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Theories of references and truth

Erkenntnis 13 (1):111 - 129 (1978)

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  1. Tarski and Primitivism About Truth.Jamin Asay - 2013 - Philosophers' Imprint 13:1-18.
    Tarski’s pioneering work on truth has been thought by some to motivate a robust, correspondence-style theory of truth, and by others to motivate a deflationary attitude toward truth. I argue that Tarski’s work suggests neither; if it motivates any contemporary theory of truth, it motivates conceptual primitivism, the view that truth is a fundamental, indefinable concept. After outlining conceptual primitivism and Tarski’s theory of truth, I show how the two approaches to truth share much in common. While Tarski does not (...)
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  • Semantics Without Semantic Content.Daniel W. Harris - forthcoming - Mind and Language.
    I argue that semantics is the study of the proprietary database of a centrally inaccessible and informationally encapsulated input–output system. This system’s role is to encode and decode partial and defeasible evidence of what speakers are saying. Since information about nonlinguistic context is therefore outside the purview of semantic processing, a sentence’s semantic value is not its content but a partial and defeasible constraint on what it can be used to say. I show how to translate this thesis into a (...)
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  • Where the Paths Meet: Remarks on Truth and Paradox &Ast.Jc Beall - 2008 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 32 (1):169-198.
    The study of truth is often seen as running on two separate paths: the nature path and the logic path. The former concerns metaphysical questions about the ‘nature’, if any, of truth. The latter concerns itself largely with logic, particularly logical issues arising from the truth-theoretic paradoxes. Where, if at all, do these two paths meet? It may seem, and it is all too often assumed, that they do not meet, or at best touch in only incidental ways. It is (...)
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  • Quine's Ladder: Two and a Half Pages From the Philosophy of Logic.Marian David - 2008 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 32 (1):274-312.
    I want to discuss, in some detail, a short section from Quine’s Philosophy of Logic. It runs from pages 10 to 13 of the second, revised edition of the book and carries the subheading ‘Truth and semantic ascent’.1 In these two and a half pages, Quine presents his well-known account of truth as a device of disquotation, employing what I call Quine’s Ladder. The section merits scrutiny, for it has become the central document for contemporary deflationary views about truth.
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  • Rorty's Mirrorless World.Michael Devitt - 1988 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 12 (1):157-177.
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  • A Putnam's Progress.Ernest Lepore & Barry Loewer - 1988 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 12 (1):459-473.
  • Does" Rabbit" Refer to Rabbits?Michael Liston & Michael List - 2005 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 1 (1):39-56.
    It is commonly presupposed that all instances of the deflationary reference schema ‘F’ applies to x if and only if x is ‘are correct. This paper argues, mainly on the basis of concrete example, that we have little reason to be confident about this presupposition: our tendency to believe the instances is based on local successes that may not be globally extendible. There is a problem of semantic projection, Ii argue, and standard accounts that would resolve or dissolve the problem (...)
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  • Quine and the Problem of Truth.Joshua Schwartz - 2016 - Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy 4 (10).
    Widespread deflationistic readings of Quine misrepresent his view of disquotation’s significance and the truth predicate’s utility. I demonstrate this by answering a question that philosophers have not directly addressed: how does Quine understand the philosophical problem of truth? A primary thesis of this paper is that we can answer this question only by working from within Quine’s naturalistic framework. Drawing on neglected texts from Quine's corpus, I defend the view that, for Quine, the problem of truth emerges from the development (...)
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  • Realism, Truthmakers, and Language: A Study in Meta-Ontology and the Relationship Between Language and Metaphysics.J. T. M. Miller - 2014 - Dissertation, Durham University
    Metaphysics has had a long history of debate over its viability, and substantivity. This thesis explores issues connected to the realism question within the domain of metaphysics, ultimately aiming to defend a realist, substantive metaphysics by responding to so-called deflationary approaches, which have become prominent, and well supported within the recent metametaphysical and metaontological literature. To this end, I begin by examining the changing nature of the realism question. I argue that characterising realism and anti-realism through theories of truth unduly (...)
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  • Deflationism and the Success Argument.By Nic Damnjanovic - 2005 - Philosophical Quarterly 55 (218):53–67.
    Deflationists about truth typically deny that truth is a causal-explanatory property. However, the now familiar 'success argument' attempts to show that truth plays an important causal-explanatory role in explanations of practical success. Deflationists have standardly responded that the truth predicate appears in such explanations merely as a logical device, and that therefore truth has not been shown to play a causal-explanatory role. I argue that if we accept Jackson and Pettit's account of causal explanations, the standard deflationist response is inconsistent, (...)
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  • Expression-Meaning and Vagueness.Stephen Schiffer - forthcoming - In Arthur Sullivan (ed.), Sensations, Thoughts, Language: Essays in Honor of Brian Loar. Routledge.
    Brian Loar attempted to provide the Gricean program of intention-based semantics with an account of expression-meaning. But the theory he presented, like virtually every other foundational semantic or meta-semantical theory, was an idealization that ignored vagueness. What would happen if we tried to devise theories that accommodated the vagueness of vague expressions? I offer arguments based on well-known features of vagueness that, if sound, show that neither Brian’s nor any other extant theory could successfully make that adjustment, and this because, (...)
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  • Reassessing Referential Indeterminacy.Christian Nimtz - 2005 - Erkenntnis 62 (1):1-28.
    Quine and Davidson employ proxy functions to demonstrate that the use of language (behaviouristically conceived) is compatible with indefinitely many radically different reference relations. They also believe that the use of language (behaviouristically conceived) is all that determines reference. From this they infer that reference is indeterminate, i.e. that there are no facts of the matter as to what singular terms designate and what predicates apply to. Yet referential indeterminacy yields rather dire consequences. One thus does wonder whether one can (...)
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  • Lessons on Truth From Kant.Gila Sher - 2017 - Analytic Philosophy 58 (3):171-201.
    Kant is known for having said relatively little about truth in Critique of Pure Reason. Nevertheless, there are important lessons to be learned from this work about truth, lessons that apply to the contemporary debate on the nature and structure of truth and its theory. In this paper I suggest two such lessons. The first lesson concerns the structure of a substantive theory of truth as contrasted with a deflationist theory; the second concerns the structure of a correspondence theory of (...)
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  • Challenges to Deflationary Theories of Truth.Bradley Armour-Garb - 2012 - Philosophy Compass 7 (4):256-266.
    In this paper, I address some of the chief challenges, or problems, for Deflationary Theories of Truth, viz., the Generalization Problem, the Conservativeness Argument, and the Success Argument.
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  • Review of Joshua Rasmussen's Defending the Correspondence Theory of Truth. [REVIEW]Joseph Ulatowski - 2015 - Polish Journal of Philosophy 9 (2):83-89.
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  • Theories of Truth and Convention T.Douglas Patterson - 2002 - Philosophers' Imprint 2:1-16.
    Partly due to the influence of Tarski's work, it is commonly assumed that any good theory of truth implies biconditionals of the sort mentioned in Convention T: instances of the T-Schema "s is true in L if and only if p" where the sentence substituted for "p" is equivalent in meaning to s. I argue that we must take care to distinguish the claim that implying such instances is sufficient for adequacy in an account of truth from the claim that (...)
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  • Truth, Correspondence, and Success.Stephen Leeds - 1995 - Philosophical Studies 79 (1):1 - 36.
  • Tarski on the Necessity Reading of Convention T.Douglas Eden Patterson - 2006 - Synthese 151 (1):1-32.
    Tarski’s Convention T is often taken to claim that it is both sufficient and necessary for adequacy in a definition of truth that it imply instances of the T-schema where the embedded sentence translates the mentioned sentence. However, arguments against the necessity claim have recently appeared, and, furthermore, the necessity claim is actually not required for the indefinability results for which Tarski is justly famous; indeed, Tarski’s own presentation of the results in the later Undecidable Theories makes no mention of (...)
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  • Disquotation and Infinite Conjunctions.Lavinia Picollo & Thomas Schindler - 2017 - Erkenntnis (5):1-30.
    One of the main logical functions of the truth predicate is to enable us to express so-called ‘infinite conjunctions’. Several authors claim that the truth predicate can serve this function only if it is fully disquotational, which leads to triviality in classical logic. As a consequence, many have concluded that classical logic should be rejected. The purpose of this paper is threefold. First, we consider two accounts available in the literature of what it means to express infinite conjunctions with a (...)
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  • A Critique of Deflationism.Anil Gupta - 1993 - Philosophical Topics 21 (1):57-81.
  • Primitive Truth.Jamin Asay - 2013 - Dialectica 67 (4):503-519.
    Conceptual primitivism is the view that truth is among our most basic and fundamental concepts. It cannot be defined, analyzed, or reduced into concepts that are more fundamental. Primitivism is opposed to both traditional attempts at defining truth (in terms of correspondence, coherence, or utility) and deflationary theories that argue that the notion of truth is exhausted by means of the truth schema. Though primitivism might be thought of as a view of last resort, I believe that the view is (...)
