Zero tolerance for pragmatics

Synthese 165 (3):359–371 (2008)

Authors
Christopher Gauker
University of Salzburg
Abstract
The proposition expressed by a sentence is relative to a context. But what determines the content of the context? Many theorists would include among these determinants aspects of the speaker’s intention in speaking. My thesis is that, on the contrary, the determinants of the context never include the speaker’s intention. My argument for this thesis turns on a consideration of the role that the concept of proposition expressed in context is supposed to play in a theory of linguistic communication. To illustrate an alternative approach, I present an original theory of the reference of demonstratives according to which the referent of a demonstrative is the object that adequately and best satisfies certain accessibility criteria. Although I call my thesis zero tolerance for pragmatics, it is not an expression of intolerance for everything that might be called “pragmatics.”.
Keywords Semantics  Pragmatics  Speaker Intentions  Demonstratives  Normativity
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DOI 10.1007/s11229-007-9189-2
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References found in this work BETA

Counterfactuals.David K. Lewis - 1973 - Blackwell.
Literal Meaning.François Recanati - 2002 - Cambridge University Press.
Semantics, Pragmatics, and the Role of Semantic Content.Jeffrey C. King & Jason Stanley - 2005 - In Zoltan Gendler Szabo (ed.), Semantics Versus Pragmatics. Oxford University Press. pp. 111--164.

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Citations of this work BETA

Speaker Intentions in Context.Jeffrey C. King - 2014 - Noûs 48 (2):219-237.
A Defence of Intentionalism About Demonstratives.Alex Radulescu - forthcoming - Australasian Journal of Philosophy:1-17.
Intention-Sensitive Semantics.A. Stokke - 2010 - Synthese 175 (3):383-404.
The Edenic Theory of Reference.Elmar Unnsteinsson - 2018 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 62 (3):276-308.
A Gricean Theory of Malaprops.Elmar Unnsteinsson - 2017 - Mind and Language 32 (4):446-462.

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