Scare quotes and their relation to other semantic issues

Linguistics and Philosophy 26 (1):1-28 (2003)
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The main aim of this paper is that of providing a unified analysis for some interesting uses of quotation marks, including so-called scare quotes. The phenomena exemplified by the cases I discuss have remained relatively unexplored, notwithstanding a growing interest in the behavior of quotation marks. They are, however, of no lesser interest than other, more widely studied effectsachieved with the help of quotationmarks. In particular, as I argue in whatfollows, scare quotes and other similar instances bear interesting relations with someimportant themes in the study of natural languages, such as questions regarding alleged devicesof conventional implicature, cases of so-called metalinguistic negation, and, moregenerally, problems pertaining to the distinction between semantic and pragmatic fieldsof inquiry.In Section 1, I begin with a description of some examples involvingthe uses of quotation marks I intend to discuss, and I hint at some desiderata fortheir analysis. In Section 2, I temporarily abandon quotation marks, and, inspired by therecent work of Stephen Neale and Kent Bach on alleged devices of conventional implicature,I present what I call the theory of message and attachment. In Sections 3 and 4,I return to my initial examples, I employ the theory of message and attachment in theiranalysis, and I discuss certain features regarding the behavior of negation in some related cases.



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Stefano Predelli
Nottingham University

Citations of this work

Quotation in Context.Bart Geurts & Emar Maier - 2005 - In Philippe de Brabanter (ed.), Hybrid Quotations. John Benjamins. pp. 109-28.
Unity in the Variety of Quotation.Kirk Ludwig & Greg Ray - 2018 - In Paul Saka & Michael Alan Johnson (eds.), The Semantics and Pragmatics of Quotation. Cham, Switzerland: Springer. pp. 99-134.
Quotation.Herman Cappelen & Ernest Lepore - 2012 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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References found in this work

Reference and Reflexivity.John Perry - 2001 - Center for the Study of Language and Inf.
The Concept of Truth in Formalized Languages.Alfred Tarski - 1936 - In A. Tarski (ed.), Logic, Semantics, Metamathematics. Oxford University Press. pp. 152--278.
Thought Without Representation.John Perry & Simon Blackburn - 1986 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 60 (1):137-166.
The Myth of Conventional Implicature.Kent Bach - 1999 - Linguistics and Philosophy 22 (4):327-366.

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