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  • “True” as Ambiguous.Max Kölbel - 2008 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 77 (2):359-384.
    In this paper, I argue (a) that the predicate "true" is ambiguously used to express a deflationary and a substantial concept of truth and (b) that the two concepts are systematically related in that substantial truths are deflationary truths of a certain kind. Claim (a) allows one to accept the main insights of deflationism but still take seriously, and participate in, the traditional debate about the nature of truth. Claim (b) is a contribution to that debate. The overall position is (...)
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  • Mainstream Semantics + Deflationary Truth.Alexis Burgess - 2011 - Linguistics and Philosophy 34 (5):397-410.
    Recent philosophy of language has been profoundly impacted by the idea that mainstream, model-theoretic semantics is somehow incompatible with deflationary accounts of truth and reference. The present article systematizes the case for incompatibilism, debunks circularity and “modal confusion” arguments familiar in the literature, and reconstructs the popular thought that truth-conditional semantics somehow “presupposes” a correspondence theory of truth as an inference to the best explanation. The case for compatibilism is closed by showing that this IBE argument fails to rule out (...)
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  • Communist Conventions for Deductive Reasoning.Sinan Dogramaci - 2015 - Noûs 49 (4):776-799.
    In section 1, I develop epistemic communism, my view of the function of epistemically evaluative terms such as ‘rational’. The function is to support the coordination of our belief-forming rules, which in turn supports the reliable acquisition of beliefs through testimony. This view is motivated by the existence of valid inferences that we hesitate to call rational. I defend the view against the worry that it fails to account for a function of evaluations within first-personal deliberation. In the rest of (...)
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  • A Deflationary Theory of Reference.Arvid Båve - 2009 - Synthese 169 (1):51 - 73.
    The article first rehearses three deflationary theories of reference, (1) disquotationalism, (2) propositionalism (Horwich), and (3) the anaphoric theory (Brandom), and raises a number of objections against them. It turns out that each corresponds to a closely related theory of truth, and that these are subject to analogous criticisms to a surprisingly high extent. I then present a theory of my own, according to which the schema “That S(t) is about t” and the biconditional “S refers to x iff S (...)
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  • Field’s Logic of Truth.Vann McGee - 2010 - Philosophical Studies 147 (3):421-432.
  • The Semantic Theory of Truth: Field’s Incompleteness Objection.Glen A. Hoffmann - 2007 - Philosophia 35 (2):161-170.
    According to Field’s influential incompleteness objection, Tarski’s semantic theory of truth is unsatisfactory since the definition that forms its basis is incomplete in two distinct senses: (1) it is physicalistically inadequate, and for this reason, (2) it is conceptually deficient. In this paper, I defend the semantic theory of truth against the incompleteness objection by conceding (1) but rejecting (2). After arguing that Davidson and McDowell’s reply to the incompleteness objection fails to pass muster, I argue that, within the constraints (...)
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  • Maudlin’s Truth and Paradox. [REVIEW]Hartry Field - 2006 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 73 (3):713–720.
    Tim Maudlin’s Truth and Paradox is terrific. In some sense its solution to the paradoxes is familiar—the book advocates an extension of what’s called the Kripke-Feferman theory (although the definition of validity it employs disguises this fact). Nonetheless, the perspective it casts on that solution is completely novel, and Maudlin uses this perspective to try to make the prima facie unattractive features of this solution seem palatable, indeed inescapable. Moreover, the book deals with many important issues that most writers on (...)
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  • A Correspondence Theory of Truth.Jay Newhard - 2002 - Dissertation, Brown University
    The aim of this dissertation is to offer and defend a correspondence theory of truth. I begin by critically examining the coherence, pragmatic, simple, redundancy, disquotational, minimal, and prosentential theories of truth. Special attention is paid to several versions of disquotationalism, whose plausibility has led to its fairly constant support since the pioneering work of Alfred Tarski, through that by W. V. Quine, and recently in the work of Paul Horwich. I argue that none of these theories meets the correspondence (...)
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  • Truth or Meaning? A Question of Priority.John Collins - 2002 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 65 (3):497-536.
    There is an incompatibility between the deflationist approach to truth, which makes truth transparent on the basis of an antecedent grasp of meaning, and the traditional endeavour, exemplified by Davidson, to explicate meaning through of truth. I suggest that both parties are in the explanatory red: deflationist lack a non-truth-involving theory of meaning and Davidsonians lack a non-deflationary account of truth. My focus is on the attempts of the latter party to resolve their problem. I look in detail at Davidson's (...)
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  • Truth, Correspondence, Models, and Tarski.Panu Raatikainen - 2007 - In Approaching Truth: Essays in Honour of Ilkka Niiniluoto. London: College Press. pp. 99-112.
    In the early 20th century, scepticism was common among philosophers about the very meaningfulness of the notion of truth – and of the related notions of denotation, definition etc. (i.e., what Tarski called semantical concepts). Awareness was growing of the various logical paradoxes and anomalies arising from these concepts. In addition, more philosophical reasons were being given for this aversion.1 The atmosphere changed dramatically with Alfred Tarski’s path-breaking contribution. What Tarski did was to show that, assuming that the syntax of (...)
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  • Putnam’s Conception of Truth.Massimo Dell'Utri - 2016 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 12 (2):5-22.
    After stressing how the attempt to provide a plausible account of the connection between language and the world was one of Putnam’s constant preoccupations, this article describes the four stages his thinking about the concepts of truth and reality went through. Particular attention is paid to the kinds of problems that made him abandon each stage to enter the next. The analysis highlights how all the stages but one express a general non-epistemic stance towards truth and reality—the right stance, according (...)
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  • Verdad, metafísica y epistemología. Observaciones sobre la neutralidad de la verdad.José Andrés Forero Mora - 2015 - Universitas Philosophica 32 (64):283.
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  • Was Tarski a Deflationist?Richard Schantz - 1998 - Logic and Logical Philosophy 6:157.
    The article explores the relationship between Tarski’s theory oftruth and modern deflationary or minimalist accounts of truth. The authornotes many similarites, but he also identifies an important difference betweenTarski’s theory and the various approaches of his modern followers: Tarskithought of his theory of truth as an elaboration of the classical correspondence notion. The heart of his theory is the definition of truth in terms ofsatisfaction. Truth is explicated in terms of a relation between language andaspects of external reality. It is (...)
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  • Alethic Deflationism and Normativity: A Critique.Massimo Dell'Utri - 2018 - Veritas – Revista de Filosofia da Pucrs 63 (1):292.
    O artigo começa destacando que praticamente ninguém se opõe a reivindicações como "considerar uma afirmação, uma crença ou um pensamento como verdadeiro ou falso é considerá-lo como correto ou errado" - uma afirmação que mostra que a verdade é intrinsecamente normativa. Sabe-se que os deflacionistas aléticos negam isso. Paul Horwich, por exemplo, sustenta que nada mostra que a verdade é um conceito normativo da maneira que deveria ser. Ao confiar em uma distinção entre as dimensões da normatividade, tentarei identificar a (...)
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  • Can Deflationists Be Dialetheists?Bradley Armour-Garb & J. C. Beall - 2001 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 30 (6):593-608.
    Philosophical work on truth covers two streams of inquiry, one concerning the nature (if any) of truth, the other concerning truth-related paradox, especially the Liar. For the most part these streams have proceeded fairly independently of each other. In his "Deflationary Truth and the Liar" (JPL 28:455-488, 1999) Keith Simmons argues that the two streams bear on one another in an important way; specifically, the Liar poses a greater problem for deflationary conceptions of truth than it does for inflationist conceptions. (...)
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  • Tarski's Method of Truth Definition: Its Nature and Significance.Ladislav Koreň - 2010 - In Jaroslav Peregrin (ed.), Foundations of Logic. Charles University in Prague/Karolinum Press.
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  • Deflationism and Referential Indeterminacy.David E. Taylor - 2017 - Philosophical Review 126 (1):43-79.
    This essay argues that deflationism is incompatible with the phenomenon of referential indeterminacy. This puts the deflationist in the difficult position of having to deny the possibility of what otherwise seems like a manifest and theoretically important phenomenon. Section 1 provides background on deflationism. Section 2 considers an intuitive argument by Stephen Leeds to the effect that deflationism precludes RI; the essay argues that this argument does not succeed. The rest of the essay presents its own, distinct argument for the (...)
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  • Expressivism, Deflationism and Correspondence.Patricia Marino - 2005 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 2 (2):171-191.
    On an expressivist view, ethical claims are not fact stating; instead they serve the alternative function of expressing our feelings, attitudes and values. On a deflationary view, truth is not a property with a nature to be analyzed, but merely a grammatical device to aid us in endorsing sentences. Views on the relationship between expressivism and deflationism vary widely: they are compatible; they are incompatible; they are a natural pair; they doom one another. Here I explain some of these views, (...)
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  • Truth and Error in Morality.Dale Dorsey - 2010 - In Cory D. Wright & Nikolaj J. L. L. Pedersen (eds.), New Waves in Truth. Palgrave-Macmillan. pp. 235--248.
