An Anscombean Reference for ‘I’? Cover Image
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An Anscombean Reference for ‘I’?
An Anscombean Reference for ‘I’?

Author(s): Robert J. Stainton, Andrew Botterell
Subject(s): Epistemology, Logic, Semantics, Analytic Philosophy, Philosophy of Mind, Philosophy of Language
Published by: KruZak
Keywords: G. E. M. Anscombe; ‘I’, persons; immunity to error through misidentification; deflated reference; The First Person;

Summary/Abstract: A standard reading of Anscombe’s “The First Person” takes her to argue, via reductio, that ‘I’ must be radically non-referring. Allegedly, she analogizes ‘I’ to the expletive ‘it’ in ‘It is raining’. Hence nothing need be said about Anscombe’s understanding of “the referential functioning of ‘I’”, there being no such thing. We think that this radical reading is incorrect. Given this, a pressing question arises: How does ‘I’ refer for Anscombe, and what sort of thing do users of ‘I’ refer to? We present a tentative answer which is both consistent with much of what Anscombe says, and is also empirically/philosophically defensible.

  • Issue Year: XVIII/2018
  • Issue No: 54
  • Page Range: 343-362
  • Page Count: 20
  • Language: English