least one object (‘som e’) is so-and-so but also that at most o n e object is so-and-so. T his conception also seems com ­ pelling in the case o f the singular existential sentence. and only one. b u t equally when th e re is no object. for it enables one to relate the u n d erstanding of the sen­ tence to a truth-co n d itio n which corresponds to the way in which we verify such sentences. as we have seen (p. 246).

and founded Rome.7 This Fregean view of p ro p e r nam es. consequently.to discover that there is no object for which it stands. and (c) the existential statem ent in which this implication would be articulated m ust be in terp reted as a general statem ent. Thus one does not have to accept Russell’s basic prem ise. T h e proper nam es of natural language do not have the direct relation they appear to have to the object. that it is impossible for the object for which a singular term stands not to exist. For it is perfectly possible in the case of such expressions . and that. ‘H o m e r’ . for his T h eo ry of Descriptions led to the conclusion that what looks like a singular predicative statem ent is.8 albeit in various form s. Rom ulus is the person ‘who did such-and-such things. in order to find his T heory of Descriptions plausible. which it is claimed cannot possibly not stand for an object. really a general statem ent. they are ‘really abbrevia­ tions for descriptions’.g. m ust one not conclude that the idea of such a direct relation is simply a fiction? But fo r Russell taking such a step was out of the question.5 But how then according to Russell are p ro p er nam es. then the state­ ments whose subject-expression is such a p ro p e r nam e are also really general statem ents. For it has now become clear th at speaking of existence always presupposes that one is speaking of all objects and that. In d eed one could even say that the result of Russell’s theory contradicts the prem ise from which he started out. R ather its plausi­ bility rests on the following considerations: (a) with sentences of the form ‘the so-and-so is F* it is always possible th at there does not exist a single such object. who killed Remus. (b) the existence of this object m ust be im plied by such a sentence.Russell and Strawson 301 predicate existence or non-existence is refu ted by the fact that it co n tra­ dicts the way in which we establish the existence or non-existence of something. R ather they d ep en d on descriptions. It has only recently been called in question. to be understood? R us­ sell’s answer is that what we call p ro p er nam es in natural language are not p ro p e r names at all. A nd if the p ro p e r nam es of natural language are reducible to descriptions. and so o n ’.e.9 went unchallenged in analytical philosophy for a long time. by K ripke and D onnellan. But if we can always only say of all objects th at one of them .10 If the p ro p e r nam es o f natural language do not refer to objects in the direct way that Russell’s view and the traditional view would have led one to expect. th erefore. T o explain this Russell applies to the proper nam es of n atural language F rege’s theory o f pro p er names. if its subject-expression is a description. So the result would be th at there are no singular statem ents. one cannot say of an individual object th at it exists. viz.6 For exam ple.

For if we have only introduced the p ro p er nam e in the p e r­ ceptual situation. B ut is is not at all clear how it is possible. In this way Russell arrives at the view that ‘this’ is the . T h o u g h Russell did not p u t it like this. then how do we know that we can still re fe r to it. It would seem plausible to say that if the object is given to us in perception. W here this is the case we can obviously use the deictic expression ‘this’. the same object. we can no longer do so with the word ‘this’. Q uine.Analysis of the predicative sentence 302 is such-and-such then it would seem that we cannot directly refer to an individual object at all. and hence as an equivalent of the expression ‘this’. however. Now the required direct sign-rela­ tion appears to presuppose a direct epistemological relation. for the sam e reason that Strawson later rejected Q u in e:12 general statem ents themselves . has accepted this conclusion: the basic statem ents are general statem ents and there are no singular statem ents. and that when it is no longer perceived. No doubt this is in a sense what actually happens. if we still refer to them when they are outside the perceptual situation. For us to be able directly to assign a sign to an individual object. And for him this could only m ean: sentences whose subject-expression stands for an object in the way th at the philosophical tradition assum ed that p ro p e r names stand for objects.refer (verweisen) via th e specification o f their truth-conditions to singular statem ents. this object m ust be directly given to us . we can still do so by m eans of the p ro p e r nam e. though we can no longer refer to it by means o f the expres­ sion ‘this’. thus a p ro p e r nam e whose referential function reaches no fu rth er th an that o f the deictic expression. who has radicalized Russell’s theory.1 Such a conclusion appeared 1 unacceptable to Russell. All that rem ains then is a p ro p e r nam e whose referential func­ tion ceases as soon as the object is no longer present.as we have already seen (p. one cannot explain to som eone the m ode of em ploym ent of a general sentence w ithout presupposing that he already knows the m ode of em ploym ent of singular sentences. we can also assign to it an ord in ary p ro p e r name. 246) .in perception. Now it is characteristic of ordinary objects that can be given to us in perception that they continue to exist outside the perceptual situation. by means o f the p ro p e r nam e when the object is no longer present to us? As which object do we m ean the object with the p ro p er nam e if it is no longer this now p resen t object? T o answer this question must we not have recourse to some descriptions o r other? B ut in that case the p ro p e r nam e would again presuppose descriptions and is thus ruled out for Russell. then not only can we re fe r to it with ‘this’. So on Russell’s view there m ust be some genuine singular sentences.

o f holding on to them by using a sign. to a plurality o f o th er objects. deictic pro n o u n s. we should ask ourselves. H owever. B ut if it is u n d e r­ stood as a proper name th en it m ust be term ed am biguous (though this am biguity could be rem oved by subscripts).Russell and Strawson 303 only logically p ro p e r n a m e . if a singular term essentially specifies an object? We can im m ediately answ er this question in the negative if we recall that ‘specify’ means ‘indicate which of all’. if these objects are not present. an im p o r­ tant feature o f deictic expressions. th e only one which in contrast to the m erely a p p a re n t p ro p e r nam es o f ord in ary language functions sem an­ tically in the way in which on Russell’s view p ro p e r nam es m ust fu n c­ tion. In the object-relation o f a logically p ro p e r nam e th ere is no relation. namely. is included in th e question of how an expression can stand for an object and in d eed takes precedence over the other two classes. b efore I move on to Straw son’s critique. O f course understood as a deictic expression th e word ‘this’ would not be am biguous. Russell. Russell com bined this view with an epistem ological thesis according to which the only objects which can be directly given to us are sense-data. . viz.13 i. but only his T h eo ry of D escrip­ tions. H ow ever. how we should ju d g e Russell’s theory of logically p ro p e r names. it is tru e. not even an im plicit one.e. Straw son in his positive conception latches onto this deictic com p o n en t o f Russell’s conception. th at they re fe r to an object th at is p resen t in the perceptual situation. It is im p o rta n t that with Russell’s theory o f logically p ro p e r nam es in addition to descriptions and p ro p e r nam es the third class of singular term s. th o u gh of course with the difference th at he recognizes the deictic expressions as such and does not in te rp re t them as p ro p e r names. Can Russell’s logically p ro p e r nam es do what they are su p ­ posed to do. As he does not discuss R us­ sell’s theory o f logically p ro p e r nam es. it is an am biguous p ro p e r nam e. not even in the sense of being able to re fe r back to them as past sense-data. T his question provides us with an o p p o rtu n ity to test the fruitfulness of what was achieved in the previous lecture reg ard in g the function o f singular term s (though at this stage of course only from the point o f view of criticism). function as singular term s. Consciousness is only related to the p resen t sense-datum and th ere is no possibility. As these are ephem eral objects this m eans th at th e logically p ro p e r nam e not only designates an object in so far as it is p resen t b u t designates this object as such. is retained. As we shall see. the function of ‘this’ as a deictic expression rem ains unclarified. does not construe the word ‘this’ as a deictic expression b u t as an am biguous p ro p e r nam e. namely. Strawson has not em phasized this positive link with Russell.

It is instructive to com pare this language of logically p ro p e r names with th at variant o f the quasi-predicate language in which the word ‘this’ was used b u t in such a way that it was not replaceable by other expressions (above p. How it can do this is a question we have still to investigate. T h e predicative sentences which can be form ed with Russell’s logically p ro p e r names represen t a language that is an exact co u n terp art.the status o f singular term s. Because Russell started out from the traditional view th at a singular term relates directly to an object he denied those expressions that are reg ard ed as singular term s .as we saw in the case of quasi-predicate language . and this they can only do by at the same tim e relating to all. 263). and som ething similar could be m aintained for Russell’s theory with respect to a place in perceptual space. Even the deictic expression ‘this’ only functions as a singular term if it refers to what is present in such a way that the latter appears as what is m eant in contrast to all others. We can now see the peculiar dilem m a to which Russell’s theory of singular term s leads. T he word ‘this’ is idling. B ut singular term s do not simply have a relation to an individual .definite descriptions and the p ro p e r nam es of o rdinary language . In both cases the speaker is tied to his perceptual situation. we can see m ore clearly why this m ust be so.every object has this to every other object to which it stands in some relation. based on an introspectionist conception. T h e re is thus confirm ed from an o th er per­ spective what I h ad already anticipated in connection with the distinc­ tion betw een predicates an d quasi-predicates: that it must be the func­ tion o f singular term s to make the em ploym ent of predicates in d ep en d en t o f the perceptual situation. and the perspective of his speech does not extend beyond this situation. because it is not u ndersto o d as a word that contrasts with o th er words which could take its place. Now. fo r he correctly perceived that they imply a relation to every­ .) Russell believed that in the direct relation of the logically proper nam e to a perceptual datum he had fou n d that relation to an individual that is characteristic of singular terms. In the case o f that language too I said that the w ord ‘this’ is not yet functioning as a singular term .the minimal function of point­ ing to a p articular place in the situation. R ather it is characteristic of singular terms th at by m eans of them we refer to an individual as an individual by indicating which it is. after the clarification of the function of singular term s. (It has perhaps .Analysis of the predicative sentence 304 A nd this has the consequence that the expression ‘this’ because it does not distinguish som ething from others fulfils no function at all and could ju st as well be om itted. to the exten d ed quasi-predicate language based on a behaviouristic concep­ tion.

