Aidan Gray
University of Illinois, Chicago
Call an account of names satisfactionalist if it holds that object o is the referent of name a in virtue of o’s satisfaction of a descriptive condition associated with a. Call an account of names minimally descriptivistif it holds that if a competent speaker finds ‘a=b’ to be informative, then she must associate some information with ‘a’ which she does not associate with ‘b’. The rejection of both positions is part of the Kripkean orthodoxy, and is also built into extant versions of the file-picture of reference. In this paper, I argue that the rejection of minimal descriptivism only follows from the rejection of satisfactionalism given certain implausible assumptions about the nature of competence with a proper name. I do this by showing that considerations internal to the file-picture - in particular the idea that competence with a proper name constitutes an ‘epistemically rewarding’ relation to its bearer - motivate an acceptance of minimal descriptivism.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s13164-014-0202-7
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 69,114
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

The Modularity of Mind.Robert Cummins & Jerry Fodor - 1983 - Philosophical Review 94 (1):101.
The Reference Book.John Hawthorne & David Manley - 2012 - Oxford University Press.

View all 39 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Indistinguishable Senses.Aidan Gray - 2020 - Noûs 54 (1):78-104.
Relational Approaches to Frege's Puzzle.Aidan Gray - 2017 - Philosophy Compass 12 (10):e12429.
Making AI Intelligible: Philosophical Foundations.Herman Cappelen & Joshua Dever - 2021 - New York, USA: Oxford University Press.

View all 7 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Names, Descriptions, and Assertion.Ray Buchanan - 2014 - In Zsu-Wei Hung (ed.), Communicative Action. Springer. pp. 03-15.
The Epistemological Argument Against Descriptivism.Robin Jeshion - 2002 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 64 (2):325 - 345.
Russell-Names: An Introduction to Millian Descriptivism.Stefano Predelli - 2016 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 45 (5):603-622.
Against Causal Descriptivism.Panu Raatikainen - 2006 - Mind and Society 5 (1):78-84.
Millian Descriptivism.Ben Caplan - 2007 - Philosophical Studies 133 (2):181-198.
Metalinguistic Descriptivism for Millians.Alexis Burgess - 2013 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 91 (3):443-457.
Descriptivism, Rigidified and Anchored.Philip Pettit - 2004 - Philosophical Studies 118 (1-2):323-338.
Kripke and the Neo-Descriptivist.Finn Spicer - 2010 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 81 (1):215-233.
Desires, Descriptivism, and Reference Failure.Alexander Hughes - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 165 (1):279-296.


Added to PP index

Total views
115 ( #100,512 of 2,499,071 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #278,516 of 2,499,071 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes