Review: Philosophical Analysis in the Twentieth Century, Volume 2: The Age of Meaning by Scott Soames
Yablo (Stephen)
Source: Philosophical Studies: Vol. 135, No. 3 (Sep., 2007), pp. 451-460
Paper - Abstract

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Author’s Introduction

  1. "Kripke (Saul) - Naming and Necessity" weaves themes from semantics, epistemology, and metaphysics. Critical reaction has been in a certain way divided.
    1. Some philosophers, notably two-dimensionalists like Chalmers and Jackson, think that Kripke has underestimated the connections here. He should have identified metaphysical, epistemic, and semantic possibility, at least considered as features of worlds.
    2. Other philosophers, such as Donnellan and Salmon, have the opposite worry: they think that the weaving together becomes at some points a blurring together.
  2. Scott Soames's four chapters on Kripke are the latest and most interesting installment in this push-back tradition.
  3. Soames agrees with Kripke about names' semantic values and how they acquire those values. He agrees with Kripke that there can be contingent a priori truths and necessary a posteriori truths - henceforth, "mixed" truths.
  4. But these are separate issues for Soames. Names do of course figure in the examples Kripke offers of mixed truths; but just for that reason, the examples give a misleading impression of what is going on.

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