15 Russell’s real problem was that of non-existent objects. hence. As such they cannot. T h e expression only stands for a specific object if it is used in a specific situation . Now it is true that Russell did not distinguish between m eaning and object. This is. but does not stand for a specific object. depending on the time at which it is used. Q uine for example. emphatically rejected this prem ise. relate to an individual. precisely so that they can relate to individuals. as we shall see. if it is used at a specific time. And it stands for a different object (whoever is King o f France at the time) or for none. can for this very reason not refer to individuals. O ne m ight distinguish with regard to an expression such as ‘the King of France’ between the expression and the use of the expression. and this problem rem ains even if one does not confuse the m eaning of a singular term with its object. Strawson points out that Russell did not distinguish between the m eaning of an expression and the object for which it stands. T o refute Russell’s theory Strawson produces two argum ents in the second and third parts of his article which are presented as if they con­ cerned the same problem but are in fact independent. a dilemma which Strawson too failed to see through and which has rem ained unresolved to this day.in this case. W hat form does Strawson’s critique of Russell’s Theory of Descrip­ tions take? His article ‘On R eferring’ is divided into five parts. In the last two parts Strawson indicates his own positive conception.14 But it is u n fruitful to reduce the basis of Russell’s problem to this easily refutable premise. T h e first argum ent is as follows. A corresponding distinction is to be m ade in regard to the . however. But those expressions from which Russell rem oved all relation to a plurality. It would follow from this. in his opinion. P art I of the article is supposed to describe the premises and the question from which Russell started. By presenting a weakness of Russell’s view that is not essential to his theory as though it were its foundation Straw­ son has m ade criticism of it far too easy.Russell and Strawson 305 thing. T h e expression as such has a m eaning. Strawson claims. the singular sentence. a peculiar generality seems already to characterize the singular term and. that a singular term which has no object also has no meaning. Russell developed his T heo ry of Descriptions in o rd er to avoid this absurd con­ sequence. T h e first three are devoted to criticism of Russell. It is true that the use of general sentences can only be explained if familiarity with the mode of em ploym ent of sin­ gular sentences can be presupposed. although he accepted Russell’s theory and fu rth e r developed it. O n the other hand.

whereas in fact it is in d ep en d en t of it. Strawson seems not to notice that the alternative which he presents to Russell’s view already involves acceptance of the essentials o f Russell’s theory. which concerns not a confusion o f m eaning and object but the talk of non-existent objects. besides one can give examples which show th at even in ordinary language one says in such a case that the state­ m en t is false. Firstly. T h e thesis o f this section is that w hen som eone uses a sen­ tence like ‘T h e so-and-so is F' he presupposes th at one. Strawson on R eferrin g ’) that the distinction that Strawson makes. object exists that is so-and-so but does not assert this. is con­ .Analysis of the predicative sentence 306 whole sentence. which specifically concerns deictic expressions. no longer arise. It is tru e th at with deictic expressions Russell’s problem only arises at the level o f the use o f the sentence but it arises at this level in ju st the sam e way as before. T h e existential statem ent. O r perhaps not? T his Strawson tries to show in the third section of his article. Once one distinguishes between the expres­ sion and its use the confusion between m eaning and object which underlies Russell’s theory can. Secondly. is in d ep en d en t o f the special problem of deictic expressions. w hether m erely presupposed or implicitly asserted. T h e sentence ‘T h e King of France is bald’ has a m ean­ ing.16 T h e criticism o f Russell then simply boils down to this: that when such an object does not exist the statem ent is not false but neither tru e n o r false. Firstly. he claims. Strawson thinks. cannot be w hether one says one thing or the o th e r in ordinary language. and which he. This criticism m ust be m ade even sharper. what is at issue. Only when it is used at a particular time can it have a truth-value. W hat is the d iffer­ ence? Strawson replies th at if som eone thinks that the existential p re ­ supposition a person m akes in em ploying such a sentence is m istaken he will not say that the latter’s statem ent is false but ra th e r that ‘the question of w hether his statem ent is true or false’ simply does not arise. Strawson writes as though this second point in his criticism were connected with the first. Russell. ra th e r than that the question of its truth or falsity does not arise. One can replace the situation-reference implicit in the expression ‘the (present) King of F rance’ by an objective specification by saying for instance ‘the King of France in 1905’ and see im mediately that the real problem . the second point is as irrelevant to the real problem as the first point.and rightly so. Russell reacted sharply to this criticism too . in no way denies. has nothing to do with the real problem . and only one. but in itself no truth-value. Against this argum ent Russell has him self pointed out (in his reply ‘Mr.

T h e appeal to natural language in W ittgenstein and those who have u n d ersto o d him has had a m ore fundam ental sig­ nificance. about the m eaning o f an ultim ate semantic explanation (ideas of the kind we have becom e acquainted with in con­ nection with the fu n d am en tal principle o f analytical philosophy). is a nuance th e relevance of which is not obvious. is absurd when understo o d in this sense. even philosophy of ordi­ nary language. If both are possible. an d Russell’s reply that this cannot be w hat is at issue. T h e appeal to natural language does not involve opposition to the idea of an ideal language as such.18 Philosophy. cannot be concerned with purely factual nuances o f ord in ary language. which in expositions of analytical philosophy is used virtually as a criterion for distinguishing the ‘ordinary language philosophy’ o f W ittgenstein and the O xfo rd School from those sem aildeists. the latter with the peculiarities o f o u r actual ordinary lan­ guage. only the possible. W hether the consequence o f this for the original statem ent is that the existence is asserted or m erely p resupposed. It is m otivated. who are orientated m ore tow ards logic an d belong to the trad itio n of Frege. T h e appeal o f W ittgenstein and others. but only to the idea o f an ideal language built in a vacuum . then Russell’s theory is vindicated. has led people to think that the controversy betw een Russell and Strawson can be characterized as follows: the fo rm e r is concerned with the construction of an ideal logi­ cal language. From o u r p o in t o f view it is a m atter o f indifference w hether the view th a t the existential statem ent is only p resu p p o sed in the use of the singular term is better attested for th e n atu ral languages with which we are fam iliar th an the view th at the existential statem ent is asserted. such as Russell. to o rd in ary language was not aim ed at bringing out the wealth o f sem antic n u an ce of o rd in ary language . including Strawson. not by an in terest in factual nuances.Russell and Strawson 307 ceived by Straw son in exactly the sam e way as by Russell:17 consequently if the expression has no object the non-existence of the object cannot be understo o d by Straw son differently than by Russell. b ut by m ethodological ideas.an u n d ertak in g which. Q u in e and C arnap. Straw son’s appeal to actual usage in o rdinary language. but the existential statem ent m ust at least be p resup­ posed. O n e m ust th erefo re conclude th at Straw son’s Russell-critique in ‘On . This contrast. W hat m ade necessary the recourse to nat­ ural language was the realization th at th e ideal language rem ains itself unexplained. could be b e tter carried out by the em pirical science o f linguistics. o r is only explained by m eans o f an ordinary language m eta-language. the m erely factual was never the object of philoso­ phy. it could p roperly be objected.

he only criticizes this aspect o f Russell’s view in passing. viz. Expressions can only fulfil this function if they function in such a way th at th ro u g h them a speaker enables a h earer to ‘identify w hat is being talked about’.19 We shall have to see in the n ex t lecture how Strawson elaborates this view in his book. But Russell did not claim to be using this word as it is used in natural lan­ guage. although he deserves credit for having raised the question of the func­ . but w hether it can explain how we can re fe r to individuals. B ut what we m ust now ask is w hether by reference to Straw son’s positive view we can explain what the real difference is between him and Russell. as a deictic expression. Rather it is because he fails to take into account ano th er peculiarity of deictic expressions. It is only in the concluding section o f Straw son’s article. H ere he speaks o f the function (task) of singular terms. Strawson is. Strawson rightly regards Russell’s logically p ro per names as fictions. the object m ust ‘be in a certain relation to the speaker and to the context of utteran ce’. as it is actually used in natural language.Analysis of the predicative sentence 308 R eferring’ fails in every respect. Strawson also failed to go into this aspect of the use of deictic expressions which is crucial to the specification of objects. has a unitary m eaning and designates d ifferen t objects d e p en d in g on the situation in which it is used. in which he sketches his own view. T h e reason why it fo u n d ers on this is not because Russell fails to see that despite the fact that a deictic expression stands fo r d ifferen t objects (depending on the situation in which it is used) it has a unitary m eaning. However. to identify the object re fe rred to. th at the same object for which a deictic expression is used in the p erceptual situation can be re fe rred to outside the percep­ tual situation by m eans o f a n o th e r deictic expression and then also by means o f o th er singular term s. T h e test of his theory is not w hether it co rresponds to the ordinary-language use of words. H e thinks he can dispose o f it by p ointing out that the conception of ‘this’ as an am biguous p ro p e r nam e again rests on the confusion of m eaning and object. Even Russell’s starting point is p re ­ sented in a way which fails to m ake clear what is really at stake in decid­ ing the correctness or uncorrectness of Russell’s theory. right in thinking that the word ‘this’. th at it becom es clear what the real issue is. But this can only be achieved by a specific referen ce to the speech-situation (the context of utterance). It is this substitutability of deictic expressions which m akes it possible to re fe r to the same object when it is no longer perceived. is not an ambiguous p ro p er nam e but. If one is speaking about individuals o ne needs expressions by means of which one can uniquely re fe r to individuals. And the two objections which Straw son then brings tu rn out to be both irrelevant. n o r can one oblige him to do so. o f course.

