Mind and Language 17 (1-2):3–23 (2002)

Authors
Dan Sperber
Institut Jean Nicod
Deirdre Wilson
University College London
Abstract
The central problem for pragmatics is that sentence meaning vastly underdetermines speaker’s meaning. The goal of pragmatics is to explain how the gap between sentence meaning and speaker’s meaning is bridged. This paper defends the broadly Gricean view that pragmatic interpretation is ultimately an exercise in mind-reading, involving the inferential attribution of intentions. We argue, however, that the interpretation process does not simply consist in applying general mind-reading abilities to a particular (communicative) domain. Rather, it involves a dedicated comprehension module, with its own special principles and mechanisms. We show how such a metacommunicative module might have evolved, and what principles and mechanisms it might contain.
Keywords speaker's meaning  mindreading  modularity  Gricean pragmatics  relevance theory  evolution of communication
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1111/1468-0017.00186
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 62,343
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Demonstratives: An Essay on the Semantics, Logic, Metaphysics and Epistemology of Demonstratives and Other Indexicals.David Kaplan - 1989 - In Joseph Almog, John Perry & Howard Wettstein (eds.), Themes From Kaplan. Oxford University Press. pp. 481-563.
Studies in the Way of Words.H. P. Grice - 1989 - Cambridge: Harvard University Press.

View all 47 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Why Do Humans Reason? Arguments for an Argumentative Theory.Dan Sperber - 2011 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 34 (2):57.
Mindreading in Infancy.Peter Carruthers - 2013 - Mind and Language 28 (2):141-172.
Relevance Theory.Deirdre Wilson & Dan Sperber - 2002 - In L. Horn & G. Ward (eds.), The Handbook of Pragmatics. Blackwell. pp. 607-632.
Semantics Without Semantic Content.Daniel W. Harris - forthcoming - Mind and Language.

View all 117 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total views
299 ( #30,337 of 2,445,379 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #310,870 of 2,445,379 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes