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Carlo Penco
University of Genoa
  1. The Cognitive Load of Presupposition Triggers: Mandatory and Optional Repairs in Presupposition Failure.Filippo Domaneschi, Carlo Penco, Elena Carrea & Alberto Greco - 2014 - Language, Cognition and Neuroscience 29 (1):136-146.
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  2. Frege: Two Theses, Two Senses.Carlo Penco - 2003 - History and Philosophy of Logic 24 (2):87-109.
    One particular topic in the literature on Frege’s conception of sense relates to two apparently contradictory theses held by Frege: the isomorphism of thought and language on one hand and the expressibility of a thought by different sentences on the other. I will divide the paper into five sections. In (1) I introduce the problem of the tension in Frege’s thought. In (2) I discuss the main attempts to resolve the conflict between Frege’s two contradictory claims, showing what is wrong (...)
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  3. Indexicals as Demonstratives: On the Debate Between Kripke and Künne.Carlo Penco - 2013 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 88 (1):55-71.
    This paper is a comparison of Kripke’s and Künne’s interpretations of Frege’s theory of indexicals, especially concerning Frege’s remarks on time as “part of the expression of thought”. I analyze the most contrasting features of Kripke’s and Künne’s interpretations of Frege’s remarks on indexicals. Subsequently, I try to identify a common ground between Kripke’s and Künne’s interpretations, and hint at a possible convergence between those two views, stressing the importance given by Frege to nonverbal signs in defining the content of (...)
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  4. Essentially Incomplete Descriptions.Carlo Penco - 2010 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 6 (2):47 - 66.
    In this paper I offer a defence of a Russellian analysis of the referential uses of incomplete (mis)descriptions, in a contextual setting. With regard to the debate between a unificationist and an ambiguity approach to the formal treatment of definite descriptions (introduction), I will support the former against the latter. In 1. I explain what I mean by "essentially" incomplete descriptions: incomplete descriptions are context dependent descriptions. In 2. I examine one of the best versions of the unificationist “explicit” approach (...)
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  5. The Influence of Einstein on Wittgenstein's Philosophy.Carlo Penco - 2010 - Philosophical Investigations 33 (4):360-379.
    On the basis of historical and textual evidence, this paper claims that after his Tractatus, Wittgenstein was actually influenced by Einstein's theory of relativity and, the similarity of Einstein's relativity theory helps to illuminate some aspects of Wittgenstein's work. These claims find support in remarkable quotations where Wittgenstein speaks approvingly of Einstein's relativity theory and in the way these quotations are embedded in Wittgenstein's texts. The profound connection between Wittgenstein and relativity theory concerns not only Wittgenstein's “verificationist” phase , but (...)
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  6. Donnellan's Misdescriptions and Loose Talk.Carlo Penco - 2017 - In Kepa Korta Maria De Ponte (ed.), Reference and Representation in Language and Thought. Oxford (UK): Oxford University Press. pp. 104-125.
    Keith Donnellan wrote his paper on definite descriptions in 1966 at Cornell University, an environment where nearly everybody was discussing Wittgenstein’s ideas of meaning as use. However, his idea of different uses of definite descriptions became one of the fundamental tenets against descriptivism, which was considered one of the main legacies of the Frege–Russell– Wittgenstein view; and I wonder whether a more Wittgensteinian interpretation of Donnellan’s work is possible.
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  7.  66
    Objective and Cognitive Context.Carlo Penco - 1999 - In P. Brezillon & P. Bouquet (eds.), Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence. Springer.
    In what follows I consider the apparent contrast between two kinds of theories of context: a theory of objective context - exemplified in the works of Kaplan and Lewis - and a theory of subjective context -exemplified in the works of McCarthy and Giunchiglia. I consider then some difficulties for the objective theory. I don't give any formalization; instead I give some theoretical points about the problem. A possible result could be the abandon of the double indexing for a development (...)
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  8. What Is Said and What Is Not: The Semantics/Pragmatics Interface.Carlo Penco & Filippo Domaneschi (eds.) - 2013 - Chicago: Chicago University Press.
    We asked some of the best philosophers of pragmatics to offer their original perspectives on the following question: to what extent do the novelties developed in these last years shed new light on defining the content of what is said? They answered with passion and without avoiding strong criticism of central ideas on opposite sides. The primary purpose of this collection is to provide a survey of what may be considered the main contemporary debate in the philosophy of language. Scholars (...)
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  9.  3
    Wittgenstein’s Thought Experiments and Relativity Theory.Carlo Penco - 2020 - In Shyam Wuppuluri & Newton da Costa (eds.), Wittgensteinian : Looking at the World From the Viewpoint of Wittgenstein's Philosophy. Springer Verlag. pp. 341-362.
    In this paper, I discuss the similarity between Wittgenstein’s use of thought experiments and Relativity Theory. I begin with introducing Wittgenstein’s idea of “thought experiments” and a tentative classification of different kinds of thought experiments in Wittgenstein’s work. Then, after presenting a short recap of some remarks on the analogy between Wittgenstein’s point of view and Einstein’s, I suggest three analogies between the status of Wittgenstein’s mental experiments and Relativity theory: the topics of time dilation, the search for invariants, and (...)
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  10.  22
    Selecting Presuppositions in Conditional Clauses. Results From a Psycholinguistic Experiment.Filippo Domaneschi, Elena Carrea, Carlo Penco & Alberto Greco - 2015 - Frontiers in Psychology 6.
  11. Converging Towards What: On Semantic and Pragmatic Competence.Carlo Penco - 2005 - In L. Serafini & P. Bouquet (eds.), CEUR-Workshops.
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  12.  40
    Context and Contract.Carlo Penco - 2008 - In R. Thomason, L. Serafini & P. Bouquet (eds.), Perspectives on Contexts. CSLI.
    The main point of the paper is the claim that a strong notion of cognitive context can answer the needs of a representation of dialogue context, with a higher generality than the "normative" notion suggested by Gauker. I will discuss some well known claims in the literature about communication and context, and I will suggest giving a central role to the notion of contract or semantic bargaining and to the normative constraints of indexicals and anaphora.
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  13.  2
    Wittgenstein’s Thought Experiments and Relativity Theory.Carlo Penco - 2020 - In A. C. Grayling, Shyam Wuppuluri, Christopher Norris, Nikolay Milkov, Oskari Kuusela, Danièle Moyal-Sharrock, Beth Savickey, Jonathan Beale, Duncan Pritchard, Annalisa Coliva, Jakub Mácha, David R. Cerbone, Paul Horwich, Michael Nedo, Gregory Landini, Pascal Zambito, Yoshihiro Maruyama, Chon Tejedor, Susan G. Sterrett, Carlo Penco, Susan Edwards-Mckie, Lars Hertzberg, Edward Witherspoon, Michel ter Hark, Paul F. Snowdon, Rupert Read, Nana Last, Ilse Somavilla & Freeman Dyson (eds.), Wittgensteinian : Looking at the World From the Viewpoint of Wittgenstein’s Philosophy. Springer Verlag. pp. 341-362.
    In this paper, I discuss the similarity between Wittgenstein’s use of thought experiments and Relativity Theory. I begin with introducing Wittgenstein’s idea of “thought experiments” and a tentative classification of different kinds of thought experiments in Wittgenstein’s work. Then, after presenting a short recap of some remarks on the analogy between Wittgenstein’s point of view and Einstein’s, I suggest three analogies between the status of Wittgenstein’s mental experiments and Relativity theory: the topics of time dilation, the search for invariants, and (...)
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  14. Frege, Sense and Limited Rationality.Carlo Penco - 2003 - History of Modern Logic 9:53-65.
    In this paper, I will discuss a well-known oscillation in Frege’s conception of sense. My point is only partially concerned with his two different criteria of sense identity, and touches upon a more specific point: what happens if we apply Frege’s intuitive criterion for the difference of thoughts to logically equivalent sentences? I will try to make a schematic argument here that will preempt any endeavor to make Frege more coherent than he really is. In sections A and B, I (...)
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  15. Between Knowing How and Knowing That.Carlo Penco - 2014 - Liber Amicorum Pascal Engel.