if. he says. recognize the use of these term s. It can only touch him.Russell and Strawson 309 tion of singular terms and.’ then it is either asserted or presupposed that in that place th ere is one. how­ ever. for he does n o t regard ‘this’ as a deictic expression at all. We shall have to ask: how can singular statem ents be understood if they already presuppose a re f­ erence to a totality and an existential statem ent that is a general state­ ment? . deictic expressions. But in that case this function is harm less neither in the sense intended by Strawson . are in terp reted away. this requires a refutation of Russell’s theory? Does the neg­ ative critical p art of the article provide that critique which the positive part presupposes? Strawson holds fast to the same presupposition which Russell took as his starting-point. . If one only criticizes Rus­ sell in the way Strawson does then precisely that aspect o f Russell’s th e ­ ory to which Strawson took exception is preserved. O ne must. and only become philosophically relevant. . as he believed. if the aspect o f the use o f deictic expressions in question can be shown to be a necessary condition o f the possibility o f referring to individual objects. B ut is it really so harmless? And has Strawson really succeeded in rehabilitating singular term s as such.n o r in the sense th at it requires no explanation. viz. Strawson him self adm its even in regard to the deictic expression ‘this’ that its use presu p ­ poses a general statem ent: if som eone points som ewhere and says ‘T his so-and so . It is. as the ‘h arm ­ less necessary thing’20 th at it is. in Russell’s T heory of Descriptions. whose purpose it is to refer to individuals. philosophically irrelevant to reproach Russell for having failed to take account o f certain aspects o f the use o f deictic expressions.th at it makes Russell’s theory dispensable . that if one is to be able to refer to an individual with an expression that expression cannot imply a general statem ent. This was to be achieved firstly (and negatively) by the critique of Russell’s theory and secondly (and positively) by the appeal to the function of singular terms. A refutation of Russell’s theory would have required Strawson to destroy its foundations rath er than simply offer an alternative version in the shape of the thesis that the general state­ m ent is not asserted but merely presupposed. He wanted to dem onstrate that it is not neces­ sary to postulate such expressions by rehabilitating the singular term s of natural language which. ra th e r it would even seem to p resu p ­ pose it. This cannot touch him. Strawson wanted to conduct his critique of logically p ro p er names in a m ore indirect fashion. and only one.21 T h e function of singular term s particularly of deictic expressions em phasized by Strawson thus in no way contradicts Russell’s theory. so-and-so. in particular.

via Strawson’s talk o f identification.m ust be em ployed if they are to be able to fulfil the function of specifying as thus described. So it is these writings towards which we m ust orientate ourselves in the hope of reaching. A nd this identificatory function is said to consist in ‘bringing it about that the h earer knows which object it is. a concrete understanding of what I have term ed the function o f specification. th at singular term s have a socalled identificatory function) is merely sketched in th at paper. We saw in the last lecture that one cannot be satisfied with the way in which Strawson. By ‘specifying’ was m eant: indicating which o f all objects it is that is classified by the o th er sentence-com ponent. o f all the objects within the h e are r’s scope of knowledge or presum ption. And in particular it rem ained still unexplained how these linguistic expressions . In o rd e r to p re p a re ourselves for this enquiry into the concrete form which the specificatory function of singular term s takes we shall begin by orientating ourselves towards the conception o f Strawson (who was the first to tackle this problem ).the . in his early paper ‘On R eferring’. In the 1961 p ap er Strawson states th at it belongs to the essence of a singular term th at it is ‘used for the p u rp o se of identifying the object’.L E C T U R E 23 W h a t is ‘identification’? At the end of the lecture before last we arrived at the result that the function of singular term s is to be u n derstood as that of specifying. n o r w hether we are to und erstan d what is m eant by ‘objects’ in term s o f it. his own positive conception (viz. that the other term ’ . H ow ­ ever. It is only worked out in his book Individuals (1958) and in his paper ‘Singular T erm s and Predication’ (1961) in which he argues with Q uine. tries critically to distinguish him self from Russell.singular terms . It has not yet been decided w hether the m eaning of o u r reference to objects is exhausted by the thus ch ar­ acterized object-relation that is m ade possible by the em ploym ent o f a species o f linguistic sign.

no explanation is acceptable that essentially presupposes that there are two separate speech-partners.3 It m ight at first sight seem a p articu lar virtue of Straw son’s conception th at from the outset he tries to u n d e rstan d referen ce to objects in term s o f the com m unication-situation. the use of these expressions is u n d ersto o d in term s o f the function they have in discourse. the m atter is m ore com plicated. one m ight th erefo re think th at they stand for the sam e concept. fo r it inevitably rem ains on .2 From this we can see why Strawson chose the term ‘identify’ for the function o f the singular terms in question: the hearer knows which object is m ean t by the speaker if he knows that the object which the speaker means is identical with an object so-and-so th a t is accessible to him . again p resuppose as prelinguistic the very epistemological structures which require explanation. the h e a re r. Such a sem antics would. viz. which object is m eant. T h u s it is th a t for Strawson the person who prim arily identifies an object is the hearer. he does so when he knows which object th e speaker m eans. O n th e o th er h a n d we saw in the semantics o f whole assertoric sentences (in the debate with Grice) that. as we shall see.1 T his definition of w hat is m eant by ‘identification’ comes very close to the definition which I have given of ‘specification’. H ow ever. such structures are then not understood in term s of the speech-situation. In Individuals the problem o f identification is.What is ‘identification’? 311 p redicate . For then the use o f the expression in soliloquy could not follow the same rules. that they serve to pick out. like traditional philosophy.‘is being applied to ’. T h e exaggerated ten ­ dency th at is to be observed today in some q u arters tow ards a com m u­ nication-orientated sem antics at any price can only lead to a semantics that construes language as simply an instrum ent of com m unication. In the case o f the speaker Strawson speaks only in a derivative sense of identification: that the speaker identifies an object m eans that the h earer identifies the object which he. T h e apparently m ore radical com m unication-orientated approach (more radical because for such an approach the separation o f speaker and h earer is essential) is in reality less radical. th at referen ce to an object implies a referen ce to all objects o f a dom ain. although linguistic expressions m ust be explained as they are used in in ter subjective com m unication. b u t this can ju st as well be soliloquy. treated as one th at concerns com ­ m unication betw een a speaker an d a h earer. m eans. the speaker. from the start. B ut it is worth noting that Strawson also takes account here o f the fact (which 1 have stressed b u t which he has otherw ise neglected). or indicate. T h e only respect in which Straw son’s account differs from the one I gave is in the explicit m ention o f a hearer. In my description of th e function o f singular term s.

the hearer understands. he says.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 312 the surface.’ T h a t is correct. m ust be able to identify the in ten d ed object ‘for h im self’. Trivially. Such a theory of singular term s could th erefo re contribute nothing to the fundam ental enquiry into the object-relation and the concept of an object. as thus understood.’7 It is clear th at the term ‘identify’ is h e re being used in a completely d ifferen t sense from that in which it was in tro d u ced at the beginning of the book.5 A nd Strawson too finds him self com pelled to speak o f ‘identifying’ in a sense other than that initially intro d u ced . So th e concept o f identification. it is assum ed in this explanation. You m ight say: ‘So what. such a reference has no place in soliloquy. O. A. In a later place in his book Strawson writes: ‘F or each of us can think identifyingly abou t particulars w ithout talking about them . T h e second com ponent of this identity-statement is a singular term which. be shown that Straw son’s explanation presupposes the very thing it is supposed to explain. such as that of Grice.4 Consequently. one m ight well add. T h u s we saw th at a purely com m unication-orientated con­ ception of the use of assertoric sentences. for it could be that this end is o verdraw n. In the same way a theory o f singular term s according to which their function consists in this: that by their m eans one speech-partner com m unicates to an o th er which object he is re fe rrin g to. Williams in a review o f Straw son’s book. T h e h e a re r identifies the object referred to by the speaker if he knows that th e object re fe rred to by the speaker is identical with the so-and-so. O ne does not refu te a theory by pointing out th at a particu lar end cannot be achieved by it. m ust p resup­ pose reference to objects as such as som ething th at does not first need to be explained in term s o f language and discourse. however. and hence all the logical structures of semantics. the authors who have continued to w ork in the field of enquiry opened u p by Strawson have no longer used the term ‘identification’ in the com m unication-orientated sense in which Strawson first introduced it. It can. has to presuppose ju d g m e n t or belief. an d th a t it th erefo re cannot explain them in term s of dis­ course. This weakness in Strawson’s conception has been draw n attention to particularly by B. had the form o f an identity-statem ent the first com ponent of which was: ‘the object which the speaker m eans’. For w hether the ‘thin k in g identifyingly’ o f which Strawson here speaks is understood as soliloquy or as som ething pre-linguistic. So if one also speaks o f identifying in soliloquy then . For th at identification.6 And. it can on no account be conceived as an internal c o u n te rp a rt o f the identification introduced by Strawson at th e beginning o f the book. the speaker m ust also be able to identify the in ten d ed object ‘for him self’. when articulated. T h e hearer. can contribute nothing to the explanation of singular terms.

H e simply paraphrases the word. this is the basic sense. before letting yourself in for this u n d ertak ­ ing.What is ‘identification ? 313 it would seem no longer to be a reference that is articulated in an identitystatem ent. and hence the m eaning o f reference to objects. can be understood. in the lecture before last. e. my reply would be that I believe that it is only by m eans of this narrow er concept of identification (which Strawson has not explained but hinted at) that the general function of specifying. And it is this picking out in the sense of singling out th at Strawson has in m ind when he uses ‘to pick o u t’ as a p arap h rase for ‘to identify’.g.11 It seems that . If the reference to an object which both speaker and hearer perform by means of one singular term is called ‘identification’. T his is also shown by the fact that on one occasion he paraphrases ‘to pick out’ itself with the expression ‘to single out’. In an identity-statem ent two singular term s are used. In this lecture and the next I shall have to put your patience to a severe test as. an officer standing before his com pany picks out an individual as the one who is to perform a certain task. building on the m eagre beginnings we find in Strawson and others. then ‘identification’ cannot m ean ‘holding som ething to be identical with som ething’. (3) that what is m eant by ‘identify’ in this second sense. and that. So it now seems clear (1) th at Strawson uses the word ‘identify’ in two completely d ifferen t senses (2) th at in its first sense . why you should be so patient. I showed to be the general function of singular term s. e. Strawson does not explain what he means by ‘identify’ in the non-com m unication-orientated sense. appears roughly to correspond to what I have called ‘specification’: the act of indicating which of all it is that is classified by the supplem enting predicative expression. therefore. a berry from a basket o f berries. paraphrased by ‘pick out’ and ‘single out’. but also for the merely designatory pick­ ing out of an individual as the one intended. by pointing to him.8 W hat is m eant by the English ‘to pick o u t’? It is not only used for the physical act of picking out an individual object from a collection. mainly by the expression ‘to pick o u t’. and Searle and others have followed him in this.it presupposes in the case of both speaker and hearer identification in the second sense. I f you w ant to know.9 It means roughly: ‘to bring som ething into prom inence as the individual that is m eant’.g.‘sp eak erhearer identification’10 . I attem p t to reach a clear concept o f identification which will tu rn out to be a pre-em inent special case of the specification which. But what then does it mean? We find no real answ er to the question in Strawson. Strawson him self considered using the expression ‘specify’ (which has also been used by Q uine). b u t rejected it as too vague.

