Two Notions of (Mis)-identification


  • Jérémie Lafraire Institut Jean Nicod



immunity to error through misidentification • identification-freedom • demonstratives reference •


Immunity to Error through Misidentification (IEM) has inspired much new research in a broad range of disciplines, from contemporary philosophy of mind and language to semantics and cognitive science. However, a reasonable suspicion is that several distinct notions of IEM are mixed up in the relevant literature. To avoid confusion and to provide an adequate understanding of what IEM is supposed to be, two distinct notions of (mis)identification have been distinguished. The first one (identification 2) comes from Gareth Evans' negative characterization of IEM and the second one (identification 1) has been introduced by Jim Pryor. In this paper, I show how Pryor's notion filled a gap between the Evansian account of vulnerability to error through misidentification and his examples of judgments immune to error through misidentification. Using these two notions, I then construct a matrix which generates four situations which exhaust Evans' negative and positive examples for IEM. This produces an interesting, though problematic, situation (situation 3: identification 2 without identification 1). To determine whether or not this theoretical possibility corresponds to a genuine situation, I provide plausible candidates involving certain demonstrative judgments.







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