David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Midwest Studies in Philosophy 25 (1):156–186 (2001)
According to one widely held view of metaphor, metaphors are cases in which the speaker (literally) says one thing but means something else instead. I wish to challenge this idea. I will argue that when one utters a sentence in some context intending it to be understood metaphorically, one directly expresses a proposition, which can potentially be evaluated as either true or false. This proposition is what is said by the utterance of the sentence in that context. We don’t convey metaphorical meanings indirectly by directly saying something else. One consequence is that, contrary to what Searle (1993: 110) suggests, we do not arrive at the metaphorical meaning that the speaker intended via a literal interpretation of the sentence the speaker utters. The defense of this view depends on articulating a conception of what is said that is more generous than that allowed for by Searle (1993) and others such as Bach (2001). I hope to motivate this broadened conception of what is said (what I call a contextualist conception of what is said), and to show some of the benefits of adopting a direct expression view of metaphor.
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Citations of this work BETA
Fernando Martinez-Manrique & Agustin Vicente (2013). What is Said by a Metaphor: The Role of Salience and Conventionality. Pragmatics and Cognition 21 (2):304-328.
Elisabeth Camp (2012). Sarcasm, Pretense, and The Semantics/Pragmatics Distinction. Noûs 46 (4):587 - 634.
Ofra Magidor (forthcoming). Category Mistakes and Figurative Language. Philosophical Studies.
Robyn Carston (2010). Metaphor: Ad Hoc Concepts, Literal Meaning and Mental Images. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 110 (3pt3):295-321.
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