<!DOCTYPE html><HTML lang="en"> <head><meta charset="utf-8"> <title>Noonan (Harold) - Relative Identity (Theo Todman's Book Collection - Paper Abstracts) </title> <link href="../../TheosStyle.css" rel="stylesheet" type="text/css"><link rel="shortcut icon" href="../../TT_ICO.png" /></head> <BODY> <CENTER> <div id="header"><HR><h1>Theo Todman's Web Page - Paper Abstracts</h1><HR></div><A name="Top"></A> <TABLE class = "Bridge" WIDTH=950> <tr><th><A HREF = "../../PaperSummaries/PaperSummary_01/PaperSummary_1937.htm">Relative Identity</A></th></tr> <tr><th><A HREF = "../../Authors/N/Author_Noonan (Harold).htm">Noonan (Harold)</a></th></tr> <tr><th>Source: Hale & Wright - A Companion to the Philosophy of Language</th></tr> <tr><th>Paper - Abstract</th></tr> </TABLE> </CENTER> <P><CENTER><TABLE class = "Bridge" WIDTH=600><tr><td><A HREF = "../../PaperSummaries/PaperSummary_01/PaperSummary_1937.htm">Paper Summary</A></td><td><A HREF = "../../PaperSummaries/PaperSummary_01/PapersToNotes_1937.htm">Notes Citing this Paper</A></td><td><A HREF="#ColourConventions">Text Colour-Conventions</a></td></tr></TABLE></CENTER></P> <hr><P><FONT COLOR = "0000FF"><U>Author s Introduction</U> (Full Text)<FONT COLOR = "800080"> <ol type="1"><li><ul type="disc"><li>A piece of bronze is shaped into a statue of Napoleon and then some time later melted down and shaped into a statue of Winston Churchill. Thus the same <em>piece of bronze</em> is. at different times, different <em>statues</em>. </li><li>A ship built entirely of timber undergoes over time a process of repair and replacement of parts so that eventually not a plank of the original ship remains. Thus the same <em>ship</em> is at different times two completely different <em>collections of planks</em>. </li><li>Dr Jekyll drinks his potion and transforms himself into Mr Hyde. Thus the same <em>man</em>, at different times, is two different <em>persons</em> or <em>personalities</em>. </li><li>I ask you to count the number of animals in the local zoo; you unable to do so without further instruction since the zoo contains several individuals of the same species: Tiger Tim is the same <em>species of animal</em> as Tiger Tom, but a different <em>member</em> of the species. </li><li>According to the doctrine of the Trinity, the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost are the same <em>God</em>, but three different <em>Persons</em>. </li></ul></li><li><ul type="disc"><li>These examples suggest that in a variety of circumstances one and the same A can be different Bs, and hence that there is some sort of incompleteness or indefiniteness in the unqualified statement that x and y are the same, which needs to be eliminated by answering the question 'the same <em>what</em>?'</li></ul></li><li><ul type="disc"><li>One way of making these vague thoughts more precise is by appeal to the idea that <em>identity is relative</em>, which was first suggested to contemporary philosophers by Peter Geach (see Peter Geach, <em>Reference and Generality</em>, 1962; <a name="3"></a>"<A HREF = "../../Abstracts/Abstract_05/Abstract_5191.htm">Geach (Peter) - Identity</A>", 1967 and subsequent references). </li><li>In the ensuing heated debate major contributions on the opposing side were those of David Wiggins (<a name="10"></a>"<A HREF = "../../BookSummaries/BookSummary_00/BookPaperAbstracts/BookPaperAbstracts_53.htm">Wiggins (David) - Identity & Spatio-temporal Continuity</A>", 1967 and <a name="11"></a>"<A HREF = "../../BookSummaries/BookSummary_00/BookPaperAbstracts/BookPaperAbstracts_54.htm">Wiggins (David) - Sameness and Substance</A>", 1980) and Michael Dummett (<a name="12"></a>"<A HREF = "../../BookSummaries/BookSummary_00/BookPaperAbstracts/BookPaperAbstracts_14.htm">Dummett (Michael) - Frege, Philosophy of Language</A>", 1973; <em>The Interpretation of Frege s Philosophy</em>, 1981; and <a name="4"></a>"<A HREF = "../../PaperSummaries/PaperSummary_06/PaperSummary_6387.htm">Dummett (Michael) - Does Quantification Involve Identity</A>", 1991) in particular, whilst other writers who have put forward views similar to, or partly identical with, those of Geach included W. V. O. Quine (<a name="13"></a>"<A HREF = "../../BookSummaries/BookSummary_00/BookPaperAbstracts/BookPaperAbstracts_42.htm">Quine (W.V.) - From a Logical Point of View</A>", 1963; and <a name="14"></a>"<A HREF = "../../BookSummaries/BookSummary_01/BookPaperAbstracts/BookPaperAbstracts_1023.htm">Quine (W.V.) - The Roots of Reference</A>", 1973), R. M. Chisholm (<a name="5"></a>"<A HREF = "../../Abstracts/Abstract_01/Abstract_1319.htm">Chisholm (Roderick) & Shoemaker (Sydney) - Symposium: The Loose and Popular and the Strict and Philosophical Senses of Identity</A>", 1969; <a name="6"></a>"<A HREF = "../../Abstracts/Abstract_01/Abstract_1778.htm">Chisholm (Roderick) - Identity Through Time</A>", 1970; and <a name="15"></a>"<A HREF = "../../BookSummaries/BookSummary_00/BookPaperAbstracts/BookPaperAbstracts_75.htm">Chisholm (Roderick) - Person and Object</A>", 1976), and David Lewis (<a name="7"></a>"<A HREF = "../../Abstracts/Abstract_00/Abstract_113.htm">Lewis (David) - Survival and Identity</A>", 1976). </li><li>In what follows I shall set out and briefly attempt to evaluate Geach's main claims and arguments and the counter-arguments of his most significant opponents. </li><li>I shall be considering Geach's claims solely as pertaining to the philosophy of language and to philosophical logic, but it should be noted that much of the interest of the concept of relative identity concerns its applicability to other areas of philosophical concern, in particular to the metaphysical controversy about <em>personal identity</em> and the debate in philosophical theology centering on the doctrine of the Trinity: in this latter context see Geach's comments in his (1961) and (1977), and the papers by Richard Cartwright (1987), Peter Van Inwagen (<a name="8"></a>"<A HREF = "../../PaperSummaries/PaperSummary_05/PaperSummary_5502.htm">Van Inwagen (Peter) - And Yet There Are Not Three Gods But One God</A>", 1990) and James Cain (<a name="9"></a>"<A HREF = "../../Abstracts/Abstract_15/Abstract_15897.htm">Cain (James) - The Doctrine of the Trinity and the Logic of Relative Identity</A>", 1989) </li></ul> </li><li>I shall first set out Geach's views under six headings: <ul type="disc"><li>(1) the non-existence of absolute identity, </li><li>(2) the <a name="1"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_0/Notes_10.htm">sortal</A><SUP>1</SUP> relativity of identity, </li><li>(3) the derelativization thesis, </li><li>(4) the counting thesis, </li><li>(5) the thesis of the irreducibility of restricted quantification and </li><li>(6) the name 'for' an A / name 'of an A distinction. </li></ul></li><li>I shall then look at the main arguments given by Geach and his opponents with regard to (1), (2) and (3), which are the core of his position. I begin with thesis (1). </li></ol> </FONT> <BR><U>Sections</U><FONT COLOR = "800080"> <ol type="1"><li>Introduction</li><li>The Non-existence of Absolute Identity</li><li>The <a name="2"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_0/Notes_10.htm">Sortal</A><SUP>2</SUP> Relativity of Identity</li><li>The Derelativization Thesis</li><li>The Counting Thesis</li><li>The Irreducibility of Restricted Quantification</li><li>The  Name for A /  Name of A Distinction</li><li>Geach Versus Quine: A Baroque Meinongian Ontology</li><li>Cats, Rivers and Heralds</li><li>Substantival Terms and the Derelativization Thesis </li></ol> </FONT><FONT COLOR = "0000FF"><HR></P><a name="ColourConventions"></a><p><b>Text Colour Conventions (see <A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_10/Notes_1025.htm">disclaimer</a>)</b></p><OL TYPE="1"><LI><FONT COLOR = "0000FF">Blue</FONT>: Text by me; &copy; Theo Todman, 2018</li><LI><FONT COLOR = "800080">Mauve</FONT>: Text by correspondent(s) or other author(s); &copy; the author(s)</li></OL> <BR><HR><BR><CENTER> <TABLE class = "Bridge" WIDTH=950> <TR><TD WIDTH="30%">&copy; Theo Todman, June 2007 - August 2018.</TD> <TD WIDTH="40%">Please address any comments on this page to <A HREF="mailto:theo@theotodman.com">theo@theotodman.com</A>.</TD> <TD WIDTH="30%">File output: <time datetime="2018-08-02T05:50" pubdate>02/08/2018 05:50:51</time> <br><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_10/Notes_1010.htm">Website Maintenance Dashboard</A></TD></TR> <TD WIDTH="30%"><A HREF="#Top">Return to Top of this Page</A></TD> <TD WIDTH="40%"><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_11/Notes_1140.htm">Return to Theo Todman's Philosophy Page</A></TD> <TD WIDTH="30%"><A HREF="../../index.htm">Return to Theo Todman's Home Page</A></TD> </TR></TABLE></CENTER><HR> </BODY> </HTML>