Metaphor, literal, literalism

Mind and Language 21 (3):243–279 (2006)
This paper examines the place of metaphorical interpretation in the current Contextualist-Literalist controversy over the role of context in the determination of truth-conditions in general. Although there has been considerable discussion of 'non-literal' language by both sides of this dispute, the language analyzed involves either so-called implicit indexicality, loose or loosened use, enriched interpretations, or semantic transfer, not metaphor itself. In the first half of the paper, I critically evaluate Recanati's (2004) recent Contextualist account and show that it cannot account for the metaphorical-literal dependence characteristic of metaphor. I then turn to Carston's (2002), and Bezuidenhout's (2001) Contextualist accounts and show that they place no constraints on metaphorical interpretations. In the second half of the paper I sketch a Literalist theory of metaphor elaborated in Stern (2000) and respond to two kinds of Contextualist criticisms of that account by Camp (2005) and Stanley (2005).
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Josef Stern (2011). Metaphor and Minimalism. Philosophical Studies 153 (2):273 - 298.

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