David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Linguistics and Philosophy 30 (6):691-706 (2007)
In this paper, I take issue with an idea that has emerged from recent relativist proposals, and, in particular, from Lasersohn , according to which the correct semantics for taste predicates must use contents that are functions of a judge parameter rather than implicit arguments lexically associated with such predicates. I argue that the relativist account and the contextualist implicit argument-account are, from the viewpoint of semantics, not much more than notational variants of one another. In other words, given any sentence containing a taste predicate, and given any assignment of values to the relevant parameters, the two accounts predict the same truth value and are, in that sense, equivalent. I also look at possible reasons for preferring one account over the other. The phenomenon of "faultless disagreement" is often believed to be one such reason. I argue, against Kölbel and Lasersohn, that disagreement is never faultless: either the two parties genuinely disagree, hence if the one is right then the other is wrong, or the two parties are both right, but their apparent disagreement boils down to a misunderstanding. What is more, even if there were faultless disagreement, I argue that relativism would fail to account for it. The upshot of my paper, then, is to show that there is not much disagreement between a contextualist account that models the judge parameter as an implicit argument to the taste predicate, and a relativist account that models it as a parameter of the circumstances of evaluation. The choice between the two accounts, at least when talking about taste, is thus, to a large extent, a matter of taste.
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References found in this work BETA
David Kaplan (1989). Demonstratives. In Joseph Almog, John Perry & Howard Wettstein (eds.), Themes From Kaplan. Oxford University Press 481-563.
John MacFarlane (2007). Relativism and Disagreement. Philosophical Studies 132 (1):17-31.
Peter Lasersohn (2005). Context Dependence, Disagreement, and Predicates of Personal Taste. Linguistics and Philosophy 28 (6):643--686.
Keith S. Donnellan (1966). Reference and Definite Descriptions. Philosophical Review 75 (3):281-304.
Citations of this work BETA
Teresa Marques (2015). Retractions. Synthese:1-25.
Michele Palmira (2015). The Semantic Significance of Faultless Disagreement. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 96 (3):349-371.
Carl Baker (2012). Indexical Contextualism and the Challenges From Disagreement. Philosophical Studies 157 (1):107-123.
Teresa Marques (2014). Doxastic Disagreement. Erkenntnis 79 (1):121-142.
J. Adam Carter (2013). Disagreement, Relativism and Doxastic Revision. Erkenntnis 1 (S1):1-18.
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