72 Matching Annotations
  1. Apr 2018
    1. The nonconscious character of most HOTs leads, however, to another objection. HOTs are supposed to make the mental states they are about conscious. How can nonconscious HOTs do this? How can HOTs be a source of con-sciousness if they are not themselves consciou

      Beginning of objection 3.

    2. How demanding are these requirements? One way to answer this is to see whether creatures without language can have such thoughts. L

      Beginning of objection 1.

    3. n the HOT theory, every conscious mental state is accompanied by a HOT about that state. This may seem hard to accept; after all, we are seldom aware of such HOTs. But the theory ac-tually predicts that we would not be.

      Beginning of objection 2.

  2. Feb 2018
    1. In sum, it may rate credence because it holds promise of theoretical inte- gration. How does FP rate in this dimension? It is just here, perhaps, that FP fares poorest of all. If we ap- proach homo sapiens from the perspective of natural history and the physical sciences, we can tell a coherent story of his constitu- tion, development, and behavioral capacities which encompasses particle physics, atomic and molecular theory, organic chemistry, evolutionary theory, biology, physiology, and materialistic neuro- science. That story, though still radically incomplete, is already extremely powerful, outperforming FP at many points even in its own domain. And it is deliberately and self-consciously coherent with the rest of our developing world picture. In short, the greatest theoretical synthesis in the history of the human race is cur- rently in our hands, and parts of it already provide searching descriptions and explanations of human sensory input, neural activity, and motor control. But FP is no part of this growing synthesis. Its intentional categories stand magnificently alone, without visible prospect of reduction to that larger corpus. A successful reduction cannot be ruled out, in my view, but FP's explanatory impotence and long stagnation inspire little faith that its categories will find them- selves neatly reflected in the framework of neuroscience. On the contrary, one is reminded of how alchemy must have looked as elemental chemistry was taking form, how Aristotelean cosmology must have looked as classical mechanics was being articulated, or how the vitalist conception of life must have looked as organic chemistry marched forward

      Passage 6 - yet another problem!

    2. A look at the history of FP does little to allay such fears, once raised. The story is one of retreat, infertility, and decadence. The presumed domain of FP used to be much larger than it is now. In primitive cultures, the behavior of most of the elements of nature were understood in intentional terms. The wind could know anger, the moon jealousy, the river generosity, the sea fury, and so forth. These were not metaphors. Sacrifices were made and auguries undertaken to placate or divine the changing pas- sions of the gods. Despite its sterility, this animistic approach to nature has dominated our history, and it is only in the last two or three thousand years that we have restricted FP's literal ap- plication to the domain of the higher animals. Even in this preferred domain, however, both the content and the success of FP have not advanced sensibly in two or three thousand years. The FP of the Greeks is essentially the FP we use today, and we are negligibly better at explaining human be- havior in its terms than was Sophocles

      Passage 5 - another problem.

    3. A serious inventory of this sort reveals a very troubled situa- tion, one which would evoke open skepticism in the case of any theory less familiar and dear to us. Let me sketch some relevant detail. When one centers one's attention not on what FP can explain, but on what it cannot explain or fails even to address, one discover; that there is a very great deal. As examples of central and important mental phenomena that remain largely or wholly mysterious within the framework of FP, consider the nature and dynamics of mental illness, the faculty of creative imagination, or the ground of intelligence differences between individuals. Consider our utter ignorance of the nature and psy- chological functions of sleep, that curious state in which a third of one's life is spent. Reflect on the common ability to catch an outfield fly ball on the run, or hit a moving car with a snowball. Consider the internal construction of a 3-D visual image from subtle differences in the 2-D array of stimulations in our respective retinas. Consider the rich variety of perceptual illusions, visual and otherwise. Or consider the miracle of memory, with its lightning capacity for relevant retrieval. On these and many other mental phenomena, FP sheds negligible light. One particularly outstanding mystery is the nature of the learning process itself, especially where it involves large-scale conceptual change, and especially as it appears in its pre-linguistic or entirely nonlinguistic form (as in infants and animals), which is by far the most common form in nature.

      Passage 4 - a catalog of problems.

    4. More interestingly, the relations between the resulting propositional attitudes are characteristically the relations that hold between the propositions "contained" in them, relations such as entailment, equivalence, and mutual inconsistency. More in- teresting still, the argument place that takes the singular terms for propositions is open to quantification. All this permits the ex- pression of generalizations concerning the lawlike relations that hold among propositional attitudes. Such laws involve quantifica- tion over propositions, and they exploit various relations holding in that domain. Thus, for example, (2) (x) (p)[(x fears that p) D (x desires that - p)] (3) (x) (p)[(x hopes that p) & (x discovers that p)) D (x is pleased that p)] (4) (x) (p) (g)[((x believes that p) & (x believes that (if p then q))) D (barring confusion, distraction, etc., x believes that q)] (5) (x) (p) (q)E((x desires that p) & (x believes that (if q then p)) ee (x is able to bring it about that q)) D (barring conflicting desires or preferred strategies, x brings it about that q)]3 Not only is folk psycnology a theory, it is so obviously a theory that it must be held a major mystery why it has taken until the last half of the twentieth century for philosophers to realize it. The structural features of folk psychology parallel perfectly those of mathematical physics; the only difference lies in the respective domain of abstract entities they exploit-numbers in the case of physics, and propositions in the case of psychology.

      Passage 3 - another advantage.

    5. More importantly, the recognition that folk psychology is a theory provides a simple and decisive solution to an old skeptical problem, the problem of other minds. The problematic convic- tion that another individual is the subject of certain mental states is not inferred deductively from his behavior, nor is it inferred by inductive analogy from the perilously isolated instance of one's own case. Rather, that conviction is a singular explanatory hy- pothesis of a perfectly straightforward kind. Its function, in con- junction with the background laws of folk psychology, is to pro- vide explanations/predictions/understanding of the individual's continuing behavior, and it is credible to the degree that it is successful in this regard over competing hypotheses. In the main, such hypotheses are successful, and so the belief that others enjoy the internal states comprehended by folk psychology is a reason- able belief

      Passage 2 - another advantage of Folk Psychology.

    6. Seeing our common-sense conceptual framework for mental phe- nomena as a theory brings a simple and unifying organization to most of the major topics in the philosophy of mind, including the explanation and prediction of behavior, the semantics of mental predicates, action theory, the other-minds problem, the inten- tionality of mental states, the nature of introspection, and the mind-body problem. Any view that can pull this lot together deserves careful consideration. Let us begin with the explanation of human (and animal) be- havior. The fact is that the average person is able to explain, and even predict, the behavior of other persons with a facility and success that is remarkable. Such explanations and predictions standardly make reference to the desires, beliefs, fears, intentions, perceptions, and so forth, to which the agents are presumed sub- ject

      Passage 1 - the advantages of Folk Psychology.

  3. Jan 2018
    1. 3 .2 The Problem of the Inputs and the Outputs

      Read from here until the end.

    2. 2.2 Are Qualia Psychofunctional States?

      Skip this section, resume reading on pg. 314

    3. 2.1 Arguments for Psychofunctionalism, and What Is Wrong with Them

      Read from here to pg. 304

    4. 1.6 Is the Prima Facie Doubt Merely Prima Facie?

      You can skip this section, resume reading on pg. 301.

    5. 1.5 Putnam's Proposal

      Read from here until page 293.

    6. (The remainder of this section, and section 1.3 and 1.4, can be omitted without loss of continuity.)

      You can skip these sections, resume reading on pg. 290.

    7. 1.2 Homunculi-Headed Robots

      Resume reading here, to page 282.


      Skip this section - pick back up reading on page 277.

    9. Troubles with Functionalis

      Please watch for my annotations to see where you can start and stop reading. Start from the beginning, and read until page 271.

    1. The issue between the brain-process theory and epiphenomenal- ism seems to be of the above sort. (Assuming that a behavioristic reduction of introspective reports is not possible.) If it be agreed that there are no cogent philosophical arguments which force us into accepting dualism, and if the brain process theory and dualism are equally consistent with the facts, then the principles of parsimony and simplicity seem to me to decide overwhelmingly in favor of the brain-process theory. As I pointed out earlier, dualism involves a large number of irreducible psychophysical laws (whereby the "nomological danglers" dangle) of a queer sort, that just have to be taken on trust, and are just as difficult to swallow as the irreducible facts about the paleontology of the earth with which we are faced on Philip Gosse's theory.

      Smart closes by re-iterating that the argument in favor of identity theory is essentially an abductive one, and that it is not coverage of the data, but rather other theoretical virtues which explain why it is preferable to epiphenomenalism.

    2. epiphenomenalism

      The position that experiences do not play any causal role, they are the "hum of the machine" (e.g., combustion drives a car engine, and combustion makes noise, but the noise is totally irrelevant to the working of the engine).

    3. 6 To say that something looks green to me is to say that my experience is like the experience I get when I see something that really is green. In my reply to Objec- tion 3, I pointed out the extreme openness or generality of statements which report experiences. This explains why there is no language of private qualities.

      To reply, Smart appeals back to the topic-neutral theory earlier. Sensation talk is just a matter of identifying similarities, so the public criteria would not be that they share some underlying phenomenological properties, but that people really do find them similar to other experiences they themselves had.

    4. For any rule of language must have public criteria for its correct application.

      The idea here is that a sensation would require a public criteria for anyone else in the world to know when their sensation was the same as another person's, and so that the same terms applied.

    5. It is obvious that until the brain-process theory is much improved and widely accepted there will be no criteria for saying "Smith has an experience of such-and-such a sort" except Smith's intro- spective report

      This is really interesting! Smart here seems to be saying that we trust reports of sensations because no other evidence is available. It would, in principle, however, be possible to dispute sensation reports if we knew enough neuroscience to be able to identify when those sensations were (and were not) occurring!

    6. But I am not claiming that "experience" and "brain-process" mean the same or even that they have the same logi

      Once again the semantics/metaphysics distinction plays a key role in the argument. Here it helps him avoid the conclusion that properties which apply to brain states do not apply to sensations. This matters because a difference in properties would mean that sensations and brain states are different things. He is implicitly appealing to Leibniz's law of indiscernible identicals in the objections, namely the idea that two identical things share all and only the same properties, and any two things which share all and only the same properties are in fact identical.

    7. There is, in a sense, no such thing as an after-image or a sense-datum, though there is such a thing as the experience of having an image, and this experience is described indirectly in material object language, not in phenomenal language, for there is no such thing.1

      Smart denies the existence of the content of the experience - the after-image is not something that exists in the world. There is only the experience of an after-image, and this can be identified with a physical point in space and time, just like a brain state.

    8. . I am not arguing that the after-image is a brain-process, but that the experience of having an after-image is a brain-process.

      This is a noteworthy distinction. He is identifying experiences with brain states, not the content of that experience (the after-image itself).

    9. This is an ignoratio elenc

      The logical fallacy of making a point that, while perhaps true or a valid argument, is irrelevant to the issue at hand.

    10. The strength of my reply depends on the possibility of our being able to report that one thing is like another without being able to state the respect in which it is like. I am not sure whether this is so or not, and that is why I regard Objection 3 as the strongest with which I have to deal

      I like that Smart is willing to acknowledge this limitation. The problem is that the topic-neutral view requires that I can identify sensations as similar, without reference to the shared properties that make them similar. Yet, one might think that when I say: "seeing the couch in my office" is similar to my experience in seeing the cover of my notebook, in that both are experiences of red.

    11. Notice that the italicized words, namely "there is something going on which is like what is going on when," are all quasi-logical or topic-neutral words. This explains why the ancient Greek peasant's reports about his sensations can be neutral between dualistic metaphysics or my materialistic metaphysics. It explains how sensations can be brain-processes and yet how those who report them need know nothing about brain-processes. For he reports them only very abstractly as "something going on which is like what is going on when

      Here, then, is Smart's solution to objection 3. To say that you see something (experience the phenomenological properties) is not really describing phenomenological properties at all. It is saying that something is going on that is similar to other situations. What's key, is that we move from:

      (1) I perceive that p.


      (2) My perception now similar to my perception in situation S.

      The first requires the existence of a phenomenological property p, whereas the latter only requires the existence of situations. This is what he means by "topic-neutral" - we can be totally ambivalent on what mental states are when we speak. This means that we can be totally wrong about what mental states are, but still truthfully describe our sensations.

    12. w. I say that "This is red" means something roughly like "A normal percipient would not easily pick this out of a clump of geranium petals though he would pick it out of a clump of lettuce leave

      I struggle with this. The idea seems clear: Smart wants to analyze colors as abilities (or powers, as he notes below) to make discriminations. To say that something is red is to say that a "normal percipient" would not be able to distinguish it from another red thing (geraniums), but would from non-red things (lettuce leaves). This is clever, but seems to miss important features of how we talk about color, namely that there is a what-it-is-likeness of it. Seeing red has a certain phenomenology above and beyond my ability to categorize objects similar to it.

    13. secondary qualities

      A secondary quality is one that depends upon the observer (color is the paradigmatic example).

    14. 1 Even if Objections i and 2 do not prove that sensations are something over and above brain-processes, they do prove that the qualities of sensations are something over and above the qualities of brain-processes. That is, it may be possible to get out of asserting the existence of irreducibly psychic processes, but not out of asserting the existence of irreducibly psychic properti

      This is a really interesting and important objection. Since we can know things about our sensations even without knowing their underlying physical processes, it would follow (on the objection) that there must be properties of those sensations not possessed by the physical processes. For example, the yellowness of a yellow flash.

    15. y a contingent

      Definition: contingent = not necessary.

    16. aybe this is because I have not thought it out sufficiently, but it does seem to me as though, when a person says "I have an after-image," he is making a genuine report, and that when he says "I have a pain," he is doing more than "replace pain-behavior," and that "this more" is not just to say that he is in distress

      Why does he think it must be a genuine report? Can we come up with other examples of statements about your mental states that it would be odd to analyze in a behaviorist way?

    17. The objection certainly proves that when we say "I have an after-image" we cannot mean something of the form "I have such and such a brain-proces

      Here Smart's distinction between identity theory as a metaphysical and as a semantic claim pays off. This means that I can talk about sensations even if our best theories for what brain processes are identical to them are wrong.

    18. In short, the reply to Objection i is that there can be contingent statements of the form "A is identical with B," and a person may well know that something is an A without knowing that it is a B.

      Smart rejects the first objection as an epistemological confusion. Two things being identical does not entail that one knows about that identity. His example is that many don't know that lightning is identical to electrical discharge, but that doesn't mean they aren't identical. Similarly, the citizens of Metropolis don't know that Superman and Clark Kent are the same guy, but they still are the same person.

    19. y. When I say that a sensation is a brain process or that lightning is an electric discharge, I am using "is" in the sense of strict identity. (Just as in the-in this case necessary-proposition "7 is identical with the smallest prime number greater than 5.") When I say that a sensation is a brain process or that lightning is an electric discharge I do not mean just that the sensation is somehow spatially or temporally con- tinuous with the brain process or that the lightning is just spatially or temporally continuous with the discharge

      Once again stating his thesis: sensations just are brain states. This connects to his earlier remark about how sensations and brain states are not correlated - since they are the same thing, they cannot be correlated with each other.

    20. Nations are nothing "over and above" citizens, but this does not prevent the logic of nation statements being very different from the logic of citizen statements, nor does it insure the translatability of nation statements into citizen statement

      It is not obvious to me that this is true. International relations scholarship often talks about nations as actors on the world stage - if nations figure into successful explanations of what happens in the international community, then would that give us an abductive argument that nations are things above and beyond the people in them?

    21. . It is not the thesis that, for example, "after-image" or "ache" means the same as "brain process of sort X" (where "X" is replaced by a description of a certain sort of brain process). It is that, in so far as "after-image" or "ache" is a report of a process, it is a report of a process that happens to be a brain proces

      Important - Smart is stating his thesis here. Sensations are brain processes, but this is a metaphysical claim (about what they are) and not a semantic claim (about what the language used to name each means).

    22. They have a queer "smell" to them

      This is hardly a compelling argument, but I think he means more than he says here. He invoked Occam's Razor before, and here he is essentially appealing to the theoretical virtue of coherence. That is, a theory which posited "natural laws" of mental states would not fit with our other theories, since they would be totally unlike all of our other natural laws.

    23. Such sensations would be "nomological danglers," to use Feigl's expressio

      "Nomological" means relating to natural laws, so to say that sensations would be nomological danglers is to say that they would not fall under any natural laws.

    24. That these should be correlated with brain processes does not help, for to say that they are correlated is to say that they are something "over and above." You cannot correlate something with itself.

      This seems to me to be really important. Something cannot be correlated with itself because it just is that thing. After all, a correlation holds between two things, but there is only one thing here.

    25. There does seem to be, so far as science is concerned, nothing in the world but increasingly complex arrangements of physical con- stituents. All except for one place: in consciousnes

      Smart is making an argument from scientific success here, rather than an argument from some prior metaphysical theory. I think this is a good strategy - it would be difficult for him to show that there is only physical stuff without begging the question against the dualist. This way, he can point to the success of physicalist descriptions of the world, and infer that the idea that everything is physical is a better explanation of that success than dualism.

    26. Mainly because of Occam's razor

      Occam's Razor: one should prefer the simplest explanation of the phenomena.

    27. The suggestion I wish if possible to avoid is a different one, namely that "I am in pain" is a genuine report, and that what it reports is an irre- ducibly psychical something

      This links back to the Descartes passages we looked at on the first day. He wants to avoid an "irreducibly psychical something," or, some sort of mind-stuff that is non-physical.

    28. One answer to this question might be that I am not reporting anything, that when I say that it looks to me as though there is a roundish yellowy orange patch of light on the wall I am expressing some sort of temptation, the temptation to say that there is a roundish yellowy orange patch on the wall (though I may know that there is not such a patch on the wall).

      This looks like a behaviorist way of analyzing the remark. In this reading, I am not saying anything about any experience or mental state; rather, I am treating the remark as indicating a tendency to say things.

  4. Apr 2017
    1. A second problem has to do with choice of grammar. Evidently, for any set there are many grammars that will enumerate it. Hence it has commonly been argued, most notably by W. v. Quine, that choice of grammar is a mat-ter of convenience, not truth, like the choice of a “grammar” for the well-formed sentences of arithmetic in some notation. But now we face real ques-tions about the subject matter of the study of language. Clearly, there is some fact about the mind/brain that differentiates speakers of English from speak-ers of Japanese, and there is a truth about this matter, which is ultimately a question of biology. But sets are not in the mind/brain, and grammars can be chosen freely as long as they enumerate the E-language, so the study of E-language, however construed, does not seem to bear on the truth about speakers of English and Japanese; it is not, even in principle, part of the natu-ral sciences, and one might argue that it is a pointless pursuit.

      Problem #2

    2. In the first place, the set is ill-defined, non simply in the sense that it may be vague, with indeterminate boundaries, but in a deeper sense. Consider what are sometimes called “semi-grammatical sentences”, such as “the child seems sleeping”. Is this in the language or outside it? Either answer is unacceptable. The sentence clearly has a definite meaning.

      Problem #1

  5. Mar 2017
    1. In the context of actual investi-gation, our general theoretical assumptions and interests doimpose substantive constraints on the metaphor’s interpreta-tion. On the one hand, not just any similarity between ele-ments in the two domains is an acceptable candidate forsolving the equation. In this case, the background assump-tion that minds are fundamentally concerned with informationprocessing significantly constrains the respects in which we arewilling to count memory retrieval as like a software program’sopening a file. On the other hand, the domain of propertieswhich could possibly count as solutions to the analogicalequation, and so as referents of the metaphor, is heavily re-stricted by independent assumptions about the general fieldunder investigation: here, by assumptions about the mechanicsof neural processing.

      Passage 16

    2. econdobjection, though: why think that an unsolved equation of thissort can give us cognitive access to a specific feature in theworld? Just as a broad, sweeping gesture toward a crowd failsto isolate a particular individual as the referent of ‘‘that guy,’’so, it seems, both the metaphor and its literal restatement failto isolate any particular property as their referent.

      Passage 15

    3. First, just as with (7), one might insist thatthe metaphorper secan be eliminated. I said that the meta-phor fixes the propertyxwhich I want to investigateviaanimplicit analogical equation. But we can make this equationexplicit in a literal definition, as for example in:(8) The property of cognition that causes memory re-trieval in a manner that is analogous in some theo-retically relevant respect to opening a folder in acomputer program.While the metaphor is considerably more compact and conve-nient than (8), the thought itself does not require that form ofexpression. However, as I argued in discussing (7), identifyingthe denotation of a literal description like (8) requires the samecognitive capacity as the original metaphor does. We still needto identify which particular similarities are relevant, and thenconstruct a positive concept of the appropriate property onthat basis

      Passage 14

    4. I don’t yet have aclear fix on just what its causal powers are, and so I can’t de-fine it as ‘‘the property that plays causal roleR.’’ I also can’tidentify it or its effects ostensively -- as ‘‘thisproperty’’ -- be-cause I only ever encounter it embedded within a complex fieldof interacting processes. Not only can’t I observe it itself di-rectly and in isolation; I also lack any reliable way to distin-guish its role in producing a given effect from the rolessimultaneously played by a host of other properties. In such acircumstance, though, a metaphor may enable me to ‘‘lock on’’to the particular property I’m interested in, much as (7)enabled its hearer to grasp the property its speaker had inmind.Boyd (1979) argued 25 years ago that this was precisely thesituation faced by researchers in cognitive science; his claimstill seems true today. If one is any sort of functionalist aboutcognition, then one believes that some properties of cognitionare essentially individuated by their causal relations. We havea rough idea about what some of these properties’ causal rela-tions must be, and we know considerably more about theireffects, but we can’t yet define the properties in fully literalterms. We can still make theoretical and experimental pro-gress, though, by thinking metaphorically -- for example, byexploiting the metaphor of memory storage and retrieval asthe opening of a computer file (where this is itself, of course,a metaphor drawn from physical data storage).