  • A Metasemantic Challenge for Mathematical Determinacy.Jared Warren & Daniel Waxman - 2020 - Synthese 197 (2):477-495.
    This paper investigates the determinacy of mathematics. We begin by clarifying how we are understanding the notion of determinacy before turning to the questions of whether and how famous independence results bear on issues of determinacy in mathematics. From there, we pose a metasemantic challenge for those who believe that mathematical language is determinate, motivate two important constraints on attempts to meet our challenge, and then use these constraints to develop an argument against determinacy and discuss a particularly popular approach (...)
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  • Reverse Engineering Epistemic Evaluations.Sinan Dogramaci - 2012 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 84 (3):513-530.
    This paper begins by raising a puzzle about what function our use of the word ‘rational’ could serve. To solve the puzzle, I introduce a view I call Epistemic Communism: we use epistemic evaluations to promote coordination among our basic belief-forming rules, and the function of this is to make the acquisition of knowledge by testimony more efficient.
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  • On the Proposed Exhaustion of Truth.John Collins - 2002 - Dialogue 41 (4):653.
    Dans la première partie de cet article, je presente une thèse parapluie — la thèse de l'«exhaustion» — qui cerne bien l'élément central des diverses positions déflationnistes au sujet de la vérité : l'idée que le contenu du prédicat de vérité s'épuise entièrement dans le contenu de ce à quoi le prédicats'applique. Je soutiens que cette thèse n'est supportée que d'une manière triviale par l'idée courante que la vérite résiste à une analyse substantielle, car les prédicats en général ne se (...)
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  • Disquotationalism, Minimalism, and the Finite Minimal Theory.Jay Newhard - 2004 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 34 (1):61 - 86.
    Recently, Paul Horwich has developed the minimalist theory of truth, according to which the truth predicate does not express a substantive property, though it may be used as a grammatical expedient. Minimalism shares these claims with Quine’s disquotationalism; it differs from disquotationalism primarily in holding that truth-bearers are propositions, rather than sentences. Despite potential ontological worries, allowing that propositions bear truth gives Horwich a prima facie response to several important objections to disquotationalism. In section I of this paper, disquotationalism is (...)
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  • Tarski, Quine, and the Transcendence of the Vernacular “True”.Jody Azzouni - 2005 - Synthese 142 (3):273-288.
    It is argued that the blind ascriptive role for the word "true", its use, that is, in conjunction with descriptions of classes of sentences or with proper names of sentences, is one which applies indiscriminately to sentences regardless of whether these are in languages we speak, can understand, or can translate into sentences that we do speak. Formal analogues of the ordinary word "true" as they arise in Tarski's seminal work, and in others, cannot replicate this essential role of the (...)
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  • Two Types of Deflationism.Aladdin M. Yaqub - 2008 - Synthese 165 (1):77-106.
    It is a fundamental intuition about truth that the conditions under which a sentence is true are given by what the sentence asserts. My aim in this paper is to show that this intuition captures the concept of truth completely and correctly. This is conceptual deflationism, for it does not go beyond what is asserted by a sentence in order to define the truth status of that sentence. This paper, hence, is a defense of deflationism as a conceptual account of (...)
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  • Truth and the Absence of Fact – Precis.Hartry Field - 2005 - Philosophical Studies 124 (1):41-44.
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  • Tarski's Physicalism.Richard L. Kirkham - 1993 - Erkenntnis 38 (3):289-302.
    Hartry Field has argued that Alfred Tarski desired to reduce all semantic concepts to concepts acceptable to physicalism and that Tarski failed to do this. In the two succeeding decades, Field has been charged with being too lenient with Tarski; but it has been almost universally accepted that an objection at least as strong as Field's is telling against Tarski's theory. Close examination of the relevant literature, most of it printed in this journal in the 1930s, reveals that Field's conception (...)
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  • Tarski, Quine, and the Transcendence of the Vernacular “True”.Jody Azzouni - 2005 - Synthese 142 (3):273 - 288.
    It is argued that the blind ascriptive role for the word true, its use, that is, in conjunction with descriptions of classes of sentences or with proper names of sentences (but not quote-names), is one which applies indiscriminately to sentences regardless of whether these are in languages we speak, can understand, or can translate into sentences that we do speak (and understand). Formal analogues of the ordinary word true as they arise in Tarskis seminal work, and in others, cannot replicate (...)
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  • Teleosemantics and the Troubles of Naturalism.Steven J. Wagner - 1996 - Philosophical Studies 82 (1):81-110.