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The notion of strict identity is sometimes given an explicit second-order definition: objects with all the same properties are identical. Here, a somewhat different problem is raised: Under what conditions is the identity relation on the domain of a structure first-order definable? A structure may have objects that are distinct, but indiscernible by the strongest means of discerning them given the language (the indiscernibility formula). Here a number of results concerning the indiscernibility formula, and the definability of identity, are collected and a number of applications discussed.

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The Review of Symbolic Logic
  • ISSN: 1755-0203
  • EISSN: 1755-0211
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