Dr. Hazim Hakkush Al- Dilaimy
Ibri College of Education
Sultanate of Oman
The concept of reference has received much attention by linguists and semanticists to be "the relation that holds between linguistic expressions and what they stand for in the world or universe of discourse". (Lyons, 1981: 220). Most of the literature on reference is devoted to such issues as how the notion of reference is manipulated to carry out the task of identification by means of various referring expressions which vary in the degree of the power of identification they supply about their referents.
The literature reveals that two camps have disputed over the issue of proper names when they are used as referring expressions. One camp believes that proper nouns have reference by means of the descriptive value they have a bout their referents. This view is mainly adopted by Frege and Russel. To Russel, proper names are used as "disguised definite descriptions" from a logical point of view whereas, to Frege a proper name has both sense and reference; the relation of denotation between a name and a referent is deeply rooted in the sense of that name.
The second camp, however, argues that the Russel-Frege view has been rejected on the grounds that names have reference without sense. A name is a word that solely denotes its referent; it does not connote anything. A name simply contributes to the truth conditions of presuppositions by indicating its referent. The reference of a name cannot be achieved by means of descriptions, as it is not essential to the definition of a name (Searle, 1980: 7).
The aim of this paper is to provide a theoretical investigation of the semantic relations that hold between the concept of identification and the various uses of proper... [continues]
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