    I wonder whether the idea of knowing how as kind of knowing that with a peculiar mode of presentation really helps in the debate between philosophers and scientists.
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  16. What Happened to the Sense of a Concept Word?Carlo Penco - 2013 - ProtoSociology 30:6-28.
    In this paper I shall outline a short history of the ideas concerning sense and reference of a concept-word from Frege to model theoretic semantics. I claim that, contrary to what is normally supposed, a procedural view of sense may be compatible with model theoretic semantics, especially in dealing with problems at the boundary between semantics and pragmatics. A first paragraph on the paradox of the concept horse will clarify the attitude concerning the history of ideas that I assume in (...)
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  17.  62
    Local Holism.Carlo Penco - 2001 - In P. Bouquet (ed.), Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence. Kluwer Academic Publishers. pp. 290--303.
    This paper is devoted to discuss a general tendency in contextualism which is known as "radical contextualism". In the first part I state the well known paradox of semantic holism, as discussed in philosophy of language: if meaning is holistic there is no possibility to share any meaning. In the second part I present the different answers to this paradox, from atomism to different forms of holism. In the third part I give a criticism of the traditional interpretation of Wittgenstein (...)
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  18. Dummett and the Game of Tarots.Carlo Penco - 2013 - Teorema: International Journal of Philosophy (1):141-155.
    In this paper I give a reconstruction of Dummett’s main arguments concerning the theory of the occult origin of the Tarot, and discuss the reasons behind the success of the Tarot pack – in particular the Major Arcana – in the history of card games. I also provide some indication of the links between Dummett’s interest in the history of card games and aspects of his philosophical background. As I am not an expert on card games, this paper is mainly (...)
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  19. Three Alternatives on Context.Carlo Penco - 2000 - In Diego Marconi (ed.), Knowledge and Meaning. Mercurio.
    Context is a concept used by philosophers and scientists with many different definitions. Since Dummett we speak of "context principle" in Frege and Wittgenstein: "an expression has a meaning only in the context of a sentence". The context principle finds an extension in some of Wittgenstein's ideas, especially in his famous passage where he says that "to understand a sentence is to understand a language". Given that Wittgenstein believes that "the" language does not exist but only language games exist, we (...)
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  20.  81
    Wittgenstein, Locality and Rules.Carlo Penco - 2004 - In Annalisa Coliva & Eva Picardi (eds.), Wittgenstein Today. Il Poligrafo. pp. 249--74.
    This paper tries to give some substance to local holism, a picture that seems to fit Wittgenstein’s analysis of the working of language. In the first part I state the well-known paradox of semantic holism, as discussed in philosophy of language: if meaning is holistic there is no possibility to share any meaning. In the second part I present the different answers to this paradox, from atomism to different forms of holism. In the third part I give a criticism of (...)
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  21.  21
    Holism in Artificial Intelligence?Carlo Penco - 1999 - In Maria Luisa Dalla Chiara (ed.), Language, Quantum, Music. pp. 37--48.
    [This is a larger version of the published article] In the discussion on semantic holism it has been claimed that A.I. is almost entirely holistic. In this paper I show that some of the main lines of research in symbolic artificial intelligence are not holistic; I will consider three classical cases: toy words, frames and contextual reasoning. I claim that these examples from A.I. can be interpreted as implementing molecularist intuitions about language. Eventually I suggest that some assumptions behind the (...)
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  22. Holism, Strawberries, and Hair Dryers.Carlo Penco - 2002 - Topoi 21 (1-2):47-54.
    The paper "Does Epistemological Holism lead to Meaning – Holism" (Cozzo, 2002) touches one of the main problems of a molecularist theory of meaning: how to restrict the class of inferences connected with a word, in order to define the sense of the word. I will discuss the starting point of this approach, mainly the pre-theoretical criterion against meaning holism: meaning holism, following a well-known argument by Dummett, reduces communication to a mystery. However there is a strong background assumption of (...)
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  23.  91
    Updating the Turing Test. Wittgenstein, Turing and Symbol Manipulation.Carlo Penco - 2012 - Open Journal of Philosophy 2 (3):189-194.
