Sellars on the Function of Semantic Vocabulary


Authors
Lionel Shapiro
University of Connecticut
Abstract
This paper examines two explanations Sellars gives, at successive stages of his career, of how semantic vocabulary lets us relate linguistic expressions to extra-linguistic reality. Despite their differences, both explanations reveal a distinctive pragmatist approach. According to Sellars, we do not use semantic vocabulary to describe language-world relations. Rather, our taking language to relate to the world is implicit in the moves licensed by our semantic assertions. I argue that Sellars's discussions of the function of semantic vocabulary point to an overlooked position regarding the relation between the concepts of meaning and truth. According to him, the function of meaning ascriptions cannot be explained independently of the function of truth ascriptions. That is because the function of meaning ascriptions essentially involves licensing claims about the world when combined with truth ascriptions. If he is right, this poses a challenge to deflationary accounts of the function of truth talk.
Keywords Wilfrid Sellars  meaning  truth  functional role  deflationism
Categories (categorize this paper)
ISBN(s)
DOI 10.1080/09608788.2014.961404
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 39,645
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

View all 20 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The Middle Does Not Hold.William A. Rottschaefer - 2011 - Journal of Philosophical Research 36:361-369.
Action, Knowledge, and Reality.Wilfrid Sellars & Hector-Neri Castañeda (eds.) - 1975 - Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill.
The Concept of Truth and the Semantics of the Truth Predicate.Kirk Ludwig & Emil Badici - 2007 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 50 (6):622-638.
Truth Via Anaphorically Unrestricted Quantifiers.Jody Azzouni - 2001 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 30 (4):329-354.
Truth as a Pretense.James A. Woodbridge - 2005 - In Mark Kalderon (ed.), Fictionalism in Metaphysics. Oxford University Press. pp. 134.
Normativity and Scientific Naturalism in Sellars’ ‘Janus‐Faced’ Space of Reasons.James R. O’Shea - 2010 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 18 (3):459-471.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2014-10-14

Total views
53 ( #139,277 of 2,325,876 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
13 ( #67,281 of 2,325,876 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature