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Journal of the History of Philosophy, Volume 23, Number 2, April 1985, pp. 237-248 (Article) Published by The Johns Hopkins University Press DOI: 10.1353/hph.1985.0022
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 . ''" ' Hans Sluga. Contrast this with Michael Dummett's views as to how one should read a philosopher. Gottlob Frege (London: Routlege & Kegan Paul. 1. The Interpretation of Frege's Philosophy (London: Duckworth."' This failure has inevitably resulted in a certain unfortunate na'ivet6 on the part of analytical philosophy. analytic philosophy arises out of a na'ivet6 regarding its own historical origins. historical Frege. I am in general agreement. at this point.IN SEARCH OF T H E ACTUAL HISTORICAL FREGE Hans Sluga has recently proposed reading Frege from an historical standpoint. He and several other Frege commentators have insisted that Frege's concept of sense is a cognitive and not a linguistic concept. 1981). what answers could be given to objections. Because of this latter sort of approach. responding to Sluga. 528. 3 . I am quoting from Dummett simply because Dummett is. "there can be no substitute for thinking through. rigorously and in detail. "In interpreting a philosopher. in short. With both these suggestions. what hidden assumptions must hold good if they are to be cogent. Since analytic philosophy traces its lineage back to Frege as it perceives him and since this perception is misguided in so far as the actual historical Frege is concerned. if Sluga is right. "to come to grips with the actual. Michael Dumlnett. 1981). according to Sluga. I will however comment on both and indicate how they are to be understood and within what limits. what relation one thesis has to another. what his arguments are and how they are supposed to work. some philosophers have failed." Dummett writes. Sluga rightly emphasizes the need for reading a philosopher from an historical perspective and in doing so provides a much-needed counterbalance for the a-historical and logical analytical approach to the writings of philosophers that one-sidedly predominates today. for subjecting his work to logical analysis.
one may contend.D u m m e t t ' s and Sluga's--opposed points of view? I want to emphasize that they are not. T h a t they are rather mutually complementary perspectives may be shown by the following two considerations. namely. In the second place. but rather remains the unthematic but encircling backg r o u n d which first renders the concerns and questionings of the text possible. Kant's first two a r g u m e n t s on space in the Transcendental Aesthetic unless you determine whom he is arguing against. and are more likely to be able to arrive at a definitive interpretation of the crucial terms. What the historical reading helps us determine are rather the meanings of the terms employed by philosophers. and not ct'. of the statements m a d e by him and of the arguments advanced.. You cannot fully understand. it is essential--if he is to grasp those concerns and questionings in their genuine i m p o r t . Dummett's p r o g r a m of subjecting a philosopher's texts to logical analysis can be carried out only when we have been able to identify the various theses the philosopher holds. I think D u m m e t t overstates his case when he takes Frege's saying that "for . and y.t h a t that horizon be rescued from its anonymity. But whence the certainty that the theses are precisely those. does not fully disambiguate the appropriate sentences and/or terms by eliminating all likely interpretations save the one we want to assign to them. in short. Dummett's program requires. If we can determine which authors our philosopher read. It would be an utter misunderstanding of the above claims on behalf of the historical reading if one took it to mean that what the historical perspective can bring out are answers to biographical curiosities such as why did Frege ask the questions that he did? If this were the case. One obvious and indispensable way of doing the latter is by careful i m m a n e n t textual exegesis. whom he took more seriously than others he knew. Logical analysis can fruitfully do its job only w h e n this historical reading has been done. sentences. that we already ascribe to a philosopher a set of theses ct. and arguments. It is here that a historical perspective comes in handy. Neither can replace the other. to be sure. 13. then. 13'. and y'? Both textual exegesis and historical reading can be beautifully combined to help us here. ct. or who most "influenced" him we can better carry out i m m a n e n t textual exegesis. This by itself. the analytic project could make no important use of it and need not wait till the historical u n d e r s t a n d i n g is achieved.. 13. and 7. Once we have succeeded in doing so.g. In the first place. For the interpreter of the text.. we can ask what relation one thesis has to another. we can explore their hidden assumptions and test the cogency and consistency of the arguments. e. every philosopher is explicitly concerned with questions and problems which themselves can be asked only within a larger philosophical horizon. It is here that u n d e r s t a n d i n g the historical milieu within which an a u t h o r t h o u g h t is of the utmost importance.238 J O U R N A L OF T H E H I S T O R Y OF P H I L O S O P H Y Are t h e s e . T h a t horizon itself is not thematized within the philosopher's texts.
no history) rule out an historical and analytical reading. is not whether Frege's texts call for an historical reading or for an analytical reading. The real issue. no less than Frege. There are two confusions here: for one thing. was he a philosopher of language. and Frege. the author of the Begriffsschrift. . are clearly historicists (admittedly. while the non-historicist philosophers do not call for. no history" (which Sluga quotes) to imply that the anti-historical approach of the analytic philosophers is the right approach to Frege. Kant. Those who understand Frege as an analytic philosopher or as the precursor of analytic philosophy agree. to say that a philosophical text (or a philosopher) should be subjected to logical-analytical scrutiny amounts neither to saying that the text (or the philosopher concerned) or even what is worthwhile in it (or in his philosophy) is itself logical and analytical.NOTES ant) DISCUSSIONS 239 the logical concept there is no development. needs to be subjected to analytical scrutiny---but that neither demands recognizing that Heidegger's philosophy is logical-analytical nor amounts to making of him a contemporary analytic philosopher. at the least. historical reading. Note that I am distinguishing between that logical-analytical thinking which has always characterized the best of philosophers in all ages and that narrowly defined--methodologically and contentually--philosophical school which goes by the name of 'analytic philosophy'. Perhaps the crucial question is. Some philosophers. the demand that their texts be subjected to analytic criticism. That concerns the second of the two confusions noted at the beginning of this paragraph. such as Hegel or Marx or Gadamer. and if so. and their doctrines (such as is expressed by Frege's statement that for the logical concept there is no development. The thesis that a logical concept has no history can be illuminated by the historical perspective and scrutinized by analytical reflection. in ascribing to him a theory of meaning. in what sense? 5. For another. just as neither Marx nor Gadamer can rule out. and that their philosophies permit. admittedly of different sorts). Heidegger. some philosophers. or of logicism in philosophy of mathematics. then. nor to saying that the right sort of approach is that of contemporary analytic philosophy. The real issue is: is it fair to look upon Frege as an analytic philosopher. It would be wrong to suppose that only the historicist philosophers deserve. I will briefly explain what I mean by the way I have formulated the first confusion. by virtue of the specific historicist theses they hold. such as Plato. are non-historicists (again. of different degrees and sorts). should not be taken as entailing an affirmative answer. it is not the case that an historical reading is appropriate only for an historicist philosopher but inappropriate for one who has no sympathy for the historicist mode of thinking. or as the precursor of what is known as analytic philosophy? The fact that he is a founder of modern logic.
but. that Frege put the theory of meaning at the center of philosophy . cognitive~meaning would be a theory of meaning. I believe. I think. . would be to challenge that claim most effectively. Frege. . and would have a bearing on the question of understanding of language as well. there are also various other possibilities. . TM Both. quite wrong to say. Gottlob Frege. . Gottlob Frege. In fact. 167. but does not quite agree with him that Frege never intended to give a semantic theory at all. let us say. it is. as Dummett does. it came later with Wittgenstein. ''5 It appears to me that both groups of interpreters--those who make of Frege a theoretician of meaning. and second. even this theory had its origin in his deep epistemological concerns about the objective validity of mathematical knowledge. To be able to ascribe such a theory to Frege would go a long way towards establishing him as an analytic philosopher. A pure theory of meaning should be a semantic theory. 5 If I understand him aright." (unpublished paper). I want to call this understanding of 'theory of meaning' into question. 154. According to this shared understanding of 'theory of meaning'. Sluga finds in Frege an unfortunate "conflation of semantics with epistemology. Frege's is a theory of cognitive contents. but in epistemology. Sluga agrees with Tyler Burge that Fregean senses are cognitive contents. Sluga's formulation is cautious: "The Fregean notion of sense has its roots not in the theory of meaning. to be able to show. that Fregean senses are not linguistic meanings and consequently that Frege had no theory of meaning as such. this theory was not the center of his philosophy. One such is the Husserlian theory that an intentional act has its own meaning. and so an analytical philosopher. 6 Hans Sluga. 4. 5 Hans Sluga. on the contrary. . Such a theory of act--or. 154. first. meaning is linguistic meaning. An Introduction to His Philosophy (NewJersey: Barnes and Noble. the Vienna Circle. and those who oppose that reading--share a certain understanding of 'theory of meaning'. fn. 1982). "~ So also is Currie's: " . 4 Gregory Currie.240 JOURNAL OF THE HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY Those who like Sluga challenge that interpretation do not want to read into Frege a theory of meaning. a theory of which should form part of a philosophy of language. on the ground that although the dominant theories of meaning at present happen to be theories of linguistic meaning and also in the analytic tradition. in effect. recognize that there are in Frege rudiments of what is called a theory of meaning. I am suggesting is that Michael Dummett's demand that a theory of meaning must be a theory of what we know when we 3 Hans Sluga. What. If there was a revolution in philosophy which put the notion of meaning at the center. "SemanticContent and CognitiveSense. and perhaps also with Tarski. and yet cannot be accommodated within the confines of the analytic school. .