  24.  92
    Dummett and Wittgenstein's Philosophy of Mathematics.Carlo Penco - 1994 - In Brian McGuiness & Gianluigi Oliveri (eds.), The Philosophy of Michael Dummett. Kluwer Academic Publishers. pp. 113--136.
  25. Rational Procedures.Carlo Penco - 2009 - The Dialogue - Yearbook of Philosophical Hermenutics, Lit Verlag. Berlin, 2009 4 (1):137-153.
    In this paper I shall deal with the role of "understanding a thought" in the debate on the definition of the content of an assertion. I shall present a well known tension in Frege's writings, between a cognitive and semantic notion of sense. This tension is at the source of some of the major contemporary discussions, mainly because of the negative influence of Wittgenstein's Tractatus, which did not give in-depth consideration to the tension found in Frege. However many contemporary authors, (...)
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  26. Idiolect and Context.Carlo Penco - 2007 - In L. E. Hahn (ed.), Library of Living Philosphers: the Philosophy of Michael Dummett. Open Court.
    In this paper I will compare some of Dummett and Davidson’s claims on the problem of communication and idiolects: how can we understand each other if we use different idiolects? First I define the problem, giving the alternative theses of (I) the priority of language over idiolects and (II) the priority of idiolects over language. I then present Dummett's claims supporting (I) and Davidson's claims supporting (II).
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  27.  30
    Explaining the Mental: Naturalist and Non-Naturalist Approaches to Mental Acts and Processes.Carlo Penco, Michael Beaney & Massimiliano Vignolo (eds.) - 2007 - Cambridge Scholars Press.
  28.  39
    Wittgenstein, Olismo Ed Esperimenti Mentali.Carlo Penco - 2008 - Paradigmi 2.
    In questo articolo parlo della influenza di Einstein su Wittgenstein a partire da alcuni problemi che si pongono all’olismo. L’olismo è stato spesso collegato a Wittgenstein, almeno in forma di “olismo locale”. L’olismo è però soggetto a due tipi di paradossi: il paradosso della comunicazione per l’olismo semantico e il paradosso del relativismo concettuale per l’olismo epistemologico. Dopo aver presentato brevemente i due paradossi, confronto le risposte di Davidson, in difesa dell’olismo, con quelle di Wittgenstein (o di tipo wittgensteiniano). Da (...)
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  29. Ragione E Pratica Sociale: L'inferenzialismo di Robert Brandom.Carlo Penco - 1999 - Rivista di Filosofia (3):467-486.
    Insieme a John McDowell, Robert Brandom è uno dei filosofi emergenti della reazione al naturalismo filosofico; seguace Wilfrid Sellars, è l'autore americano che più si avvicina al dialogo con la filosofia continentale e propone una rivalutazione di Kant e Hegel nella filosofia analitica. Già allievo di Richard Rorty, Brandom è diventuo famoso con la pubblicazione di Making it Explicit. Questo ponderoso volume di 900 pagine non ha avuto però ancora una sufficiente attenzione nel dibattito filosofico italiano (a parte alcuni inteventi (...)
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  30. Proceedings of the Workshop on Bob Brandom's Recent Philosophy of Language: Towards an Analytic Pragmatism Genoa, Italy, April 19-23, 2009.Cristina Amoretti, Federico Pitto & Carlo Penco (eds.) - 2009 - University of Genoa, Department of Philosophy.
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  31.  27
    Towards and Analytic Pragmatism.Cristina Amoretti, Carlo Penco & Federico Pitto (eds.) - 2009 - CEUR WS.
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  32.  13
    Meaning and Context-Sensitivity.Carlo Penco - 2020 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Meaning and Context-Sensitivity Truth-conditional semantics explains meaning in terms of truth-conditions. The meaning of a sentence is given by the conditions that must obtain in order for the sentence to be true. The meaning of a word is given by its contribution to the truth-conditions of the sentences in which it occurs. What a speaker … Continue reading Meaning and Context-Sensitivity →.
