Philosophy Lexicon of Arguments

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Indeterminacy, philosophy: An object is indeterminate if its linguistic description indicates fewer characteristics than a member of a (linguistic) community usually needs to distinguish the object from other objects. See also uncertainty of translation, vagueness, under-determinateness, inscrutability, determinateness.

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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.

 
Author Item Excerpt Meta data

 
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Rorty I 227
McDowellVsQuine: If truth is underdetermined by the entirety of the observable, then it must be independent of it. This is absurd for verificationists, therefore one must not understand it realistically.
This strategy would imply, however, that one includes biology, but excludes translation.
ChomskyVsQuine: there is only one indeterminacy: the familiar underdeterminacy of each theory through all observations.
((s) You never know whether all the observations are taken into account, or are already done.
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Quine I 257
Indeterminate singular terms do not designate objects. - An indefinite singular term must therefore stand in purely significant position: E.g. "The tax inspector is looking for someone" (position significant - "someone" is not significant).
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I 283
Indefinite singular term: disappears in quantification "something is an x such that", "everything is an x .."
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I 285
Beliefs and quotes can be understood as infinite different things (Indeterminacy).
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II 33
Inscrutability of reference: no difference: "x is a dog" or "x is the spatiotemporal strand, which is filled by a dog" - only one statement about the used terminology and its translation, not about physical objects (representative function). - Inscrutability: occurs in translation or permutation.
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VI 69
Indeterminacy of translation/syntax/Quine: the ambiguity does not extend to the syntax - but on the referential apparatus: plural endings, equal signs, quantifiers - but these are not part of syntax.
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XII 60
Indeterminacy of translation/Quine: E.g. numbers of Neumann, Frege, Zermelo: each definition is correct, but they are all incompatible with one another. - Solution: we invent set-theoretic models which must comply with the laws that fulfill the numbers in non-explicit meaning - Problem: you do not know if you talk about the terms or about the Goedel numbers - (> shifted ostension).
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XII 62
Indeterminacy of translation/Native language/Quine: the indeterminacy of translation is also valid in a language: E.g. we may translate the "hopefully" of a particular speaker better differently - principle of indulgence: justifies deviations from the homophonic translation, reproduction by the same phoneme order - compensation: can be made by corrections to the predicates - problem: we cannot ask: "are you really referring to Goedel numbers?" - Because the answer: "to numbers" lost its right to homophonic translation - ((s) because of the principle of indulgence).
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XII 97
Indeterminacy/translation/Gavagai/linguistics/Quine: the linguist always comes to an accurate translation, but only because he unconsciously makes arbitrary decisions - decisive: the holism: statements cannot be isolated. - ((S) any differences can be compensated in other partial-translations.)


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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.

Q I
W.V.O. Quine
Wort und Gegenstand Stuttgart 1980

Q II
W.V.O. Quine
Theorien und Dinge Frankfurt 1985

Q III
W.V.O. Quine
Grundzüge der Logik Frankfurt 1978

Q IX
W.V.O. Quine
Mengenlehre und ihre Logik Wiesbaden 1967

Q V
W.V.O. Quine
Die Wurzeln der Referenz Frankfurt 1989

Q VI
W.V.O. Quine
Unterwegs zur Wahrheit Paderborn 1995

Q VII
W.V.O. Quine
From a logical point of view Cambridge, Mass. 1953

Q VIII
W.V.O. Quine
Bezeichnung und Referenz
In
Zur Philosophie der idealen Sprache, J. Sinnreich (Hg), München 1982

Q X
W.V.O. Quine
Philosophie der Logik Bamberg 2005

Q XII
W.V.O. Quine
Ontologische Relativität Frankfurt 2003

Ro I
R. Rorty
Der Spiegel der Natur Frankfurt 1997

Ro II
R. Rorty
Philosophie & die Zukunft Frankfurt 2000

Ro III
R. Rorty
Kontingenz, Ironie und Solidarität Frankfurt 1992

Ro IV
R. Rorty
Eine Kultur ohne Zentrum Stuttgart 1993

Ro V
R. Rorty
Solidarität oder Objektivität? Stuttgart 1998

Ro VI
R. Rorty
Wahrheit und Fortschritt Frankfurt 2000

Q XII
W.V.O. Quine
Ontologische Relativität Frankfurt 2003


> Counter arguments against Quine
> Counter arguments in relation to Indeterminacy



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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2017-07-21