." a n d f u r t h e r m o r e . as Frege's has to be.: 4o5 . Let me begin by referring to Tyler Burge's thesis that Fregean senses are cognitive contents. . are not only incompatible with each other but need to be b r o u g h t together to yield all the benefits of Fregean insights. their cognitive character is b r o u g h t out by the consideration that they are context-dependent whereas linguistic meanings are not. But what could be meant by saying that the senses are cognitive contents? For Burge. These are: (a) the ontological thesis that senses are abstract entities. But one wants to know what Burge means by 'cognitive contents'. timeless and objective. (c) the claim that they are cognitive contents. s Ibid. especially (c). Fregean senses are to be taken as cognitive. for at least the reason that they are introduced to explain the possibility of informative identity statements. "ontologically and conceptually i n d e p e n d e n t of language and of h u m a n agents. not all of which seem to be mutually compatible. Looking for an account of that cognitive notion in Sluga's book. we are no less disappointed. for one can come up with an account of 'thought' in terms of 'linguistic meaning'.t h a t Fregean senses are cognitive contents rather than linguistic meanings. rather than linguistic." PhilosophicalReview. Also they are not linguistic meanings for the simple reason that they are eternal and objective structures. ''8 In this account. we need a notion of cognitive content or conceptual representation that is nonpsychological. but how are they.NOTES AND DISCUSSIONS 241 u n d e r s t a n d a language. "Sinning against Frege. and the other camp's insistence--which in my opinion is the correct view on the m a t t e r . But this is not to say that all Fregean senses are context-dependent or that there are no context-dependent linguistic meanings. What he does tell us is that the notion of sense is introduced to solve an epistemological problem. T h e two important aspects of Frege's theory which Burge draws attention to in support of his claim are: senses contain the "modes of givenness. (b) the cognitive thesis that the senses contain modes of givenness. To say that it is either a thought or its c o m p o n e n t is not to say much. compatible with (a) and (d)? How can we have a theory of cognitive content for which those contents are both ontological structures that are grasped a n d also ways o f givenness o f entities in the world? Obviously. 88 (1979): 398-43 ~. (b) and (c) are of a piece. and (d) Frege's strong anti-psychologistic thesis. He also suggests that 7 Tyler Burge. they are components of abstract thoughts (or. 7 This is a thesis with which I fully concur. not linguistic meanings. t h o u g h t contents). to account for the difference in cognitive value between A = B (when true) and A = A. there are several elements.
