In Carnap’s Defense: A survey on the concept of a linguistic framework in Carnap’s philosophy

  • Parzhad Torfehnezhad
Schlagworte: logical syntax, linguistic framework, levels of abstraction, Carnap, Quine, analytic-synthetic distinction


The main task in this paper is to detail and investigate Carnap’s conception of a “linguistic framework”(LF). On this basis, we will see whether Carnap’s dichotomies, such as the analytic-synthetic distinction, are to be construed as absolute/fundamental dichotomies or merely as relative dichotomies. I argue for a novel interpretation of Carnap’s conception of a LF and, on that basis, will show that, according to Carnap, all the dichotomies to be discussed are relative dichotomies; they depend on conventional decisions concerning the logical syntax of LF. Thus, all of the dichotomies directly hinge on the conception of the LF. The LF’s logical structure, in turn, is an immediate consequence of adopting the linguistic doctrine of logical truths. As we will see, no appeal to any of these distinctions is necessary in establishing a LF and all of its components. I will also draw attention to the differences between what Carnap labels a “way of speaking”, “language”, and “artificial language”. Consequently, I will briefly conclude that none of Quine’s major objections address the main points of Carnap’s theory.