A note on name individuation and identifying descriptions

  • JP Smit Department of General Linguistics, Stellenbosch University


In ‘Public Proper names and Idiolectical Identifying Descriptions’ (2009) Glezakos puts forward a theory concerning the role of identifying descriptions in the theory of names. Her main claim is that such identifying descriptions serve to individuate names, i.e. to make it the case that a given linguistic act containing a name N contains N, and not some phonetically/orthographically equivalent name. In this paper I will claim that, while a lot of what Glezakos has to say about the role of descriptions is probably correct, such descriptive conditions are not needed to solve the individuation problem.


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