Philosophy Dictionary of Arguments

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Synonymy, philosophy: synonymy is the similarity of meaning of linguistic expressions. The conditions for actual equality of meaning are diverse and vary considerably, depending on the consideration of various aspects such as e.g. regional characteristics of the language use or different size of the subject area in question. See also intension, extension, identity, externalism, opacity, substitution, interpretation, translation, language usage.

Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

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Peter Geach on Synonymy - Dictionary of Arguments

Synonymy/Criteria/propositional identity/Geach: we know that strict reciprocal implication is not a sufficient criterion for synonymy - e.g. "Necessarily either both, p and q, or neither p nor q" usually does not suffice: that does not justify the conclusion: Everyone believes that p iff and only if he believes that q". - ((s) because of lack of identity criteria for intensional objects.) Geach: entailment as a substitute for strict implication is complicated, but does not help. - Transitivity must be abolished - even from reciprocal entailment, the identity of propositions does not follow. - Geach: no one knows what he says when he says that two propositions are identical. If the difference between two propositions is not an obstacle, that both are believed at the same time, why should it be an obstacle being expressed simultaneously by one and the same proposition? - Problem: then the whole apparatus of synonymy and non-ambiguity threatens to collapse. On the other hand, if we cannot recognize the same meaning (sense) in different linguistic disguises, there is also little purpose in postulating propositions.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Gea I
P.T. Geach
Logic Matters Oxford 1972

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2021-04-12
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