. Alfred Tarski on Truth Definition - Dictionary of Arguments

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Truth Definitions: are attempts to define truth and can be arranged into two main streams A. Semantic truth theories presuppose a concept of consistency between understood and interpreted verbal utterances with something outside of the usage of language. One problem here is that the definition of meaning and the definition of truth are presupposing each other. See also correspondence theory, coherence theory, meaning theory, deflationism, disquotationalism. B. Pragmatic truth theories refer to a more or less fixed image of a socially or religiously determined ideal, which must be realized. Untruth is then something like the difference between a state realized by social practice and the image of the ideal. See also pragmatism, idealization, ideas.
Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Concept Summary/Quotes Sources

Alfred Tarski on Truth Definition - Dictionary of Arguments

Berka I 403
Truth-Definition/Tarski: in artificial languages: not solvable if they contain variables of an arbitrarily high order.
, >Variables, cf. >Type theory.
Solution: truth-concept as undefined basic concept - it can be used in a "deductive discipline".(1)
Berka I 477
Truth/Truth-Definition/language/Tarski: would the language be finite, it took just a list to fill in the scheme.(2)

1. A.Tarski, „Der Wahrheitsbegriff in den Sprachen der deduktiven Disziplinen“, in: Anzeiger der Akademie der Wissenschaften in Wien, mathematisch-naturwissenschaftliche Klasse 69 (1932) pp 23-25
2. A.Tarski, Der Wahrheitsbegriff in den formalisierten Sprachen, Commentarii Societatis philosophicae Polonorum. Vol. 1, Lemberg 1935
Horwich I 119
Truth-Definition/Tarski: has other interesting consequences: we can use it to prove the semantic sentence of contradiction and the semantic sentence of contradiction - but not the corresponding logical sentences, because these contain the term "true". (They belong to the propositional calculus).
>Semantics, >Logic, >Excluded Middle, >Truth predicate, >Semantic closure, >Metalanguage, >Provability, >Propositional logic, >Propositional calculus.

Also, it is shown that truth never coincides with provability - because there are true statements that are not provable.(3)

3. A. Tarski, The semantic Conceptions of Truth, Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 4, pp. 341-75
Skirbekk I 156
Truth/Tarski: we get the truth-definitions simply because of the definition of fulfillment:
Definition fulfillment/Tarski: fulfillment is a relationship between any object and propositional function - an object satisfies a function when the function is a true statement, when replacing the free variable with the name of object - Snow satisfies the propositional function "x is white" - Vs: that is circular, because "true" occurs in the defintion of fulfillment - Solution: fulfillment itself must be defined recursively - if we have the fulfillment, it relates by itself on the statements themselves - a statement is either satisfied by all objects, or by none.
Skirbekk I 162
Truth Definition/Tarski: not circular, because the conditions under which statements of the form "if ... then" are true, are extralogical.
Skirbekk I 163
Truth-Schema/Tarski: correct: (T)X is true if and only if p. - wrong: (T") X is true if and only if p is true ((s) Vs: here 'true' occurs twice) - Tarsk: Confusion of name and object) statements and their names) - ((s) p is the statement itself, not assertion of its truth.)
>Redundancy theory.
Skirbekk I 169
Truth-Definition/Tarski: "actually" does not occur, because it does not concern the content - also no assertibility condition because the definition is not epistemologically - epistemologically would be "snow is white" not true.(4)

4. A.Tarski, „Die semantische Konzeption der Wahrheit und die Grundlagen der Semantik“ (1944) in: G. Skirbekk (ed.) Wahrheitstheorien, Frankfurt 1996

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Tarski I
A. Tarski
Logic, Semantics, Metamathematics: Papers from 1923-38 Indianapolis 1983

Berka I
Karel Berka
Lothar Kreiser
Logik Texte Berlin 1983

Horwich I
P. Horwich (Ed.)
Theories of Truth Aldershot 1994

Skirbekk I
G. Skirbekk (Hg)
Wahrheitstheorien, Gunnar Skirbekk, Frankfurt 1977

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2024-05-28
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