Sense and Mode of Presentation

Theories of linguistic meaning have been a major influence in twentieth century philosophy. This is due, in part, to the assumption that meaning is the crucial and interesting thing about language. To know the meaning of an expression is to understand it, and since understanding is central to philosophy in many different ways, it should be no surprise that the notion of meaning has often taken center stage. The aim of this paper is to briefly explore some influential views concerning linguistic meaning. The final objective will be to demonstrate some alternatives which are open to theory with respect to this notion,for there are those who have wanted to ban talk of meaning from serious scientific discourse. The point is that many of the disadvantages of traditional notions of meaning are avoidable¾in particular, they are avoidable along a path which starts from Frege and moves on via Tarski and Davidson.
Keywords Meaning  Reference  Frege  Davidson
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