Research Workshop on “Grappling Hooks and Anchors: The Function of Singular Thought”
Kyle Dickey (UCSB Grad Student)
Friday, October 12th from 12:10–2:00 PM in 22-210 (English bldg)
Abstract: Singularity in thought and content has been tied to the doctrine of acquaintance since introduced by Bertrand Russell. There has been recent push back against the doctrine in both epistemology and philosophical semantics, but most of this has been critical. In this talk I will discuss a number of cases that have been used to criticize acquaintance constraints on singular thought and sketch a view that explains the intuitiveness of Russell's doctrine while shedding light on our ability to think about things with which we are not acquainted. At the core of this view is a functional role that singular terms and singular thought seem to share. Both serve functionally as anchors or grappling hooks in securing reference for discourse and thought.
The Cal Poly Philosophy department is launching a Research Workshop series. At these Research Workshops, graduate students from the UC Santa Barbara philosophy department come to Cal Poly to discuss some of their current work over lunch with our students and faculty. The Philosophy Research Workshops provide an opportunity to encounter and explore areas of current graduate student research. If the topics seem puzzling, consider attending so you may learn more about areas of philosophy beyond the scope of your current experience. We will be running two Research Workshops in Fall, with more scheduled for Winter and Spring.
The Cal Poly Research Workshop is made possible by the generous support of our alumni and benefactors.
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