In Context and Content Robert Stalnaker develops a philosophical picture of the nature of speech and thought and the relations between them. Two themes in particular run through these collected essays: the role that the context in which speech takes place plays in accounting for the way language is used to express thought, and the role of the external environment in determining the contents of our thoughts. Stalnaker argues against the widespread assumption of the priority of linguistic over (...) mental representation, which he suggests has had a distorting influence on our understanding. The first part of the book develops a framework for representing contexts and the way they interact with the interpretation of what is said in them. This framework is used to help to explain a range of linguistic phenomena concerning presupposition and assertion, conditional statements, the attribution of beliefs, and the use of names, descriptions, and pronouns to refer. Stalnaker then draws out the conception of thought and its content that is implicit in this framework. He defends externalism about thought--the assumption that our thoughts have the contents they have in virtue of the way we are situated in the world--and explores the role of linguistic action and linguistic structure in determining the contents of our thoughts. Context and Content offers philosophers and cognitive scientists a summation of Stalnaker's important and influential work in this area. His new introduction to the volume gives an overview of this work and offers a convenient way in for those who are new to it. The Oxford Cognitive Science series is a new forum for the best contemporary work in this flourishing field, where various disciplines--cognitive psychology, philosophy, linguistics, cognitive neuroscience, and computational theory--join forces in the investigation of thought, awareness, understanding, and associated workings of the mind. Each book constitutes an original contribution to its subject, but will be accessible beyond the ranks of specialists, so as to reach a broad interdisciplinary readership. The series will be carefully shaped and steered with the aim of representing the most important developments in the field and bringing together its constituent disciplines. (shrink)
This paper argues that truth values of sentences containing predicates of “personal taste” such as fun or tasty must be relativized to individuals. This relativization is of truth value only, and does not involve a relativization of semantic content: If you say roller coasters are fun, and I say they are not, I am negating the same content which you assert, and directly contradicting you. Nonetheless, both our utterances can be true (relative to their separate contexts). A formal semantic theory (...) is presented which gives this result by introducing an individual index, analogous to the world and time indices commonly used, and by treating the pragmatic context as supplying a particular value for this index. The context supplies this value in the derivation of truth values from content, not in the derivation of content from character. Predicates of personal taste therefore display a kind of contextual variation in interpretation which is unlike the familiar variation exhibited by pronouns and other indexicals. (shrink)
In this paper, I defend the thesis that alleffects of extra-linguistic context on thetruth-conditions of an assertion are traceable toelements in the actual syntactic structure of thesentence uttered. In the first section, I develop thethesis in detail, and discuss its implications for therelation between semantics and pragmatics. The nexttwo sections are devoted to apparent counterexamples.In the second section, I argue that there are noconvincing examples of true non-sentential assertions.In the third section, I argue that there are noconvincing examples of (...) what John Perry has called`unarticulated constituents''. I conclude by drawingsome consequences of my arguments for appeals tocontext-dependence in the resolution of problems inepistemology and philosophical logic. (shrink)
Robert Stalnaker explores the contexts in which speech takes place, the ways we represent them, and the roles they play in explaining the interpretation and dynamics of speech. His central thesis is the autonomy of pragmatics: the independence of theory about structure and function of discourse from theory about mechanisms serving those functions.
The purpose of this study was to assess the relationships among ethical context, organizational commitment, and person-organization fit using a sample of 304 young working adults. Results indicated that corporate ethical values signifying different cultural aspects of an ethical context were positively related to both organizational commitment and person-organization fit. Organizational commitment was also positively related to person-organization fit. The findings suggest that the development and promotion of an ethical context might enhance employees' workplace experiences, and companies (...) should consider adopting ethical policies that support principled conduct, punish unethical actions, and increase individual perceptions of an ethical company environment. (shrink)
Recently, philosophers have offered compelling reasons to think that demonstratives are best represented as variables, sensitive not to the context of utterance, but to a variable assignment. Variablists typically explain familiar intuitions about demonstratives—intuitions that suggest that what is said by way of a demonstrative sentence varies systematically over contexts—by claiming that contexts initialize a particular assignment of values to variables. I argue that we do not need to link context and the assignment parameter in this way, and (...) that we would do better not to. (shrink)
Some apparently valid arguments crucially rely on context change. To take a kind of example first discussed by Frege, ‘Tomorrow, it’ll be sunny’ taken on a day seems to entail ‘Today, it’s sunny’ taken on the next day, but the first sentence taken on a day sadly does not seem to entail the second sentence taken on the second next day. Mid-argument context change has not been accounted for by the tradition that has extensively studied the distinctive logical (...) properties of context-dependent languages, for that tradition has focussed on arguments whose premises and conclusions are taken at the same context. I first argue for the desiderability of having a logic that accounts for mid-argument context change and I explain how one can informally understand such context change in a standard framework in which the relation of logical consequence holds among sentences. I then propose a family of simple temporal “intercontextual” logics that adequately model the validity of certain arguments in which the context changes. In particular, such logics validate the apparently valid argument in the Fregean example. The logics lack many traditional structural properties (reflexivity, contraction, commutativity etc.) as a consequence of the logical significance acquired by the sequence structure of premises and conclusions. The logics are however strong enough to capture in the form of logical truths all the valid arguments of both classical logic and Kaplan-style “intracontextual” logic. Finally, I extend the framework by introducing new operations into the object language, such as intercontextual conjunction, disjunction and implication, which, contrary to intracontextual conjunction, disjunction and implication, perfectly match the metalinguistic, intercontextual notions of premise combination, conclusion combination and logical consequence by representing their respective two operands as taken at different contexts. (shrink)
‘In Context’ is aimed at giving contextualization its rightful place in the study of argumentation. First, Frans H. van Eemeren explains the crucial role of context in a reconstructive analysis of argumentative discourse. He distinguishes four levels of contextualization. Second, he situates his approach to context in the field of argumentation studies by comparing it with Walton’s approach. He emphasizes the importance of distinguishing clearly between a normatively motivated theoretical ideal model and empirically-based communicative activity types. Third, (...) van Eemeren concentrates on the ‘macro-level’ of contextualization: contextualization in institutionalized communicative activity types. He makes clear that the macro-context of a communicative activity type can be characterized argumentatively by describing the disctinctive features of the empirical counterparts of the four stages of a critical discussion in the activity type concerned. Fourth, he points out what the consequences of the macrocontextualization of argumentative discourse in a certain communicative activity type are for the strategic maneuvering that may takes place and the identification of fallacies as derailments of strategic maneuvering. Fifth, van Eemeren draws some general conclusions regarding the role of contextualization in the analysis and evaluation of argumentative discourse. (shrink)
According to what I will call a contextualist solution to the sorites paradox, vague terms are context-sensitive, and one can give a convincing dissolution of the sorites paradox in terms of this context-dependency. The reason, according to the contextualist, that precise boundaries for expressions like “heap” or “tall for a basketball player” are so difficult to detect is that when two entities are sufficiently similar (or saliently similar), we tend to shift the interpretation of the vague expression so (...) that if one counts as falling in the extension of the property expressed by that expression, so does the other. As a consequence, when we look for the boundary of the extension of a vague expression in its penumbra, our very looking has the effect of changing the interpretation of the vague expression so that the boundary is not where we are looking. This accounts for the persuasive force of sorites arguments. (shrink)
