Gricean rational reconstructions and the semantics/pragmatics distinction

Synthese 128 (1-2):93 - 131 (2001)
Abstract
This paper discusses the proper taxonomy of thesemantics-pragmatics divide. Debates about taxonomyare not always pointless. In interesting casestaxonomic proposals involvetheoretical assumptions about thestudied field, which might be judged correct orincorrect. Here I want to contrast an approach to thesemantics-pragmatics dichotomy, motivated by a broadlyGricean perspective I take to be correct, with acontemporary version of an opposing ``Wittgensteinian''view. I will focus mostly on a well-known example: thetreatment of referential uses of descriptions anddescriptive uses of indexicals. The paper isstructured as follows. I will start by characterizingin the first section the version of the Griceanapproach I favor; in the second section, I willillustrate the differences between the two views byfocussing on the example, and in the third section I willobject to what I take to be the main Wittgensteinianconsideration.
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