predicates. T h e problem is clearly connected with Strawson’s opposition to Russell’s T heory of Descriptions which I discussed in the last lecture. and hence specified.e. properties with respect to which objects can be o rd ered in a series. a pre-em inent case of the general function of indicating-which-of-all. viz. Descriptions which do not locate in either of these ways we can call ‘purely descriptive definite descriptions’ (rein deskriptive Kennzeichnungen). An object can fail to be distinguished from all others. of purely descriptive specification.e. he m ust have o th e r reasons. At any rate one can say this of all those definite descriptions which do not contain a deictic expression or a spatio-tem poral specification. a spatio-tem poral specifi­ cation objectively to locate som ething. or m ore than one so-and-so. But the fact that the specification fails does not m ean that an expression is not used in this way (with this intention). which Russell’s T heo ry of Descriptions fits. Even the use of a dem onstrative expres­ sion . so now the . ‘the second highest m ountain’.which is regard ed by m any authors. as the most unam biguous form o f identification can fail if it tu rn s out th at th ere is no so-and-so. i.13 Examples o f this sort o f singular term would be ‘the highest m ountain’.‘this so-and-so’ .Analysis of the predicative sentence 314 he wished to exclude the following ambiguity. So it cannot be because it can sometimes fail that Strawson does not recognize this form o f specification as identification. i. O ne could specify12 what is m eant simply by saying: it is that object to which such and such p ro p ­ erties belong. at the place which is pointed to. For it is obviously the possibility ju s t m entioned. W hereas in ‘O n R eferring’ Strawson completely rejected this theory he now seems to accept it at least for one type of description. If th erefo re Strawson paraphrases his second use of the word ‘identification’ so that it appears to correspond to what I have term ed ‘specification’ and if nevertheless he does not count as identification cases which clearly fulfil the function of specification then we m ust assum e that this talk o f ‘identification’ contains yet an o th er hidden ambiguity. and also by Strawson. O ne may doubt w hether one can distinguish an individual object from all others by the m ere accum ulation of merely descriptive expressions.g. Clearly th ere are singular terms which specify the object for which they stand in this way. A deictic expres­ sion serves subjectively to locate som ething. We shall have to deal with this in detail later on. e. by such descriptions. However this possibility is rela­ tively clear in the case o f ‘ordinal’ properties. because there are two or m ore objects to which the p ro p erty in question belongs to the same degree. if there are two m ountains of exactly the same height. W hat Strawson intends by ‘identify’ in the sense of ‘pick o u t’ m ust be a special. definite descriptions.

“w hat?”. und erstan d better what it was in Russell that Straw son took exception to and. then we have not indicated. one m ight say. we have only said th a t the only thing th at is so-and-so. but we can now say that how ever it is achieved it is only this specification that should be called ‘identification’. O ne can ask ‘and which m ountain is the highest th en ?’ Only w hen this question h ad been answ ered would we have ‘identified’ a specific m ountain. on the one hand. Such a definition o f th e word ‘identify’ occurs in Searle. At the lowest level.What is ‘identification’? 315 objection would only be th at Russell has im properly generalized what is tru e o f this type and in so doing has overlooked that use of singular term s in particular by m eans of which an object is ‘identified’. o f which object it is asserted that it is F. of which m ountain. this explanation is still unclear.’14 You will still find this u nclear and ask: ‘what is this distinction of levels in re g a rd to the question “which o f all is m eant?” and w hat is it that distinguishes th e lowest level?’ So far as I can see the literature has up till now provided no m eans for systematically dealing with this question. or “which one?” are answ ered. A lthough Russell of course does not him self speak of ‘specification’ an d although Strawson too does not call it ‘specification’. on the o th e r han d . obtain an indication from this o f what he means by ‘identification’. If we supp lem en t such an expression with a predicate to form a whole sentence and say: ‘the one which is so-and-so is F ’. clarify this contrast by m eans o f an exam ple. an object is only identified if it is itself directly designated. one can nevertheless say: th ere is a kind o f specification by m eans of a singular term in which it is said: ‘th ere is an object that is so-and-so’ or (if we re n d e r im plicit the explicit assertion o f existence which Strawson m ade m uch of. O ne can. whichever this may be. We should now be in a position to. however. We can now easily see w hat it is th at Strawson still misses in such an expression and why he will still not g ran t it the function of identification. the o th er person could reply th at in this way the object is only indirectly designated as the sole b e a re r o f a p roperty. for to som eone who were to argue in this way one could reply: ‘B ut we have specified which it is. O f course. he is speaking. precisely by saying “th e only one th a t is so-and so”. I f som eone says som ething about the highest m ountain on earth it is n o t yet clear of which object. H e says: ‘By “identify” h e re I m ean th a t there should no longer be any do u b t o r am biguity about w hat exactly is being talked about. but which is in itself indifferent) ‘the one which is soand-so’. questions like “who?”. . It is still unclear how this further specification of which it is is to be achieved. This contrasting of an indirect and a direct reference to an object is o f course still unclear.’ H owever. is F.

270).16 Now there is a com prehensive system of unique relations to which all spatio-tem poral objects belong. we saw then (p. an d whose m eaning he did not explain but merely hinted at by m eans o f paraphrases.15 But an object can also be identified indirectly. T h e question ‘which is the highest m ountain?’ can. H ow ever. can only be answered by asking how it is established for which object a singular term stands. be definitively answ ered by taking the questioner to a p articular m ountain and saying: ‘it is this o ne’. is to be understood. T h e question o f what it is for a singular term to stand for an object. This ‘dem onstrative identification’ consists in this. so it would seem. M oreover. T his can only be done by relating it to the situation o f dem onstrative identification. So far I have only dis­ cussed the question o f what in general Strawson means by ‘identification’. We m ust now try to fo rm a clearer picture of the possibilities of identi­ fication o f perceptible objects by singular term s which he envisages. Every perceptible object has a place within . B ut though I re fe rred to this at the beginning we have not so far p u t it to use. In the meantim e we have seen that the function o f the singular term is to specify an object. this should also explain how that narrow er concept of specification. Strawson distinguishes two sorts o f identification: direct (dem onstra­ tive) and indirect (non-dem onstrative). hence that ‘standing fo r’ is to be understood as specifying. H e is thereby able ‘directly to locate’ the object re fe rre d to.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 316 Now in the fundam ental principle of analytical philosophy we have a natural clue to guide us in the enquiry into the semantics of singular term s. In this way we can p re p a re the g ro u n d for the systematic clarification of what distinguishes the narrow er concept of identification from the m ore com prehensive concept o f specification. thus to the perceptual situation o f speaker and h earer. which Strawson calls ‘identification’. Such an identification is achieved th erefo re by means o f ‘a description which relates the p a r­ ticular in question uniquely to a n o th e r particular which can be dem o n ­ stratively identified’. in a non-dem onstrative way. As one would expect he sees identification by m eans o f the deictic expression ‘this’ as the simplest case of identification. in p rep aratio n for such a systematic analysis we should first make clear how far o ne can get with Strawson. T hus the question we have to ask is obviously: how is it established which object a singular term specifies? A nd if there are different kinds of singular term and d ifferen t levels of specification then we can expect that these can be distinguished by reference to the different ways in which it is established which object the expression specifies. th at ‘the h earer can sensibly discrim inate the individual object re fe rred to ’ and thus ‘pick it o u t’. namely the system o f spatio-tem poral relations.

But that the answer ‘the highest m ountain (or: the m ountain which you see here) is Mt Everest’ is usually accepted as definitive is d ue simply to the fact th at it is presupposed th at one is clear which m ountain it is that is so nam ed. By the question ‘which is it?’ we m ean here ‘w here is it? in what spatial relations does it stand to other objects. T hus one can only agree with Strawson that dem onstrative specification is a specification at the lowest level. from the standpoint of the speaker. to o th er geographical data?’ It is only after a reply to a question o f this kind that the fu rth e r question ‘and which is the m ountain that is at such-and-such a place?’ is meaningless. Strawson’s failure to see this results from his taking over the traditional assum ption. thus the position which belongs to the object not ju st subjectively. which is also implicit in Russell’s theory of logi­ cally p ro p er names. 316) presupposes the possibility o f an objective location. Like Russell. Strawson conceived this relation as a dem onstrative relation in which som ething present in p e r­ . th at an expression’s standing for an object is to be understood as a direct relation. As the system of spatio-tem poral relations is unique. and com prehensive.What is 'identification ? 317 this system and thus stands in a unique spatio-temporal relation to every o th er perceptible object.that a specification by means of a singular term V shall only count as identification if it no longer gives rise to the fu rth e r question ‘and which object isx?’. non-dem onstrative identification. an ‘identification’. if not by an o th er unique relation at any rate by its spatio-tem poral rela­ tion to a directly identifiable object. If we take som eone who wants to know what the highest m ountain is blindfold to Mt Everest. but the position which belongs to it relative to all o th er possible standpoints. to the extent that norm ally w hen we use the dem onstrative pronoun ‘this’ or the corresponding spatio-tem poral expressions ‘h e re ’ and ‘now’ we presuppose th at we can replace these expressions by other expressions which designate the objective spatiotem poral position in which the object is situated. every perceptible object can be identified. then one must raise the following objections: 1. D em on­ strative identification if it is to be genuine identification itself presupposes spatio-tem poral. it is quite likely th at he will reply: ‘But which m ountain is it that I see here?’ Normally one would reply to such a question by giving the nam e of the m ountain.an idea which of course is not form ulated by Strawson him self . But then it is not possible to conceive of the identification o f perceptible objects in th at way in two steps as Strawson does. What Strawson calls ‘direct location’ (above p. rem ove the blindfold and say to him ‘It is this’.17 If we m easure these two possible ways of identifying concrete objects which Strawson envisages against the idea .