This paper compares the moral reasoning of 363 auditors from Canada and the United States. We investigate whether national institutional context is associated with differences in auditors'' moral reasoning by examining three components of auditors'' moral decision process: (1) moral development, which describes cognitive moral capability, (2) prescriptive reasoning of how a realistic accounting dilemma ought to be resolved and, (3) deliberative reasoning of how a realistic accounting dilemma will be resolved. Not surprisingly, it appears that institutional factors are (...) more likely to be associated with auditors'' deliberative reasoning than their prescriptive reasoning in both countries. Additionally, our findings suggest that the national institutional context found in the United States, which has a tougher regulatory and more litigious environment, appears to better encourage auditors to deliberate according to what they perceive is "the ideal" judgment as compared to the Canadian context. We then discuss the implications of these findings for regulators and for ethics research. (shrink)
On a traditional view, the semantics of natural language makes essential use of a context parameter, i.e. a set of coordinates that represents the situation of speech. In classical semantic frameworks, this parameter plays two key roles: first, context contributes to determining the content of utterance; second, it is crucial for defining logical consequence. I point out that recent empirical proposals about context shift in natural language (in particular, context-shifting semantics in the style of Anand and (...) Nevins 2004) are incompatible with the traditional view of context. At the same time, there is increasing cross-linguistic support for this brand of context shift. Hence I suggest that context has no place in semantic theory proper. We should revert back to so-called multiple-indexing frameworks that were developed by Montague and others, and relegate context to the postsemantic stage. (shrink)
This paper revisits some foundational questions concerning the abstract representation of a discourse context. The context of a conversation is represented by a body of information that is presumed to be shared by the participants in the conversation – the information that the speaker presupposes a point at which a speech act is interpreted. This notion is designed to represent both the information on which context-dependent speech acts depend, and the situation that speech acts are designed to (...) affect, and so to be a representation of context that is appropriate for explaining the interaction of context and the contents expressed in them. After reviewing the motivating ideas and the outlines of the apparatus, the paper responds to a criticism of the framework, and considers the way it can help to clarify some phenomena concerning pronouns with indefinite antecedents. (shrink)
In February 2012, the Obama White House endorsed a Privacy Bill of Rights, comprising seven principles. The third, “Respect for Context,” is explained as the expectation that “companies will collect, use, and disclose personal data in ways that are consistent with the context in which consumers provide the data.” One can anticipate the contested interpretations of this principle as parties representing diverse interests vie to make theirs the authoritative one. In the paper I will discuss three possibilities and (...) explain why each does not take us far beyond the status quo, which, regulators in the United States, Europe, and beyond have found problematic. I will argue that contextual integrity offers the best way forward for protecting privacy in a world where information increasingly mediates our significant activities and relationships. Although an important goal is to influence policy, this paper aims less to stipulate explicit rules than to present an underlying justificatory, or normative rationale. Along the way, it will review key ideas in the theory of contextual integrity, its differences from existing approaches, and its harmony with basic intuition about information sharing practices and norms. (shrink)
Context Shifting Arguments (CSA) ask us to consider two utterances of an unambiguous, non-vague, non-elliptic sentence S. If the consensus intuition is that what’s said, or expressed or the truth-conditions, and so possibly the truthvalues, of these utterances differ, then CSA concludes S is context sensitive. Consider, for example, simultaneous utterances of ‘I am wearing a hat’, one by Stephen, one by Jason. Intuitively, these utterances can vary in truth-value contingent upon who is speaking the sentence, while holding (...) hat-wearing constant, and so they express distinct propositions and differ in their truth conditions. Since these differences are not the result of ambiguity (lexical or structural), vagueness, conversational implicature, or syntactic ellipsis, we have pretty strong evidence that ‘I am wearing a hat’ is context sensitive. (shrink)
