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Análisis filosófico

versión On-line ISSN 1851-9636


ZERBUDIS, Ezequiel. The problem of extensional adequacy for Devitt's rigid appliers. Anal. filos. [online]. 2009, vol.29, n.2, pp.219-237. ISSN 1851-9636.

In the present paper, I examine how Michael Devitt's proposal as to how to understand the notion of rigidity for general terms fares as regards what I have called the 'criterion of extensional adequacy' for any such notion -namely, the condition according to which any notion of general term rigidity should make the class of rigid terms coincide with that of natural kind terms. I try to show that Devitt's defense of his view from the usual objections raised in the literature fails. In the first place, the proposal seems to overgeneralize, as terms such as 'television set' or 'table', would also be rigid appliers; as I try to show here, the arguments presented by Devitt in order to show that that is not the case are based on some alleged properties of those terms that are also true of some of the expressions he does consider as rigid. In the second place, the proposal also undergeneralizes; even though Devitt himself accepts that this is so, I try to show that his strategy to lessen the disappointment this causes also fails.

Palabras clave : Designation; Rigidity; General term; Natural kind.

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