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  1. Context-Sensitivity and Semantic Minimalism: New Essays on Semantics and Pragmatics.G. Preyer (ed.) - 2007 - Oxford University Press.
    "This book represents a continuation of the research project in philosophy of language and semantics represented in the journal "Protosociology" at the J. W. ...
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  2. Vagueness and Non-Indexical Contextualism.Jonas Åkerman & Patrick Greenough - 2009 - In Sarah Sawyer (ed.), New Waves in Philosophy of Language. Palgrave-Macmillan.
    Contextualism concerning vagueness (hereafter ‘CV’) is a popular response to the puzzle of vagueness.[1] The goal in this paper is to uncover in what ways vagueness may be a particular species of context-sensitivity. The most promising form of CV turns out to be a version of socalled ‘Non-Indexical Contextualism’.[2] In §2, we sketch a generic form of CV (hereafter ‘GCV’). In §3, we distinguish between Truth CV and Content CV. A non-indexical form of CV is a form of Truth CV, (...)
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  3. Context Dependence.Kent Bach - 2012 - In Manuel García-Carpintero & Max Kölbel (eds.), The Continuum Companion to the Philosophy of Language. Continuum International.
    All sorts of things are context-dependent in one way or another. What it is appropriate to wear, to give, or to reveal depends on the context. Whether or not it is all right to lie, harm, or even kill depends on the context. If you google the phrase ‘depends on the context’, you’ll get several hundred million results. This chapter aims to narrow that down. In this context the topic is context dependence in language and its use. It is commonly (...)
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  4. Context Ex Machina.Kent Bach - 2005 - In Zoltán Gendler Szabó (ed.), Semantics Versus Pragmatics. Oxford University Press. pp. 15--44.
    Once upon a time it was assumed that speaking literally and directly is the norm and that speaking nonliterally or indirectly is the exception. The assumption was that normally what a speaker means can be read off of the meaning of the sentence he utters, and that departures from this, if not uncommon, are at least easily distinguished from normal utterances and explainable along Gricean lines. The departures were thought to be limited to obvious cases like figurative speech and conversational (...)
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  5. Truth in Context.Lynne Rudder Baker - 1989 - Philosophical Psychology 2 (1):85 – 94.
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  6. Semantic Minimalism and the “Miracle of Communication”.Endre Begby - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 165 (3):957-973.
    According to semantic minimalism, context-invariant minimal semantic propositions play an essential role in linguistic communication. This claim is key to minimalists’ argument against semantic contextualism: if there were no such minimal semantic propositions, and semantic content varied widely with shifts in context, then it would be “miraculous” if communication were ever to occur. This paper offers a critical examination of the minimalist account of communication, focusing on a series of examples where communication occurs without a minimal semantic proposition shared between (...)
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  7. What Properly Belongs to Grammar? A Response to Lepore and Stone.Anne Bezuidenhout - 2016 - Inquiry : An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 59 (2):175-194.
    Lepore and Stone devote Part I of their book to setting out a number of views that act as foils for their own positive ‘disambiguation’ view of interpretation developed in Part II. They divide their opposition into three camps: The Gricean rationalists, the neo-Gricean lexicalists, and the empirical psychologists. I try to show why a ‘disambiguation’ view of such phenomena is unappealing and why Relevance Theory provides a better account of these phenomena. I end with some brief remarks about what (...)
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  8. Truth-Conditional Pragmatics.Anne Bezuidenhout - 2002 - Philosophical Perspectives 16:105-134.
    Introduction The mainstream view in philosophy of language is that sentence meaning determines truth-conditions. A corollary is that the truth or falsity of an utterance depends only on what words mean and how the world is arranged. Although several prominent philosophers (Searle, Travis, Recanati, Moravcsik) have challenged this view, it has proven hard to dislodge. The alternative view holds that meaning underdetermines truth-conditions. What is expressed by the utterance of a sentence in a context goes beyond what is encoded in (...)
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  9. Contextualism.Claudia Bianchi - 2010 - Handbook of Pragmatics Online.
