British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 61 (1):123-160 (2009)
|Abstract||This paper defends an orthodox model of the linguistic intuitions which form a central source of evidence for generative grammars. According to this orthodox conception, linguistic intuitions are the upshot of a system of grammatical competence as it interacts with performance systems for perceiving and articulating language. So conceived, probing speakers’ linguistic intuitions allows us to investigate the competence–performance distinction empirically, so as to determine the grammars that speakers are competent in. This model has been attacked by Michael Devitt in his recent book and a series of papers. In its place, Devitt advances a model of linguistic intuitions whereby they are speakers’ theory-laden judgements about the properties of languages. In this paper, I try to make clear the rationale behind the orthodox model and the inadequacies of Devitt's model|
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