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Emma Borg [62]Emma Gabriel Nelson Borg [2]
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Emma Borg
University of Reading
  1. Minimal Semantics.Emma Borg - 2004 - Oxford University Press.
    Minimal Semantics asks what a theory of literal linguistic meaning is for - if you were to be given a working theory of meaning for a language right now, what would you be able to do with it? Emma Borg sets out to defend a formal approach to semantic theorising from a relatively new type of opponent - advocates of what she call 'dual pragmatics'. According to dual pragmatists, rich pragmatic processes play two distinct roles in linguistic comprehension: as well (...)
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  2.  39
    Pursuing Meaning.Emma Borg - 2012 - Oxford University Press.
    Emma Borg examines the relation between semantics and pragmatics, and assesses recent answers to fundamental questions of how and where to draw the divide between the two. She argues for a minimal account of the interrelation between them--a 'minimal semantics'--which holds that only rule-governed appeals to context can influence semantic content.
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  3.  76
    Explanatory Roles for Minimal Content.Emma Borg - 2019 - Noûs 53 (3):513-539.
    A standard objection to so-called ‘minimal semantics’ is that minimal contents are explanatorily redundant as they play no role in an adequate account of linguistic communication. This paper argues that this standard objection is mistaken. Furthermore, I argue that seeing why the objection is mistaken sheds light both on how we should draw the classic Gricean distinction between saying and implicating, and how we should think about the key philosophical notion of assertion. Specifically, it reveals that these ideas are best (...)
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  4.  71
    Is the Folk Concept of Pain Polyeidic?Emma Borg, Richard Harrison, James Stazicker & Tim Salomons - 2020 - Mind and Language 35 (1):29-47.
    Philosophers often assume that folk hold pain to be a mental state – to be in pain is to have a certain kind of feeling – and they think this state exhibits the classic Cartesian characteristics of privacy, subjectivity, and incorrigibility. However folk also assign pains bodily locations: unlike most other mental states, pains are held to exist in arms, feet, etc. This has led some to talk of the ‘paradox of pain’, whereby the folk notion of pain is inherently (...)
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  5. If Mirror Neurons Are the Answer, What Was the Question?Emma Borg - 2007 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 14 (8):5-19.
    Mirror neurons are neurons which fire in two distinct conditions: (i) when an agent performs a specific action, like a precision grasp of an object using fingers, and (ii) when an agent observes that action performed by another. Some theorists have suggested that the existence of such neurons may lend support to the simulation approach to mindreading (e.g. Gallese and Goldman, 1998, 'Mirror neurons and the simulation theory of mind reading'). In this note I critically examine this suggestion, in both (...)
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  6. Minimalism Versus Contextualism in Semantics.Emma Borg - 2007 - In Gerhard Preyer & Georg Peter (eds.), Context-Sensitivity and Semantic Minimalism: New Essays on Semantics and Pragmatics. Oxford University Press.
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  7. Exploding Explicatures.Emma Borg - unknown
    ‘Pragmaticist’ positions posit a three-way division within utterance content between: the standing meaning of the sentence, a somewhat pragmatically enhanced meaning which captures what the speaker explicitly conveys, and further indirectly conveyed propositions which the speaker merely implies. Here I re-examine the notion of an explicature, asking how it is defined and what work explicatures are supposed to do. I argue that explicatures get defined in three different ways and that these distinct definitions can and do pull apart. Thus the (...)
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  8. Complex Demonstratives.Emma Borg - 2000 - Philosophical Studies 97 (2):229-249.
    Some demonstrative expressions, those we might term ‘bare demonstratives’, appear without any appended descriptive content (e.g. occurrences of ‘this’ or ‘that’ simpliciter). However, it seems that the majority of demonstrative occurrences do not follow this model. ‘Complex demonstratives’ is the collective term I shall use for phrases formed by adjoining one or more common nouns to a demonstrative expression (e.g. ‘that cat’, ‘this happy man’) and I will call the combination of predicates immediately concatenated with the demonstrative in such phrases (...)
