Elements of Speech Act Theory in the Work of Thomas Reid

History of Philosophy Quarterly 7 (1):47 - 66 (1990)
The idea of a theory of speech acts, when taken in its strict sense,1 has been employed of late to indicate a bundle of theories growing out of J. L. Austin’s How to Do Things with Words of 1962. John Searle’s book Speech Acts, published in 1969, is undoubtedly the most conspicuous contribution to this theory to date. With the lapse of time, however, our distance to these fundamental works has become great enough to allow some reflection on the criteria which must be met by a ‘theory of speech acts’ properly so called, so that it has become possible also to consider in this light candidate..
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