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The Enumerative Character of Tarski’s Definition of Truth and Its General Character in a Tarskian System
Synthese (2001)
  • Bo Mou, San Jose State University
Abstract

In this paper, I suggest an approach to the alleged problem with the Tarskian formal definition of truth: its enumerative character seems to make it unable to capture our pretheoretic general understanding of truth. For this purpose, after spelling out two requirements for extending an enumerative definition to new cases, I examine to what extent Tarski’s Convention T provides what are needed for extending the Tarski’s enumerative definition. I conclude that, though not explicitly providing what are needed, Convention T does implicitly suggest something quite promising and provide necessary conceptual resources for its further modifications. Then I suggest a Tarskian explicitly general definition of what it is to be a truth-definition on the basis of some theoretical and conceptual resources within Tarski’s semantic theory, and I explain how it would make the Tarskian seemingly enumerative formal definition have a general character in accord with our pretheoretic understanding of truth. Finally, I examine the current proposal in comparison with Davidson’s approach and in the light of Hintikka’s new perspective.

Keywords
  • Tarski,
  • truth
Disciplines
Publication Date
2001
Citation Information
Bo Mou. "The Enumerative Character of Tarski’s Definition of Truth and Its General Character in a Tarskian System" Synthese Vol. 124 Iss. 1-2 (2001)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/bo_mou/28/