By Carmelo Lacorte
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Extra info for Teoretica I
Instead of there being just the single linear causal chain that goes back from one's utterance to the original naming ceremony, the structure is mangrove-like: the utterance proceeds also out of further historical chains that are grounded in later stages of the bearer itself. Once our use of "Madagascar" has a large preponderance of its groundings in the island rather than the mainland region, it thereby comes to designate the island; once our use of "Jack" is heavily grounded in many people's perceptual encounters with the man called that, those groundings will overmaster the chain that began with the naming ceremony.
In Kripke's fiction, the theorem was proved in the 1920s by a man named Schmidt, who died mysteriously without publishing it. 4 Now, most people know Godel, if at all, as the man who proved the Incompleteness Theorem. Yet it seems clear that when even those who know nothing else about Godel utter the name "Godel," they do refer to Godel rather than to the entirely unknown Schmidt. For example, when they say "Godel proved the Incompleteness Theorem," they are speaking falsely, however well justified they may be in their belief.
But then a separate question is, in virtue of what is a thing the referent or bearer of a particular name? Semantics leaves that question to philosophical analysis. A philosophical theory of referring is a hypothesis as to what relation it is exactly that ties a name to its referent - more specifically, an answer to the question of what it takes for there to be a referential link between one's utterance of a name and the individual that gets referred to by that utterance. Semantical theories of names and philosophical accounts of referring vary independently of each other.