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Gregory Lavers – Frege the Conventionalist and Carnap the Fregean
The Montreal Inter-University Workshop on the History and Philosophy of Mathematics presents: Frege the Conventionalist and Carnap the Fregean by Gregory Lavers (Concordia) Wednesday, September 30, 2009. 5:30-7:00pm McGill University, Leacock Building, Room 927 Abstract: In this paper I examine the fundamental views on the nature of logical and mathematical truth of both Frege and Carnap. I argue that their positions are much closer than is standardly assumed. I attempt to establish this point on two fronts. First, I argue that Frege is not the metaphysical realist that he is standardly taken to be. Second, I argue that Carnap, where he does differ from Frege, can be seen to do so because of mathematical results proved in the early twentieth century. The differences in their views are, then, not primarily philosophical differences. Also, it might be thought that Frege was interested in analyzing our ordinary mathematical notions, while Carnap was interested in the construction of arbitrary systems. I argue that this is not the case: our ordinary notions play an even more important role in Carnap’s philosophy of mathematics than they do in Frege’s. For more information, please contact: Gregory Lavers (Concordia), Mathieu Marion (UQÀM), Jean-Pierre Marquis (UdM), Dirk Schlimm (McGill).