D u m m e t t also agrees that the notion o f sense is a cognitive one. it is obvious that for D u m m e t t sense is cognitive only because it is what we may be said to know when we u n d e r s t a n d a word or a sentence. sense is that which we know. How does D u m m e t t continue. the senses do not constitute the referent. 679- . for him. if there is any part o f Frege's t h e o r y that shows the influence of Kant's theory o f concepts (that concepts are predicative in nature. to r e g a r d Frege's philosophy to be a linguistic one? T h e crucial question. then. p u r s u e it any f u r t h e r . is this: can we say that senses stand in any relation to the h u m a n mind that is analogous to the way Kantian concepts do? Because senses are cognitive contents one would expect t h e m to have some such relation to the mind. there is no r e f e r e n c e save t h r o u g h such mediation. Likewise. are neither predicative n o r need completion. I suspect. but the Fregean rejection o f psychologism prevents us f r o m ascribing to him such a view. It is t h r o u g h concepts that we know whatever we know. the notion o f sense is connected with that o f knowledge.24~ JOURNAL OF THE HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY Frege's distinction between sense and r e f e r e n c e has its origin in the Kantian distinction between concepts and objects. being objects. a973). Michael Dummett. but would make it impossible for the h e a r e r to be sure that he associates the same sense as the speaker does. T h e idea o f 'cognitive content' then loses any interesting significance. according to Frege. that would not only be inconsistent with Frege's anti-psychologism. in the present context. it is his theory o f concept (that concepts are predicative and are u n s a t u r a t e d . there is no non-conceptual knowledge. to be completed by an object). Frege: The Philosophy of Language (London: Duckworth. and that concepts without intuitions are empty). H e also sees that for Frege. Concepts together with intuitions constitute the object. to know an object is to bring it u n d e r concepts. However. works somewhat like this: According to Kant. T h e analogy between the Kantian distinction and the Fregean. is: How does one come to associate a sense with a word or a sentence? In what does o u r attaching a sense to a word consist? T h e connection cannot be an i n n e r mental connection. But h e r e the analogy ends. Frege has to say that the sense which the speaker attaches to a sentence must be ascertainable f r o m 9 See esp. but I need not. r e f e r e n c e to objects is m a d e possible t h r o u g h the media o f senses. 9 Yet. T o say that it is a cognitive content is t a n t a m o u n t to saying that it is an object o f cognition. T h e decisive question. Senses. Curiously e n o u g h . for my present purpose. when we u n d e r s t a n d an expression. Consequently. T h e disanalogy extends f u r t h e r than this.
It is a particular. and (3) also the f u r t h e r fact that the theory o f sense is also a t h e o r y o f meaning. Our only access to the sense is t h r o u g h linguistic expressions.t h a t suggests a way o f reconciling these three claims. it is "time-less. again." which "belongs" to it." As d e t e r m i n i n g reference. and is thus individuated by its ownership and its temporal location. but cannot be "expressed" or communicated. and being an intensional entity. " H o w does a use or behavior manifest a certain sense?" Or. in its b r o a d outlines. (2) the complete rejection o f psychologism. one and the same n o e m a can be the correlate o f numerically distinct acts and so o f acts occurring at d i f f e r e n t times and having d i f f e r e n t owners.. and in this sense is psychologically subjective. T h e problem. For this." one may very well ask. the theory o f n o e m a is capable o f . All intentional acts (in the B r e n t a n o sense) r e f e r to their objects t h r o u g h their respective senses (or noemata). it also "contains" the m o d e o f givenness. publicly observable behavior. Surely.a n d that too f r o m amongst Frege's contemporaries. objective structures. It is an event. if the original question. T h e theory is Husserl's. T h e r e is only one o t h e r theory that is available to u s . it can itself be r e f e r r e d to. we have to t u r n to a cognitivist reading. then. Frege then must be a linguistic philosopher. it satisfies the cognitive criteria recognized by Frege. that the senses must be ascertainable f r o m the speaker's linguistic (and non-linguistic) behavior is not explicitly said by Frege. In o t h e r words. F u r t h e r m o r e . no m a t t e r w h e t h e r the object to which the act refers exists or not. in what does o u r attaching a sense to a word consist.. An intentional act (or a state o f consciousness) has thus a two-tiered structure. However. for any Frege-exegesis which wants to look u p o n senses as cognitive contents is: How to reconcile this reading with (1) the ontological thesis that they are timeless. perhaps. not being t e m p o r a l l y individuated.NOTES AND DISCUSSIONS 243 his observable linguistic behavior. occurring in someone's mental life. This theory is not the same as the t h e o r y o f linguistic meaning. At the same time. This sense or n o e m a is not individuated by ownership or temporal location o f the act whose sense or n o e m a it is. T h e theory. every such intentional act has a correlative sense or noema. but as an "intentional correlate" which it must have. in that weak sense it is objective. " H o w does one come to attach a sense to a certain use?" O n e needs an account that is o t h e r than an associationistic psychologism and a Wittgensteinian linguistic behaviorism. inasmuch as not all intentional acts are as such linguistic acts. is answered by saying " t h r o u g h appropriate. its "content. T h u s the n o e m a or sense is intersubjectively available. goes somewhat like this. f r o m one whom Frege k n e w . not as a real c o m p o n e n t . .
for example. so-called speech acts. when one takes all these latter considerations seriously. Frege's theory of sense. and (b) all noemata. is the idea of intentionality as an act-noema structure. objective entities. Frege. that the Brentano School. It is because of this feature of Frege's thought that a realistic interpretation. that Frege held some such view. timeless. Objective idealism. made a distinction between dependent and independent. It is also not intended to add to the historical story which Sluga has so admirably narrated. left these components at odds. are. It covers a large variety of philosophical positions. are the primary bearers of meaning on the theory) are a species of intentional acts. although there is no doubt. linguistically "expressible" (though with suitable "adaptations"). the picture emerges of what Sluga calls an objective idealist. have their correlative noemata which are publicly available. satisfies the second requirement. It is through such noemata--as is the case in Frege's theory-that acts intend their objects. contents. interpreted as cognitive content. although private particulars. is not a private particular. And yet. complete and incomplete. such as Dummett's. My purpose in introducing Husserl's theory in its bare outlines is not to suggest. even remotely. and so have their noemata which are linguistic meanings. It is nevertheless helpful to recall that objective idealism of any sort must be committed to (a) a conception of consciousness that is non-psychologistic and (b) a conception of "contents" of consciousness that. But 'objective idealism' itself is a blanket title. makes room for a limited realist discourse. jarring components of Frege's theory into harmony. like consciousness itself. but can we ascribe to him anything even remotely suggesting (a)? One who wants to interpret Frege as an objective idealist can turn to enigmatic texts such as these three: . that Husserl (and the Brentano School in general) belongs to that intellectual milieu which must have shaped Frege's thought. in principle. the idea namely that mental acts. not excluding those of non-linguistic acts. appears so convincing if one considers large chunks of what Frege says sundered from his overall concerns. to be sure. . (Note. from his historical rootedness as well as from some of his enigmatic pronouncements. with which Frege's likesounding distinction was closely connected.) The purpose of this digression into Husserlian phenomenology is to suggest one way of bringing the different. which lends it its explanatory power. especially Carl Stumpf and Husserl. (which. it should be borne in mind. The core of the thesis. as Sluga recognizes. and not the signs themselves.244 JOURNAL OF THE HISTORY OF P H I L O S O P H Y generating a theory of linguistic meaning inasmuch as (a) linguistic acts.
359. not of minds. Neither logic nor mathematics has the task of investigating souls and the content of consciousness whose bearer is an individual human being. By objectivity I mean independence from our sensing. Passages A and B suggest some such concept. and imagining and from the construction of internal pictures from memories of earlier sensations. but not independence from Reason . ~ Gottlob Frege. . It is this conception o f the mental (which is e q u a t e d with the psychological) that provides the u n d e r p i n ning for both his and Husserl's anti-psychologism. as a first a p p r o x i m a t i o n . 198o). I have characterized his "official" philosophy o f mind as "naive. 1967). the correct description. intuiting. is obvious. ~o B. T h a t the mental in this sense has to be sharply s u n d e r e d f r o m the logical. Rather. But still the grasping of this law [the law of Gravitation] is a mental process! Yes. H C. The Foundations of Arithmetic (Oxford: Blackwell. could he provide such an account? In o r d e r to be able to do so. certainly provides the initial and. these three passages show that he felt the n e e d for a richer philosophy o f mind which could s u p p o r t his theories. 1953). '~ Gottlob Frege. An i m p o r t a n t part o f the a r g u m e n t to the effect that the Fregean senses are not linguistic meanings but cognitive contents rests on Frege's statements about indexicals. which lends s u p p o r t to a realistic ontology o f senses. we are entitled to ask. . and the science o f it as unavoidably inductive a n d statistical. .NOTES AND DISCUSSIONS 245 A. But did he arrive at any such account? Also. t45." for he looked u p o n mental life as consisting o f private particulars. . 36. But the problematic cfiaracter o f this m e t a p h o r o f ' g r a s p i n g ' . he needs to satisfy (a): H e needs to have a non-psychologistic theory o f consciousness. one might perhaps set down as their task the investigation of the Mind---of the Mind. but the suggestions are too vague to admit o f a precise interpretation. but it is a process which takes place on the very confines of the mental and which for that reason cannot be completely understood from a purely psychological standpoint? 2 [In a footnote to C. indeed."] Although Frege's r a t h e r naive philosophy o f mind remains in sharp contrast with his r e m a r k a b l y sophisticated logical theory. . T h e m e t a p h o r o f 'grasping' (the subjective mental act grasps an objective sense). as emphasized by passage C. shows that Frege was groping not only for a m o r e suitable m e t a p h o r . Lo Gotdob Frege. Frege adds: "I should say that this question of grasping thoughts and recognizing them to be true is still far from being grasped in all its difficulty. Kleine Schriften (Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft. Posthumous Writings (Oxford: Blackwell. but for a m o r e satisfactory concept o f the mental act and its relation to the t h o u g h t or sense that the act is said to grasp.
Could it consist in an unvarying m o d e o f self-understanding. 1: 316. a referent.. a non-conceptual. F r e g e is thus led to a theory o f i n c o m m u n i c a b l e sense which does indeed a p p e a r to conflict with the original t h e o r y o f sense. be a sense.p r e s e n t a t i o n is a Vorstellung a n d not a Sinn? In o r d e r to be an i n c o m m u n i c a b l e sense. but we are b o r d e r i n g o n the c o n c e p t o f m o d e o f self-givenness on my own p a r t that is n e i t h e r a set o f descriptions n o r a passing s e l f . i n c o m m u n i cable sense o f T ? Husserl.3 Edmund Husserl. Now how a r e we to u n d e r s t a n d this thesis a b o u t the unique. who largely s h a r e d Frege's views on such matters. but no incommunicability) a n d the varying m o d e s o f self-feeling (in which case we have i n c o m m u n i c a b i l i t y but not a sense). '''3 C o u l d o n e not r e t o r t that this individual I . .) F r e g e also writes that e v e r y o n e is originally given to h i m s e l f in a special a n d unique m a n n e r in which he c a n n o t be given to a n y o n e else. such t h o u g h t can consist only o f the senses o f the c o m p o n e n t parts o f the sentences.k n o w n . But he could not have held such a view. wrote: "each m a n has his own I . It would have been a less complicated t h e o r y if only F r e g e h a d held that the indexicals d e n o t e or r e f e r and have 'linguistic m e a n i n g ' . I f the s e n t e n c e "I am in pain" is to express a t h o u g h t . . N. trans. J. T h e availability o f a descriptive account (in which case we have a F r e g e a n sense. inarticulate selfinterpretation in t e r m s o f ( H e i d e g g e r e a n ) projects and choices? I do not know. I f the I . 197o).f e e l i n g . a n d not a Vorstellung.p r e s e n t a t i o n consists in a set o f descriptive predicates that I alone believe to be true o f myself. F r e g e h e l d . LogzcalInvestigations. as I am d o i n g along with B u r g e a n d Sluga.. first o f all. it must. T h e r e f o r e T m u s t express a sense. With r e g a r d to indexicals.. In so far as the sense contains the m o d e o f givenness. We have t h e n to look for the i n c o m m u n i c a b l e sense s o m e w h e r e in between these two extremes. c a n n o t but be interested in the significance o f his r e m a r k s on indexicals and on p r o p e r n a m e s strictly so-called.e4 6 JOURNAL O F T H E H I S T O R Y OF P H I L O S O P H Y I want to suggest that a n y o n e w h o reads Frege f r o m a cognitivist perspective.p r e s e n t a t i o n (and with it his own individual notion o f I). (He does not say that the sense o f 'I' varies even w h e n the s a m e s p e a k e r utters it on d i f f e r e n t occasions.t h a t the sense o f T varies f r o m s p e a k e r to speaker. the sense that goes with every speaker's u t t e r a n c e o f ' T ' is s o m e t h i n g unique a n d incommunicable.a s is w e l l . Findlay (New York: Humanities Press. A t h o u g h t c a n n o t have as one or m o r e o f its c o m p o n e n t s . but d o not have any sense. t h e n t h e r e is no r e a s o n why I c a n n o t let others know what I take myself to be: Such a sense would not be in principle i n c o m m u n i c a b l e .t h e idea o f pre-conceptual sense.
