## Unifying Three Notions of Concepts

### Author

Edward N. Zalta
### Reference

*Theoria* (Special Issue: Context, Cognition and Communication;
Tadeusz Ciecierski and Paweł Grabarczyk, guest eds.), 87(1)
(February 2021), 13–30; first online 05 June 2019, doi:
10.1111/theo.12187

### Abstract

In this talk, I first outline three different notions of concepts: one
derives from Leibniz, while the other two derive from Frege. The
Leibnizian notion is the subject of his “calculus of
concepts” (which is really an algebra). One notion of concept
from Frege is what we would call a “property”, so that
when Frege says “*x* falls under the
concept *F*”, we would say “*x* instantiates
*F*” or “*x* exemplifies *F*”. The
other notion of concept from Frege is that of the notion of sense,
which played various roles within Frege's theory. This notion of
concept can be generalized and, as such, accounts for our intuitive
talk of “*x*'s concept of …”, where the
ellipsis can be filled in with a name for individual, a property, or a
relation, etc. After outlining these three notions, I then discuss how
(axiomatic) object theory offers a distinct, precise regimentation of
each of the three notions.

[Preprint available online in PDF]