    Contextualism is a view about meaning, semantic content and truth-conditions, bearing significant consequences for the characterisation of explicit and implicit content, the decoding/inferring distinction and the semantics/pragmatics interface. According to the traditional perspective in semantics (called "literalism" or "semantic minimalism"), it is possible to attribute truth-conditions to a sentence independently of any context of utterance, i.e. in virtue of its meaning alone. We must then distinguish between the proposition literally expressed by a sentence ("what is said" by the sentence, its (...)
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  10. How to Be a Contextualist.Claudia Bianchi - 2005 - Facta Philosophica 7 (2):261-272.
    This paper deals with the semantic issues of epistemological contextualism - the doctrine according to which the truth-conditions of knowledge ascribing sentences vary depending on the context in which they are uttered. According to the contextualist, a sentence of the form "S knows that p" does not express a complete proposition. Different utterances of this same sentence, in different contexts of utterance, can express different propositions: "know" is context-dependent. Little attention has been paid to a precise formulation of the semantic (...)
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  11. Three Forms of Contextual Dependence.Claudia Bianchi - 1999 - In Paolo Bouquet (ed.), Modeling and Using Context. Second International and Interdisciplinary Conference, CONTEXT '99, Trento, Italy, September 9-11, 1999, Proceedings. Springer.
    The paper emphasizes the inadequacy of formal semantics, the classical paradigm in semantics, in treating contextual dependence. Some phenomena of contextual dependence threaten one central assumption of the classical paradigm, namely the idea that linguistic expressions have a fixed meaning, and utterances have truth conditions well defined. It is possible to individuate three forms of contextual dependence: the one affecting pure indexicals, the one affecting demonstratives and "contextual expressions", and the one affecting all linguistic expressions. The third type of dependence (...)
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  12. Review: Literal Meaning. [REVIEW]E. Borg - 2006 - Mind 115 (458):461-465.
  13. Semantical Paradox.Tyler Burge - 1979 - Journal of Philosophy 76 (4):169-198.
  14. Response.Herman Cappelen & Ernest Lepore - 2006 - Mind and Language 21 (1):50–73.
    Reading these excellent commentaries we already wish we had written another book—a more comprehensive, clearer, and better defended one than what we have. We are, however, quite fond of the book we ended up with, and so we’ve decided that, rather than to yield, we’ll clarify. These contributions have helped us do that, and for that we are grateful to our critics. We’re lucky in that many (so far about twenty)1 extremely able philosophers have read and commented on our work (...)
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  15. Shared Content.Herman Cappelen & Ernest Lepore - 2006 - In Ernest Lepore & Barry C. Smith (eds.), The Oxford Handbook to the Philosophy of Language. Oxford University Press. pp. 1020--1055.
    A general and fundamental tension surrounds our concept of what is said. On the one hand, what is said (asserted, claimed, stated, etc.) by utterances of a significant range of sentences is highly context sensitive. More specifically, (Observation 1 (O1)), what these sentences can be used to say depends on their contexts of utterance. On the other hand, speakers face no difficulty whatsoever in using many of these sentences to say (or make) the exact same claim, assertion, etc., across a (...)
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  16. A Tall Tale: In Defense of Semantic Minimalism and Speech Act Pluralism.Herman Cappelen & Ernie Lepore - 2013 - In Maite Ezcurdia & Robert J. Stainton (eds.), The Semantics-Pragmatics Boundary in Philosophy. Broadview Press. pp. 412-28.
    We provide a defense of our insensitive semantics: that is, the combination of semantic minimalism and speech act pluralism argued for at more length in our book Insensitive Semantics.
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  17. Replies. [REVIEW]Herman Cappelen & Ernie Lepore - 2006 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 73 (2):469–492.
    Symposium on Insensitive Semantics. Replies to Kent Bach, John Hawthorne, Kepa Korta and John Perry, and Robert J. Stainton.
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  18. A Note on Belief Reports and Context Dependence.Tadeusz Ciecierski - 2017 - Acta Analytica 32 (4):447-464.
    The aim of this paper is to pose a problem for theories that claim that belief reports are context dependent. Firstly, I argue that the claim is committed to verbalism, a theory that derives the context sensitivity of belief reports from the context sensitivity of the psychological verbs used in such reports. Secondly, I argue that verbalism is not an attractive theoretical option because it is in conflict with the non-proto-rigidity of verbs like ‘believe’. Finally, I describe various consequences that (...)
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  19. Context and Communication by Herman Cappelen and Josh Dever (Review). [REVIEW]Alex Davies - forthcoming - Philosophical Quarterly.
  20. Testimony, Recovery and Plausible Deniability: A Response to Peet.Alex Davies - forthcoming - Episteme.
    According to telling based views of testimony (TBVs), B has reason to believe that p when A tells B that p because A thereby takes public responsibility for B's subsequent belief that p. Andrew Peet presents a new argument against TBVs. He argues that insofar as A uses context-sensitive expressions to express p, A doesn't take public responsibility for B's belief that p. Since context-sensitivity is widespread, the kind of reason TBVs say we have to believe what we're told, is (...)
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  21. Communicating by Doing Something Else.Alex Davies - forthcoming - In Tamara Dobler, John Collins & Alun Davies (eds.), Themes from Charles Travis: On Language, Thought, and Perception. Oxford University Press.
    It's sometimes thought that context-invariant linguistic meaning must be a character (a function from context types to contents) i.e. that linguistic meaning must determine how the content of an expression is fixed in context. This is thought because if context-invariant linguistic meaning were not a character then communication would not be possible. In this paper, I explain how communication could proceed even if context-invariant linguistic meaning were not a character.
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  22. Entailments Are Cancellable.Alex Davies - 2017 - Ratio 30 (3):288-304.
    Several philosophers have recently claimed that if a proposition is cancellable from an uttered sentence then that proposition is not entailed by that uttered sentence. The claim should be a familiar one. It has become a standard device in the philosopher's tool-kit. I argue that this claim is false. There is a kind of entailment—which I call “modal entailment”—that is context-sensitive and, because of this, cancellable. So cancellability does not show that a proposition is not entailed by an uttered sentence. (...)
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  23. Elaboration and Intuitions of Disagreement.Alex Davies - 2017 - Philosophical Studies 174 (4):861-875.
    Mark Richard argues for truth-relativism about claims made using gradable adjectives. He argues that truth-relativism is the best explanation of two kinds of linguistic data, which I call: true cross-contextual reports and infelicitous denials of conflict. Richard claims that such data are generated by an example that he discusses at length. However, the consensus is that these linguistic data are illusory because they vanish when elaborations are added to examples of the same kind as Richard’s original. In this paper I (...)
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  24. Occasion-Sensitivity: Selected Essays, by Charles Travis. [REVIEW]Alex Davies - 2011 - Disputatio 4 (31):309-315.
    This is not a critical review of Travis' book. It's an attempt to summarize the key thesis (occasion-sensitivity) in a way that makes the book accessible and distinguishes it from similar looking theses (such as relevance theory and truth-conditional pragmatics).
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  25. How to Use (Ordinary) Language Offensively.Alex Stewart Davies - 2012 - Nordic Wittgenstein Review 1 (1):55-80.
    One can attack a philosophical claim by identifying a misuse of the language used to state it. I distinguish between two varieties of this strategy: one belonging to Norman Malcolm and the other to Ludwig Wittgenstein. The former is flawed and easily dismissible as misled linguistic conservatism. It muddies the name of ordinary language philosophy. I argue that the latter avoids this flaw. To make perspicuous the kind of criticism of philosophical claims that the second variety makes available, I draw (...)
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  26. Evaluative Disagreements.Justina Diaz Legaspe - 2016 - Teorema: International Journal of Philosophy (1):67-87.
    A recent quarrel over faultless disagreements assumes that disputes over evaluative sentences should be understood as regular, factual disagreements. Instead, I propose that evaluative disagreements should be understood in Lewisian terms. Language use works like a rule-governed game. In it, the assertion of an evaluative sentence is an attempt to establish one value as default in the conversation; its rejection, in turn, is in most cases the refusal to accept this move.
