Linked bibliography for the SEP article "Idiolects" by Alex Barber

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Further Reading

A general overview of the topic of idiolects can be found in Higginbotham 2006. For a different perspective, see Millikan 2005.

McGilvray 1999 and Smith 1999 both provide clear introductions to Chomsky's philosophy of language and linguistics, including his E-/I-language distinction. A shorter account of his views on this topic in particular can be found in Bezuidenhout 2006. Critical discussion can be found in four collections: Otero 1994 (Volume II), Antony and Hornstein 2003, Barber 2003, and McGilvray 2005. Chomsky's own non-technical writing is usually accessible. A good starting place would be the second chapter of Chomsky 1986 or the essays in Chomsky 2000.

Three papers in Davidson 1984 (‘What metaphors mean’, ‘Communication and convention’, and ‘Mood and Performances’) herald the anti-conventionalism of his 1986 essay, which is discussed in detail by Hacking 1986, Dummett 1986, Pietroski 1994, and Reimer 2004. Hacking addresses the extent to which Davidson's conclusion undermines his earlier philosophy of language. Dummett attempts to show that the notion of a prior theory presupposes the notion of a linguistic community, and hence of a shared language. For more recent work on the pragmatics/semantics boundary, see Stanley 2000, Carston 2002, Borg 2004, Recanati 2004, Cappelen and Lepore 2005, and Szabo 2005.

The theory of conventions used in Lewis 1975 (see Appendix) is developed at length in Lewis 1969. The resulting theory of language is elaborated by Bennett 1976 and criticised in Burge 1975 and Laurence 1996, the latter from a Chomskian perspective.

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