David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 80 (1):1–41 (2006)
The paper criticizes epistemological conceptions of analytic or conceptual truth, on which assent to such truths is a necessary condition of understanding them. The critique involves no Quinean scepticism about meaning. Rather, even granted that a paradigmatic candidate for analyticity is synonymy with a logical truth, both the former and the latter can be intelligibly doubted by linguistically competent deviant logicians, who, although mistaken, still constitute counterexamples to the claim that assent is necessary for understanding. There are no analytic or conceptual truths in the epistemological sense. The critique is extended to purportedly analytic inference rules. An alternative account is sketched on which understanding a word is a matter of participation in a linguistic practice, while synonymy and concept identity consist in sameness of truth-conditional semantic properties. Although there are philosophical questions about concepts, the idea that philosophical questions in general are conceptual questions generates only an illusion of insight into philosophical methodology.
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Citations of this work BETA
Jonathan Ichikawa & Benjamin Jarvis (2009). Thought-Experiment Intuitions and Truth in Fiction. Philosophical Studies 142 (2):221 - 246.
Elijah Chudnoff (2013). Is Intuition Based On Understanding? Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 86 (1):42-67.
Peter Schulte (2011). Truthmakers: A Tale of Two Explanatory Projects. Synthese 181 (3):413-431.
Justin Clarke-Doane (2014). Moral Epistemology: The Mathematics Analogy. Noûs 48 (2):238-255.
Brendan Balcerak Jackson (2009). Understanding and Semantic Structure: Reply to Timothy Williamson. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 109 (1pt3):337-343.
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