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  33.  7
    Discussione su "Lexical Competence" di Diego Marconi.Roberto Casati, Carlo Penco & Timothy Williamson - 1998 - Iride: Filosofia e Discussione Pubblica 11 (2):389-402.
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  34.  18
    Propositional Attitudes Towards Presuppositions.Filippo Domaneschi, Elena Carrea, Alberto Greco & Carlo Penco - 2014 - Pragmatics and Cognition 22 (3):291-308.
    According to the Common Ground account proposed by Stalnaker, speakers involved in a verbal interaction have different propositional attitudes towards presuppositions. In this paper we propose an experimental study aimed at estimating the psychological plausibility of the Stalnakerian model. In particular, the goal of our experiment is to evaluate variations in accepting as appropriate a sentence that triggers a presupposition, where different attitudes are taken towards the presupposition required. The study conducted suggests that if a speaker has the attitude of (...)
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  35.  25
    Discussione Su "Making It Explicit" di Robert Brandom.Piergiorgio Donatelli, Paolo Leonardi & Carlo Penco - 1999 - Iride: Filosofia e Discussione Pubblica 12 (1):179-196.
  36.  38
    Wittgensteinian : Looking at the World From the Viewpoint of Wittgenstein’s Philosophy.A. C. Grayling, Shyam Wuppuluri, Christopher Norris, Nikolay Milkov, Oskari Kuusela, Danièle Moyal-Sharrock, Beth Savickey, Jonathan Beale, Duncan Pritchard, Annalisa Coliva, Jakub Mácha, David R. Cerbone, Paul Horwich, Michael Nedo, Gregory Landini, Pascal Zambito, Yoshihiro Maruyama, Chon Tejedor, Susan G. Sterrett, Carlo Penco, Susan Edwards-Mckie, Lars Hertzberg, Edward Witherspoon, Michel ter Hark, Paul F. Snowdon, Rupert Read, Nana Last, Ilse Somavilla & Freeman Dyson (eds.) - 2020 - Springer Verlag.
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  37.  22
    Kenny's Wrong Formula.Antonio Negro & Carlo Penco - 2017 - Philosophical Investigations 40 (2):170-172.
    Kenny’s book on Wittgenstein has been studied by hundreds of students. What happens when a student comes to the lecturer and says that Kenny’s formula for the number of truth-functions is wrong? You read the 2006 revised edition of the book and realise that the student is right and are ashamed at not having pointed this out to the class. Then you try to focus on which misunderstandings may lie behind the wrong formula. This is what we are trying to (...)
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  38.  47
    Assertion and Inference.Carlo Penco - 2009 - In Cristina Amoretti, Carlo Penco & Federico Pitto (eds.), Towards and Analytic Pragmatism. CEUR WS.
    A very short introductory tutorial to Brandom's idea of assertion.
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  39.  79
    Between Saying and Doing: Towards an Analytic Pragmatism – by Robert B. Brandom.Carlo Penco - 2009 - Theoria 75 (4):366-369.
  40.  54
    Brandom's Solution of Kripke's Puzzle.Carlo Penco - 1998 - [Papers on Line - Teaching Material].
    Brandom's "solution" of Kripke's puzzle in Making it Explicit [573-583] is to be read on the background of four main ideas, plus his general concern on inferential role semantics. I will give some hints about these basic presuppositions, because, once they have been accepted, Kripke's puzzle seems to have no more appeal (at least from Brandom's point of view). If already acquainted with Brandom's general ideas, you may skip part I and go directly to part II.
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  41.  12
    Competenza E Competenze.Carlo Penco - 1998 - Iride: Filosofia e Discussione Pubblica:329-397.
    Lexical Competence si presenta come una analisi dei diversi aspetti del del concetto di competenza semantica, con contributi originali sull'aspetto referenziale e sui problemi al margine tra filosofia e intelligenza artificiale. La pacata analisi del concetto di competenza lessicale porta a criticare tesi filosofiche sostanziali: le teorie oggettivistiche del significato alla Putnam tendono a ipostatizzare le norme semantiche, e le teorie naturaliste alla Chomsky tendono a dare poco o nessuno spazio agli aspetti normativi del linguaggio. Marconi cerca una terza via (...)