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  9.  31
    Epistemic Virtues Versus Ethical Values in the Financial Services Sector.Emma Borg & Bradford Hooker - 2019 - Journal of Business Ethics 155 (1):17-27.
    In his important recent book, Ethics and the Global Financial Crisis: Why Incompetence is Worse than Greed, Boudewijn de Bruin argues that a key element of the global financial crisis of 2007–2008 was a failure of epistemic virtue. To improve matters, then, de Bruin argues we need to focus on the acquisition and exercise of epistemic virtues, rather than to focus on a more ethical culture for banking per se. Whilst this is an interesting suggestion and it is indeed very (...)
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  10. Pointing at Jack, Talking About Jill: Understanding Deferred Uses of Demonstratives and Pronouns.Emma Borg - 2002 - Mind and Language 17 (5):489–512.
    The aim of this paper is to explore the proper content of a formal semantic theory in two respects: first, clarifying which uses of expressions a formal theory should seek to accommodate, and, second, how much information the theory should contain. I explore these two questions with respect to occurrences of demonstratives and pronouns – the so- called ‘deferred’ uses – which are often classified as non-standard or figurative. I argue that, contrary to initial impressions, they must be treated as (...)
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  11. Saying What You Mean: Unarticulated Constituents and Communication.Emma Gabriel Nelson Borg - 2005 - In Ellipsis and non-sentential speech. Dordrecht: Springer. pp. 237-262.
    In this paper I want to explore the arguments for so-called ‘unarticulated constituents’ (UCs). Unarticulated constituents are supposed to be propositional elements, not presented in the surface form of a sentence, nor explicitly represented at the level of its logical form, yet which must be interpreted in order to grasp the (proper) meaning of that sentence or expression. Thus, for example, we might think that a sentence like ‘It is raining’ must contain a UC picking out the place at which (...)
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  12.  48
    Minimalism and the Content of the Lexicon.Emma Borg - 2010 - In Erich Rast & Luiz Carlos Baptista (eds.), Meaning and Context. Peter Lang. pp. 51--77.
  13.  38
    More Questions for Mirror Neurons.Emma Borg - 2013 - Consciousness and Cognition 22 (3):1122-1131.
    The mirror neuron system is widely held to provide direct access to the motor goals of others. This paper critically investigates this idea, focusing on the so-called ‘intentional worry’. I explore two answers to the intentional worry: first that the worry is premised on too limited an understanding of mirror neuron behaviour, second that the appeal made to mirror neurons can be refined in such a way as to avoid the worry. I argue that the first response requires an account (...)
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  14.  3
    The Meaning of Pain Expressions and Pain Communication.Emma Borg, Nathaniel Hansen & Tim Salomons - 2019 - In Marc A. Russo, Joletta Belton, Bronwyn Lennox Thompson, Smadar Bustan, Marie Crowe, Deb Gillon, Cate McCall, Jennifer Jordan, James E. Eubanks, Michael E. Farrell, Brandon S. Barndt, Chandler L. Bolles, Maria Vanushkina, James W. Atchison, Helena Lööf, Christopher J. Graham, Shona L. Brown, Andrew W. Horne, Laura Whitburn, Lester Jones, Colleen Johnston-Devin, Florin Oprescu, Marion Gray, Sara E. Appleyard, Chris Clarke, Zehra Gok Metin, John Quintner, Melanie Galbraith, Milton Cohen, Emma Borg, Nathaniel Hansen, Tim Salomons & Grant Duncan (eds.), Meanings of Pain: Volume 2: Common Types of Pain and Language. Springer Verlag. pp. 261-282.
    Both patients and clinicians frequently report problems around communicating and assessing pain. Patients express dissatisfaction with their doctors and doctors often find exchanges with chronic pain patients difficult and frustrating. This chapter thus asks how we could improve pain communication and thereby enhance outcomes for chronic pain patients. We argue that improving matters will require a better appreciation of the complex meaning of pain terms and of the variability and flexibility in how individuals think about pain.We start by examining the (...)
