What Beliefs Are Made From

Speech and Language

Author(s): Jonathan Leicester

Pp: 113-122 (10)

DOI: 10.2174/9781681082639116010016

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


The chapter begins with a discussion of names, descriptive names, and definitive descriptions, with the suggestion that a description becomes a descriptive name, and later simply a name, as it becomes a symbol for the thing it refers to. The issue of naming the several categories of things that we cannot describe accurately is raised. This includes a look at Wittgenstein´s private language argument. The problems of universals, nominalism, and realism are explained and commented on. The influence these issues can have on belief is illustrated with the debate on whether delusions are beliefs, and the issue of moral relativism is raised. The chapter ends with brief comment on misunderstanding through slippage of meaning, and on the Whorf-Sapir hypothesis.

Keywords: Belief, Delusion, Descriptions, Names, Nominalism and realism, Private language argument, Universals.

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