Understanding Assertion: Lessons from the False Belief Task

Language & Communication 29 (1):47-60 (2009)
Abstract
This paper uses recent research in developmental psychology regarding the acquisition of the concept of belief in young children to explore the contrast between a disposition-based account of the principles underlying linguistic communication and the representative and highly influential intention-based accounts of assertional practice advanced by David Lewis and Donald Davidson. Indeed, evidence from recent work in developmental psychology would seem to suggest that disposition-based accounts are not only possible accounts of the acquisition of competence in assertional practice, but are in fact better than their rivals in explaining the way such competence is actually acquired.
Keywords assertion  linguistic competence  false belief task
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