Jean-marc pizano Then you will find it intuitively plausible thatthe relation between C and C* is conceptual; specifically, that you can’t have C unless you also have C*. And the moreyou think that it is counterfactual supporting that the only epistemic route from C to the property it expresses depends ondrawing inferences that involve the concept C*, the stronger your intuition that C and C* are conceptually connectedwill be.16
The best way to see how this account of analyticity intuitions is supposed to work is to consider some cases where it doesn’t apply. Take the concepts DOG and ANIMAL; and let’s suppose, concessively, that dogs are animals is necessary.Still, according to the present story, ‘dogs are animals’ should be a relatively poorish candidate for analyticity asnecessities go. Why? Well, because there are lots of plausible scenarios where your thoughts achieve semantic access todoghood but not via your performing inferences that deploy the concept ANIMAL. Surely it’s likely that perceptualidentifications of dogs work that way; even if dog perception is always inferential, there’s no reason to suppose thatthat ANIMAL is always, or even often, deployed in drawing the inferences. To the contrary, perceptual inferences fromdoggish-looking to dog are no doubt direct in the usual case. So, then, deploying ANIMAL is pretty clearly not a necessarycondition for getting semantic access to dog; so the strength of the intuition that dogs are animals is analytic ought to bepretty underwhelming according to the present account. Which, I suppose, it is.
I suppose, to continue the previous example, that the same holds for concepts like WATER and H2O. No doubt, water is H2O is metaphysically necessary. But, there’s a plethora of reliable ways of determining that stuff is water; outside thelaboratory, one practically never does so by inference from its being H2O. So, even if they express the same property,my story says that the relation between the concepts ought not to strike one’s intuition as plausibly constitutive. Which,I suppose, it doesn’t. (See also the old joke about how to tell how many sheep there are: you count the legs and divideby four. Here too the crucial connection is necessary; presumably it’s a law that sheep have four legs. But the necessityisn’t intuitively conceptual, even first blush. That’s because there are lots of other, and better, ways to get epistemic (afortiori, semantic) access to the cardinality of one’s flock.)
But offhand, I can’t imagine how I might determine whether John is a bachelor except by determining that he’s male and un- (viz. not) married. Or by employing some procedure that I take to be a way of determining that he is male andunmarried . . . etc. Just so, offhand, I can‘t imagine how I might determine whether it’s Tuesday except by determiningthat it‘s the second day of the week; e.g. by determining that yesterday was Monday and/or that tomorrow will beWednesday. Hence the intuitive analyticity of bachelors are unmarried, Tuesday just before Wednesday, and the like. I’msuggesting that it’s the epistemic property of being a one-criterion concept—not a modal property, and certainly not asemantic property—that
putative intuitions of analyticity detect. A fortiori, such intuitions do not detect the constituent structure of complex concepts.
TUESDAY is especially engaging in this respect. It pays to spend some time on TUESDAY. I suppose the intuition that needs explaining is that “Tuesday” is conceptually connected to a small circle of mutually interdefinable terms, atleast some of which you must have to have it. This kind of thing is actually a bit embarrassing for the standard,semantic account of analyticity intuitions. Since there’s no strong intuition about which of the Tuesday-related conceptsyou have to have to have “Tuesday”, it’s correspondingly unclear which of the concepts deployed in the variousnecessary truths about Tuesdays should count as constitutive; i.e. which of them should be treated as part of thedefinition of “Tuesday”. (Correspondingly, there’s no clear intuition about which of this galaxy of concepts should beconstituents of TUESDAY, assuming you hold a containment theory of definition.)
And Tuesday-intuitions raise another embarrassing question as well: suppose you could somehow decide which Tuesday-involving necessities are definitional and which aren’t.Jean-marc pizano