Based on the analysis of narrations in Free Indirect Discourse and the Historical Present, we argue that the grammatical notion of context of speech should be ramified into a Context of Thought and a Context of Utterance. Tense and person depend on the Context of Utterance, while all other indexicals are evaluated with respect to the Context of Thought. Free Indirect Discourse and the Historical Present are analyzed as special combinatorial possibilities that arise when the (...) two contexts are distinct, and exactly one of them is presented as identical to the physical point at which the sentence is articulated. (shrink)
According to contextualist accounts, the truth value of a given knowledge ascription may vary with features of the ascriber's context. As a result, the following may be true: "X doesn't know that P but Y says something true in asserting 'X knows that P'". The contextualist must defend his theory in the light of this unpleasant but inevitable consequence. The best way of doing this is to construe the context sensitivity of knowledge ascriptions not as deriving from an (...) alleged indexicality of the word "know" nor from its vagueness or ambiguity, but rather from a distinct semantic feature of the word "know", namely its unspecificity. (shrink)
The standing tradition in theorizing about meaning, since at least Frege, identifies meaning with propositions, which are, or determine, the truth-conditions of a sentence in a context. But a recent trend has advocated a departure from this tradition: in particular, it has been argued that modal claims do not express standard propositional contents. This non-propositionalism has received different implementations in expressivist semantics and certain kinds of dynamic semantics. They maintain that the key aspect of interpretation of modal claims is (...) the characteristic dynamic effect they have on the context. I argue that pessimism about truth-conditions arises from an overly simplistic picture of content, context and their interaction. While I agree with the critics that an important aspect of modal meaning is the dynamic effect modals have on the context, I argue that they have mischaracterized the nature and the complexity of this effect. A more nuanced account of the interaction between modals and context shows that far from being incompatible with propositional meaning, the dynamic aspect of meaning is precisely what allows us to predict the correct propositional content of an utterance. (shrink)
In this paper, I argue that Contextualist theories of semantics are not undermined by their purported failure to explain the practice of indirect reporting. I adoptCappelen & Lepore's test for context sensitivity to show that the scope of context sensitivity is much broader than Semantic Minimalists are willing to accept. Thefailure of their arguments turns on their insistence that the content of indirect reports is semantically minimal.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between organizational ethical context and the individual ethical decision-making process. In addition, a new statistical approach combining cluster and discriminant analyses was developed to overcome violations of regression assumptions, which are commonly not identified and/or ignored in behavioral and psychological research. Using regressions and this new alternative method, the findings indicated that ethical context does indeed influence the various components of ethical reasoning. However, social desirability was the strongest (...) predictor of ethical decision making, which raises new concerns about how this bias can confound business ethics research. Finally, the findings showed that the alternative method provided more useful and interpretive results, indicating that it has the capacity to influence future empirical work in the field of business ethics, particularly when dealing with data that do not satisfy regression assumptions. The implications and limitations of the study are discussed, and several noteworthy suggestions for future research are provided. (shrink)
We investigate a basic probabilistic dynamic semantics for a fragment containing conditionals, probability operators, modals, and attitude verbs, with the aim of shedding light on the prospects for adding probabilistic structure to models of the conversational common ground.
With mention of Ogden and Richards' The Meaning of Meaning, and drawing on Mailinowski, for an opening example, Dewey argues for the importance of the relationship of interpretation and meaning, to context and and situation of usage or utterance. In this article, Dewey expounds, among other themes, on the the prospect of interpretation of a radically alien language and what this prospect tells us about linguistic meaning.
Contextualism is relativism tamed. Relativism about truth is usually motivated by the idea of no-fault disagreement. Imagine two parties: one (she) says ‘P’; the other (he) says ‘Not P’.1 Apparently, if P then ‘P’ is true and ‘Not P’ false, so she is right and he is wrong; if not P then ‘P’ is false and ‘Not P’ true, so he is right and she is wrong. In both cases, there is an asymmetry between the two parties. Since P or (...) not P (by the law of excluded middle), there is indeed an asymmetry between them, one way or the other. Yet the two parties may strike a neutral observer as on a par, equally intelligent, informed, perceptive and alert. Relativists about truth strive to dissolve the unpleasant asymmetry: ‘”P” is true for her; “Not P” is true for him’. Trouble starts when we ask what the relativists mean by ‘for’ in the construction ‘true for X’. If to call something true ‘for’ X is just to say that X believes that it is true, then