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名前と指示 : 人類学的省察

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概要 In both linguistics and philosophy, proper names have sometimes posed a perplexing problem, as proper names obviously belong to a system of linguistic signs, and yet they seem to lack "meaning". They ...do not signify, but they only point. As meaning or sense of a sign is its relations to other signs, with language being a system of the closely interrelated signs, their apparent lack of meaning has made proper names, in being isolated from the other signs, look particularly anomalous in a system of linguistic signs. The purpose of this paper is to show, from anthropological perspective, that this particular conception of proper names is wrong due to its inappropriate assumptions on language and communication. Anthropological interests in proper names have been largely descriptive, concerning culturally diverse systems of allocation of proper names to individual members of a society. However when anthropologists stop to dwell on the nature of proper names more theoretically, they have been under strong influences of on-going linguistic and philosophical discussion. Many tend to argue, following Levi=Strauss, that proper names do have meanings, i.e., proper names do not just point, but signify by classifying individuals named and by relating them to the group and society they belong to. In short they try to show, in vain, that proper names are actually not 'proper' at all. In this paper I examine Levi=Strauss's unsuccessful attempt to locate proper names within a system of classification, thus to rid them of their anomalous linguistic positions. Another well-known attempt to incorporate proper names into the signifying system of linguistic signs is Russell's theory of descriptions, where definite descriptions assure proper names of their meaningfulness. By examining Kripke's refutation of Russell's theory, proper names will be shown again to resist their incorporation into a signifying system of signs, but I will also show how Kripke, and those who follow his argument, have gone so far as to overemphasize the anomaly of proper names. I will argue that both those who try to reduce the anomaly of proper names and those who overemphasize it are erred in seeing proper names in their signifying or referring relation to the named, i.e., seeing them as a kind of describing of the latter. Instead I will show the relation between proper names and the named is essentially that of ownership, therefore names are signs of indexical nature, not ones of symbolic nature as other nouns are. I will conclude the so-called problem of proper names is pseudo problem based on confusing indexical signs with symbolic signs. This will lead us finally to recognize our tendency to overlook or underestimate ontogenetically and philogenetically indexical nature of our language.続きを見る

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登録日 2012.11.19
更新日 2017.06.09

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