Propositions and Attitudinal Objects (Chapter 4 of Abstract Objects and the Semantics of Natural Language, OUP 2013)

Oxford: Oxford University Press (2013)
Authors
Friederike Moltmann
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique
Abstract
Propositions have played a central role in philosophy of language since Frege. I will argue that the notion of a proposition, because of a range of philosophical problems as well as problems of linguistic adequacy, should be replaced by a different notion, for almost all the roles for it has been invoked, namely by the notion of an attitudinal object. Attitudinal objects are entities like ‘John’s belief that S’, ‘John’s claim that S’, and ‘John’s desire to do X’. Attitudinal objects are closely related to, yet ontologically distinct from mental events and speech acts.
Keywords propositional attitudes  clausal complements  attitudinal objects  propositions
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