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  27. Context-Sensitivity.Tom Donaldson & Ernie Lepore - 2012 - In Gillian Russell & Delia Graff Fara (eds.), Routledge Companion to Philosophy of Language. New York, NY, USA: Routledge. pp. 116 - 131.
    This article is a survey of the literature on context sensitivity in the philosophy of language.
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  28. What If All Truth is Context-Dependent?Bruce Edmonds - unknown
    This paper argues that truth is by nature context-dependent – that no truth can be applied regardless of context. I call this “strong contextualism”. Some objections to this are considered and rejected, principally: that there are universal truths given to us by physics, logic and mathematics; and that claiming “no truths are universal” is self-defeating. Two “models” of truth are suggested to indicate that strong contextualism is coherent. It is suggested that some of the utility of the “universal framework” can (...)
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  29. Truth in Context.Gertrude Ezorsky - 1963 - Journal of Philosophy 60 (5):113-135.
  30. What Tipper is Ready For: A Semantics for Incomplete Predicates.Christopher Gauker - 2012 - Noûs 46 (1):61-85.
    This paper presents a precise semantics for incomplete predicates such as “ready”. Incomplete predicates have distinctive logical properties that a semantic theory needs to accommodate. For instance, “Tipper is ready” logically implies “Tipper is ready for something”, but “Tipper is ready for something” does not imply “Tipper is ready”. It is shown that several approaches to the semantics of incomplete predicates fail to accommodate these logical properties. The account offered here defines contexts as structures containing an element called a proposition (...)
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  31. Semantics and Pragmatics.Christopher Gauker - 2012 - In Gillian Russell & Delia Graff Fara (eds.), Routledge Companion to the Philosophy of Language. Routledge.
    Semantics deals with the literal meaning of sentences. Pragmatics deals with what speakers mean by their utterances of sentences over and above what those sentences literally mean. However, it is not always clear where to draw the line. Natural languages contain many expressions that may be thought of both as contributing to literal meaning and as devices by which speakers signal what they mean. After characterizing the aims of semantics and pragmatics, this chapter will set out the issues concerning such (...)
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  32. Contexts in Formal Semantics.Christopher Gauker - 2010 - Philosophy Compass 5 (7):568-578.
    Recent philosophical literature has debated the question of how much context-relativity needs to be countenanced in precise semantic theories for natural languages and has displayed different conceptions of the way in which it might be accommodated. This article presents reasons to think that context-relativity is a phenomenon that semantic theory must accommodate and identifies some of the issues concerning how it ought to be accommodated.
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  33. Global Domains Versus Hidden Indexicals.Christopher Gauker - 2010 - Journal of Semantics 27 (2):243-270.
    Jason Stanley has argued that in order to obtain the desired readings of certain sentences, such as “In most of John’s classes, he fails exactly three Frenchmen”, we must suppose that each common noun is associated with a hidden indexical that may be either bound by a higher quantifier phrase or interpreted by the context. This paper shows that the desired readings can be obtained as well by interpreting nouns as expressing relations and without supposing that nouns are associated with (...)
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  34. Review: Insensitive Semantics: A Defense of Semantic Minimalism and Speech Act Pluralism. [REVIEW]Christopher Gauker - 2006 - Mind 115 (458):399-403.
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  35. What is a Context of Utterance?Christopher Gauker - 1998 - Philosophical Studies 91 (2):149-172.
    For many purposes in pragmatics one needs to appeal to a context of utterance conceived as a set of sentences or propositions. The context of utterance in this sense is often defined as the set of assumptions that the speaker supposes he or she shares with the hearer. I argue by stages that this is a mistake. First, if contexts must be defined in terms of shared assumptions, then it would be preferable to define the context as the set of (...)
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  36. Domain of Discourse.Christopher Gauker - 1997 - Mind 106 (421):1-32.
