Article/Publication Details

Frege on Meaning

(Original title: Frege o význame)
Organon F, 1997, vol. 4, No 1, pp. 15-38.
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Abstract

Though Fregeś second semantical theory is worked out excellently, he did not precisely and explicitly answer the question, which of the two semantical notions he used in his semantics - sense and reference -, could be taken as proper explication of an intuitive notion of meaning. Intuitively, meaning of a word can be connected with an understanding of the word: if we understand the word, we know its meaning. Our problem seems to be accute in connection with present tendency to render words "meaning" and "význam" as proper translations of German word "Bedeutung", used by Frege to refer to named or signed objects (i. e. wordś referent or denotation). Fregeś basic concepts of both periods of developing of his thinking - Inhalt, Sinn and Bedeutung -, having been outlined, the author tries to explicate this intuitive notion of meaning as wordś content, or wordś sense and reference, respectively. This attempt is aimed to give a possible Fregeś answer to the above question. Then the discussion about a few counter-arguments follows and its main profit is in illumination of some less clear aspects of our interpretation of Fregeś conceptual apparatus. In the end the author argues that the word "meaning" as translation of "Bedeutung" does not cohere with Fregeś possible intentions, and defends the words like e. g. "denotation" as much better and clearer translations than the above one.

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