Sarcasm, Pretense, and The Semantics/Pragmatics Distinction

Noûs 46 (4):587 - 634 (2012)
Traditional theories of sarcasm treat it as a case of a speaker's meaning the opposite of what she says. Recently, 'expressivists' have argued that sarcasm is not a type of speaker meaning at all, but merely the expression of a dissociative attitude toward an evoked thought or perspective. I argue that we should analyze sarcasm in terms of meaning inversion, as the traditional theory does; but that we need to construe 'meaning' more broadly, to include illocutionary force and evaluative attitudes as well as propositional content. I distinguish four subclasses of sarcasm, individuated in terms of the target of inversion. Three of these classes raise serious challenges for a standard implicature analysis
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DOI 10.2307/41682690
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Albert N. Katz (2009). On the Science and Art of Sarcasm. In Leslie Anne Boldt-Irons, Corrado Federici & Ernesto Virgulti (eds.), Disguise, Deception, Trompe-L'oeil: Interdisciplinary Perspectives. Peter Lang
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