Flexible Contextualism about Deontic Modals: A Puzzle about Information-Sensitivity

Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 56 (2-3):149-178 (2013)
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Abstract

According to a recent challenge to Kratzer's canonical contextualist semantics for deontic modal expressions, no contextualist view can make sense of cases in which such a modal must be information-sensitive in some way. Here I show how Kratzer's semantics is compatible with readings of the targeted sentences that fit with the data. I then outline a general account of how contexts select parameter values for modal expressions and show, in terms of that account, how the needed, contextualist-friendly readings might plausibly get selected in the challenge cases.

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Janice Dowell
Syracuse University

Citations of this work

Skepticism about Ought Simpliciter.Derek Clayton Baker - 2018 - Oxford Studies in Metaethics 13.
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Retractions.Teresa Marques - 2018 - Synthese 195 (8):3335-3359.
How to Be an Ethical Expressivist.Alex Silk - 2014 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 91 (1):47-81.
‘Ought’-contextualism beyond the parochial.Alex Worsnip - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (11):3099-3119.

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References found in this work

Moral dimensions: permissibility, meaning, blame.Thomas Scanlon - 2008 - Cambridge, Mass.: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
Themes From Kaplan.Joseph Almog, John Perry & Howard Wettstein (eds.) - 1989 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Ought, Agents, and Actions.Mark Schroeder - 2011 - Philosophical Review 120 (1):1-41.
On Quantifier Domain Restriction.Jason Stanley & Zoltán Gendler Szabó - 2000 - Mind and Language 15 (2-3):219--61.

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