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PHIL 4120 Lecture Notes - Salva Veritate, Logical Truth, Empiricism

Course Code
PHIL 4120
Duncan Macintosh

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Monday, March 21, 2011
W.V Quine – Two Dogmas of Empiricism, On What There Is [Trained as a LP]
Grice, Strawson – In Defense of a Dogma
Responding to the LP tradition – every meaningful sentence is a truth of def., or a
sentence that can be true of false through observation of the world
Theoretical sentences (ex. electrons) can be defined through other things you can
Logical truth of empirical truth – direct empirical truth or definable in terms of empirical
Analytic – logical truths. True necessarily, could not be false. Could be such because of
definitions, rules of language, subject terms of sentences, etc. Method is a priori (truth or
false in advance of)
Synthetic – grounded in fact. True contingently, could be false in diff. circumstances. All
you had to know if the meaning of the terms in them. Thought to be such because given
their meanings they said they could be true in some situations and false in others. A
Each statement is either analytic or synthetic (tell you how to expect the world to look if
its true or false)
No such thing to truth other than a logical necessity.
Quine – what does it mean to be an analytic truth? It’s purely picturesque. What is a
possible world? Predicate word concept is contained in the subject.
Ex. Bachelor contains unmarried and male – What is it for one concept to contain
Analytic truths which involve definitions – ex. concept ‘bachelor’ is the same as
‘unmarried’ and ‘male’.
Salva veritate –
A rule of the language? Language doesn’t come presented as a rule book.
Problem of Quine: What is the meaning of analytic? Means containment Means
true in all possible worlds
means truth of definition
means rule of language
means necessary truth
means analytic
Circular – no distinction between analytic and synthetic.
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