Using and understanding maps

Many philosophers who advocate broadly pragmatist accounts of belief or language treat maps as paradigm examples of representation and they often assume that a pragmatic account of representation is obviously correct for maps (e.g. Dewey, Dretske, Millikan, Putnam and Ramsey). By examining mapping activities and the representational properties of maps in detail, this paper argues that no single notion of representation can fit every map or every mapping activity. This is bad news for pragmatists: if there are maps they can’t cope with, we should question whether they can tell the full story about belief or language
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