    The proposition expressed by an utterance of a quantified sentence depends on a domain of discourse somehow determined by the context. How does the context of utterance determine the content of the domain of discourse? Many philosophers would approach this question from the point of view of an expressive theory of linguistic communication, according to which the primary function of language is to enable speakers to convey the propositional contents of their thoughts to hearers. This paper argues that from this (...)
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  37. Context and Unrestricted Quantification.Michael Glanzberg - 2006 - In A. Rayo & G. Uzquiano (eds.), Absolute Generality. Oxford University Press. pp. 45--74.
    Quantification is haunted by the specter of paradoxes. Since Russell, it has been a persistent idea that the paradoxes show what might have appeared to be absolutely unrestricted quantification to be somehow restricted. In the contemporary literature, this theme is taken up by Dummett (1973, 1993) and Parsons (1974a,b). Parsons, in particular, argues that both the Liar and Russell’s paradoxes are to be resolved by construing apparently absolutely unrestricted quantifiers as appropriately restricted.
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  38. A Contextual-Hierarchical Approach to Truth and the Liar Paradox.Michael Glanzberg - 2004 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 33 (1):27-88.
    This paper presents an approach to truth and the Liar paradox which combines elements of context dependence and hierarchy. This approach is developed formally, using the techniques of model theory in admissible sets. Special attention is paid to showing how starting with some ideas about context drawn from linguistics and philosophy of language, we can see the Liar sentence to be context dependent. Once this context dependence is properly understood, it is argued, a hierarchical structure emerges which is neither ad (...)
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  39. The Liar in Context.Michael Glanzberg - 2001 - Philosophical Studies 103 (3):217 - 251.
    About twenty-five years ago, Charles Parsons published a paper that began by asking why we still discuss the Liar Paradox. Today, the question seems all the more apt. In the ensuing years we have seen not only Parsons’ work (1974), but seminal work of Saul Kripke (1975), and a huge number of other important papers. Too many to list. Surely, one of them must have solved it! In a way, most of them have. Most papers on the Liar Paradox offer (...)
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  40. Truth-Relativism, Norm-Relativism, and Assertion.Patrick Greenough - 2011 - In Jessica Brown & Herman Cappelen (eds.), Assertion: New Philosophical Essays. Oxford University Press.
    The main goal in this paper is to outline and defend a form of Relativism, under which truth is absolute but assertibility is not. I dub such a view Norm-Relativism in contrast to the more familiar forms of Truth-Relativism. The key feature of this view is that just what norm of assertion, belief, and action is in play in some context is itself relative to a perspective. In slogan form: there is no fixed, single norm for assertion, belief, and action. (...)
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  41. Contextualism About Vagueness and Higher-Order Vagueness.Patrick Greenough - 2005 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 79 (1):167–190.
    To get to grips with what Shapiro does and can say about higher-order vagueness, it is first necessary to thoroughly review and evaluate his conception of (first-order) vagueness, a conception which is both rich and suggestive but, as it turns out, not so easy to stabilise. In Sections I–IV, his basic position on vagueness (see Shapiro [2003]) is outlined and assessed. As we go along, I offer some suggestions for improvement. In Sections V–VI, I review two key paradoxes of higher-order (...)
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  42. The Semantic Error Problem for Epistemic Contextualism.Patrick Greenough & Dirk Kindermann - 2017 - In Jonathan Ichikawa (ed.), Routledge Handbook of Epistemic Contextualism. Routledge. pp. 305--320.
    Epistemic Contextualism is the view that “knows that” is semantically context-sensitive and that properly accommodating this fact into our philosophical theory promises to solve various puzzles concerning knowledge. Yet Epistemic Contextualism faces a big—some would say fatal—problem: The Semantic Error Problem. In its prominent form, this runs thus: speakers just don’t seem to recognise that “knows that” is context-sensitive; so, if “knows that” really is context-sensitive then such speakers are systematically in error about what is said by, or how to (...)
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  43. Just What Is It That Makes Travis's Examples So Different, So Appealing?Nat Hansen - 2018 - In John Collins & Tamara Dobler (eds.), The Philosophy of Charles Travis: Language, Thought, and Perception. Oxford University Press.
