By Freud Sigmund
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Extra info for An Outline of Psychoanalysis
To take an example, suppose I ask you about the weather tomorrow, and you answer—and I interpret your answer as reflecting your belief—that it will rain tomorrow. As a folk psychologist, I metarepresent the semantic content of the linguistic expression of your belief, which is the thought that it will rain tomorrow, as a future state of affairs—say,
As the title of his book Thoughts without Words indicates, Bermudez aimed to show that there are predicative thoughts without words. In my view, the only wordless thoughts are coinstantiative. As argued later, thoughts are predicative not because they can be expressed only by words but because, antecedently, it is the very acquisition of words, in some specific manner, that enable thoughts to become predicative. I take the views surveyed in this section, and the one based on the language of thought from a previous section, to be among the most serious, powerful, and systematic, yet I think they fail to make the case for animal or infant predication.
They are instructions for expressing, not forming, predications. The topic-comment-presupposition format is about what information to encode and organize explicitly, what to leave implicit or backgrounded and assumed, what to take as given, shared, or of interest, and what to add or contribute as a further classification or evaluation, how to enclose the result in a self-contained unit of thinking or communication, and how to make the result available to further mental operations. It may be argued that this formatting job may be done by simpler means than I am assuming here.