      Passage 13

    5. In a case like (7), however, the speaker lacks the resourcesnecessary to introduce a new term in the manner Searleimagines, even if she avails herself of all possible literalmeans. She herself could easily invent a new word, relying ondemonstrative reference through memory. But she could notintroduce that word into the language, because her hearerwould be in no position to comprehend it -- not as a result oflinguistic incompetence, or irrationality, but just from a lackof worldly experience.

      Passage 12

    6. Metaphors, however, don’t require ostension, and so theycan allow the speaker to communicate her intended contenteven when ostension is ruled out. The metaphor accomplishesthis by setting up an implicit analogy between two object-property pairs, where the hearer presumably has had experi-ence with both the object and the property in one pair butonly with the object of the second. This is how a metaphorlike (7) works, I think:(7) When he finally walked out the door, I was leftstanding on the top of an icy mountain crag, withnothing around me but thin cold air, bare whitecliffs, and a blindingly clear blue sky.Here, the speaker is claiming to have experienced a specificproperty, one for which the language has no existing expres-sion, and one which the hearer has not (let us suppose) experi-enced himsel

      Passage 11

    7. Rather than focusing on metaphor’s complexity, I think amore promising avenue for establishing the claim that meta-phors pose a distinctive challenge to paraphrase lies in theprecisionof at least some metaphors. The fact that anygiven language contains only a finite number of fixed linguis-tic expressions constrains the range of properties its speakerscan talk about directly. Demonstratives extend these linguisticresources significantly, by enabling speakers to exploit theworld itself in order to construct novel expressions. Meta-phors can function communicatively much like demonstra-tives in this respect. For example, characterizing the drunk atthe bar as a ‘‘wheezing bagpipe’’ allows me to capture theparticular tone of his voice: loud, braying, continuous, nasal.These latter adjectives provide you with a general schema forimagining the relevant sound, but the metaphor is consider-ably more vivid and precise, because it exploits your specific,experiential knowledge of the sound that bagpipes make.

      Passage 10

    8. As essential as ‘‘aspectual thought’’ is to metaphor’s work-ings and to its overall effect, however, I do not think it be-longs in the paraphrase. As I said in Section 1, a paraphraseshould capture the content of the speaker’s intended speechact. But a ‘‘perspective’’ or an overall way of structuringone’s thinking does not itself fix any conditions of satisfac-tion, and so it cannot be the content of (e.g.) a claim. ‘‘Per-spectives’’ are indeed cognitive, in the sense of beingtoolsforthinking, but they are not themselves thoughts. Thus, whileBlack is correct both that a literal paraphrase lacks the sameinsight as the original, and that this is a significant cognitiveloss, this does not impugn the paraphrase’s own adequacy.Finally, notice that even this phenomenon, of inducing anopenended ‘‘aspect’’ or ‘‘perspective,’’ is not distinctive of met-aphor. The discovery that Donald Rumsfeld was a wrestler, forinstance, gave me a whole new schema for understanding him.

      Passage 9

    9. The final argument against paraphrase implicit in the quotefrom Black is that the paraphrase fails to give the same ‘‘in-sight’’ as the original. The metaphor doesn’t merely express apropositional thought; it reveals an overall perspective -- a‘‘filter’’ (Black, 1962) or ‘‘frame’’ (Moran, 1989) for organiz-ing and coloring our thoughts, both about the subject underdiscussion and about the world at large.

