First person: The demand for identification-free self-reference

Journal of Philosophy 92 (4):223-234 (1995)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

I defend the thesis that identification-free self-reference is immune to error through mis-identification because even though self-reference and self-identification are distinct, they are not separable. This provides a critique and a reductio of Carol Rovane’s neo-Lockean analysis of ‘I’ in terms of a definite description, since no definite description or proper name can be substituted salva sensu or salva veritate for the singular term ‘I’. Furthermore, I distinguish between self-identification and self-ascription, and argue that even if there may be an error in self-ascription, the self-identification component – that is, the reference and identity of ‘I’ – remains unshaken. There is no way of losing track of the subject in ‘I’-thoughts, since there is no way of forming dynamic Fregean thoughts. I conclude by arguing that one’s capacity to think of oneself self-consciously is not exhausted by the presence or absence of linguistic devices such as ‘I’. Rather, it has to do with the metaphysics concerning the nature of the self.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 93,745

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Analytics

Added to PP
2009-01-28

Downloads
102 (#53,127)

6 months
9 (#1,260,759)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Andrea Christofidou
University of London

Citations of this work

Immunity to error and subjectivity.Robert J. Howell - 2007 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 37 (4):581-604.
The new neo-Kantian and reductionist debate.Kathy Behrendt - 2003 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 84 (4):331-350.
On Referring to Oneself.Maximilian de Gaynesford - 2004 - Theoria 70 (2-3):121-161.

Add more citations

References found in this work

Self-reference and self-awareness.Sydney S. Shoemaker - 1968 - Journal of Philosophy 65 (October):555-67.
De re senses.John Mcdowell - 1984 - Philosophical Quarterly 34 (136):283-294.
Understanding demonstratives.Gareth Evans - 1981 - In Herman Parret & Jacques Bouveresse (eds.), Meaning and understanding. New York: W. de Gruyter. pp. 280--304.

Add more references