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  15.  51
    On Three Theories of Implicature: Default Theory, Relevance and Minimalism.Emma Borg - 2009 - The International Review of Pragmatics 1 (1):63-83.
    Grice's distinction between what is said by a sentence and what is implicated by an utterance of it is both extremely familiar and almost universally accepted. However, in recent literature, the precise account he offered of implicature recovery has been questioned and alternative accounts have emerged. In this paper, I examine three such alternative accounts. My main aim is to show that the two most popular accounts in the current literature still face signifi cant problems. I will then conclude by (...)
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  16. Local Vs. Global Pragmatics.Emma Borg - 2017 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 60 (5):509-516.
    In 'Local pragmatics in a Gricean framework', Mandy Simons argues that, contrary to the received view, it is possible to accommodate local pragmatic effects utilising just the mechanisms for pragmatic reasoning provided by Grice. Although I agree with this overarching claim, this paper argues that we need to be careful in our understanding of 'what is said', and the nature of communicated content in general, when deciding between local and global accounts of pragmatic effects.
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  17.  27
    On Deflationary Accounts of Human Action Understanding.Emma Borg - 2018 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 9 (3):503-522.
    A common deflationary tendency has emerged recently in both philosophical accounts and comparative animal studies concerned with how subjects understand the actions of others. The suggestion emerging from both arenas is that the default mechanism for understanding action involves only a sensitivity to the observable, behavioural features of a situation. This kind of ‘smart behaviour reading’ thus suggests that, typically, predicting or explaining the behaviour of conspecifics does not require seeing the other through the lens of mental state attribution. This (...)
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  18. Semantics and the Place of Psychological Evidence.Emma Borg - 2009 - In Sarah Sawyer (ed.), New Waves in Philosophy of Language. Palgrave-Macmillan.
    Minimal semantics is sometimes characterised as a ‘neo-Gricean’ approach to meaning. This label seems reasonable since a key claim of minimal semantics is that the minimal contents possessed by sentences (akin to Grice’s technical notion of ‘what is said by a sentence’) need not be (and usually are not) what is communicated by a speaker who utters those sentences. However, given an affinity between the two approaches, we might expect that a well-known challenge for the Gricean – namely that their (...)
     
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  19.  87
    Meaning and Context: A Survey of a Contemporary Debate.Emma Borg - 2009 - In Daniel Whiting (ed.), The Later Wittgenstein on Language. Palgrave-Macmillan.
    relevant to the differences between the two speakings, Odile’s words in the first case said what was false, while in the second case they said what was true. Both spoke of the same state of the world, or the same refrigerator in the same condition. So, in the first case, the words said what is false of a refrigerator with but a milk puddle; in the second case they said what is true of such a refrigerator.
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  20.  51
    Mirroring, Mindreading and Smart Behaviour-Reading.Emma Borg - 2017 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 24 (5-6):24-49.
    This paper examines the claim that mirror neuron activity is the mechanism by which we come to know about the action-related intentions of others, i.e. that they are a mechanism for ‘mindreading’. I agree with recent authors who reject this view but nevertheless I argue that mirror neurons may still have a role to play in the ways in which we understand one another. If we adopt a certain kind of pluralism about social cognition then the mirror neuron system could (...)
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  21.  35
    Semantics Without Pragmatics.Emma Borg - 2012 - In Keith Allan & Kasia Jaszczolt (eds.), Cambridge Handbook of Pragmatics. Cambridge University Press. pp. 513--528.
  22.  27
    An Expedition Abroad: Metaphor, Thought, and Reporting.Emma Borg - 2001 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 25 (1):227–248.
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  23. Intention-Based Semantics.Emma Borg - 2006 - In Ernest Lepore & Barry Smith (eds.), The Oxford Handbook to the Philosophy of Language. Oxford University Press. pp. 250--266.
    There is a sense in which it is trivial to say that one accepts intention- (or convention-) based semantics.[2] For if what is meant by this claim is simply that there is an important respect in which words and sentences have meaning (either at all or the particular meanings that they have in any given natural language) due to the fact that they are used, in the way they are, by intentional agents (i.e. speakers), then it seems no one should (...)
