Philosophical Review 107 (1):118 (1998)

Authors
Frances Egan
Rutgers University - New Brunswick
Robert Charles Cummins
University of California, Davis
Abstract
“Naturalistic” semantic theories attempt to specify, in nonintentional and nonsemantic terms, a sufficient condition for a mental representation’s having a particular meaning. Such theories have trouble accounting for the possibility of representational error. In his latest book, Robert Cummins traces the problem to the fact that the theories currently on offer identify the meaning of a representation with certain features of its use. Only a theory that takes meaning to be an intrinsic feature of a representation, Cummins argues, can both accommodate representational error and play a genuinely explanatory role in an account of rational capacities. In the second half of the book he develops and defends a proposal that he calls the “picture theory of representation.”
Keywords Analytic Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy  General Interest
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ISBN(s) 0031-8108
DOI 10.2307/2998319
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