[FOM] Grim paradox

Richard Heck rgheck at brown.edu
Sat Oct 7 11:20:26 EDT 2006

laureano luna wrote:
> Reading Patrick Grim (e. g.‘The Incomplete Universe’,
> MIT Press, 1991) I have come to consider propositions
> of the kind of the following: 
> (p)  ‘all propositions that are not about themselves
> are about something else’
> (p) seems to express an evident truth about all
> propositions that are not about themselves. But we
> have that (p) is about (p) iff (p) is not about (p).
Maybe I'm missing something, but I don't see the argument for the
paradox. Part of my trouble is that I'm not sure what "about" is
supposed to mean here. But waiving that, suppose (p) is about (p). How
does it follow that (p) is not about (p)? Even if we assume that (p) is
true, (p) only tells us (by instantiation) that, if (p) is NOT about
itself, then it is about something else. But the supposition is that (p)
IS about itself, so (p) tells us nothing.

Richard Heck

Richard G Heck, Jr
Professor of Philosophy
Brown University
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