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  24.  24
    Minimal Semantics and the Nature of Psychological Evidence.Emma Borg - 2009 - In S. Sawyer (ed.), New Waves in Philosophy of Language. pp. 24-40.
  25. Must a Semantic Minimalist Be a Semantic Internalist?Emma Borg - 2009 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 83 (1):31-51.
    I aim to show that a semantic minimalist need not also be a semantic internalist. §I introduces minimalism and internalism and argues that there is a prima facie case for a minimalist being an internalist. §II sketches some positive arguments for internalism which, if successful, show that a minimalist must be an internalist. §III goes on to reject these arguments and contends that the prima facie case for uniting minimalism and internalism is also not compelling. §IV returns to an objection (...)
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  26. Formal Semantics and Intentional States.Emma Gabriel Nelson Borg - unknown
    My aim in this note is to address the question of how a context of utterance can figure within a formal, specifically truth-conditional, semantic theory. In particular, I want to explore whether a formal semantic theory could, or should, take the intentional states of a speaker to be relevant in determining the literal meaning of an uttered sentence. The answer I’m going to suggest, contrary to the position of many contemporary formal theorists, is negative. The structure of this note is (...)
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  27. Terms and Truth: Reference Direct and Anaphoric.Emma Borg - 2004 - Mind 113 (452):737-740.
  28. Language: A Biological Model.Emma Borg - manuscript
    Ruth Garrett Millikan is one of the most important thinkers in philosophy of mind and language of the current generation. Across a number of seminal books, and in the company of theorists such as Jerry Fodor and Fred Dretske, she has championed a wholly naturalistic, scientific understanding of content, whether of thought or words. Many think that naturalism about meaning has found its most defensible form in her distinctively “teleological” approach, and in Language: A Biological Model she continues the expansion (...)
     
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  29.  2
    On Three Theories of Implicature: Default Theory, Relevance and Minimalism.Emma Borg - 2010 - In K. Petrus (ed.), Meaning and analysis: new essays on Grice. Palgrave studies in pragmatics, language and cognition. pp. 268-287.
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  30.  13
    Must a Semantic Minimalist Be a Semantic Internalist?Emma Borg - unknown
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  31.  98
    Semantic Category and Surface Form.Emma Borg - 1998 - Analysis 58 (3):232-238.
  32.  15
    Reviews. [REVIEW]Paul Noordhof & Emma Borg - 2003 - Mind and Language 18 (5):538–551.
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  33.  55
    Applied Philosophy of Language.Emma Borg - 2020 - Ratio.
    This chapter explores the extent to which philosophy of language can be considered an applied discipline. I consider, first, ways in which sub-sections of philosophy of language may be considered as applied in terms of their subject matter and/or the kinds of questions being addressed. Then, in the second part of the chapter, I turn to consider a more general conception of philosophy of language as applied, which arises from the methodology adopted and the relationship of the discipline to empirical (...)
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  34. Deferred Demonstratives.Emma Borg - 2002 - In Joseph K. Campbell, Michael O'Rourke & David Shier (eds.), Meaning and Truth: Investigations in Philosophical Semantics. Seven Bridges Press. pp. 214--230.
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  35. Exploring Linguistic Liability.Emma Borg & Patrick Joseph Connolly - forthcoming - In Ernest LePore & David Sosa (eds.), Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Language Volume 2.
    There is a well-established social practice whereby we hold one another responsible for the things that we say. Speakers are held liable for the truth of the contents they express and they can be sanctioned and/or held to be unreliable or devious if it turns out what they say is false. In this paper chapter we argue that a better understanding of this fundamental socio-linguistic practice – of ascribing what we will term (following Borg (2019)) ‘linguistic liability’ – helps to (...)
     
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  36.  88
    From Ape Empathy to Human Morality?Emma Borg - unknown
    The idea that empathy provides an important developmental precursor to moral decision making possesses significant conceptual appeal. However, the idea of a necessary, diachronic relation between empathy and morality has been rejected recently. This paper reassesses the strength of the claim that empathy is developmentally necessary for morality and argues that the position remains a live possibility.