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  42.  23
    Contexts in Philosophy: Pragmatic Competence as Filter.Carlo Penco - 2018 - Modeling and Using Context 2 (1):1-19.
    This programmatic paper is an attempt to connect some worries in the philosophy of language with some traditional views in artificial intelligence. After a short introduction to the notion of context in philosophy (§1), starting from the inventor of mathematical logic, Gottlob Frege, I list three debates in the philosophy of language where the solution is strongly undecided: §2 treats the debate between holism and molecularism; §3 describes the debate on the boundaries between semantics and pragmatics; §4 hints at a (...)
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  43.  43
    Competenza pragmatica come filtro.Carlo Penco - 2007 - Rivista di Estetica 47 (34):213-231.
    In questo lavoro tratto del problema del rapporto tra semantica e pragmatica, e in particolare cerco di dare una visione generale di cosa si dovrebbe intendere per "competenza pragmatica". Assumo una visione olistica del significato, perché mi permette di mostrare come, anche con una posizione radicale di questo genere, possiamo trovare modi per spiegare la comunicazione e salvare la composizionalità. Il modo per spiegare la comunicazione e salvare la composizionalità passa attraverso la dimensione pragmatica, intesa come il modo di filtrare (...)
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  44.  31
    Etica E Giustificazione: Wittgenstein E l'Influenza di Moore.Carlo Penco - 2006 - In R. M. Carcaterra (ed.), Le ragioni del conoscere e dell'agire. Scritti in onore di Rosaria Egidi,.
    Nel febbraio 1912 Wittgenstein venne ammesso al Trinity College con Russell come supervisor, e iniziò a seguire le lezioni di Moore. E’ probabile che leggesse il libretto di Moore, Ethics, pubblicato al suo arrivo a Cambridge, o che ritrovasse nelle lezioni di Moore alcune delle suggestioni presenti nel libro. Ma dopo il Tractatus Wittgenstein dedicò poco spazio alle riflessioni sull’etica e quel poco in un periodo ristretto di tempo, agli inizi degli anni ‘30, dalla Conferenza sull’etica2 alle lezioni del ’32-33. (...)
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  45.  29
    Expressing the Background.Carlo Penco - 1997 - Icelandic Philosophical Association (talks).
    Is deduction of use in application to our everyday problems? Aristotle said that in practical matters we cannot use a strictly deductive attitude: "we must be content...in speaking about things which are only for the most part true, with premises of the same kind, to reach conclusions that are no better" (Nic.Eth.I,4 - my underlining). We may content ourselves with conclusions which - according to the usual views - are not true; but what happens when we realize that such conclusions (...)
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  46. Frege.Carlo Penco - 2010 - Carocci.
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  47.  43
    Filosofia Del Linguaggio.Carlo Penco - 1989 - In [introductory work].
    - la prima parte dà una presentazione sommaria dei principali paradigmi di filosofia del linguaggio, mostrando alcune connessioni tra i principali autori di riferimento. Dovrebbe contenere il minimo indispensabile per avere una panoramica delle tematiche della filosofia del linguaggio e addentrarsi negli argomenti in modo più approfondito. La conoscenza dei contenuti di questa parte è un prerequisito per l’esame.
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  48.  12
    Frege e il linguaggio come azione.Carlo Penco - 1992 - Idee 20:53-68.
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  49. Indexicals and Essential Demonstrations.Carlo Penco - 2021 - Semiotica 2021 (240):261-284.
    In this paper, I discuss some of Maximilian de Gaynesford’s arguments regarding indexicals. Although I agree with his treatment of the first singular personal pronoun as a prototype of demonstrative expressions, I challenge his refusal to treat indexicals as complex demonstratives. To offer an alternative to this refusal I try to develop a common ground from different theories that consider indexicals as linguistic constructions that embed a nonlinguistic element, following an original idea in Frege’s latest writings. These views form the (...)
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  50. Intuition in Mathematics? Wittgenstein's Remarks.Carlo Penco - 1981 - Epistemologia 4 (1):77.