f r o m d i f f e r e n t perspectives. a c c u r a t e . A n d yet Frege did not come to develop a t h e o r y o f intentionality and a philosophy o f mind adequate for this purpose. which I prefer.N O T E S AND D I S C U S S I O N S 247 We may be better o f f with r e g a r d to p r o p e r names.m a k e s sense.. t h o u g h t of.. Why is it that Husserl in his m a t u r e r years c o n c e d e d that although his refutations o f psychologism in the Prolegomena o f I9OO were still valid. he had not then grasped the true n a t u r e o f psychologism and so had not overcome it? G e r m a n e to psychologism is a naturalistic i n t e r p r e t a t i o n . or one may want to r e t u r n to the purely semantic theory o f the Begriffsschrift (which. what is the essence o f Aristotle--a d i f f e r e n t question a l t o g e t h e r . r e f e r r e d to in d i f f e r e n t manners. with the increasing emphasis o n the idea o f m o d e o f presentation.) All o f this bears on the issue o f psychologism. inserted into the causal o r d e r o f nature. what sense one attaches to the p r o p e r n a m e d e p e n d s u p o n how the p e r s o n Aristotle is p r e s e n t e d to one. I presume. in that very thematization. T o ask. Signs derive their senses f r o m the interpretive acts o f the speaker or the h e a r e r or the community. the senses come to be tied closer to what could be called intentional acts. whereas in the account o f 1892 it is contained in the sense o f sign. T o ask then what is the sense o f 'Aristotle' would a p p e a r to be misconceived. Senses do not originally belong to signs. Let me take courage to r e t u r n to that much-discussed footnote in "Sinn u n d B e d e u t u n g " in which Frege writes that in the case o f an actual p r o p e r n a m e such as "Aristotle" opinions as to its sense may differ. there is a true sense. One may then r e a s o n a b l y / n a i n t a i n that a p r o p e r n a m e such as 'Aristotle' itself is not associated with one u n a m b i g u o u s sense and with no other.. T h u s a l t h o u g h Frege began by attaching senses to signs. T h e r e are two directions to move ahead f r o m h e r e on. the speaker or the "hearer. in my view. Sluga prefers. O n e may then hold that since the sense after all contains the m o d e o f presentation. It is not . It does not matter if Frege would have wanted. What psychologism and anti-psychologism o f the c o m m o n variety both share is a conception o f the mental that is tied to a certain conception o f psychological discourse. A f t e r all. Aristotle may be presented. as he certainly appears. Either one may want to go all the way with the implied cognitivism. but o f the mental life itself.n o t alone o f the logico-mathematical entities. It becomes the subject-matter o f psychology as a natural science by being. that it does not make sense to say that o f the m a n y senses d i f f e r e n t persons may attach to it. Sluga has most appropriately shown that in the Begriffsschrift account 'the m o d e o f determination' is a p r o p e r t y o f the sign.a n d h e r e Sluga's historical reading is. T h e mental as such is not the psychological. to to eliminate such variations in sense in an ideal scientific language. T h e sense o f 'A' and the essence o f A n e e d not coincide.
One then may be led to ask how this framework is possible. The obvious presupposition of such a radical critique of psychologism is a conception of consciousness as transcendental. His philosophy of mind contains the glimpses of the concept of intentionality. and yet the 'grasping' of thought. phenomenologist Frege---equally have his day? J. MOHANTY University of Oklahoma . intentions. an interpretive framework that remains hidden from view. it occupies an unstable position between a semantic theory (which attaches senses and references to signs) and a semi-contextual. One may be said to have truly overcome psychologism when one recognizes that we have here.248 JOURNAL OF T H E H I S T O R Y OF P H I L O S O P H Y necessary to deny that such discourse is legitimate or even to say that the mental is not a private particular. We are then on the threshhold of a transcendental philosophy. historical Frege is elusive. N. epistemological. his thought is torn between a Platonic (and commonsensical) realism and a sort of Kantian idealism. What I want to insist upon is that what makes psychologism possible in the first place is that interpretive framework within which the life of consciousness comes to be construed as the domain of private particulars or as the subject matter of introspective or even of scientific psychology. An unavoidable precondition for raising this last question is to subject that framework to the famed 'epoch6'. but does not go beyond a logic of intensionality. What. The texts situate us in an ambiguous. we shall be carrying forward the historical relevance of Frege. Can the new Frege that is emerging--the cognitivist. and so pretends to be an ontological thesis. underlying psychologism. rather unstable position in relation to various possibilities. then. The mental act is relegated to empirical psychology. even if our reading is not as meticulously historical as is Sluga's. cognitivist and epistemological theory which makes senses and references functions of contexts. the interpreters. We. In theory of meaning. In doing this. calls into question the gulf that divides the mental and the logical. In this regard. as a mental act. In metaphysics. The actual. the analytic interpretation over the last fifty years has let Frege as it saw him create history. was the actual historical Frege's philosophy like? Was he a realist or an idealist? Was the core of his problematic semantics or epistemology? I think any interpretive choice here is to be dictated as much by Frege's actual historical texts as by the interpreter's 'prejudices'. and cognitive perspectives. make of him what we want by putting pressure on one or other components of his thought.