This is a guide to the thought and ideas of Gottlob Frege, one of the most important but also perplexing figures in the history of analytic philosophy. Gottlob Frege is regarded as one of the founders of modern logic and analytic philosophy, indeed as the greatest innovator in logic since Aristotle. His groundbreaking work identified many of the basic conceptions and distinctions that later came to dominate analytic philosophy. The literature on him is legion and ever-growing in complexity, representing a considerable challenge to the non-expert. The details of his logic, which have come into focus in recent research, are particularly difficult to grasp, although they are crucial to the development of his grand project, the reduction of arithmetic to logic, and the associated philosophical innovations. This book offers a lucid and accessible introduction to Frege's logic, taking the reader directly to the core of his philosophy, and ultimately to some of the most pertinent issues in contemporary philosophy of language, logic, mathematics, and the mind.
"Continuum's Guides for the Perplexed" are clear, concise and accessible introductions to thinkers, writers and subjects that students and readers can find especially challenging - or indeed downright bewildering. Concentrating specifically on what it is that makes the subject difficult to grasp, these books explain and explore key themes and ideas, guiding the reader towards a thorough understanding of demanding material.
Edward Kanterian is lecturer in philosophy at the University of Oxford, and the author of Analytic Philosophy (2004) and Wittgenstein (2007).
1. Introduction / 2. Begriffsschrift: probing the terrain / 2.1 Scope of a concept-script\ 2.2 The epistemological dimension of logic / 2.3 The struggle against intuition and language / 2.4 Concept-script: a brief overview / 3. Begriffsschrift: digging deeper / 3.1 The judgment-stroke and the content-stroke / 3.2 Subject and predicate / 3.3 Modes of judgment, negation / 3.4 Conditionality / 3.5 The functional character of concept-script\ 3.6 Identity / 3.7 Definition / 3.8 Logical analysis and elucidations / 3.9 Functions and functional analysis / 3.10 Functions, concepts, properties / 3.11 Generality / 3.12 Inference / 4. Later developments / 4.1 Sense and Meaning / 4.2 The function-theoretic account of Sense / 4.3 The challenge of contingent thoughts / 4.4 Are concepts functions? / 4.5 Concept and object / 4.6 Fictional discourse / 5. Epilogue / Notes / Bibliography / Index