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  37.  29
    Finding Meaning.Emma Borg - 2016 - The Linguist 55 (3):22-24.
    Philosophical questions about how language imparts meaning impact on our understanding of everything from machine translation to legal statutes. This article outlines the key theories and explores why experts still can't agree.
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  38. Gary Ostertag, Ed., Definite Descriptions: A Reader Reviewed By.Emma Borg - 1999 - Philosophy in Review 19 (4):272-274.
  39. Gary Ostertag, Ed., Definite Descriptions: A Reader. [REVIEW]Emma Borg - 1999 - Philosophy in Review 19:272-274.
  40.  10
    Introduction.Emma Borg, Sarah A. Fisher, Nat Hansen, Antonio Scarafone & Marat Shardimgaliev - 2020 - Ratio 33 (4):203-205.
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  41.  16
    Must a Semantic Minimalist Be a Semantic Internalist?Emma Borg - 2009 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 83 (1):31-51.
  42.  9
    Language and Context.Emma Borg - forthcoming - In S. Finn, D. Edmonds & N. Warburton (eds.), Women of Ideas.
    Emma Borg discusses the relationship between linguistic meaning and context, and talks about her own view, called 'Semantic Minimalism', in this Philosophy Bites interview, conducted by David Edmonds and Nigel Warburton.
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  43. Meaning and Representation.Emma Borg (ed.) - 2002 - Wiley-Blackwell.
    This prestigious collection of papers discusses the relationship between meaning and representation. Illustrates the differences that exist on the question of how formal representations relate to semantic representations. Includes contributions by Tim Crane, Jerry Fodor, Paul Horwich, John Hyman, Ernie Lepore, Gregory McCulloch and Mark Sainsbury.
     
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  44.  32
    Millikan, Meaning and Minimalism.Emma Borg - 2018 - Theoria 84 (3):242-258.
    Across a series of seminal works, Ruth Millikan has produced a compelling and comprehensive naturalised account of content. With respect to linguistic meaning, her ground breaking approach has been to analyse the meaning of a linguistic term via the function it performs which has been responsible for securing the term’s survival. This way of looking at things has significant repercussions for a number of recent debates in philosophy of language. This paper explores these repercussions through the lens of what is (...)
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  45.  15
    Pragmatic Determinants of What is Said.Emma Borg - 2005 - In K. Brown (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics. 2nd Edition. pp. 737-40.
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  46.  10
    Pain Priors, Polyeidism, and Predictive Power: A Preliminary Investigation Into Individual Differences in Our Ordinary Thought About Pain.Emma Borg, Sarah Fisher, Nat Hansen, Rich Harrison, Tim Salomons, Deepak Ravindran & Harriet Wilkinson - forthcoming - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics.
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  47.  4
    rMichael Devitt and Richard Hanley, Eds. The Blackwell Guide to the Philosophy of Language Reviewed By.Emma Borg - 2007 - Philosophy in Review 27 (1):18-20.
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  48. Referential Intentions, Minimal Semantics and Epistemic Behaviourism.Emma Borg - manuscript
     
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  49.  14
    Reshaping Relations Between the State and the Private Sector Post-COVID-19? Exploring the Social Licence Framework.Emma Borg & Charlotte Unruh - 2021 - Journal of the British Academy 9.
    During the COVID-19 pandemic governments across the globe have provided unparalleled support to private sector firms. As a result, new oversight mechanisms are urgently needed, to enable society to assess and, if necessary, redress, moves by firms which have taken government aid. Many jurisdictions have seen the introduction of ‘piecemeal’ conditionality on different pots of aid. This paper argues that a better response would be to adopt a more unified approach. In particular, the paper explores the social licence framework as (...)
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  50.  60
    Reference Without Referents – R. M. Sainsbury.Emma Borg - 2006 - Ratio 19 (3):370–375.
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