      Passage 8

    10. Much ordinary talk -- let alone literary writing -- is looseand/or evocative in just this way,despitebeing literal. I believethat this is because much of our talk, literal and metaphorical,relies upon characterizations, whether pre-fabricated as withstereotypes, or made ready-to-order as in a narrative. Charac-terizations are almost always merely rough and intuitive, andgo well beyond the content that’s conventionally encoded inour words and concepts.5Paraphrases of such utterances willoften be merely partial and approximate, and will impose adeterminacy on the speaker’s meaning that it did not origi-nally possess. The difficulty here, however, is a general onewith paraphrasing utterances whose intended contents are notfully determinate; it is not a difficulty that applies to metaphorin particular. We don’t usually conclude that literal utteranceslike (3) through (6) lack propositional content, or that theircontent is importantly different in kind from that expressed byutterances which can be paraphrased more easily. Thus, theargument can’t be used to establish the special, irreducibleineffability of metaphorical meaning.

      Passage 7

    11. he dissatisfaction with paraphrase articulated here is deepand often genuinely warranted.4However, to the extent thatthe argument succeeds in undermining the paraphraseabilityof metaphor, it also thereby undermines the paraphraseabilityof many literal utterances. Suppose you asked me to restatejust what I meant in saying any of the following:(3) Jane is a real woman now.(4) He’s a politician’s politician.(5) He is an honorable and upright member of the petitbourgeoisie.(6) She thinks she’s hit the big time, living the glam LAlifestyle, but she’s just another aspiring waitress.

      Passage 6

    12. However, I think Black’s negativeclaim is mistaken: a literal paraphrase need not ignore thesestructural relations. Our language may not contain manycommon, convenient devices for making them explicit, but itis well within our capabilities to represent them. I did justthat with Romeo’s metaphor, albeit in rather laborious terms,in order to motivate the intuition that therewassuch a struc-ture. We can also, more perspicuously, supplement our lan-guage with formal representational systems such as numericalweightings or maps, as I’ve done in Figure 1.

      Passage 4

    13. Confronted with something like Figure 1, though, it’s natu-ral to respond with Black’s second objection. Such a para-phrase fails to translate the metaphor because it ‘‘says toomuch:’’ it is inappropriately specific, definite, and explicit

      Passage 5

    14. Suppose we try to state the cognitive content of a...metaphor in ‘‘plainlanguage.’’ Up to a point, we may succeed...But the set of literal state-ments so obtained will not have the same power to inform and enlightenas the original. For one thing, the implications, previously left for a suit-able reader to educe for himself, with a nice feeling for their relative pri-orities and degrees of importance, are now presented explicitly as thoughhaving equal weight. The literal paraphrase inevitably says too much --and with the wrong emphasis. One of the points I most wish to stress isthat the loss in such cases is a loss in cognitive content; the relevantweakness of the literal paraphrase is not that it may be tiresomely prolixor boringly explicit (or deficient in qualities of style); it fails to be a trans-lation because it fails to give the insight that the metaphor did.

      Passage 3

    15. Metaphors’ contents are often highlycomplex, not just in the sense of having many components,but in having a rich structure among those components. Con-sider, for instance, Romeo’s utterance of (2) in the context inwhich he utters it.2I think it’s part of Romeo’s claim here thatsome of the features he ascribes to Juliet are more importantthan others. Her being gloriously beautiful is more important,for instance, than her helping him to grow emotionally.

      Passage 2

    16. In communicating, weconfront an ‘‘articulatory bottleneck’’: the process of vocalarticulation runs about four times slower than the surround-ing mental processes (Levinson, 2000, pp. 6, 28). We there-fore need to pack as much information as we can into eachof the syllables we utter, and rely on our hearers to decodethe full richness of our intended meaning from those sylla-bles. Metaphors offer one convenient way to do this.They also enable an important sort ofcognitiveefficiency,one that goes beyond just circumventing the limitations ofour vocal cords. As Glucksberg and Keysar (1993, p. 421)say, metaphors present ‘‘a patterned complex of properties inone chunk.’’ I believe that this is because metaphoricalcommunication exploits a general fact about our engagementwith the world: we typically experience multiple propertiesinstantiated together, first in particular individuals and againacross individuals of certain kinds.

      Passage 1

  6. Feb 2017
    1. But can we condone a language which contains such an adverb? Does the adverb really make sense? To suppose that it does is to suppose that we have already made satisfactory sense of 'analytic'. Then what are we so hard at work on right now? Our argument is not flatly circular, but something like it. It has the form, figuratively speaking, of a closed curve in space.

