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Mind Association

The Sense of Communication Author(s): Richard G. Heck, Jnr. Reviewed work(s): Source: Mind, New Series, Vol. 104, No. 413 (Jan., 1995), pp. 79-106 Published by: Oxford University Press on behalf of the Mind Association Stable URL: . Accessed: 05/02/2013 14:17
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The Sense of Communication


1. Opening
In recent years, something of a consensus has emerged concerning Frege'sdistinction betweensenseandreference.' According theHybrid to the View, contentsof beliefs andotherpropositional attitudes characare teristicallyintensional: contentof a speaker'sbelief thata is F may the differfromthe contentof herbelief thatb is F, evenif a is b. But,the story if of matter: thetermst andu are goes, the meanings sentencesareanother co-referential the predicate is extensional), thenthemeaningsof (and Fu the sentencesrt is F' andru is F' cannotdifferSo, for example,one' s belief thatHesperus Phosphorus well havea different is contentfrom may one's belief thatHesperusis Hesperus, is thoughHesperus indeedPhosphorus.(FollowingFrege, I shall call the contentof a belief, so understood, a thought.) On the other hand, the sentences "Hesperus is and is have the same meaning,prePhosphorus" "Hesperus Hesperus" cisely because Hesperusis Phosphorus.Thus, Frege was right about belief, but wrong aboutthe meaningsof propernames. Somethinglike Frege'snotionof sense is neededin a proper accountof belief (andother propositional but attitudes), no suchnotionis neededin an accountof the meaningsof sentences(except,perhaps, an accountof the meaningsof in intensional operators). The wide acceptanceof the HybridView2 derives in partfrom the agreedforce of arguments the claim thatbelief is intensional(in the for
I See Frege (1892). I shall translate Frege's word "Bedeutung"as "reference", not as "meaning". 2 It is probably fair to say that the Hybrid View is dominant these days. Among the classic statements of it are Kaplan (1978), Richard (1983), and Loar (1988). Peter Carruthers(1989) actually comes close to addressing some of the concerns voiced below. In recent writing, authors are often content to presume the correctness of the account of meaning in question: it is usually the account of belief or belief-ascription which is taken to be controversial. Nathan Salmon, for example, holds a peculiar version of the Hybrid View, since, on the one hand, he holds that belief is a relation between agents, propositions, and "modes of acquaintancewith propositions, or ways in which a believer may be familiar with propositions" (1986a, p. 441); but, on the other hand, he holds that belief-attributions quantify existentially over modes of acquaintance, whence belief-attributions are extensional (see Salmon 1986b, esp. Ch. 8).

Mind, Vol. 104. 413. January 1995

X Oxford University Press 1995

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G. 80 Richard Heck,Jnr.

in like sense outlinedabove).The arguments questiongo something this. SupposethatOfficerObie believes thatArlo (knownto him as a certain musician)dumpedsome trashoff a cliff; Obie is anxious to arrestthe whomhe does not that criminal Arlo. Suppose,further, he meetsGuthrie, If a party. he arrest Guthrie? ObiebelievedthatArlo arrest, at Whydoesn't him, so the obviousansweris was Guthrie, even wrongly,he wouldarrest thatObiedoes notbelieve thatArlois Guthrie.3 Thatis the rightexplanaif and tion of Obie'sbehavior, Arlo is not Guthrie, it is the rightexplanasince Obie does not believe that Therefore, tion, even if Arlo is Guthrie. and does believe thatArlo is Arlo, Arlois Guthrie, since he (presumably) then, the contentsof thesebeliefs mustdiffer.Werebelief notintensional, since Obiebelieves thatArlo is Arlo, he wouldhave to believe thatArlo is Guthrie,since Arlo is Guthrie.Our explanationof Obie's behavior, which dependsessentiallyupon the claim thathe does not believe that the Arlo is Guthrie,would then fail.4Whatdistinguishes contentof the beliefthatArlois Guthrie fromthatof thebelief thatArlois Arlois somethinglike a Fregeansense, a "wayof thinkingof' or "wayof apprehending"the objectin question.5 of Surely,however,no argument this sortcan show any more thanthat like account something Frege'snotionof sense is neededin an adequate of belief.As MichaelDummett putsa closely relatedpoint: betweensense andreference for [This]argument the distinction has a majordefect:it has no tendencyto show thatthe sense of a word is a featureof the language. It shows, at best, that each if with a word,mustattach speaker, he is to associatea reference senseto it; it does notshowanynecessityfor different a particular to speakers attachthe samesense to any one word,so long as the senses which they attachto it determinethe same reference.It leaves openthe possibilitythatthe sense of a wordis ... therefore by [buta] partof the psychologicalmechanism which a speaker attachesa meaningto the word,and not a genuineingredient of the meaning.(Dummett1978, p. 130)
I One always has the sense in these sorts of examples that the information that Arlo is Guthrie is being withheld. But there is no essential lack of information at this point: one does not ordinarily think that Obie's behaviour cannot be explained until one knows whether Arlo is Guthrie. 4 Note that the problem does not only concern intuitions about belief reports-which might be susceptible of pragmatic explanation-but the status of everyday explanations of behaviour.This is the best answer to Salmon (1986b, pp. 11l9ff). I It is sometimes said that what is needed is a notion of a way of apprehending a proposition (see Salmon 1986a, p. 441, quoted in note above). But this is a mistake, due to excessive concentration upon sentences which contain only one proper name. Consider, for example, the inferential relations between the beliefs that a likes b, that b likes c, and so forth, where all the terms refer to the same object.

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TheSenseof Communication 81

Afterall, for all thathas been said so far,the contentsof beliefs mightbe essentially the propertyof particular persons, so that differentpeople an couldapprehend objectin similarways, thoughneverin the sameway. We have, to put the pointdifferently, been given no reasonto thinkthat the notionof sensehas anyapplication whatsoever outsidethephilosophy of thought. Indeed,it has becomeharder harder fathomhow arguments and to like thatunderdiscussioncould ever have been supposedto show anything more than that belief is intensional, how they could ever have been thoughtto show thatthe meaningof a propernameis not just its referent. Of course,thereare a numberof arguments which purport show to directlythatthe meaningof a nameis just its reference (e.g. Kripke1980 andPutnam1975), andthe popularity the HybridView is due in part of to the influenceof these arguments. But, or so it seems to me, whathas is madethe HybridView so attractive the thoughtthatwhatonce seemed obviousis simplywrong:neitherthe claim thatbelief is intensional, nor even the best argument that claim, implies that the meaning of a for nameexceeds its reference,and it is just a mistaketo supposethatthey do. So much, then, for explanationand motivationof the HybridView. WhatI wish to arguehereis thatit is nevertheless unstable: once one has allowedthatbelief is intensional, further arguments commitone to the do view thatthe meaningof a nameexceedsits reference. Beforeturning to I View in moredetail.I shall thatargument, shallfirstdevelopthe Hybrid thendiscusswhatI shallcall the Problem Content, questionraised the of associatewith by whichis: how mustthe senseswhichdifferent speakers a given namebe relatedif transmission knowledgeby meansof lanof guage is to be possible?WhatI shall argueis thatthe answeris not that speakersmay diverge as much as they like regardingthe senses they attach a given name,so long as they attach samereference it, that the to to they need only "getthe referenceright".Whatoughtto be controversial is notthis intermediate but I conclusion the significance shallascribeto it, is for whatI shallbe arguing thatit is inconsistent with the HybridView. This ultimateconclusionrests upontwo crucialauxiliary premises:first, thatconclusionsaboutwhat is necessaryfor the transferof knowledge yield conclusionsaboutwhat is necessaryfor understanding; secand, is necessaryfor understanding ondly,thatconclusionsaboutwhat yield conclusionsaboutmeaning.In bothcases, I shallnotbe arguing directly for these premises,thoughthey areboundto be controversial. Instead,I shall be arguingthat they ought to be acceptableto a proponent the of View. Hybrid

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82 RichardG. Heck,Jnr.

Since the arguments given here are directedagainstthe HybridView, theyshow,atbest,thatthemeaning a proper of nameexceedsits reference Even then,they may not implythatproper names if belief is intensional. have sensesin Frege'ssense of thatterm.(Infact,the notionof sense will be left almost totally unexplained.)In concluding,I shall make a few remarks aboutwhatsortof conceptionof the meaningsof propernames mightbe supposedto issue fromthe arguments given here,but, unfortunately,I am presently unableto say verymuchaboutthis;andI shallsay almost nothingaboutthe senses of (utterances demonstratives of) and indexicals.

2. Meaning and content

At the beginningof "OnSense and Reference", Fregeobservesthatthe "cognitivevalue"of a sentenceof the formra is F' may differfromone
of the form rb is F', even if the names a andb have the same reference

is (1892, pp.25-6). If thisobservation to be thefoundation anargument of that the meaningof a propername exceeds its reference,the notion of to meaningmustbe related thatof cognitivevalue.Frege'splainintention is to arguethat sentencesof this form may have differentmeaningsby showingthatthey may differin cognitive value. He will then conclude that,sincethe sentencesdifferonly in respectof whatnamestheycontain, the names must have differentmeanings.But what might we take the to value"of a sentenceto be?Andhow is it supposed be related "cognitive to the meaningof the sentence? Orwellwrote1984",in SupposethatTonyuttersthe sentence,"George Alex's presence.6 Whatis required Alex is to have understood if Tony? Obviously,Alex must at least know whatTony said: she must know,in that particular, Tony said thatGeorgeOrwellwrote1984; she must,in a differentsense, know whatTony said meant.Now, on the HybridView, whatTonysaid does not dependuponhow Tonyherselfthinksof George Orwell:whatTonysaid does not depend,in respectof the name"George Orwell",upon anythingother thanits reference.Hence, to know what this Tonysaid,as faras concerns name,Alex mustmerelyget its reference thereis no morestringent To correct; requirement. thinkof GeorgeOrwell as the referenceof Tony'sutterance "GeorgeOrwell",she mustthink of of him in some way:perhaps of Tonythinksof him as the author Animal

Throughout paper,I meanto be talkingaboutthe meaningsof specific this

As at utterances of names. will becomeimportant the end of ?7, relevant features of the contextshouldbe thoughtof as contributing the determination the to of meaningof the utterance itself.

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TheSenseof Communication 83 Farm; Alex may thinkof GeorgeOrwellas the authorof certainreports

aboutthe SpanishCivil War.7 Nevertheless, they arethinking the same of object, andAlex has understood Tony so long as she thinks something like:GeorgeOrwell,thatguy who wroteaboutthe SpanishCivil War,he wrote1984;that'swhatTonysaid (cf. Evans 1982,pp. 305ff.). TheHybrid Viewis thuscommitted theextensionality understandto of ing: understanding utterance an depends,in respectof names,only upon thepreservation theirreference, uponthepreservation any"intenof not of sional"featuresof the namesused. Indeed,it is difficultto see how else one might explainthe HybridView's commitment the claim thatthe to meaningof a proper nameis just its reference exceptin termsof aninsistence that,so faras linguisticcommunication concerned, is is reference all thatmatters. how,withoutthisclaim,arewe to understand whatthe For to sensesof namesdo notmatter? whatthe Hybrid To View'srejection the of claimthatnames"themselves" havesensesamounts? conclusionthat The the Hybrid Viewis committed theextensionality understanding not to is of meantto be, andoughtnotto be, controversial. the is Indeed, package both coherentand attractive. Knowledge(like belief) is intensional.Thus, if Alex is to knowthatTony'sutterance thename"George of Orwell" referred to GeorgeOrwell,Alex must apprehend, thinkof, GeorgeOrwellin or some way.But, according the Hybrid to this View,in understanding utterance of "GeorgeOrwell",she may thinkof GeorgeOrwellhowevershe pleases;thatis why the "intensional" features the namearenotfeatures of
of the name.8 Thus, not only does the conclusion that the Hybrid View is

committedto the extensionality understanding of pose no threatto it, it oughtto be a welcomeconclusion,one whichhelpsbetterto explainit. It is obviousthatthereis some sense in whichone says the samething whetherone asserts"GeorgeOrwell wrote 1984" or "EricBlair wrote 1984".The questionis whether understand to someoneis to know "what she said"in this sense.The HybridView is committed the claimthatit to to is, andthe argument be given againstthe HybridView is thatit is not. The questionat issue hereis thus:is it enoughto understand someoneto of But get thereferences herwordsright? aninquiry baseduponthisques7To emphasize: am neither I suggestingnorsupposing sensesor "waysof that thinking" mustbe, or usuallywill be, descriptive. use of descriptive My sensesin examplesis due, first,to unclarity abouthow to talkaboutsenses of otherkinds; and,secondly,to the ease with whichone can talkaboutdescriptive senses.The sameis trueof Frege. 8 Similarly, Alex knowsthatTonysaid thatGeorgeOrwellwrote1984, the if meaning of the sentenceuttered Tonywill not itself be (partof) the contentof by Alex's knowledge.Rather, the Alex mustapprehend meaningof the sentencein some particular way. Nevertheless, may say thatAlex knows whatthe senone tence Tonyutteredmeant:she merelyhas a particular of apprehending way the meaningof thatsentence.But see note5.

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Richard Heck,Jnr. G.

tion is all too likely to stall. One can easily imagine one side offering examplesin which someone"getsthe referenceright"andis said not to the understand; otherside, tryingto explainthe examplesaway,professing intuitional ineptitude, offeringotherexamplesin whichsomeone and "getsthe sense wrong"and yet is said to understand. How then can we resolvedisputes aboutwhether someonehasunderstood? we firsthave Do to decidewhatconstitutes understanding? us hopenotandinsteadask: Let why do we care whetherwe understand another? moreprecisely: one Or, an madeby someoneenableone to do? whatdoes understanding utterance For then we may decide whethersomeonehas understood asking:is by is she now ableto do thatwhichunderstanding supposed makeus able to to do?

3. Understanding,assertion, and belief

an of To understand utterance an assertoric sentence,one mustknowhow it says the worldis. Justas importantly, mustrecognizeit as an utterone ance of an assertoric sentence, a sentencewhich, as Frege would say, expressesa judgement opposed,say,to a wish).But whatis it to know (as that,to know whatjudgementthe sentenceexpresses?Or even to know that it expressesa judgement? One might say thatto know whatjudgement the sentence expresses, one must know not only how it says the worldis, but thatit claimsthe worldis thatway. But thatdoes not seem is particularly helpful.One mightalso say: an assertion an expressionof belief (as opposed to desire) (cf. Frege 1918, p. 62). Granted,one can (defeasibly)inferfrom someone'smakingan assertionthatshe believes what she has asserted.Perhapsthe validityof such inferencesis even a In matter. any event,thereis an undeniably close connection conceptual betweenthe notionsof assertion belief. and that is However,the nearplatitude an assertion an expressionof belief is does not exhaustthis connection. least as important the fact thatwe At acquirebeliefs in responseto assertionsmade by others.The view for whichI shallbe arguingin the presentsectioncan be putroughlyas follows:thetransmission belief fromspeaker speaker a basicpurpose to is of of thepractice assertion alternative can of (the beingthat,thoughassertion The View sofunction,thatis notits purpose). argument againstthe Hybrid like requires appealto thisview, or at leastsomething it. Forthe argument is goingto be thattheHybrid Viewfails to account thecapacity comof for munication transfer to information fromspeaker speaker. to Partof the reasonwe carewhetherwe understand othersis thatwe use otherspeakers sourcesof information as aboutthe world.It is partof our

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TheSenseof Communication 85

practice assertion one acceptsthe assertions others.(Assertions of that of are notjust expressionsof belief, but also invitations believe.) If one to acceptsan assertion true,one ipsofacto comesto have a certain as belief: an hence, if one misunderstands assertionand yet acceptsit as true,one risksacquiring false belief, even if the belief the speaker expressing a was was true.In so faras we areinterested understanding, areinterested in we in communication, an interestin communication, so I am aboutto and or argue,amountsto just the sort of interestin belief-transmission which I amtryingto motivate.It is, unfortunately, possiblefor me to establish not this claimin full generality here(andnotfor lackof space).In arguing for it, I shallbe assumingthatbelief is intensional, effect arguing it is in that a consequence (thataspectof) the HybridView. of As arguedearlier,the HybridView is committedto the claim that understanding dependsonlyuponpreservation reference. of Onlybecause the HybridView insists thatsuccessfulcommunication does not require speakers attachthe same-or even related-senses to a given nameis to it compatible withthe claimthatspeakers, believers,attachsensesto qua namesat all. But one mightwonderwhy even preservation reference of the of oughtto be required. Why do we botherto preserve references the nameswhichoccurin sentencesuttered others? Whatsortof argument by can be given for the claimthateven so muchis necessaryfor understanding? Merelyto remark, this point,thatthe meaningsof thosenamesare at the objectsto whichthey referwouldbe unhelpful,since the questionis its why (enoughto determine) reference shouldbe anypartof themeaning of a name. Similarly,it would be unhelpfulto remarkthat we wish to know whatotherssay, since the questionis why we careto know "what otherssay"(in this particular the must sense).Certainly, reasonreference be preserved,if one is to understand, not (accordingto the Hybrid can View) be that assertionis merely the expressionof belief and that, to understand an assertion, we must understandwhat belief is being expressed: for then, to understand,one would have to do more than reference. to merelypreserve And,it wouldagainbe unhelpful say merely we to the that,in communication, areinterested determine beliefs of others only "upto reference": the questionwouldthenbe why areinterfor ested in the beliefs of othersto, andonly to, thatextent. Thereasonwe must(at least)preserve reference that,in communicais as we beliefs tion, we use otherspeakers a sourceof information: acquire from them. It is thus important we not get the referencesof names that occurringin sentences utteredby others wrong, lest we acquirefalse beliefs. The necessitythat(at least) reference preserved communibe in cationis to be explainedas a consequenceof the fact that assertionis a mode of belief-transmission.

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86 RichardG. Heck,Jnr.

Indeed,an argumentfor Hybrid the View,for the claimthatno moreis required understanding thatspeakers thereference for than "get right", can be formulated similarterms.9SupposethatTony assertsthe sentence in "EricBlair wrote 1984". Her doing so is an expressionof a belief she her holds;hearing andaccepting sentenceas true,Alex comesto form the a belief whichshe wouldexpressby meansof the same sentence.But so long as TonyandAlex referto the sameobjectby meansof thename"Eric Blair",then,even if they referto it in different ways, it is impossiblethat Alex'sbelief shouldbe falseif Tony'sis true.Thereis a certain of epissort temic difficultyin which Alex will not findherself simply because she attachesa sense to the namedifferent fromTony's;in particular, difthis ferencewill not leadherto acquire false beliefs fromTony,since any any beliefs she shouldso acquire be truejust in case Tony'sare.In short: will as longas one getsthereference right,one doesnotriskacquisition false of beliefs.Hence,if thetruth-preserving transmission beliefsis thecentral of is of purpose communication, preservation reference all thatis required of for that centralpurpose.And that is arguablyenough to establish the HybridView (given the intensionality belief). of Thus,the premisethatit is partof the purposeof linguisticcommunibelief from one speakerto anotherplays an important cationto transfer in the only availableargument, role acceptableto the HybridView, for in why so much as referencemust be preserved communication. Moreover,this premiseplaysa crucialrolein a plausible for argument the claim thatno morethanreference mustbe preserved so in a plausiblearguand View.The Hybrid View thusrequires communimentfor the Hybrid that cationbe essentiallya meansfor the transmission information, true of of beliefs fromone speaker another. to

4. Meaning and cognitive value

WhenFregespeaksof the cognitivevalueof a sentence,whathe meansis and of somethinglike: utilityfor the acquisition application knowledge, and forreasoning, so forth.'0 Though Fregehimselfdoesnotdo so, I intend
9 David Wiggins offers an argument like that about to be given (1976, pp. 252ff.). See also Carruthers(1989, pp. 48-55 and Ch. 13). Compare Evans (1982, pp. 399-400), but note that Evans's view is not the Hybrid View. McDowell notes, in fn. 27 on p. 404, that Evans left notes toward a discussion of the question we are considering here; sadly, they were apparently too sketchy to warrantpublication. 10 The German is, I am told, a perfectly ordinary phrase. This does not, of course, imply that Frege is not using it in a technical sense, but I am not sure whether I should like to claim that he does.

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TheSenseof Communication 87

hereto developthis notiona bit andemployit in a partialexplanation of betweenthenotionsof meaning, therelationship understanding, belief. and Letus saythatthecognitivevalueof a sentence,for speaker, is thecontent a of the belief she wouldformwere she to acceptthatsentenceas true(the belief she wouldformin virtueof heraccepting truthof thatvery senthe I is withFrege'stextis easilyenough tence)." Thatthisdefinition consistent seen.Thecognitivevalues,so explained, rt is F' andru is F' candiffer, of even if the namest andu referto the sameobject,for for a given speaker, thatis just to say thatthe speakercan associatedifferentThoughtswith these sentences,thatthe beliefs she wouldformwere she to acceptthem as truemay have differentcontents,even thoughthey concernthe same object;andthatis to say little morethanthatbelief is intensional. Fregedoes not speakof the cognitivevalueof a sentencefor a speaker, butof the cognitivevalueof the sentenceitself:it is becausehe so speaks but thathe concludes,notjust thatbelief is intensional, thatthe meaning But of a nameexceedsits reference. whatis thecognitivevalueof thesentence?The most obviousthingto say, I think,is thatthe cognitivevalue to of the sentenceitself is whatis, or oughtto be, common the beliefs difit ferentspeakerswho understand would form were they to acceptit as true;it is whatis commonto the cognitivevaluesthe sentencehasfor differentspeakers it.'2 who understand The question,then,is whatrelationI " One might wish to object at this point that, if one accepts the truthof an assertion, one may acquire many different beliefs, depending upon what else one believes, what inferences one notices are then possible, and so forth. However, it seems to me that there is one thing which one would come to believe, given how one understandsa certain assertion, were one to accept it as true, no matter what else one believed: not only is there such a thing, it is the source of the other beliefs one may come to have, through inference. The claim admittedly amounts to acceptance of a version of the analytic-synthetic distinction. But I am not convinced that the distinction cannot be defended in this form. In order not to clutter the exposition, I shall speak, as I have here, simply of the cognitive value of a sentence, even though I intend what is said to apply, in the first instance, to utterances of the sentence. I do not believe that the argumentsto be given trade upon this abstraction from context. There must be a continuity of cognitive value, for a given speaker, among various utterances of the same sentence if her later utterances of the sentence an utterance of which informed her that p, are to express her so-informed belief that p. There may be some variation of cognitive value from context to context, but my central interest below is precisely in the limits to such variation. 12 It is at this sort of point that considerations of demonstratives will make for a much more complicated story. It is admittedly dangerous to leave such matters undiscussed, in the present context, since discussions of demonstratives often play an importantrole in arguments for the Hybrid View. Still, Evans (1985, pp. 291-321) gives one some reason to be confident about this. One should not take this talk of "what is common" too literally. What is common might be the use of one of a family of descriptions, any one of which is acceptable, but not all of which need be known to any given speaker.

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88 Richard Heck,Jnr. G.

shipthereis betweenthe cognitivevalueof a sentence,in this sense, and the meaningof thatsentence.WhatI am going to arguein the restof this sectionis thatthe meaningof a sentenceis its cognitivevalue, so underI stood.I shallnot establishthis in full generality. shall simplyarguethat the forms of argumentemployed in the last section depend upon this

How mustthecognitivevalueswhicha given sentencehasfor different be speakers relatedif communication to be successful,thatis, if speakis ersareto understand another? meaningof a sentenceandthecogone The nitive values it has for speakers who understandit must be related somehow.After all, those who understand sentencemay notjust form a beliefs they like whentheycome to acceptthatsentenceas true.Alex any does not understand sentence"GeorgeOrwellwrote 1984" if she is the disposed,upon acceptingits truth,to form, in the first instance,not the beliefthatGeorgeOrwellwrote1984, 13butthebeliefthatFlipper disliked cauliflower. Now, it maybe correctthata given sentencecan havedifferent cognitivevaluesfor differentspeakers of whomunderstand but all it, how different thesebe?At theveryleast,the different can beliefsspeakers would form, were they to acceptthe truthof a sentencethey all understand,surelymustconcernthe sameobjects:theymustat leastget the referencesof the namesin the sentencecorrect.Indeed,if the HybridView is right,the cognitivevalues a given sentencehas for differentspeakers needagree,in respectof anyproper namescontained the sentence,only in in the references the names. of The questionwhat restrictions thereare upon the differentcognitive values a sentencemay have for differentspeakersis a generalization of the question,discussedin the last section,why reference needsto be preservedin communication. the last section,I developed,on behalfof the In HybridView, an argument it does, as well as for the claim thatno that morethanreference need be preserved. focus uponthese claimswas My not due simply to theirintrinsicinterest.Rather,afterthey were established, I went on to draw conclusions about the meanings of names, that respectively, the meaningof a namemustdetermine reference its and thatthe meaningof a nameis determined its reference.'4 the case of In by the latterclaim,for example,I argued behalfof the Hybrid (on View) that if no moreis required, communication to transfer beliefs, thanthat is true
13 Onecan hardly avoidtalkabout"the" beliefthatGeorgeOrwellwrote1984, butnoneof the arguments be givendependuponthisway to talking.Officially, to one as perhaps, oughtto readsuchremarks e.g. "thebelief (of the personin question which is relatedin some suitableway to RH's belief) thatGeorgeOrwell wrote1984".It will not affectthe argument. 14 Imean "determine" themathematical in sense,so thatif meaning determines reference, nameswiththe samemeaningcannothavedifferent references.

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TheSenseof Communication 89

a forms,in virtueof heraccepting given thecontentof thebelief a speaker sentenceas true,shouldconcernthe correctobjects;thatis, thatthe cognitive values the sentencehas for differentspeakersneed only agree in reference(since the contentof the belief a speakerwould so formis the sentence's cognitive value for that speaker).To draw any conclusion aboutthe meaningsof namesat this pointis to drawa conclusionabout the meaningof an expressionfrom one aboutwhatmustbe commonto it. who understand Inparthecognitivevaluesa sentencehasfor speakers this drawsthe conclusionthatnameswiththe samerefticular, argument erence do not differ in meaning from the conclusion that (otherwise such names do not differ in cognitive identicalsentencescontaining)"5 its of value:it drawsthe conclusionthatthe reference a namedetermines its meaningfromthe conclusionthatthe referenceof a namedetermines should cognitivevalue (cf. Evans 1985, p. 301). Thatsuch an argument that be valid, as it seems to be, requires the cognitivevalue of an expresits sion shoulddetermine meaning. that For our purposes,however,it is more important thereis a seemwhich dependsupon the converseclaim, that the ingly valid argument its meaningof an expressiondetermines cognitivevalue. The firstargument discussed in the last section, for the claim that the meaningof a its namemust determine reference,is such an argument.16I arguedfirst mustatleast speakers thatthe cognitivevaluesa sentencehasfor different agreein the referencesascribedto propernamescontainedin them (by is true if arguingthatthis is required communication reliablyto transfer belief). I then concluded,as a kind of corollary,that the meaningof a its Thatis to say,I drewthe connamemustat least determine reference. clusion that the meaningof a name determinesits referencefrom the its lemmathatthe cognitivevalue of a namedetermines reference.That such an argumentshould be valid, as it seems to be, requiresthat the its meaningof a nameshoulddetermine cognitivevalue. Thus,if theforms of argument employedin the last sectionarevalid,as mustbothdetermine be and they seem to be, the meaningsof expressions with,theircognitivevaldetermined andso mightas well be identified by, is too ues. Thisconclusion,for whichI saidI wouldbe arguing, probably weak.Themeaningof a sentenceis (notjust whatis commonto but)what
constrains, or unifies, the possibly different cognitive values it may have

it. who understand Onemightalmostsay thatclaims for variousspeakers

II In the spirit of the Context Principle, we may say that the cognitive value of an expression, for a speaker, is the contribution that expression makes to determining the cognitive values of (utterances of) sentences containing it. 16 It is precisely this form of argument that will be employed below, and its validity could use more defense than I am presently able to give it. See the end of ?7 for a bit more on this topic, which I hope to address elsewhere.

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90 Richard Heck,Jnr. G.

aboutmeaningarebut theoretical reformulations claims aboutcogniof tive value.Theimportant point,forpresent is purposes, just thattheforms of argument in the last paragraph indeed valid-at least, discussed are theyoughtto be acceptable a proponent the Hybrid to of View,since they wouldseemto playanessentialrolein thebestarguments it. If so, then for questionsaboutthe meaningsof sentencesmay be addressed-as they have alreadybeen addressedin the last section-by asking what is or oughtto be commonto thecognitivevalueswhichdifferent speakers who understand sentencetakeit to have. a Let me emphasize that the HybridView does not conflict with the claim thatthe meaningof a sentenceis its cognitivevalue.Accordingto the HybridView,speakers may associatesenses as different they wish as with a given propername, so long as they get its referenceright.The cognitivevalue a sentencehas for a speaker-the belief she wouldform were she to accept it as true-is therefore constrained only by the requirement it concernthe appropriate that object. Whatis commonto the cognitivevalues a particular sentencehas for differentspeakerswho understand is, on this view, the contentsof those beliefs stripped,in it respectof anyproper namescontained them,of all buttheirreference. in Thus, not only is the HybridView compatiblewith the claim that the meaningof a sentenceis its cognitive value; this latterclaim, together with the claimthatspeakers need only "getthe reference right"to understandan assertion,implies thatthe meaningof a propername is just its reference. Beforeturning criticismof the Hybrid to View,it is worthreviewingits accomplishments. far,we haveseen thatthe Hybrid So View successfully accommodatesFregean argumentsfor the intensionalityof belief; it accommodates well-knownarguments the meaningof a proper that name does not exceed its reference; is compatible it with the thesisthatunderstandingis knowledgeof meaning;and,it is compatiblewith the thesis thatthereis a close connection betweenthemeanings sentencesandthe of cognitivevaluesthose sentenceshave for variousspeakers. is no wonIt derit has foundso manyadherents. is nonethe less wrong. It

5. Theproblem of content: communicationand knowledge

Earlier,we consideredan argumentfor the HybridView which went roughlyas follows. Partof the purposeof linguisticcommunication to is transferbeliefs from one speakerto another,and we have an obvious interestin not so acquiring false beliefs. It is therefore necessaryfor successful communication that one get the referencesof another'swords

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TheSenseof Communication 91

to that right.Moreover, guarantee the truthof a belief so transferred will be preserved, is also sufficient, respectof thosenames,to get the refit in erenceright.Whatmustbe common different to speakers who understand a name,if communication amongthemis to be successful,is thusjust the referenceof the name:hence, given whatwas arguedin the last section, the meaningof a nameis just its reference. This argument rests upon a quite wrong pictureof communication, one accordingto which successful communicationneed only prepare the way for the transfer truebeliefs. The argument thatdifferences of is in the senses speakersattachto a given namewill not obstruct transthe fer of truebeliefs and thattherefore successfulcommunication depends of The conclusionfollows only if it is only uponpreservation reference. successfully-to have understoodan sufficientto have communicated assertion-to have put oneself in a position to acquire true beliefs shouldthe speakerherselfbe expressingtruebeliefs. This is the crucial premiseof the argument, it is false: moreover, successfulcommuand if nicationmust enableone to do morethanacquiretruebeliefs, preservation of reference alone might not be sufficient for successful communication. The claimthatcommunication mustprepare way for the transfer the of truebelief was introduced a partial as of must explanation why reference be preserved communication-andso as partof an explanation why in of thereareanyrestrictions thedifferent upon cognitivevaluesspeakers may understand given sentenceto have. But is this the correctexplanation? a Is it only becausean arbitrary belief hasno particular chanceof beingtrue that differentspeakerscannotunderstand sentenceto have arbitrarily a different the cognitivevalues?17 Granted, merefactthatsomeoneasserted a sentencedoes not give an arbitrary belief any particularly good chance of being true,butthatis not why theremustbe a connection betweenthe cognitivevaluesa sentencehas for differentspeakers. if Rather, the content of the belief one speakerformsin reactionto an assertionbearsno to particular relationship the contentof the belief the latterwas expressing, then, even if her newly formedbelief were true,she shouldmerely have been lucky. Again, if the beliefs we form in reactionto sentences asserted othersbearno close relationship the meanings thosesenby to of tences, then, even if those beliefs are true, we would not, in ordinary cases, knowthemto be true.We would not even have acquired justified beliefs. Ourpurposein communication notjust to assembletruebeliefs;we is haveat least as muchinterestin acquiring knowledgeor,at least,justified
1 One might note here that if it were merely true beliefs in which we were interested, material equivalence would be enough. Cf. Carruthers(1989, p. 50).

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Richard G. Heck, Jnr.

beliefs-if for no otherreasonthanthatwe can pursuethe truthonly by pursuingjustified belief. Earlier, I raised the question why we care and otherspeakers, the answersuggestedwas that whether understand we We we use otherpersonsas sourcesof information. wish not to misunderis of of standbecauseunderstanding a precondition the transfer informawe of tion. But the transfer information desireis not merelythe transfer of truebelief:it is the transfer knowledge. of then of is If communication a meansof thetransfer information, to have information. in If, is understood to haveputoneself inpositionto acquire in of of turn,the sortof transfer information questionis not a transfer true must beliefbutof knowledge,thento understand be to putoneselfin posibe The tion to come to know, shouldcircumstances favourable. point is Evans:18 putnicely by Gareth recognized, pointthat thoughinsufficiently [I]tis a fundamental, communicationis essentially a mode of the transmissionof
knowledge. ... [I]f the speaker S has knowledge of x to the effect

uttersa sentencein whichhe rethatit is F, andin consequence A fers to x, andsays of it thatit is F, andif his audience hearsand the and understands utterance, acceptsit as true(andthereareno
defeating conditions), then A himself thereby comes to know of x that it is F. (Evans 1982, pp. 310-11)

made an If one hascommunicated successfullywith(understood assertion if by) one who knows what she said to be true,then all thatis required, is that one accept the assertionas one is to come to know something, we true.19 havea shortexpression, maysay:successfulcommunication To of enablesthe transmission knowledge. We have, to this point,reducedthe questionwhetherthe meaningof a whatmustbe common nameexceedsits reference the question: to proper to the cognitivevalues a sentencehas for differentspeakerswho underenablesthe standit? In light of the fact that successfulcommunication as: maybe reformulated how,in transmission knowledge,ourproblem of respectof the namescontainedin it, must the cognitive values which a is be given sentencehas for differentspeakers related,if communication of to be successful,thatis, if thetransmission knowledgeby meansof lan18 Evans's emphasis. It is worth noting, as Evans does, that the principle he states is at the root of various arguments for the importance of causal considerations both in epistemology and in semantics. 19Modulo defeating conditions, as Evans notes. The point may also be put thus: if one has understood an assertion made by one who knows what she has said to be true, and if one has good reason to and does trust her, ceteris paribus, and so on, then all that is required if one is to come to know something is that one accept the assertion as true. We shall ignore this complexity here. The examples to be given do not trade on it.

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guageis to be the defaultcase?Thisproblem whatI call the Problem of is


The Problemof Contentis best explainedby example.Supposethat TonyhearsAlex assert"George Orwellwrote1984"andthatAlex knows this sentenceto be true.If Tonyunderstands Alex and acceptsthe assertion as true,she will ipso facto form a particular belief, that which she expressesas "George Orwellwrote1984".Tony'sformingthe belief she does is explained(in part)by herattaching sense she does to the name the "GeorgeOrwell".Though she might instead,or additionally, form the belief which she expressesas "EricBlairwrote 1984",her belief would not thenbe justified,unlessshe hadcertainauxiliary knowledge,namely, the knowledgethatGeorgeOrwellis EricBlair. One problemwhich this sort of exampleraises is whatwe mightcall the Problemof Propositional Attitudes: how it is even possiblefor there to be a difference betweenthe belief thatGeorgeOrwellwrote1984 and the belief thatEricBlairdid?It is this problem whichleadsto one half of the Hybrid View,the claimthatbelief is intensional. Problem ConThe of tent,on the otherhand,concernsthe following differencebetweenthese beliefs:Tony'snewlyformedbelief is atleastprima faciejustified,though her belief, had she formedit, thatEricBlair wrote1984 wouldnot have been. Furthermore, Tony'snew belief may constitute knowledge:if Alex says thatGeorgeOrwellwrote1984 andknowsthathe did, then,so long as she understands whatAlex said,Tonyhas an epistemicopportunity, an opportunity come to knowthatGeorgeOrwellwrote1984;on theother to hand,she mayhaveno opportunity come to knowthatEricBlairwrote to 1984. Whether acceptsthis opportunity, course,is another she of matter, andwhatelse she has the chanceto come to knowwill dependuponwhat else she knows:thereis nevertheless difference a betweenwhatone does anddoes not havethe opportunity come to knowpurelyin virtueof the to fact thatone has understood assertion an madeby one who knowsit to be true.TheProblem Content of amounts the question: to whatdistinguishes whatTonyhas an opportunity come to know from whatshe does not to have an opportunity come to know? to Theproblem oughtto understand we Fregeas raisingin "OnSenseand Reference" thusnot how the belief thata is F can differfromthe belief is thatb is F, if a is b. Thoughthatproblemdoes indeedconcernhim, the morepressingquestionis: how,if the meaningof a namewerejust its reference,could therebe sufficientlystrongrestrictions uponthe cognitive values a sentencecould have for differentspeakersthatthe transferof
20 TheProblem of Content shouldnotbe confusedwiththemoregeneralproblem of how it is possiblefor knowledgeto be transferred meansof language by at all. The Problemof Contentconcernswhatknowledgea speakermay come to haveby meansof communication.

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94 Richard Heck,Jnr. G.

The knowledge shouldbe possible?21 force of this question,like the correctness of its presuppositions,depends upon a variety of auxiliary claims.First,thatthereis an important betweenthe beliefs relationship differentspeakersassociate with a given sentence and the sentence's meaning.Secondly,thatonly if thereis an appropriate relationbetween the beliefs differentspeakersassociatewith a given sentence(andso an appropriate relationbetweenthose beliefs andits meaning)will successbe ful communication possible.Finally,thatcommunication notbeen has successfulunless the transmission knowledgehas been enabled.It is of forthisreasonthatwe havehadto spendso long layingthe ground the for question. WhatI am going to arguein the remainder the paperis that it is of becauseof its inabilityto resolve this problem,the Problemof Content, thatthe HybridView fails. It is becausecommunication mustenablethe transfer knowledgethatmorethanreferencemustbe commonto the of cognitive values differentspeakersattachto a given name. Since the meaningof a sentenceis whatis, or oughtto be, commonto the cognitive values it has for differentspeakers,sentenceswhich differ only in that they containdifferent namesof a given objectmay have different meanings. Hence,the meaningof a nameis notjust its reference.

6. Theproblem with the hybrid view

we Earlier, considered argument the Hybrid an for View,for the view that the cognitivevalue of a sentencefor a speakerwho understands need it The basis for this argument the claim was only "getthe reference right". thatthe belief someoneformsin responseto an assertion madeby someone else is "appropriately related" it just in case the belief is aboutthe to sameobjects.22 it is obviousthatpreservation reference But of aloneis not sufficientfor transmissionof knowledge. Supposethat Tony does not know that George Orwellis Eric Blair and thatAlex asserts,in Tony's
21 Let me emphasize that the question is not: what is required if the transferof what is known is to be possible? I am not assuming that communication must transfer the content known from one speaker to another, which would beg the question, but ratherthat the belief one forms on the basis of an assertion one understands must constitute knowledge if the belief expressed constituted knowledge. Even if I were going to argue that the latter implies the former, that would not be to assume the former. But I'm not really going to argue that, since that would be to argue in favour of what, below, I call the "strict"Fregean view. 22 The belief need not merely concern the same objects, but also involve the same "properties"or what have you, and be similarly structured,and so on. But this part of the story is not at issue here.

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TheSenseof Communication 95

presence,"EricBlair is Eric Blair".Supposefurther that, in reactionto Alex's assertion,Tony forms the belief she would express as "George Orwellis EricBlair".Thisbelief does concernthe correctobjects.Reference is preserved. Truthis preserved. Tonythen come to know that Has is EricBlair?Obviouslynot. GeorgeOrwell is Somefurther restriction therefore needed,beyondmerepreservation of reference.A naturalrestrictionis this one: a belief formed when a of speakeracceptsthe assertion a given sentenceas trueis appropriately relatedto the contentof thatsentencejust in case it concernsthe correct But objectsandis expressible meansof thatsamesentence.23 this will by not do, either.SupposeEric Blair were to become amnesiacand check himselfinto a hospital.The doctor,Tony,decidingthatshe needsto have Andsuppose Orwell". some nameby whichto call him,dubshim"George to further Alex says-not intending referto Tony'spatient-"George that Orwellwrote1984"andthatTonyforms,in reactionto Alex's assertion, the belief she would express to othermembersof her staff as "George Orwellwrote1984". Thisbelief is true:Tony'snew patient to happens be Eric Blair, that is, "the other"George Orwell. But surely it would not countas knowledge,even if Alex knowsthatGeorgeOrwellwrote1984: it wouldnot even countas justified.24 Thus,preservation reference of and meansof expression not sufficient successfulcommunication, is for since it does not sufficeto enablethe transmission knowledge. of Thisargument seem sophistical, may baseduponanexampletoo trivial to show anythingsubstantial. course,the thoughtmightgo, thereare Of lots of GeorgeOrwellsin the world,andto understand sentencecontaina ing the name"George Orwell", mustdetermine one whichGeorgeOrwell the sentenceis about;perhaps may even say thatone mustdetermine we whichnameis being employed,thatone mustdisambiguate sentence the properly.25 the pointthe argument But purports makeis preciselyone to
about how we must distinguish among names. It is one thing to say that

therearelots of peoplewhosenameis "George Orwell"; suchnamesmay be distinguished theirreferences, examplesinvolvingconfusionof by and differentpeople named "GeorgeOrwell"would pose no threatto the
23Arelatedview maybe foundin Forbes (1990).His topicis belief-attribution, but it was his paperwhich inspiredmy initial reflectionson the presenttopic. Whenteachingthis material, call this the spellingview, becauseit amountsto I claimingthatthe crucialdifferencelies in the spelling(or pronunciation) the of names. 24 Compare Kripke's Napoleon-the-aardvark example(1980, p. 96). Kripke's remarks aboutthisexampledo notdependuponthe factthatthe namein fact has a differentreference.See also his discussionof Paderewski (1976, pp. 265-6). Thanksto CharlesParsons the presentversionof this example. for 25 I hope it is clear that the argument does not turnupon any specific view aboutthis.It is most easily formulated, however,in termsof this sortof view.

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Richard G. Heck, Jnr.

HybridView. In the case under consideration,however, Tony's new patientreallyis "theother"GeorgeOrwell.The name"GeorgeOrwell" whichTonyuses is a differentnamefromthe nameAlex uttered, so and (if thisis therightthingto say) she hasfailedproperly disambiguate to the sentence.But the namesdo not differbecausethey referto different people, since,ex hypothesi,theyreferto the sameperson. Whatthese examplesshow is that,if we aregoing to resolvethe Problem of Content distinguishing by amongnamesin some way,distinguishing themin termsof theirreferenceandphonological will properties not suffice.Of course, it is hardlya revelationthat,to resolve the question whetherthe meaningof a nameexceeds its reference,we need to determinehow,in orderto understand linguisticcommunication, mustdiswe tinguishamongnames.The pointof the Problem Content, of however,is
that there are significant cognitive26 or epistemological constraints upon

how we must distinguish names.While it is not a prioriimpossiblethat one could producea distinctionamong names couched, say, in causal termswhichsuccessfully resolvedtheProblem Content, is hardto see it of is muchhope of such an account.And it is even harder see thatthere to thatany such account,whichdid not itself trafficin notionscognitiveor epistemological, could provideany sortof explanation of the distinction betweenwhatone can, andwhatone can not, come to knowbecauseone hasunderstood acceptedan assertion and madeby one who knowsit to be true. It is because the notion of causationhas important connectionsboth with the notionof knowledgeandwith thatof referencethatit is natural to seek a causal solutionto the Problemof Content.Consideragainthe example:Alex uses the name "Orwell"for someone she knows as an and author, so on; Tony,as a namefor her patient.If, as one mightsuppose, thereis really no connectionbetweentheiruses of the name,then -beliefsarenot properly relatedto Alex's, andTonycan Tony's"Orwell" gainno knowledgeaboutthe personshe calls "Orwell" fromAlex. But if we tell the appropriate of causalstory,if we morefinelydistinguish kind amongnames,can we not do better?Supposethatwe distinguish among names not just by their referencebut by the sorts of causal chains by meansof whichthereference a nameis passedfromspeaker speaker: of to we havethesame namejustin case thecausalchainleadsbackto the same "initial betweenTony'sandAlex's baptism". Then,if thereis a connection uses of the name,if theirusage derivesfromthe same "initialbaptism",
26 Fregewas quiteclearthatthe notionof sense is not psychological charin acter.I am, for this reason,using the word"cognitive" here.WhatFregemeant was thatsense cannotbe explainedin termsof consciousexperience. notion The of sense plainly was psychological(as we now understand term)for him, this sincesensesarethe contentsof propositional attitudes.

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thenperhaps Tonydoes learn,fromAlex, thatGeorgeOrwellwrote1984, thather patientdid. Perhapsthen Tony andAlex merelyhave different knowledgeaboutthe bearer the name.27 of Causation certainly a role to play here.Therehas been enoughdishas cussionof exampleslike thatjust sketchedto establishthatspeakers may be ablecompetently use a nameandyet knowverylittleaboutits bearer, to indeed,notknowthebasicfactswhichwouldserveto identifyit forothers. This is one sortof reasonthatcausationhas an important to play in role thetheoryof reference. the sortof causalstoryoutlinedabovewill not But do as a solutionto the Problemof Content.It is simplynot sufficient, to understandan assertion,that one preservethe reference of the name and-so to speak-the "initial baptism" whichoneis causallyconnected. to One could acquirethe name"George Orwell" fromsomeonewho used it as we all do andyet endup usingit quitedifferently, withoutits reference For changing. example,onecanimaginethata wholetradition shouldhave grownup around name"George the the Orwell", concerning activitiesof the man we so call, thatthis traditionshouldhave begun as partof our present tradition, thatit remained so to causallyconnected the"initial baptism"by meansof which the name"GeorgeOrwell"was endowedwith its reference. this otherpractice Yet, couldhavedivergedfromthe one we now havein sucha way thatno one wouldrealizethatthe name"George as referred thesamemanas does to Orwell", usedin the"deviant" practice, ourname"George Orwell". Therecouldevenbe singlespeakers whoused both names "GeorgeOrwell",who had knowledge aboutboth George Orwells(so to speak),andyet theremightnot even be one personwho so muchas suspected therewas reallyonly one GeorgeOrwell.It is easy that to see how,under thesesortsof assumptions, examplelike thatdiscussed a earlier couldbe constructed. it And,thoughI shallnotpursue here,knowledge once againwould not be transferred, no-one can come to know for thatthereis but one GeorgeOrwellby meansof a misunderstanding.28 Admittedly,this terse discussion is not sufficient to show that no broadlycausal accountcould resolve the Problemof Content.We certainlyhaveseenthat,if one is goingto resolvetheProblem distinguishby
27 The view under discussionderivesfromKripke(1980, pp. 96-7). It is imat portant, pointssuchas this,to be clearthatKripke's "causal theory" a theory is of transfer of reference, a theoryof reference. not is Kripke admirably clearabout this point,moreso thanhis followershavebeen. 28 This exampleis similarto Evans's "Madagascar" (1985, pp. 10-11), case exceptthatit does not in fact involvechangeof reference. One mightwantto reply herethatmorethanjust the "baptism" needsto be preserved, e.g., something like the "causalnetwork" leadingbackto the baptism.But some accountis now neededof these"networks", whatfixestheircriteria identity, of of whichdoes not make use of the cognitive or epistemologicalconstraints whose acknowledgementI am tryingto force.

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98 Richard Heck,Jnr. G.

ing amongthevariousnamesspeakers understand, is goingto haveto one Thatalone distinguish themmorefinely thanin termsof theirreference. does notestablisha Fregean view, sincethe notionof sense,as Fregeconceives it, straddles philosophyof thoughtandthe philosophyof lanthe that must withouta demonstration the distinction guage.Wearetherefore dismakeuse of cognitiveor epistemological notions,thoughthe present solutionfaces cussiondoes indicatethatthe provisionof a non-Fregean significant obstacles.

7. Knowledge of reference
with attempts resolvethe Problem of We havethusfarbeen concerned to Content distinguishing by amongnamesmorefinelythanin termsof their reference. Onemightwell suggest,however,thatsuchsolutionsarequite out of the spiritof the Hybrid View,since one of its essentialcomponents that,to underis the thesisthatthe meaningof a nameis just its reference; stand language and communication,one need not distinguish among names any more finely than in termsof theirreferences.Perhapssuch are perhaps attempts resolvetheProblem Content in thewrongspirit; to of namesthemselvesdo not need to be distinguished more finely.Perhaps can the phenomena be explainedsimplyin termsof the fact thatspeakers do not always knowwhen differentnamesare namesof a single object. Whatmakesexamplesof the sortwe havebeendiscussingpossibleis precisely that speakersneed not know when names they understandare namesof the sameobject.Whatthe presentdiscussionshows is just that, if speakers not know differentnamesto referto the same object,that do the of may obstruct transmission knowledge. is is The suggestion thusthatwhatis required understanding-what for requiredif knowledge is to be transferredby means of communicabut of Undertion-is notpreservation reference, knowledge reference. of afterall, is knowledgeof meaning, standing, knowledgeof whatwas said. And if one knowswhatthe reference a wordis, if one knowingly of "gets therecan be no failureof communication, failure the reference no right", forknowledgeto be transferred.29 example,unlessone already For knows that Eric Blair is George Orwell, one cannotordinarilylearn, from an of assertion "EricBlairis F", thatGeorgeOrwellis F. Onemay certainly know that someone is referringto Eric Blair, yet not know that she is
29 Cf. Carruthers (1989, p. 135): "...[I]t suffices to give me reason to add a belief to my stock of information about an individual if I know that your assertion concems that very same thing ...". I do not mean to be endorsing this claim.

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referring GeorgeOrwell,by her use of the name"EricBlair".This is to precisely the position in which one may be if one does not know that an GeorgeOrwellis EricBlair.Hence,if one so understands assertion of "EricBlairis F" that,in accepting as true,one comes to havethe belief it thatGeorgeOrwellis F, one's belief may not constituteknowledge:for thoughone will have"gottenthe reference right",since "EricBlair"does referto GeorgeOrwell,one may notknowinglyhavegottenthe reference right. On the other hand, if one does know that "EricBlair"refers to GeorgeOrwell,as well as to EricBlair,thenone can come to know that of GeorgeOrwellis F froman assertion "EricBlairis F". As the Problem Content originallypresented, questionwas: was of the what distinguisheswhat one can come to know from what one cannot come to know in virtue of one's understanding what was assertedby someonewho knew it to be true?The suggestedsolutionis thatwhatis required, enablethe transmission knowledge,is notjust thatone get to of the reference right;further, mustknowingly get the reference one rightor, moresimply,knowto whatthe namerefers.Thisview derivesa greatdeal of appealfromthe factthatthe explanation offeredabove,of why one can not come to knowthingsaboutGeorgeOrwellfromassertions containing "EricBlair", closely parallelsthe intuitive explanation.The intuitive I explanation, submit,is thatone who does not know thatGeorgeOrwell is EricBlaircannotlearnthingsaboutGeorgeOrwellfromassertions containing"EricBlair" preciselybecauseshe does notknowthat"EricBlair" refersto GeorgeOrwell. Thisis notjust a view, a solutionto the Problem Content. Thisview, of thatto understand use of a given proper a name,one need only knowthe reference, whatreallyunderlies Hybrid is the View View.If, as theHybrid insists, belief is intensional,then there can be names of a given object which speakersdo not know to be names of the same object. On the HybridView, however,it is not in meaningthat such names differ,for theirmeaningis just theircommonreference; is, instead,in speakers' it aboutthemthatsuch namesdiffer.It is partandparcelof the knowledge HybridView thatone can believe (or know)thatGeorgeOrwellis F, yet not believe thatEricBlairis F; hence,the Hybrid View is surelycompatible withthe factthatone cancome to know,fromsomeone'sassertion of "GeorgeOrwell wrote aboutthe SpanishCivil War",only thatGeorge CivilWar. one Orwell,andnotthatEricBlair,wroteaboutthe Spanish For can know, say, that someoneis referring GeorgeOrwell,and yet not to knowthatshe is referring EricBlair. to The pointI wish now to makeis notthatthis solutionto the Problem of in Contentcannotbe formulated termsof the resourcesavailableto the View.NoramI goingto arguethatthis sortof solutionto the ProbHybrid

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100 Richard Heck,Jnr. G.

lem of Content only apparently solution,or is not workable.30 is a WhatI am goingto argueis thatit is an illusionthat,on thisview, the meaningof a name is its reference.Bluntly:the HybridView has collapsed into a Fregean view. Something very muchlike the view thatcommunication dependsupon is knowledgeof reference expressedin Frege'slate essay,"Thoughts":31
Suppose ... that Herbert Garner knows that Dr. Gustav Lauben

was bornon 13 September 1875 in N.N. and[that]thisis nottrue of anyoneelse; suppose,however,thathe does not know where Dr. Lauben now lives norindeedanything abouthim.On the else otherhand,supposethatLeo Peterdoes notknowthatDr.Lauben was bornon 13 September 1875in N.N. Thenas faras theproper name"Dr.GustavLauben" concerned, is Garner Leo Herbert and Peterdo not speakthe samelanguage, although theydo in factrefer to the samemanwiththisname;fortheydo notknowthatthey are doing so. (Frege1918, p. 65; my emphasis.) Frege here admitsthatdifferentspeakersmay attachdifferentsenses to the sameproper name.Shortlyafterwards, however,he says that,though differentspeakersoughtto attachthe same sense to a given name,"it is oftenunimportant this stipulation that shouldbe fulfilled,butnot always" (Frege1918,p. 66). In particular, variation sensewill be of significance of in cases in which speakersdo not knowthatthe senses they attachto a the given namedetermine sameobjectas its bearer. suchcases, though In the thoughtsdifferentspeakersexpress by means of the sentence "Dr. Gustav Laubenwas wounded"must "correspond truth-value", in the themselvesmaynotknowthatthisis so; theymaydisagree speakers about the truth-value the sentence,even if they agree aboutotherrelevant of facts availableto them.32
30 I do not, however, mean to be committing myself to the view. See note 33 for one worry about it. What I am arguing here is that, at the very least, knowledge of reference is required for understandingand that, if so, something like the distinction between sense and reference is present. 31 Compare Dummett (1978, p. 132): "If language is to serve as a medium of communication, it is not sufficient that a sentence should in fact be true under the interpretationplaced on it by one speaker just in case it is true under that placed on it by another; it is also necessary that both speakers should be aware of the fact". Note that Frege speaks not just of knowledge of reference, but of what we might call knowledge of preservationof reference. One altemative to the view under discussion here would be one according to which communication depends upon the knowledge that the object to which I refer is the same as that to which others refer. But it is unclear whether there is any real difference here. 32 The proper interpretationof these passages is a difficult matter.One way of reading them is to take Frege here to be concemed with an idealization implicit in his use of the notion of sense. My own understandingof the passage owes much to Dummett (1981, pp. 101-9), and the different view of George (199?).

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Thereare two important points here. First,it is frequentlysupposed is of that,on Frege'sview, whatis required communication knowledge for the sense a speakerassociates with a given name (see e.g. Carruthers of 1989,p. 135).Butthisis mistaken. Consider, example,anutterance for this is To one "Hesperus a planet". understand utterance, need not know how the speakerherself thinks of Hesperus,that is, have knowledge whose contentconcernsthe manner which the speakerthinksof Hesin perus.The view that knowledge of referenceis all that is requiredfor communication not inconsistent is with a generallyFregeanoutlook.To understand assertioncontaining"Hesperus", mustknow thatthe an one this as namerefersto Hesperus, bit of knowledgebeingas intensional any on other.It is not sufficient, Frege'sview, to knowthatthe namerefersto Whatdistinguishes Phosphorus.33 Frege'spositionis his insistencethat, an of to understand utterance a proper name,one mustthinkof the object is in fashion. On the strictto whichthe speaker referring an appropriate est suchview, one mustthinkof the objectin the sameway as the speaker; butnotethat,even on this strictview, one neednot entertain thoughts any abouthow the speakerherselfthinksof the object.Nor will one need to fashion"in weaker,more do so on views which explain"anappropriate of plausibleterms.The objectof knowledgeis the reference the speakers' utterance the name,not the sense. One mightsay thatthe sense is not of the objectbutthe contentof understanding. Secondly,the strictFregeanview is, as was said, thatthinkingof the fashion"is thinkingof the object in the same object "in an appropriate But way as the speaker. this claimis optional.Thereis no obviousreason why, once one acceptsthatthe meaningof a nameexceeds its reference,
33 This Fregean View is thus stronger than the view that knowledge of reference suffices for understanding. One issue here is whether the following sort of person would understand utterances of "Hesperus": someone who knows that "Hesperus"refer to Phosphorus, but not that Hesperus is Phosphorus-and so, not that "Hesperus"refer to Hesperus. For example, if Tony does not know that Phosphorus is the first celestial body to become visible in the evening, i.e., the evening star,it is at least arguable that she cannot know that it is Hesperus. (We may safely ignore what Peacocke calls "deference-dependent" attributions of knowledge (1992, pp. 29-33); consideration of these leads only to Evans's distinction between "producers"and "consumers" (1982, pp. 376ff.).) Could Tony yet know that "Hesperus"refers to Phosphorus? It is difficult to see now she could pick this fact up from speakers' usage-plus astronomical skill-without coming to know that Phosphorus was the evening star (and even more so, if no one knows that Phosphorus is the evening star). Still, Tony might be told that "Hesperus" refers to Phosphorus. In such a case, she could communicate the knowledge that "Hesperus"refers to Phosphorus, and so-despite that fact that she herself has no such knowledge -ffectively transfer the knowledge that Hesperus is Phosphorus. This, though, does not show that Tony understands utterances of "Hesperus"; speakers are frequently able to transfer knowledge expressed by sentences they do not (completely) understand.

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102 Richard Heck,Jnr. G.

andthatthe explanation the meaningof a namemustinvokecognitive of or epistemological notions,one must be committedto claimingthat,to an understand utterance a given name,one mustthinkof the reference of of the namein the very same way as she who utteredit. As said above, Frege'sview was not only thatthereis more to the meaningof a name thanits reference,but thatthe meaningof a nameis a partof a thought, the sort of thing which can be a constituent the contentsof proposiof will the tionalattitudes; presentargument not show thatthe meaningof a nameis a sense in this sense. The presentargument will show no more thanthatnameshavewhatwe mightcall "linguistic" senses,distinctfrom theirreferences, thatthe "linguistic" "cognitive" and and senses speakers attachto a given namemustbe closely related.I claimno more.It would be consistentwith everything said hereif "linguistic" senses were someones. thinglike familiesof "cognitive" Now, all of this having been said, is the position thatunderstanding with the HybridView? requires only knowledgeof referencecompatible If one startsfromthe positionthatunderstanding requires only preservato the tion of reference,it is natural strengthen conditionon understanding, in lightof examplesconsidered above,so thatunderstanding requires if But knowledgeof reference. then,quitedifferent thingscanbe required utterances differentnames with the same referone is to understand of ence. According to this view, to understandan assertion of "George Orwellwrote1984",it is not thatone may thinkof GeorgeOrwellin any way one likes, so long as one gets the referenceright;one mustthinkof GeorgeOrwellin sucha way as to knowthathe is the objectto whichthe speaker is referring (no knowledge about ways of thinking being required). Therearethuslimitsuponhow one maythinkof GeorgeOrwell if one is to understand utterance. one does not know thatGeorge the If Orwellis EricBlair,one cannotthinkof GeorgeOrwellas EricBlairand an yet understand utterance containing"GeorgeOrwell".Thatis to say, therewill be a (moreor less vague)collectionof ways34 whichone may in thinkof GeorgeOrwellif one is to understand anutterance, there such and will be a different collectionof ways in whichone may thinkof him and understand utterance an the containing name"EricBlair".The cognitive valuesof (utterances these namesmay therefore different. of) be The conclusionthatnameswiththe samereference mayhavedifferent meaningswill follow if the meaningof an utterance determines cogniits tive value. We saw earlierthatthis principlewas tacitlyemployedin an attractive,and seemingly valid, argumentthat the meaningof a name
34 And this collection well be highly dependent upon context, including especially common background knowledge. Perhaps this will worry some, but such context dependence will have to be acknowledged in any decent-account of our understandingof demonstratives and indexicals.

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The Sense of Communication 103

mustat least determine reference.But a defenderof the HybridView its might still demurhere, denyingthata differencebetweenthe cognitive values of utterancesof "GeorgeOrwell"and "EricBlair"implies that thereis any difference meaning.Whathas been established thatdifis of ferentthingsmay be required a speakerif she is to understand of utterances (in the same context)of differentnameswith the same reference, namely,she may need to think of the referencein differentways. Our defendermust therefore deny thatutterances the nameswill differin of meaning if differentways of thinking of the object are requiredof a speakerwho understands those utterances. Whatis wanted,at this point, is some accountof what,besidesits meaning,contributes determining to if she is to understand utterance how a speaker mustthinkof its referent an Features of of a name,andit is farfromclearhow thismightbe provided. the context, which might be supposedto play this role, will probably havebeentakento contribute the determination the meaning to of already In questionwhether of the utterance.35 any event,if thereis a non-verbal whatis required understanding determines for meaning,it is one beyond the scope of this paper.

8. Closing
The warningsand caveatsofferedin the last section do not themselves constitute theoryof sense. Sadly,I haveno suchtheoryto offer.In closa ing, however,I shouldlike to maketwo suggestionsaboutthe formsuch a theorymighttake.First,we have so farbeen discussingthe Problemof Contentonly in termsof whatit shows aboutwhatmustbe common36 to the cognitive values a given sentencehas for differentspeakers.I sug35One can certainly imagine the reply that reference is the only context-independent aspect of the meaning of a proper name. I do not have any fixed view about this matter, but it does not seem to me to be of crucial importance. It may be true, in some cases; but there might well be other cases, and it seems to me that there plainly are (e.g., "Hesperus"), where it is not. But however that may be, it remains that the meaning of any utterance of the name is not exhausted by its reference. 36 One might worry that, on the view discussed in the last section, there does not seem to be anything which "must be common" between speaker and hearer beyond reference. It is, indeed, not obvious that speaker and hearer need "share" anything but reference. But one should not get carried away by talk of what is "shared"or "common". We are interested in what is requiredof someone if she is to understand utterances containing a proper name; we have seen that different things can be required, even when the names have the same reference. That the very same thing is not always required, of every speaker, is relatively uninteresting. See note 12 above.

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104 Richard G. Heck, Jnr.

as gested earlierthatthe notionof meaningought not to be understood additionally, shouldconone fromthese differences: merelyabstracting ceive of the notionof meaningas constraining or unifying the sensesthey the attachto it. So understood, notionof sense wouldbe in partan idealiis is zation.Thedifficulty to arguethatthisidealization itselfbuiltintoour rather thanbeing imposedfromwithout. linguisticpractices, of Secondly,the Problem Contentcan be used to arguethatthe notion in of the senseof an expression oughtto be explained, part,in termsof the notion of justification. An explanationof the notion of the sense of a of name,given in termsof thatof justifyingan identification an objectas its bearer, could providea solutionto the Problemof Content,since difof justifyidentifications an objectmay give rise ferencesin how speakers of Moreover,this treatment the to failuresof knowledge-transmission. for notionof sense couldwell be argued on the basis of the claimthat,to understand expression,it is necessarythat one use it in ways suffian cientlysimilarto the ways in whichit is usedby others.Forto hold one's to object,responsible its use by othuse of a name,to referto a particular aboutthe identification of anobjectresponersis to holdone'sjudgments for sibleto whatotherspeakers acceptasjustification suchidentifications. betweensomeone'suse of a nameandthatof herfellow speakers Conflict she the neednot dependuponheridentifying wrongobjectas its referent: of is out of step if she is merely unableto justify her identification the bearer termsherfellows wouldaccept. in The referenceto justification may raise suspicionsof verificationism. is eitheras premiseor conclusion. Butno kindof verificationism intended development It oughtnot to be a premisebut a conclusion of any further what of the arguments discussedhere that,if speakersdiffer regarding of for countsas justification the assertion a given sentence,thereis a corit differencein the meaningsthey understand to have (since responding the of suchdifferences couldobstruct transmission knowledge).Theconverse-that differencesin meaningmust be reflectedin differencesin not by, whatcountsasjustification-is certainly presupposed andis arguably independentof, these arguments.Even this principleis not itself in thoughit plays a centralrole in an argument verificationist character, for a certainform of anti-realism, namely, Dummett's.The claim that is semantics not proceedwithoutattention matters can to epistemological though,to borrowfrom Evans,"it has to a certain not itself anti-realist, (Evans extentbeen caughtup in the stampedeaway from"anti-realism the for 1982,p. 94).37 We mustresuscitate principle, a plausibletheoryof the meaningsof namesrequiresthatwe acknowledge,as Dummetthas
37 Evans is speaking of "Russell's Principle", which says that, to think about a given object, a person must be able to distinguish it from all other objects. Russell's Principle itself introduces the cognitive into semantics.

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long urgedwe must, the epistemicconstraints cognitive purposeof the communication placesupontheoriesof whatwe communicate.38
Department of Philosophy Harvard University 208 Emerson Hall Cambridge MA 02174 USA RICHARD G. HECK, JNR.

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