A problem for Predicativism not solved by Predicativism

Anders J. Schoubye


Hawthorne & Manley (2012) observe that there is a clear contrast between (1) and (2):

(1) In every race, the colt won.
(2) In every race, John won.

Whereas 'the colt' in (1) has a co-varying reading, 'John' in (2) does not. This is a problem for the so-called Predicativist view of names defended by e.g., Elbourne (2005), Matushansky (2006, 2008), Izumi (2013), and Fara (2015a,b,c). In a recent response to Hawthorne and Manley, Fara argues that this contrast is not only not a problem for her view, but it is in fact predicted by it. In other words, the existence of this contrast, according to Fara, provides an argument in favor of Predicativism. In this short discussion note, I show that Fara's response has significant shortcomings and that the contrast between (1) and (2) remains a considerable problem for the Predicativist view of names.

BibTeX info


names; definite descriptions; domain restriction; binding

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3765/sp.9.18

License URL: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

ISSN: 1937-8912

Journal doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.3765/sp