g. ‘the first m an to climb Everest’. One must also be able to distinguish the object m eant from all others. T his does not m ean that one must be able to give the relations o f the object referred to to all other objects (this is not the case with. We have now seen that dem onstrative identification itself presupposes the first kind of non-dem onstrative identification. And in both cases the question rem ains open what it is that has this property or relation. Why this can only be done by indicating in which spatio-tem poral relation it stands to all others is som ething we have still to investigate. e. most types of abstract objects).. ‘the m u rd e re r of M r X—’. We have seen that Strawson distinguishes two sorts of non­ dem onstrative identification. It does however m ean th at through the ‘indication which’ the object re fe rred to m ust be distinguishable from everything that is not identical with it. I shall come back to this point. Now it is easy to see that the specification of an object by means of such a unique relation to something already identified in no way differs from specification by m eans of a merely descriptive expression. in the first sort by m eans o f its spatio-tem poral relation. In both cases the object m eant is identified by m eans of a unique relation to som ething dem onstratively identified. hence the relation to the perceptual situation can be as indirect as you please. H e failed to notice that to specify an indi­ vidual means: to indicate which of all. Examples are: ‘the m u rd e re r o f this m an ’. ‘the President of France’. All specification by means o f a unique relation to som ething already identified clearly belongs to the sam e class. All locating of som ething by indicating its spatio-tem poral relations to other objects is only an identification if the spatio-tem poral relations of these other objects to the perceptual situation are known.g. T h e presupposition is o f course a reciprocal one. And in the specific case o f the specification of perceptible objects this has the consequence that the indication of which object is m eant by means of a m ere dem onstrative does not suffice for specification. But how is it with the o th e r kind o f non-dem onstrative identification . A specification of the form ‘the only one that stands in the relation R to this h e re ’ does not differ qua specification from a specification of the form ‘the only one th at isF . to which Strawson has denied the status of ‘identification’. e. A nd then . ‘the wife of Mr M aier’.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 318 ception is simply pointed at. in the second by m eans of an o th er relation.’ In both cases som ething is only singled out as an individual by saying that it is the only thing which has a certain property or is related in a certain way to som ething identified. 2.th at by m eans of other th an spatio-tem poral relations? O ne cannot reg ard this kind of identification as restricted to those cases in which som ething stands directly in a unique relation to som ething perceived.

A nd h ere too this can only m ean: if one can spatiotem porally identify the person.’). B u t if this were so one could not adm it all relation-descriptions which in virtue o f th eir m eaning p re ­ suppose th at only one object stands in this relation (e. If we now look at th e objections I have b ro u g h t against the two forms o f identification distinguished by Strawson tog eth er. as I have done.g. Probably he th o u g h t that only a unique relation ensures that w hat is specified is really only one. the relevant criterion for distinguishing identification from m ere specifica­ tion is th a t in the fo rm er case the question ‘which o f all is m eant?’ is answ ered at the lowest level.’) b u t only those w here not m ore th a n one object can have the relation concerned to a particu lar object (e. Strawson has not sharply defined his concept o f identification. like the question ‘which is the highest m ountain?’ can initially be answ ered by giving a p ro p e r nam e. does not tell decisively against him.g. It is difficult to see why Straw son believed th at specification by m eans of a uniq u e relation differs essentially from specification by m eans o f a unique property. i. in the sense o f it tu rn in g o u t that th e re is no such object. all the kinds o f identification distin­ guished by Strawson can fail in the o th e r sense. T h u s in the case o f dem o n stra­ tive identification it can tu rn o u t that w hen one says ‘this beetle’ there is no beetle in the place at which one points. C onsequently. they seem to point . in th e sense relevant to identification. who m u rd e re d M r X?’ T his question. ‘the m o th er of . . cannot fail in the sense th at it could tu rn out that the descrip­ tion applies to m ore than one object. A nd. th at this question can no longer be repeated. O ne cannot arg u e definitively against an im precise position. T his assertion o f m ine is how ever conclu­ sive if.e. It is th erefo re also n o t clear what his criterion is for distinguishing a specification in the narrow er sense from one in the w ider sense. Spec­ ifications by m eans o f such relations. unlike those by m eans of a unique p rop erty . in o th er w ords. B ut w ithout fu rth e r explanation it is n o t clear why a specification should n o t be an identification merely because it can fail. . . B ut again this is a reply th at can only count as identification if it is assum ed th a t one knows which person it is th at is so nam ed. ‘the m u rd e re r o f . besides. . a n arro w er concept of identifi­ cation from a w ider one o f specification. and the sam e clearly holds for identification by m eans o f th e objective identification by m eans of the spatio-tem poral position at which the object is situated. my assertion that specification by m eans o f a u n iq u e relation does n o t differ. from specification by m eans of a unique p ro p ­ erty.What is ‘identification ? 319 the question arises: ‘who is that. for he has not distinguished. as I assum ed in connection with th e quotation from Searle.

then at least by m eans o f its spatio-tem poral relations.Analysis of the predicative sentence 320 from two d iffe re n t sides to o ne and the same thing: namely that Straw­ son. It em erges then. that the spatio-temporal relations between objects constitute a com prehensive and unitary system of relations and thereby m ake it possible to identify an object. who deserves the credit for draw ing attention to the special signif­ icance o f the system of spatio-tem poral relations for the identification of perceptible objects. T h a t all spec­ ification of perceptible objects at the lowest level is location by means of th eir spatio-tem poral relations is a result that m ust first be m ade intel­ ligible. In this way I have situated my own enquiry and its fu rth er systematic elaboration in th e context o f the state o f the problem in con­ tem porary analytical philosophy. in principle. So far it has not becom e clear why it is that th ere are several and essentially two levels o f specification o f perceptible objects and what it is. B ut it has now been shown. as far as I can see. but th at there is only one sort o f identification o f perceptible objects: if an individual perceptible object is to be spoken of in such a way that the question ‘A nd which is that?’ is no longer possible. W here have we got to? T h e result at which we have now arrived has its foundation in an in tern al critical in terp retatio n o f Strawson and. T h e correction of Strawson’s view that it is m ost im p o rtan t to hold on to is the refutation of his conception of an isolated dem onstrative identification. (a) th a t dem onstrative identification is only an identification if it is presu p p o sed that it can be replaced by spatio-tem ­ poral relations by which th e objective spatio-tem poral position which the object occupies is designated and (b) that specification by means of o th e r unique relations is not identification at all. This conception is a residue of the traditional theory o f the object-relation as a simple relation to som ething im m ediately given and contradicts the insight that reference to an object is to be u n d ersto o d as specification. if not by m eans of o th er unique relations. has not essentially advanced beyond Strawson. at the sam e time. has yet u n d erestim ated this significance. as the indication of which o f all is m eant. then it m ust be located in space and time. in so far as it is not dem onstratively identifiable. We could get no answer . 1. which. W hat rem ains as the positive result o f the internal interpretation of Strawson how ever will scarcely strike you as transparent. in several respects. not ju st th at the system of spatio-tem poral relations is specially significant for th e identification of perceptible objects. For Strawson this significance consists simply in this. in the attem p t to p u rsu e the question ‘which is m eant?’ th ro u g h its various levels to the final one at which it can no longer be repeated. th at distinguishes the final level.

I have already pointed out that from the standpoint of W ittgen­ stein’s principle it would have been obvious from the start to pose the question of the m ode of em ploym ent o f the various kinds of singular term (and that means: the question of the particular form which the specificatory function assumes) by asking how it is established for which object the expression stands (p. 316). 2 6 8 f).What is ‘identification f 321 to this question from Strawson.specification at the lowest level .e. by a predicate (p. So I confined my attention to the m ere fact that such levels are shown in the m an n er in which we specify an object. B ut if reference to an object is essentially to be understood as specification. as regards their object-relation. Should we accept it simply as a fact that the specification of p er­ ceptible objects at this lowest level turns out to be spatio-tem poral loca­ tion? For Strawson this question did not need to arise because spatiotem poral location appeared to him to be merely one kind of identification am ong others. 2.and we do not yet have such a concept. because his use of the term ‘identification’ is too unclear. In the introduction to the problem of singular term s I left open the question of w hether the ‘standing’ of a singular term ‘fo r’ an object can only be u nderstood in relation to the context of predication. 291). essentially incomplete expressions . for this question could not be decided on the basis of the truth-definition of the predicative sentence-form (p. i. In o rd e r to answ er this question and in this way advance our enquiry into the m ode of em ploym ent of singular term s and reference to objects we will now have to bring to bear the conceptual means which we derive from o u r systematic approach: 1. and we already know that the philosophical question concerning the m eaning of a form o f expression is the question concerning how individual expressions of this form are explained . B ut if this fact is somehow to become intelligible then it must be possible to explain it by recourse to the concept of identification .they require to be supplem ented by something that is said about the object m eant. 2.and this means: how their m eaning is established. T h e explanation of the m ode of em ploym ent o f singular term s can thus be . M oreover we will now have also to bring in the question o f meaning. A lthough th e specification of perceptible objects at the lowest level has tu rn e d out to be spatio-tem poral location it has so far rem ained unexplained how this specification actually functions in the interplay of dem onstrative and objectively locating expressions. and specification exhibits such differences. 3. B ut as it then em erged that ‘standing fo r’ m ust be understood as specification it also became clear that singular term s are. then the analysis o f these differences is clearly essential for understanding our reference to objects.

