Proper Names: Contemporary Philosophy and the Nyāya

  • J. L. Shaw
Part of the Synthese Library book series (SYLI, volume 178)


The aim of this paper is to present the Nyāya theories of proper names in light of the views of Frege, Russell, and Kripke. The first section of this paper will deal with the views of certain contemporary philosophers on proper names. Since the contemporary discussion is mainly confined to the description theory and the causal theory of proper names, I would like to discuss in this context the views of Frege, Russell, and Kripke. The second section will deal with the views of classical Nyāya philosophers on this topic. In this section I would like to discuss four different views of the Nyāya philosophers, and to compare their views with some contemporary philosophers. This discussion will take place in the light of the Nyāya theory of meaning. At the end of this section I would like to develop a theory of proper names, which, I think, can be developed within the Nyāya system. Moreover, this view may be claimed as a mean between the two other views of the Nyāya philosophers.


Definite Description Contemporary Philosophy Indian Philosophy Rigid Designator Identity Sentence 
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© D. Reidel Publishing Company 1985

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  • J. L. Shaw

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