The paper is primarily a response to Against Arguments from Reference, though some of what we have to say is relevant to the arguments in Semantics, Cross-Cultural Style. Really, we want to make three points.
- The experimental data presented to date don’t undermine what Kripke says about the Gödel-Schmidt case;
- The Gödel-Schmidt case is only relevant to a very small part of Kripke’s overall theory of reference, so if he’s wrong about it the bulk of the theory is unaffected; and
- The main philosophical applications of Kripke’s theory have concerned the bits that are already established in Naming & Necessity before the Gödel-Schmidt case comes up, not the bits that are supported by the Gödel-Schmidt case. So even if the experiments do show that Kripke’s wrong about that case, not a lot follows for the applications of Kripke’s theory in the last four decades.