. i.e. 3. T here is a third methodological perspective directly connected with this second one.Analysis of the predicative sentence 322 reinforced by ap proaching the m atter from the o ther side and asking how perceptible objects m ust be specified if they are to be capable of being characterized by corresponding predicates. If the specificatory function of singular term s is to be understood in connection with the need to be supplem ented by p re d i­ cates this m eans that the establishing of which object the singular term stands for m ust be u nderstood in connection with the establishing o f w hether the predicative statem ents into which the singular term enters as a d e p en d en t com ponent are tru e or false. by predicates which are explained in perceptual situations.

led to the following result. consideration o f the fact that singular term s are expressions which su p p lem en t predicates. but a p re-em in en t special case o f this function by m eans o f which is indicated at a lowest level which object is m eant. in p articular. Specification and tru th T h e attem p t to clarify Straw son’s vague talk o f ‘identification’. 3. in such a way th at the question ‘A nd which object is th e one thus specified?’ can no longer be rep eated. It th e re fo re also rem ained unclear what relevance this special case has for specification in general and hence for the possibility o f re fe rrin g to objects. A nd it em erged th at in the case o f perceptible objects this special case of specification is only given w hen the object is spatio-tem porally located by th e singular term . th at is. we have-so far not succeeded in describ­ ing this special case of specification in a way th at would justify speaking of a clear concept of identification. consideration of the function which establishing which object the expression stands for has in establishing the tru th or falsity o f the sen­ tences th at can be form ed with it. H ow ever. A nd equally it rem ained unclear how this identification . A t the end o f the last lecture I re fe rre d to th re e m ethodological p e r­ spectives which can guide us in answ ering these questions which still rem ain open: 1.specification by spatio-tem poral location actually functions and in w hat way spatio-tem poral location has such a pre-em inence fo r the ultim ate specification o f a perceptible object. which at first seem ed to correspond to what I had called the specificatory function of singular term s. and it is also . O f these th re e perspectives the first is th e m ost concrete. 2. tow ards the question o f how it is to be estab­ lished for which object the expression stands. the orientation towards the actual m ode o f em ploym ent of singular term s and. W hat is thereby intended is not the general concept o f specification.L E C T U R E 24 Specification and identification.

with the result that it is no longer necessary to use the locution ‘standing fo r’ in the truth-definition of predicative state­ ments and that the predicative sentence-form becomes intelligible.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 324 decisive. T he resulting orientation for the u n d erstan d in g o f singular term s will automatically lead us to the detailed investigation of singular term s from the point of view of how one establishes which object is specified by a singular term . for after all we are only u n d ertak in g the investigation of singular term s so as ultimately to arrive at an explanation of the use of the predicative sentence-form . most im por­ tantly. to the second m ethodological p e r­ spective. if the specificatory function of singular terms is essentially a partial function (Teilfunktion) which supplem ents the function of characterization-expressions in such a way that expressions with an assertoric function result. T h e reason for the unsatis­ factory state of the semantics o f singular term s. finally. W here the mode of employ­ m ent o f singular term s was enquired about this happened without an orientation tow ards m ore general sem antic principles and. w ithout consideration o f the function o f singular term s in the sentence-whole. T he th ird perspective is of particular im portance to us. It would also seem ap p ro p riate to begin with the third perspective because. an object-relation which they do not themselves yield. to consideration of the fact that singular term s are expressions which supplem ent predicates . despite the vast literature. O n the o th e r hand. or of the word ‘tru e ’ at this lowest level o f its recursive definition. Since we shall only be able to answ er a p art o f the open questions in this way. T his holds for Strawson and it also holds for other im p o rtan t m o d ern investigations of particular types of singular terms . for we clearly cannot attribute to singular terms through the expressions which they supplem ent or through those which arise from such supplem entation. thus w ithout enquiring about the mode o f em ploym ent of the expressions. then from the other perspectives one should at least be able to shed light on those questions which concern not so much the descriptive phenom ena themselves as their intelligibility. o f the th ree. is that the discussion of such term s was only placed in the m ore general context o f the semantics o f assertoric sentences w here the latter was p u rsu ed at the level o f m eta-theory. I shall revert. it is the only one to have so far been considered in analytical philosophy by some authors.and this perspective will lead to a deepening o f o u r understanding of the use of singular terms which.predicates which if they were not thus supplem ented would be quasi-predicates . T he best th in g th erefo re is for us to start from a global consideration of the th ird perspective as the most com prehensive. in the next lecture. should lead to a full u n d erstan d in g of singular terms from the third perspective.

where this m eans: we know the contribution this sentence-component makes to establishing the truth of the sentence. rule. I (i) p know what it is for “< to be tru e and (ii) know w ithout prelim inaries pa” what it is to investigate w hether “< is tru e. as we have seen. especially as it presents itself as an attem pt (albeit a ‘rough and unsatisfactory’ one) to define the term ‘identify’.Specification and identification 325 which represent views opposed to Strawson. which is understood by him as a directive for establishing which object the expression stands for. the .one knows w ithout px’ prelim inaries how one establishes w hether ‘< is true. for Dum m ett. And to understand the m eaning of an assertoric sentence is also. and since.1 T h e form ulation in Wiggins is so concise that we can take it as our starting point. 202 f ) the first condition can be om itted. in particular those of Kripke and Donnellan. to know how its truth or falsity is to be established. inasmuch as. I think this is clearly correct as far as it goes. However this conception has no conse­ quences for the details of his analysis in which Wiggins sticks to the fram ew ork m arked out by Straw son. he maintains that the m eaning of a singular term . pa Let us first be clear what is plausible about this definition. in other words. Only in Dummett do we find a clear orientation towards the third perspective. If (a) we have a sentence that consists of two com ponents V ’ and ‘a ’ and (b) it is assum ed that to u n derstand a sentence is to know how one establishes w hether it is true and (c) we u n derstand V ’. the verification-rule is a m ore thorough­ going form ulation of the truth-condition (p. A similar conception is also to be found in Wiggins. in his book on Frege. ‘I identify a if.assuming that one knows the verification-rule of the predicate V ’ (that one knows w ithout prelim i­ naries how one establishes w hether ‘< is true) . However.’2 pa” W hat Wiggins m eans by the qualification th at the two conditions only hold for those predicates V of which one knows what it is for something to be ip can be explained as follows: they hold only for predicates with regard to which one knows how one establishes that they only apply to an object. D um m ett has not devel­ oped the semantics of singular term s in detail. So we can sum m arize Wiggins’ definition as follows: a sin­ gular term ‘a identifies the object a if . However. O f the two conditions the first concerns the knowledge of the truth-condition of l< the second the knowledge of the verificationpa’. then (d) to u n derstand a ’ m ust be to know the contri­ bution of other sentence-com ponent to establishing the truth of the sentence. only for predicates whose verification-rule one knows. is to be understood as the contribution it makes to the m eaning of the assertoric sentences into which it enters as a constituent. for any < such that I understand fully what it is for som ething to be tp.

if one knows how the tru th of the predicative sentences into which it enters as a constituent is to be established (assuming that . Now one can easily build a bridge here and say: to und erstan d a singular term is to know how one establishes which object it identifies. T hus we are so far lacking a concept of identification. but would have to result from th e definition (the definiens). is bound to seem doubtful as soon as we consider how then the m eaning and specificatory function of the o th e r singular term s is to be understood. R ather the criterion o f identification.Analysis of the predicative sentence 326 explanation remains abstract inasmuch as it fails to reveal the difference of the roles which the singular term and the predicate play in establishing the truth o f the predicative sentence. and not the broad concept o f specification. but what it is for a singular term to identify an object. it rem ains unclear how far this describes its role in the establishing o f the tru th of the predicative sentence form ed with it. Wiggins does not intend his definition to explain what it is to u n d erstan d a singular term . for. in the first place. is supposed to dem arcate a special sub-class of singular term s. the word ‘iden­ tify’ is the word th at Wiggins defines in his definition. W hat Wiggins has in m ind is the narrow concept of identification. A nd. It ju st seemed to us perfectly natural to say that one u n derstands a singular term . secondly. although speaking o f specification or identification brings out a peculiarity o f the singular term . that it really only applies to the specificatory function of a special class of singular term s. But that this d ef­ inition actually achieves this. At the end of the previous lecture we fou n d a possible external criterion for this narrow concept o f identification in the non-repeatability of the question ‘and which is that?’ B ut one of the questions left open was how this distinction o f levels is to be understood.any singular term . And you m ight think that this provided an answer to the question ju st raised concerning the special role of the singular term in the establishing o f the tru th o f the sentence. which Strawson aim ed at but left unclear. as he defines it. w hat the role of the singular term is in the establishing o f the tru th o f the predicative sentences that are form ed with it can therefo re not be presupposed by reference to a previous u n derstanding o f the word ‘identify’. It emerges clearly from the context that Wiggins does not intend his definition to be understood as a general definition of the function o f singular term s. Could it be contained in W iggins’ definition? Certainly Wiggins intended this with his definition. But this is not so. This would make the con­ nection between the m eaning of the singular term and its identificatory or specificatory function. and why it is that it comes to an end in the locating descriptions. the most im portant problem is as follows. Besides. However.

and this w ould pa’ give us a perspective for explaining not only the concept o f identification but also its relation to the general concept o f specification. B ut what basis do we have. th e various considerations I have raised in con­ nection with W iggins’ definition were not simply random . He says that a is identified if one knows ‘w ithout p relim inaries’ how one estab­ lishes that ‘(pa* is true.a definition o f identification . his attem p t to dem arcate the in ten d ed narrow concept of identification would also seem to fail.Specification and identification 327 one also u n d erstan d s the predicates o f these sentences). p oint a way out of the im passe if we simply re g a rd it as an indication that th ere could be dif­ fe re n t ways o f know ing how one establishes (given th at one already knows the verification-rule o f V ’) w hether ‘< is true. for adopting this perspective. b u t an object is identified by ‘a if we know without preliminaries how one establishes w heth er ‘< is tru e (in both pa’ cases it is assum ed th at we know how the p redicate is to be verified). Is this any help? We could now say: one understands a singular term ‘a \ or an object is specified by ‘a . but were guided by the aim of connecting Wiggins’ specific intention . and for seeing in it the possibility of an answ er to o u r question? Well. if one knows how one establishes w heth er ‘(pa’ is true. after so many blind alleys. although W iggins’ approach is m ore fu n d am ental than that of Strawson. that to und erstan d a singular term m ust be to know its co ntribution to the establishm ent of the tru th of predic­ . B ut of course you will ask: w hat does it m ean to know such a thing with or w ithout ‘prelim inaries’? W iggins says nothing about this and I do not believe we will get any fu rth e r by m erely trying to speculate what could be m eant by ‘prelim inaries’ in this context. d ep en d in g on the kind o f singular term ‘a . and the reason for th at sequence o f levels in the question ‘W hich is it?’. I f this is not so. then how could the m eaning of those predicative sentences that contain singular term s which are not identificatory in the narrow sense be understood? So it would seem th at W iggins’ definition fits the general concept of specification ra th e r than the narrow concept of identification. T h e qualification which rem ains u n clear in W iggins could. however. N evertheless. T h u s. W iggins’ definition contains a n o th e r restrictive qualifi­ cation which could p erh ap s lead us o u t of the p resen t impasse. For like Strawson he too has failed to consider the broad concept o f specification and hence has m ade no provision for the necessary dem arcation against it. which has resulted from an obscure qualifying clause in W iggins’ definition. th ere are differen t ways o f establishing th at the predicative sentences ‘< form ed pa with it are true.with th e basic thesis which em erged from our third methodological perspective. for it could tu rn out that. viz.

but it belongs to this context in such a way th at it concerns the verifiability o f this classifiability.w hether a predicative statem ent is true? As we are dealing with that aspect o f the establishm ent o f the tru th of the statem ent which does not concern the pred icate’s verification-rule but that with respect to which the p redicate’s verification-rule is to be applied. the question ‘How does one establish for which object the singular term stands = Which object is specified by it?’ not only belongs essentially to the context of som ething being classifiable by predicates. But as we did not w ant to im pose on the m eaning o f singular term s anything that does not follow from their own explanation it is advisable in applying the first m ethodological perspective initially to disregard the third perspec­ tive and only bring it in later. But this means: the question at issue is how one establishes for which object the singular term stands and this is nothing o th e r than th e first of o u r three m ethodological perspectives. T h u s as soon as we try to carry through the third perspective con­ cretely we are forced to m ake the transition to the first perspective.assum ing one already knows the predicate’s verifi­ cation-rule . T h e question ‘How does one establish which?’ when it is incorporated into the question o f how one establishes w hether the corresponding predicative statem ents are tru e has not only the sense of ‘How does one establish which object it is that is classified?’ but also ‘How does one establish with respect to which object the verification-rule of the classification-expression is to be applied?’ In oth er words. you will now ask: but how should we now proceed? How can we tackle the question of the different ways in which one can establish .a n d this m eans: disregard p ro p e r nam es .Analysis of the predicative sentence 328 ative sentences. B ut the question presented by the first perspective has now received from the third perspective a direction th at was not obvious from the start. Is this a hypothesis. you will ask. A ssum ing you accept this.then in the p re ­ . the question at issue is how one establishes what it is with respect to which the p re d ­ icate’s verification-rule is to be applied. I f we confine ourselves to those singular term s which also have a m eaning . or is it compelling? It is compelling if two things are adm itted: (1) th at we u n d erstan d an assertoric sentence if and only if we know how its tru th is to be established and (2) that the m eaning of the com ponent-expressions of predicative sentences consists in their contribution to the m eaning o f the sentences. T he perspective for the clarification of the differentiation of level in the specification-question which has now em erged is simply th at which we get by focussing on a differentiation yielded by the third m ethodological perspective.

It is true that in a perceptual situation the presence of one and only one object of a certain kind is established. If the reflections o f the previous lecture on the dependence of dem onstrative specification on locating specification were correct then clearly one will have to supplem ent what has now been said about the first case by reference to the second case. (2) by a description by means o f spatiotem poral relations (‘the m ountain that is situated at the intersection of such and such a parallel of latitude an d such and such a circle of lon­ gitu d e’). W hat is special about . but which it is (and that means: which of all) is established by specifying what the perceptual situation is relative to all other perceptual situations. It is decided by perception w hether the specification succeeds or fails. However. reflection on the possibility o f repeating the question ‘A nd which is that?’ showed that there is no difference between (3) and (4). (4) by a unique property (‘the highest m ountain’).Specification and identificationn 329 vious lecture we had to do with four ways in which a perceptible object can be specified by a singular term : (1) by a dem onstrative expression (‘this m ountain’. it is clearly the per­ ceptual situation in which the existence o f the object referred to would be established th at is designated. the use of a dem onstrative singular term . and h ere too perception would decide w hether one (and only one) object was specified. and if at the same tim e we bring the third m ethodological perspective to bear. that (1) and (2) are closely connected and that between (3) and (4) on the one hand and (1) and (2) on the other th ere is a sharp distinction. the ground of the distinction o f levels in the question ‘Which is it?’ should becom e intelligible. In the first case it is not enough to say that which object is m eant is established by perception. Applying the question ‘How does one establish which is m eant?’ should reveal the correctness of this initially tentative reclassification. is clearly that establishing which is m eant can be achieved directly through perception. (3) by other unique relations to som ething already identified (‘the m u rd e re r of Mr M aier). but that he sharply distinguishes between (3) and (4) and regards (1) as in d ep en d en t o f (2). one establishes w hether there really is one and only one object o f the relevant kind at the place to which the dem onstrative expression points. In the second case. We have seen that Strawson sees no structural difference between (2) and (3). that of a locating description. W hat distinguishes the first case. We can now begin to u n derstand why locating descriptions have the role o f a final answer in the question ‘Which is it?’ (in the previous lecture we could merely point to this as a fact). ‘this beetle’).

however. I am speaking as though it were self-evident that th ere are perceptible objects. b u t in this: they are not ju st relations between objects. predicates whose use can be explained in perception by means o f examples). It is at this poin t that it becomes necessary to explain the significance of what was worked out by adopting the first methodological perspective by reference to the third perspective. like Russell. it is true. W hat Strawson failed to see is that the system o f spatio-tem poral relations is not ju st anchored in dem onstration and perception. W hat is special about spatio-tem poral descriptions. Strawson conceived of a. rath e r it is a system of possible perceptual positions . a system of specification could never arise in this way. But what this means is that they specify the verificationsituation in which one can establish w hether the perceptual predicates asserted o f the object apply to it. he presented it as though it consisted merely of relations betw een objects and was dem onstratively anchored at only one place. had assum ed that all reference to perceptible objects m ust be dem onstratively-perceptually grounded. however. as Strawson thought. Strawson. is that they specify perceptible objects as perceptible objects. that they specify them as objects o f possible perceptions. It is thus tru e to say that by means o f the spatio-tem poral descriptions . whereas it is the presen t analysis of the use o f singular term s that is supposed to explain what it is for us to be able to refer to objects in perception. that they specify the perceptual object in such a way that one can establish of it as thus specified w hether the predicate applies to it. This then would be. But this does not yet capture w hat is essential about this state of affairs. say: singular term s of this kind are such as specify the perceptual situ­ ation in which it can be established by perception which the object is that they specify. In reality.Analysis of the predicative sentence 330 spatio-tem poral relations for the problem o f specification resides not only in their universality. For what is a perceptible object? W hatever else it may be it is an object to which indeed other predicates apply. O ne can. In a predicative sentence whose predicate is a perceptual predicate the distinguishing character of dem onstrative an d locating singular term s consists in this. every spatio-tem poral position is a p e r­ ceptual situation. at least as regards singular term s o f the first two types.e. system of identification.and th at means: a system of demonstrative specifications. it is thereby constituted as a perceptible object. therefore. the special role they have in estab­ lishing the tru th o f predicative sentences: they indicate the verificationsituation to which the predicate’s verification-rule is to be applied. W hereas for Russell the object-relation did not reach beyond the p ar­ ticular demonstrative act. but to which first and forem ost perceptual predicates apply (i.

T hus the state of affairs is m ore appropriately expressed if in the first instance we fo rm u late it w ithout using the w ord ‘object’: with the specification of an object by spatio-tem poral descriptions a verification-situation for the application o f p erceptual predicates is specified. for it can be mis­ in te rp re te d as m eaning that by m eans o f this specification an object that is already the object it is in d ep en d en tly o f this specification is specified in a certain respect . H ow ever.g. But an object th a t is essentially a perceptible object cannot already be the object it is in d ep en d en tly o f its specification as perceptible. H e re estab­ lishing which object it is is preced ed by an investigation which com pares . O rdinal pro p erties are also implicitly relational. In this case. T o re fe r to a p er­ ceptible object is to specify a verification-situation fo r perceptual p re d ­ icates. Singular term s o f the third an d fourth kinds like those o f th e first two kinds contain a directive as to how it is to be established which object is m eant. T h e pro ced u res req u ired for establishing who the m u rd e re r is are d iffe re n t from those for establishing which is the highest m ountain. an d since o ne can only specify such a p erceptual Situationen such by spatio-tem porally locating it. w here it could be established by sim ple perception w h eth er a given object has th e char­ acteristic. the direc­ tive does not take the form o f specifying the p erceptual situation in which th e object would be perceived. T h u s the singular term contains the directive to investigate all objects of a certain kind to establish which uniquely possesses the p ro p erty in question. can easily be u n d erestim ated . With this we now have a basis for re n d e rin g W iggins’ definition p re ­ cise. how ever. T h e significance of this statem ent. In no case is th e establishing of th e sim ple type we have become acquainted with in the case o f p ercep tu al predicates. as regards its causes o r effects o r ordinal properties. to obtain the p ro p e r back­ g ro u n d for this I would first like to deal with the still outstanding ques­ tion o f how one establishes in the case of the o th e r two types o f singular term s which object is specified.Specification and identification 331 a perceptible object is specified qua perceptible object. the perceptible object as such is only specified if it is spatio-tem porally located. With this definition o f the specification of th e object as such we have arrived at the narrow concept of identification fo r which we have been looking.ju s t as it can also be specified in oth er respects. in the fo u rth an absolute one . however. T h e ways in which all objects are investigated to establish which has the characteristic can be very d iffe re n t d e p e n d in g on the p ro p erty con­ cerned. ra th e r it takes the form o f speci­ fying a criterion — in the th ird case a relative one.by which the object m ean t can be recognized. e. so that it can really be u n d ersto o d as a definition of the intended narrow concept o f identification.as perceptible .