      Necessity to Analyticity

    2. Now a language of this type is extensional, in this sense: any two predicates which agree extensional- ly (i.e., are true of the same objects) are interchangeable salva yeri- tate. In an extensional language, therefore, interchangeability salva yeri- tate is no assurance of cognitive synonymy of the desired type. That 'bachelor' and 'unmarried man' are interchangeable salva veritate' in an extensional language assures us of no more than that (3) is true. There is no assurance here that the extensional agreement of 'bachelor' and 'unmarried man' rests on meaning rather than merely on acciden- tal matters of fact, as does extensional agreement of 'creature with a heart' and 'creature with a kidney'. For most purposes extensional agreement is the nearest approxima- tion to synonymy we need care about. But the fact remains that ex- tensional agreement falls far short of cognitive synonymy of the type required for explaining analyticity in the manner of Section I. The type of cognitive synonymy required there is such as to equate the synonymy of 'bachelor' and 'unmarried man' with the analyticity of (3), not merely with the truth of

      Interchangeability to Necessity: Passage 2

    3. We can quickly assure ourselves that it is, by examples of the following sort. The statement: (4) Necessarily all and only bachelors are bachelors is evidently true, even supposing 'necessarily' so narrowly construed as to be truly applicable only to analytic statements. Then, if 'bachelor' and 'unmarried man' are interchangeable salva veritate, the result (5) Necessarily, all and only bachelors are unmarried men of putting 'unmarried man' for an occurrence of 'bachelor' in (4) must, like (4), be true. But to say that (5) is true is to say that (3) is analytic, and hence that 'bachelor' and 'unmarried men' are cogni- tively synonymous.

      Interchangeability to Necessity: Passage 1

    4. Hence the definiendum and its definiens may be expected, in each case, to be related in one or another of the three ways lately noted. The definiens may be a faithful paraphrase of the definiendum into the narrower notation, preserving a direct synonymy as of antecedent usage; or the definiens may, in the spirit of explication, improve upon the antecedent usage of the definiendum; or finally, the definiendum may be a newly created notation, newly endowed with meaning here and now. In formal and informal work alike, thus, we find that definition- except in the extreme case of the explicitly conventional introduction of new notations - hinges on prior relationships of synonymy.

      Synonymy to Interchangeability: Passage 2

    5. There are those who find it soothing to say that the analytic state- ments of the second class reduce to those of the first class, the logical truths, by definition; 'bachelor', e.g., is defined as 'unmarried man'. But how do we find that 'bachelor' is defined as 'unmarried man'? Who defined it thus, and when? Are we to appeal to the nearest dic- tionary, and accept the lexicographer's formulation as law? Clearly this would be to put the cart before the horse. The lexicographer is an empirical scientist, whose business is the recording of antecedent facts; and if he glosses 'bachelor' as 'unmarried man' it is because of his belief that there is a relation of synonymy between these forms, implicit in general or preferred usage prior to his own work

      Synonymy to Interchangeability: Passage 1

    6. Statements which are analytic by general philosophical acclaim are not, indeed, far to seek. They fall into two classes. Those of the first class, which may be called logically true, are typified by: (i) No unmarried man is married. The relevant feature of this example is that it is not merely true as it stands, but remains true under any and all reinterpretations of 'man' and 'married'. If we suppose a prior inventory of logical particles, com- prising 'no', 'un-', 'not', 'if', 'then', 'and', etc., then in general a logical truth is a statement which is true and remains true under all reinter- pretations of its components other than the logical particles. But there is also a second class of analytic statements, typified by: (2) No bachelor is married. The characteristic of such a statement is that it can be turned into a logical truth by putting synonyms for synonyms; thus (2) can be turned into (i) by putting 'unmarried man' for its synonym 'bache- lor'. We still lack a proper characterization of this second class of analytic statements, and therewith of analyticity generally, inasmuch as we have had in the above description to lean on a notion of "synony- my" which is no less in need of clarification than analytic

      Meaning to Synonymy: Passage 2

    7. For the theory -of meaning the most conspicuous question is as to the nature of its objects: what sort of things are meanings? They are evidently intended to be ideas, somehow - mental ideas for some semanticists, Platonic ideas for others. Objects of either sort are so elusive, not to say debatable, that there seems little hope of erecting a fruitful science about them. It is not even clear, granted meanings, when we have two and when we have one; it is not clear when lin- guistic forms should be regarded as synonymous, or alike in meaning, and when they should not. If a standard of synonymy should be ar- rived at, we may reasonably expect that the appeal to meanings as entities will not have played a very useful part in the enter

      Meaning to Synonymy, passage 1