frege@stirling workshop II — may 10-11 2014

Frege@Stirling Workshop II

—Frege’s Conception of Sense. Context, Content and Inference in a Fregean Framework—

May 10-11, 2014

University of Stirling

Pathfoot Building – Room B2


Patricia Blanchette (Notre Dame) — Mike Beaney (York) —  Bob Hale (Sheffield)

Peter Milne (Stirling) — Walter Pedriali (Stirling) — Michael Potter (Cambridge)



On one natural reading, Fregean thoughts are absolute, timeless, sharply bounded. They are not relativized to anything, not even worlds; they are radically de-contextualized. So construed, thoughts (i.e. the senses of declarative sentences) are entities of staggering (indeed, ungraspable) informational complexity. And yet senses are what competent speakers supposedly understand. Indeed, their content is what guides linguistically competent agents in their inferential activities. However, since senses contain all and only that which determines reference, imperfect grasp of any of their parts should by rights impair our ability to draw inferences correctly. There is thus a prima facie tension between two of the requirements that are constitutive of the notion of sense, namely, that senses be complete in every respect and that they determinedly guide inference. The aim of the workshop is to explore ways to resolve this tension within a Fregean framework. Questions to be considered at the workshop will include discussion of Frege’s various meaning-determining principles, the attendant indeterminacy issues, the role of definitions and elucidations in keeping such issues at bay and the notion(s) of content that Frege was working with.


For further information regarding the workshop and to register for the event, please contact the organisers, Philip Ebert and Walter Pedriali. Please note that graduate students bursaries are available. Contact Walter Pedriali for further details. Please also note that registration for the event closes on April 30th. Information about StirlingPhilosophy@StirlingStirling CampusCampus MapTravelling to Stirling.


The series of workshops is partly sponsored by an Early Career Leverhulme Trust Award held by Walter Pedriali. Additional funds are provided by the Scots Philosophical Association and the University of Stirling.



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