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RE: [jboske] Opacity and belief

> And Rosta scripsit:
> > If furze and gorse are aren't synonyms (they aren't for me), then it is
> > not fundamentally different. If they are synonyms, then believing that
> > furze is not gorse is literally the same thing as believing that furze is
> > not furze, so "furze is not gorse" must receive a nonliteral interpretation,
> > under which the two terms are not synonyms
> You seem to equivocate here between the subjective definition of synonymy
> and some supposed objective definition.

It is subjective rendered somewhat objective by the fact that we try
to speak the same language; we try to keep our linguistic beliefs in
harmony with those of others. So if I believe that furze and gorse
are different things, then I won't consider the terms synononyms,
but if I believe that furze and gorse are the same thing, then I
will consider the words synonyms only if I reckon that this accords
with 'the facts of English' (seen as some kind of compromise between
an ideal language and the beliefs of actual speakers).

> If gorse and furze are synonyms
> for John, then John can't possibly believe that gorse is not furze, unless
> he is a Tortoise

Yes, but I'm not sure what your point is!

> > Why? De dicto beliefs are not linguistic beliefs. We can report de dicto
> > in Lojban the beliefs of someone who does not know Lojban.
> I don't think so (i.e. I think not).

If you're right, then I think we need to separate de re into pure de re,
where everything is exportable out of the subordinate proposition
from dedictoey de re, where nothing is exportable out of the subordinate
proposition, but the description of the subordinate proposition is

> Consider Pierre the bilingual, whose
> de dicto beliefs are "Londres est joli" and "London is ugly". What he doesn't
> know, of course, is that the London where he now lives is the same as the
> Londres that he heard of when he lived in France. Short of metalinguistic
> expression, these two sentences can't be translated into Lojban in full

There is no problem with reporting this in Lojban. We just need one
predicate that denotes what Pierre's 'Londres' denotes and another
predicate that denotes what his 'London' denotes.

> > Synonymy would be a fact about my knowledge of Lojban, not about
> > the believer's beliefs
> But from someone's belief that A is not B, you can infer that A and B are
> nonsynonymous for him (unless indeed he is a Tortoise). So the views are
> not unrelated

That's right. But from someone's belief that A is B, you can't infer
that they believe the words A' and B' to be synonymous, since the
latter belief requires the supporting belief that the synonymy is
part of the body of language beliefs believed by other competent