Theoria: An International Journal for Theory, History and Foundations of Science

Volume 9, Issue 2, Septiembre 1994

Matthias Schirn
Pages 109-133

Frege y los nombres de cursos de valores

Frege’s method of introducing abstract singular terms by transforming an equivalence statement into an identity statement suffers from one major defect: it is haunted by a pervasive indeterminacy of putative reference. In this paper, I. discuss mainly Frege’s introduction of courses-of-values in his magnum opus Grundgesetze der Arithmetik (Volume I, 1893, Volume 11, 1903). More specifically, I want to assess critically, with respect to course-of-values names, what I call Frege’s indeterminacy problem. In the first part, I sketch the nature of this problem in connection with the introduction of numerical singular terms in his book Die Grundlagen der Arithmetik of 1884. In the second part, I try to shed light on the analogies and differences concerning the introduction of numerical terms on the one hand and of course-of-values terms on the other.