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  1. Sergeiy Sandler, Bakhtin on Poetry, Epic, and the Novel: Behind the Façade.
    Mikhail Bakhtin has gained a reputation of a thinker and literary theorist somehow hostile to poetry, and more specifically to the epic. This view is based on texts, in which Bakhtin creates and develops a conceptual contrast between poetry and the novel (in "Discourse in the Novel") or between epic and the novel (in "Epic and Novel"). However, as I will show, such perceptions of Bakhtin's position are grounded in a misunderstanding of Bakhtin's writing strategy and philosophical approach. Bakhtin often (...)
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  2. Sergeiy Sandler, Is There Such a Thing as “Semantic Content”?
    The distinction between the semantic content of a sentence or utterance and its use is widely employed in formal semantics. Semantic minimalism in particular understands this distinction as a sharp dichotomy. I argue that if we accept such a dichotomy, there would be no reason to posit the existence of semantic contents at all. I examine and reject several arguments raised in the literature that might provide a rationale for assuming semantic contents, in this sense, exist, and conclude that Ockham’s (...)
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  3. Sergeiy Sandler, Language as Literature: Characters in Everyday Spoken Discourse.
    There are several linguistic phenomena that, when examined closely, give evidence that people speak through characters, much like authors of literary works do, in everyday discourse. However, most approaches in linguistics and in the philosophy of language leave little theoretical room for the appearance of characters in discourse. In particular, there is no linguistic criterion found to date, which can mark precisely what stretch of discourse within an utterance belongs to a character, and to which character. And yet, without at (...)
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  4. Sergeiy Sandler, The Possibility of Dialogic Semantics.
    This paper outlines and demonstrates the viability of a consistent dialogic approach to the semantics of utterances in natural language. Based on the philosophical picture of language as dialogue, adumbrated by Mikhail Bakhtin and incorporating work in conversation analysis and cognitive-functional linguistics, I develop a method for analyzing both the function and the content of human utterances within a unified philosophical framework. I demonstrate the viability of this method of analysis by applying it to a brief conversational exchange (in Hebrew), (...)
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  5. Sergeiy Sandler, The Reinterpretation of Kant and the Neo-Kantians: On Bakhtin’s Pattern of Appropriation.
    Studies of the origins of Mikhail Bakhtin’s thought have tended to either follow a traditional intellectual history paradigm—where establishing the presence of an influence is taken to be a sign of Bakhtin’s identity as a thinker—or to view terminological and conceptual borrowings in Bakhtin’s work as mere veneer in which he dressed his own ideas to make them publishable or acceptable to his peers in a hostile political and intellectual environment. And while Bakhtin did absorb some genuine formative influences, and (...)
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  6. Mikhail Bakhtin & Sergeiy Sandler (forthcoming). Bakhtin on Shakespeare (Excerpt From “Additions and Changes to Rabelais”). PMLA.
    This is the English translation (with a brief introduction and relatively detailed commentary) of a long excerpt from Mikhail Bakhtin's notes titled "Additions and changes to Rabelais", written in the mid-1940s with reworking his then unpublished manuscript on François Rabelais in mind. This excerpt is most notable for being the only extant text in which Bakhtin discusses and analyses Shakespear's tragedies at relative length—a discussion interesting not only as a reading of Shakespeare, but also as an unusual and revealing example (...)
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  7. Sergeiy Sandler (2013). Language and Philosophical Anthropology in the Work of Mikhail Bakhtin and the Bakhtin Circle. Rivista Italiana di Filosofia Del Linguiaggio 7 (2):152-165.
    The Bakhtin Circle’s conception of language is very much still alive, still productive, in the language sciences today. My claim in this paper is that to understand the Bakhtin Circle’s continuing relevance to the language sciences, we have to look beyond the linguistic theory itself, to the philosophical groundwork laid for this project by Bakhtin in what he himself referred to as his philosophical anthropology. This philosophical anthropology, at the center of which stands an architectonics of self—other relations, opens the (...)
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  8. Sergeiy Sandler (2012). What Is Meaning? By Scott Soames. Soochow University Lectures in Philosophy. [REVIEW] The European Legacy 17 (5):708-709.
    Scot Soames’ new book, What is Meaning, is an important book, both in the issues it raises and in its shortcomings. It is the first serious discussion of meaning (not “semantic content” or some other term of art designed to sidestep the real issue) by a leading analytic philosopher of language in a long while, and its findings lead towards a more realistic understanding of meaning and language.In his account, Soames uses the notion of cognitive event to account for the (...)
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  9. Sergeiy Sandler (2012). Whose Words Are These Anyway? In Mykola Polyuha, Clive Thomson & Anthony Wall (eds.), Dialogues with Bakhtinian Theory: Proceedings of the Thirteenth International Mikhaïl Bakhtin Conference. Mestengo Press.
    Is there, according to Bakhtin, such a thing as nobody’s or neutral words? Going over Bakhtin’s writings we might encounter an intriguing variety of answers to this question, ranging from a clear negative – there is no such thing – to a radical positive – all words are neutral, are “nobody’s” – and with a few other variants in between. This paper examines this puzzle both in its own right and from the perspective of what it can teach us about (...)
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  10. Sergeiy Sandler (2011). Reenactment: An Embodied Cognition Approach to Meaning and Linguistic Content. [REVIEW] Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 11 (4):583-598.
    A central finding in experimental research identified with Embodied Cognition (EC) is that understanding actions involves their embodied simulation, i.e. executing some processes involved in performing these actions. Extending these findings, I argue that reenactment – the overt embodied simulation of actions and practices, including especially communicative actions and practices, within utterances – makes it possible to forge an integrated EC-based account of linguistic meaning. In particular, I argue: (a) that remote entities can be referred to by reenacting actions performed (...)
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  11. Sergeiy Sandler (2007). Habermas, Derrida, and the Genre Distinction Between Fiction and Argument. International Studies in Philosophy 39 (4):103-119.
    In his book, The Philosophical Discourse of Modernity, and especially in the “Excursus on Leveling the Genre Distinction between Philosophy and Literature” (pp. 185-210), Jürgen Habermas criticizes the work of Jacques Derrida. My aim in this paper is to show that this critique turns upon itself. Habermas accuses Derrida of effacing the distinctions between literature and philosophy. Derrida indeed works to subvert the distinction between fictional and argumentative writing, but in doing so he works with the genres he is mixing. (...)
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