    Odd and memorable examples are a distinctive feature of Charles Travis's work: cases involving squash balls, soot-covered kettles, walls that emit poison gas, faces turning puce, ties made of freshly cooked linguine, and people grunting when punched in the solar plexus all figure in his arguments. One of Travis's examples, involving a pair of situations in which the leaves of a Japanese maple tree are painted green, has even spawned its own literature consisting of attempts to explain the context sensitivity (...)
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  44. Color Adjectives and Radical Contextualism.Nat Hansen - 2011 - Linguistics and Philosophy 34 (3):201-221.
    Radical contextualists have observed that the content of what is said by the utterance of a sentence is shaped in far-reaching ways by the context of utterance. And they have argued that the ways in which the content of what is said is shaped by context cannot be explained by semantic theory. A striking number of the examples that radical contextualists use to support their view involve sentences containing color adjectives ("red", "green", etc.). In this paper, I show how the (...)
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  45. Testing for Context-Dependence. [REVIEW]John Hawthorne - 2006 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 73 (2):443–450.
  46. Semantics and Context-Dependence: Towards a Strawsonian Account.Richard Heck - 2014 - In Brett Sherman & Alexis Burgess (eds.), Metasemantics: New Essays on the Foundations of Meaning. Oxford University Press. pp. 327-364.
    This paper considers a now familiar argument that the ubiquity of context -dependence threatens the project of natural language semantics, at least as that project has usually been conceived: as concerning itself with `what is said' by an utterance of a given sentence. I argue in response that the `anti-semantic' argument equivocates at a crucial point and, therefore, that we need not choose between semantic minimalism, truth-conditional pragmatism, and the like. Rather, we must abandon the idea, familiar from Kaplan and (...)
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  47. If-Clauses as Postsemantic Context-Shifters.Benj Hellie - manuscript
    A mainstay assumption in natural-language semantics is that \emph{if}-clauses bind indexical argument-places in \emph{then}-clauses. Unfortunately, recent work (compare \citealt{santorio12}) suggests that \emph{if}-clauses can somehow act to `shift the context'. On the framework of Kaplan's `Demonstratives' \citep{kaplan77}, that would be `monstrous' and somehow impossible `in English'. The superseding framework of Lewis's `Index, context, and content' \citep{lewis80icc} instead maintains that an indexical argument-place is just one that is bindable (compare~\citealt[ch.~1]{stalnaker14}), but maintains that these are rare---whereas the lesson of recent work is that (...)
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  48. A Plea for Radical Contextualism.Minyao Huang - 2017 - Synthese 194 (3):963-988.
    Extant contextualist theories have relied on the mechanism of pragmatically driven modulation to explain the way non-indexical expressions take on different interpretations in different contexts. In this paper I argue that a modulation-based contextualist semantics is untenable with respect to non-ambiguous expressions whose invariant meaning fails to determine a unique literal interpretation, such as ‘lawyer’ ‘musician’ ‘book’ and ‘game’. The invariant meaning of such an expression corresponds to a range of closely related and equally basic interpretations, none of which can (...)
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  49. Using Words: Pragmatic Implicatures and Semantic Contents.Michael Don Jeshion-Nelson - 2002 - Dissertation, Princeton University
    Sometimes what a sentence says varies from context to context, in the sense that different utterances of that sentence semantically encode different information. Such sentences are context-sensitive. Sometimes, however, different utterances of the same sentence convey different pieces of information even though both utterances semantically encode the same information. In such cases the speaker means more with her utterance than, or something all together different from, what the sentence she utters says. It is uncontroversial, even if sometimes controverted, that these (...)
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  50. Literal Meaning and Logical Theory.Jerrold J. Katz - 1981 - Journal of Philosophy 78 (4):203-233.
    In "Literal Meaning," John Searle claims to refute the view that sentences of a natural language have a meaning independent of the social contexts in which their utterances occur. The present paper is a reply on behalf of this view. In the first section, I show that the issue is not a parochial dispute within a narrow area of the philosophy of language, of interest only to specialists in the area, but is at the heart of a wide range of (...)
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