some­ times complicated. In oth er words.’) and. T h e ordinary relational description specifies a rela­ tional characteristic and contains the directive to investigate all objects to establish which uniquely has the property. We can now u n d erstan d why Strawson (1) could not see where the relevant dividing line is betw een the types of singular term . not ju s t as a m atter of fact.directly or indirectly . B ut this means th at to establish which object it is that is specified by means o f a singular term o f type (3) or (4) is to establish which of the perceptible objects. mountains) with respect to the relevant ordinal p ro p erty (e.‘the so-and-so’ . which are specifiable by means of locating descrip­ tions.g.. . or relational. . specify the situation in which one and only one object of a certain kind can be perceived. Only when this question is asked does it become clear that although locating descriptions and descriptions by m eans of other unique relations have the same gram m atical form . ‘the pres­ ident o f . ‘the m u rd e re r o f . T h e m eaning o f an expression of the form ‘the so-and-so’ is u n d ersto o d if (a) its form is understood (and that means: if one knows how in general statem ents of the form ‘T h ere is am ong all things one and only one that is so-and-so’ are verified) and (b) the p re­ dicative. but in virtue o f its m eaning. A lthough the locating description also has the form ‘am ong all objects there is one that is at such and such a time in such and such a place’ this does not contain a directive to run through (durchlaufen) all objects individually and exam ine them to establish which has the characteristic of being in such and such a place . (2) why he failed to give ap p ro p riate expression to the uneasiness he rightly felt about Russell’s T h eo ry of Descriptions. height). specification of types (3) and (4) presupposes locating specification of types (1) and (2). decision-procedures for establishing whether a given object has this relation to another.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 332 the objects of the kind specified (e.’) o r institutional properties (‘the wife of . d ep en d in g on which it is. expression ‘so-and-so’ is understood (and that means: if one knows how it is established w hether this predicate applies to an object). . however. . ‘the m other of . . there are different. For o u r purposes.to establish which one it is that stands in this relation. it is that uniquely fulfils the relevant criterion (being the so-andso). on the o th er hand.they have completely different sem antic functions. Locating descriptions.g. . With the relational properties it is mostly a m atter o f causal properties (e. or how one establishes which object a singular term specifies.g. Both these things result from his not asking how the m eaning of singular term s is explained. all that m atters is that in all cases of both these types o f specification all objects of a certain kind m ust be individually investigated .

when suitably qualified. is. applies to him. if taken in iso­ lation. of the narrow concept of identification (which is what Wiggins intended). of course. thus because the individual perceptible objects are constituted as individuals precisely by the spatiotem poral positions they occupy. to specify an object.g. But one is also not directly in a position to verify such a thing about a person who is specified by a locating description.Specification and identificationn 333 at such and such a time. only what he has to do to establish this is som e­ thing differen t from what he has to do to establish w hether the person who was b orn at such and such a tim e in such and such a place has blue eyes. If one speaks of ‘the m u rd e re r of H ans’ one is clearly not directly in a position to verify w hether a predicate. On the o th er hand. e. only in the one case can that which is m eant only be established by a ru n ning-through o f all. This is because. is ultimately empty. o f what it is for a singular term . O n the other h and. due to its unclarity. that depends am ong o ther things on who it is who wants to establish it. 369). but also because (b) the specification o f an individual spatio-temporal position implies a reference to all spatiotem poral positions in a way which differs from that in which the speci­ fication of an individual object implies a reference to all objects. It is not a question of which is easier or m ore complicated. ‘having blue eyes’. as we have seen. T hus if one were to in terp ret W iggins’ ‘w ithout prelim inar­ ies’ qualification very narrowly then his definition would only apply to dem onstrative specification. although both kinds of description imply a universal statem ent. B ut I will also be coming back to this (p. the person who understands the expression ‘the m u rd e re r of H ans’ understands perfectly well what he has to do to establish w hether the person so described has blue eyes. Someone who was present when H ans was m urdered can probably establish m ore easily and with g reater certainty w hether the m u rd erer has blue eyes than if the person is specified for him by his date of birth . in particular a perceptual predicate. We are now in a position to give a clear sense to W iggins’ definition. T h e last explanation does not clearly follow from what has gone before. in the o ther case no such d eto u r is required. I shall be returning to this aspect. at least if we ignore the qualification ‘without p re ­ lim inaries’ which. of whatever kind. This is because the running through of indi­ vidual objects is itself perform ed by running through the different spa­ tio-temporal positions (perceptual situations). which. and. We can easily see that the definition also completely fits singular terms of types (3) and (4). not specification at all. Indeed it can now claim to be both a definition of specification in general. (a) that which is referred to is a perceptual situation. it is already clear that.

so in this sense one can say with Wiggins that in their case one knows ‘w ithout prelim inaries’ how one establishes w hether the relevant sentence is true. if intended as a definition o f ‘identification’. By contrast we have a fundam entally different situation if the object is not specified as a perceptual object by being spatio-tem porally located but by means o f a characteristic. if it does not specify the com plete life-path o f the object but only. R ather it is a question of a fundam ental difference in the m ethod o f verification of a perceptual predicate. that is by specifying the situation in which it can be established w hether a percep­ tual predicate asserted of this object applies to it. but no dif­ ference o f principle. must be restricted to perceptual predicates is this: if the special pre-em inence of locating expressions for establishing the tru th of predicative statem ents rests on their designating perceptual situations then this special role only obtains in the case o f predicates which are such that it can be verified by p e r­ ception w hether they apply. its birth. For in o rd e r to establish w hether it is tru e that the au th o r was a great poet all th at is relevant is that he was the au th o r of this and . it must first be established which o f all perceptual objects uniquely has the property concerned. however the lifepath of the object can be followed from perceptual situation to perceptual situation to that tim e at which the predicate is supposed to apply to it. Let me clarify this by means of an exam ple. T h e reason why W iggins’ definition. is thus (a) the elucidation (which I have ju st given) of his qualification ‘without prelim inaries’ and (b) the restriction to perceptual predicates. for exam ple.3 T o establish w hether the statem ent that the author o f the Divine Comedy was a great poet is true it would clearly rep resen t a d eto u r w ere we first to establish which o f all spatio-tem porally locatable persons it was th a t wrote the Divine Comedy. In the case of objects that e n d u re and change their place and to which different perceptual predicates apply at differen t times the locating. introduces a complication into the connection between locating specification and the verification of perceptual predicates. A locating description specifies an object directly. to which we shall also have to retu rn . for in this case before one can know w hat the perceptual situation would be in which one can establish w heth er a perceptual predicate applies to this object. This problem of the duratio n o f objects. It is this interm ediate procedure which is absent in the case o f locating descriptions. W hat is missing from W iggins’ definition.Analysis o f the predicative sentence 334 and he does not belong to his im m ediate family. in so far as it is supposed to define that narrow concept o f ‘identification’. does not designate the perceptual situation in which it can be decided whether a predicate that belongs to it at some time applies.

‘if we w ant to know who in a final sense’: we now know what this m eans. specify som e­ thing as som ething th at uniquely possesses a relative or absolute p ro p ­ erty. is so-and-so. w heth er this person is the a u th o r o f the Divine Comedy and o th er poem s. namely.i. B ut it is distinguished from Russell’s conception in so far as the two levels now belong closer together. that is. such that from all of them one can be singled out —is connected. It means ‘which o f all objects th at a re locatable and distinguishable as individual objects of perception by m eans o f th eir spatio-tem poral relations’.e. A nd we can clearly also verify with respect to the object thus specified that it has such-and-such p ro p ­ erties (if they are not perceptual properties). w hichever that may be.Specification and identificationn 335 possibly other poems. W e have thus answ ered one o f the questions which rem ained open at the end of the previous lecture. and that m eans: to identify them . In this way it becomes possible to specify individual perceptible objects as perceptible. A nd if som ething is specified in this way then one can always also ask (though one need not). T h a t th ere are perceptible individual objects . only we th en m ean: the so-and-so. B ut as we have seen we can also specify an object in an o th er way. You may ask: is not this conception o f two levels of reference to indi­ vidual perceptible objects very similar to Russell’s conception? Certainly.4 We now know what is m eant by the clause ‘w hichever th a t may b e’. or ap p ro p ria te inferences to p e r­ ceptible actions. T h u s if we want to know in a final sense who this g reat poet was we m ust clearly have recourse to locating singular term s and p erceptual predicates. not anything to be established by perception about a locatable person. A nd even if we w ant to know w hether D ante .the person who was born in such-and-such a place and had such-and-such a life-path . things that are perceptible and clas­ sifiable.was a great poet. such that from any perceptual situation one can re fe r to any o th e r and thus can indicate of each one which of all it is. why it is that there are two levels o f specification of perceptible objects and what it is th at distinguishes the narrow concept of specification . how it is to be identified. B ut it is also possible to m ake general uniqueness-statem ents.and this means: identify it.which we can call ‘identification’ . T h a t a distinguishing o f individual perceptible objects is possible at all depends on th ere being a multiplicity of em ploy­ m ent -sit 11 ations o f elem entary (perceptual) predicates. It m eans: if we w ant to specify the object <25 a perceptible object . the perception of this person is only relevant to the decision w hether this predicate applies to him in so far as we can only decide by perception.from the general concept of specification. an d this implies a new concept of the . with th e fact that th ere is a m ul­ tiplicity of perceptual situations. in a way th at has still to be explained.

O f course.in such a way that one singles it out as one of all.con­ trary to Russell’s opinion and the traditional opinion in general . T h e em ploym ent-situations of elem entary classification-expressions. So we now find ourselves confronted with the question: how are the identif