Meaning holism and interpretability

Philosophical Quarterly 41 (July):301-15 (1991)
The authors argue that while meaning holism makes massive error possible, it does not, as Donald Davidson fears, threaten interpretability. Thus they hold, in opposition to Davidson, that meaning holism need not be constrained by an account of meaning according to which in the methodologically most basic cases the content of a belief is given by the cause of that belief. What ensures interpretability, they maintain, is not that speakers' beliefs are in the main true, but rather that beliefs have the contents they do because of events others can in principle identify and describe.
Keywords Belief  Holism  Interpretation  Language  Meaning
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DOI 10.2307/2220031
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