the attempted dissolution amounts to this: ‘She believes that “P” is true; he believes that “Not P” is true’. But that is to add no more than that both parties believe that they are right; it does nothing to undermine the argument for an asymmetry between them. Relativists had better mean something else by ‘true for X’. When asked to explain what else they mean, wild relativists bluster incoherently. Contextualists, by contrast, have a clear answer. A sentence is true for X if and only if it is true as uttered by X, true relative to a context in which X is the speaker. Such relativism is tame because the relativity to context in the truth-value of a sentence allows for absoluteness in the truth-value of what the sentence is used to say in a given context. When she says ‘P’, she speaks truly: not just truly for her, but absolutely truly. When he says ‘Not P’, he too speaks truly: not just truly for him, but absolutely truly. The argument for asymmetry 1 assumes that, when she says ‘P’, she speaks truly if and only if P, and when he says ‘Not P’, he speaks truly if and only if not P.. (shrink)
In this paper I criticize the most significant recent examples of the practical knowledge analysis of knowledge-how in the philosophical literature: David Carr [1979, Mind, 88, 394–409; 1981a, American Philosophical Quarterly, 18, 53–61; 1981b, Journal of Philosophy of Education, 15(1), 87–96] and Stanley & Williamson [2001, Journal of Philosophy, 98(8), 411–444]. I stress the importance of know-how in our contemporary understanding of the mind, and offer the beginnings of a treatment of know-how capable of providing insight in to the use (...) of know-how in contemporary cognitive science. Specifically, I claim that Carr’s necessary conditions for know-how fail to capture the distinction he himself draws between ability and knowing-how. Moreover, Carr ties knowing-how to conscious intent, and to an explicit knowledge of procedural rules. I argue that both moves are mistakes, which together render Carr’s theory an inadequate account both of common ascriptions of knowledge-how and of widely accepted ascriptions of knowledge-how within explanations in cognitive science. Finally, I note that Carr’s conditions fail to capture intuitions (heshares) regarding the ascription of know-how to persons lacking ability. I then consider the position advocated by Stanley & Williamson (2001), which seems avoid Carr’s commitments to conscious intent and explicit knowledge while still maintaining that “knowledge-how is simply a species of knowledge-that" (Stanley & Williamson, 2001, p. 411). I argue that Stanley and Williamson’s attempt to frame a reductionist view that avoids consciously occurrent beliefs during exercises of knowledge-how and explicit knowledge of procedural rules is both empirically implausible and explanatorily vacuous. In criticizing these theories I challenge the presuppositions of the most pervasive response to Ryle in the philosophic literature, what might be described as “the received view." I also establish several facts about knowing-how. First, neither conscious intent nor explicit representation (much less conscious representation) of procedural rules are necessary for knowing-how given the theory of cognition current in cognitive science. I argue that the discussed analyses fail to capture the necessary conditions for knowledge-how because know-how requires the instantiation of an ability and of the capacities necessary for exploiting an ability—not conscious awareness of purpose or explicit knowledge of rules. Second, one must understand knowledge-how as task-specific, i.e., as presupposing certain underlying conditions. Conceiving of know-how as task-specific allows one to understand ascriptions of know-how in the absence of ability as counterfactual ascriptions based upon underlying competence. (shrink)
0. Abstract In this paper, I argue that although the behavior of adjectives in context poses a serious challenge to the principle of compositionality of content, in the end such considerations do not defeat the principle. The first two sections are devoted to the precise statement of the challenge; the rest of the paper presents a semantic analysis of a large class of adjectives that provides a satisfactory answer to it. In section 1, I formulate the context thesis, (...) according to which the content of a complex expression depends on the context of its utterance only insofar as the contents of its constituents do. If the context thesis is false, the content of some complex expression is not compositionally determined. In section 2, using an example due to Charles Travis, I construct an objection to the context thesis based on the behavior of the adjective ‘green’. In section 3 and 4, I look at some of the difficulties surrounding the semantics of ‘good’, which provide the motivation for the thesis that most adjectives are contextually incomplete one-place predicates. In section 5, I discuss how ‘green’ and other color adjectives can be treated within such a semantic theory. Since this theory is compatible with the context thesis, the objection against the compositionality of content looses its force. (shrink)
We introduce a “reason-based” framework for explaining and predicting individual choices. It captures the idea that a decision-maker focuses on some but not all properties of the options and chooses an option whose motivationally salient properties he/she most prefers. Reason-based explanations allow us to distinguish between two kinds of context-dependent choice: the motivationally salient properties may (i) vary across choice contexts, and (ii) include not only “intrinsic” properties of the options, but also “context-related” properties. Our framework can accommodate (...) boundedly rational and sophisticatedly rational choice. Since properties can be recombined in new ways, it also offers resources for predicting choices in unobserved contexts. (shrink)
In his seminal paper 'Assertion', Robert Stalnaker distinguishes between the semantic content of a sentence on an occasion of use and the content asserted by an utterance of that sentence on that occasion. While in general the assertoric content of an utterance is simply its semantic content, the mechanisms of conversation sometimes force the two apart. Of special interest in this connection is one of the principles governing assertoric content in the framework, one according to which the asserted content ought (...) to be identical at each world in the context set. In this paper, we present a problem for Stalnaker's meta-semantic framework, by challenging the plausibility of the Uniformity principle. We argue that the interaction of the framework with facts about epistemic accessibility - in particular, failures of epistemic transparency - cause problems for the Uniformity principle and thus for Stalnaker's framework more generally. (shrink)
Color adjectives have played a central role in work on language typology and variation, but there has been relatively little investigation of their meanings by researchers in formal semantics. This is surprising given the fact that color terms have been at the center of debates in the philosophy of language over foundational questions, in particular whether the idea of a compositional, truth-conditional theory of natural language semantics is even coherent. The challenge presented by color terms is articulated in detail in (...) the work of Charles Travis. Travis argues that structurally isomorphic sentences containing color adjectives can shift truth value from context to context depending on how they are used and in the absence of effects of vagueness or ambiguity/polysemy, and concludes that a deterministic mapping from structures to truth conditions is impossible. The goal of this paper is to provide a linguistic perspective on this issue, which we believe defuses Travis’ challenge. We provide empirical arguments that color adjectives are in fact ambiguous between gradable and nongradable interpretations, and that this simple ambiguity, together with independently motivated options concerning scalar dimension within the gradable reading accounts for the Travis facts in a simpler, more constrained, and thus ultimately more successful fashion than recent contextualist analyses such as those in Szabó (Perspectives on semantics, pragmatics and discourse: A festschrift for Ferenc Kiefer, 2001) or Rothschild and Segal (Mind Lang, 2009). (shrink)
This paper argues against relativism, focusing on relativism based on the semantics of predicates of personal taste. It presents and defends a contextualist semantics for these predicates, derived from current work on gradable adjectives. It then considers metasemantic questions about the kinds of contextual parameters this semantics requires. It argues they are not metasemantically different from those in other gradable adjectives, and that contextual parameters of this sort are widespread in natural language. Furthermore, this paper shows that if such parameters (...) are rejected, it leads to an unacceptably rampant form of relativism, that relativizes truth to an open-ended list of parameters. (shrink)
This field survey focused on two constructs that have been developed to represent the ethical context in organizations: ethical climate and ethical culture. We first examined issues of convergence and divergence between these constructs through factor analysis andcorrelational analysis. Results suggested that the two constructs are measuring somewhat different, but strongly related dimensions ofthe ethical context. We then investigated the relationships between the emergent ethical context factors and an ethics-related attitude and behavior for respondents who work in (...) organizations with and withoutethics codes. Regression results indicated that an ethical culture-based dimension was more strongly associated with observedunethical conduct in code organizations while climate-based dimensions were more strongly associated with observed unethical conduct in non-code organizations. Ethical culture and ethical climate-based factors influenced organizational commitment similarly in both types of organizations. Normative implications of the study are discussed, as are implications for future theorizing, research and management practice. (shrink)
In a clinic-wide approach to establish liberal policies, a closed psychiatric ward was planned to be opened. The leaders of the multi-professional team of this ward requested continuous ethics support during the first few months after the transition from their previously closed ward into an open one. During the process of accompanying the team through this ethically sensitive period of institutional change, several variations of ethics consultation were developed: the ‘context-adjusted’ clinical ethics support. Some ethics consultations focused on a (...) retrospective evaluation of a patient case, in other ethics consultations consolidation of a previous case discussion was worked out, and/or reflections on fundamental ethical issues were included. Based on our experiences and the feedback of the team, we consider this context-adjusted clinical ethics support as feasible and effective. (shrink)
This paper defends the view that standards, which are typically social in nature, play a role in determining whether a subject has knowledge. While the argument focuses on standards that pertain to reasoning, I also consider whether there are similar standards for memory and perception.Ultimately, I argue that the standards are context sensitive and, as such, we must view attributions of knowledge as indexical. I exploit similarities between this view and a version of the relevant alternatives reply to skepticism (...) in order to defend this reply against the objection that it is ad hoc. (shrink)
In this article the relevance of a sociocognitive approach to discourse is shown by presenting a new theory of context, defined as subjective participants’ constructs of communicative situations, and made explicit in terms of mental models - context models - in Episodic Memory. Through a ‘contextual analysis’ of a fragment of one of the ‘Iraq’ speeches by Tony Blair in the British House of Commons, it is shown how such context models control and explain many political aspects (...) of interaction that cannot be accounted for in autonomous approaches to text and talk. Context models thus provide an explicit theory of relevance and the situational appropriateness of discourse, and hence also a basis for theories of style. (shrink)
Vector models of language are based on the contextual aspects of words and how they co-occur in text. Truth conditional models focus on the logical aspects of language, the denotations of phrases, and their compositional properties. In the latter approach the denotation of a sentence determines its truth conditions and can be taken to be a truth value, a set of possible worlds, a context change potential, or similar. In this short paper, we develop a vector semantics for language (...) based on the simply typed lambda calculus. Our semantics uses techniques familiar from the truth conditional tradition and is based on a form of dynamic interpretation inspired by Heim's context updates. (shrink)
The processes mediating dynamic and flexible responding to rapidly changing task-environments are not well understood. In the present research we employ a Stroop procedure to clarify the contribution of context-sensitive control processes to online performance. In prior work Stroop interference varied as a function of probe location context, with larger Stroop interference occurring for contexts associated with a high proportion of congruent items [Crump, M. J., Gong, Z., & Milliken, B. . The context-specific proportion congruent stroop effect: (...) location as a contextual cue. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 13, 316–321.] Here, we demonstrate that this effect does not depend on awareness of the context manipulation, but that it can depend on attention to the predictive context dimension, and on the relative salience of the target and predictive context dimensions. We discuss the implications of our results for current theories of cognitive control. (shrink)
Egalitarianism, the view that equality matters, attracts a great deal of attention amongst contemporary political theorists. And yet it has turned out to be surprisingly difficult to provide a fully satisfactory egalitarian theory. The cutting-edge articles in Egalitarianism move the debate forward. They are written by some of the leading political philosophers in the field.
In the spirit of model revision, researchers continue to refine the notion of a learning progression. Despite many advances in learning progressions research, one key design element has eluded scholarly critique, the upper anchor. Drawing on science education research and studies of science, this essay argues for a shift from the predominant model of the upper anchor as the fixed, “most sophisticated” way of thinking toward a more expansive “upper reach” that acknowledges plurality and context-dependence in ways of knowing. (...) Three possible models for context-dependent upper reaches are offered. (shrink)
This introductory article concludes the examination of prototypical argumentative patterns manifesting themselves in communicative activity types in the political, legal and medical domain reported in this special issue of the Journal of Argumentation in Context and an earlier special issue of the journal Argumentation ). First, the results pertaining to the use of pragmatic argumentation in the main argumentation of prototypical argumentative patterns in the various domains are described that were reported in the latter issue. Next, the results are (...) described which are reported in this issue of JAIC; they pertain to prototypical argumentative patterns in the various domains that come into being as a result of the employment of an argument scheme in the main argumentation that is perfectly suited for being used in a certain communicative activity type in a specific domain. In the following section an overview is provided of the most conspicuous differences in the prototypical argumentative patterns between the various communicative domains caused by the institutional preconditions for strategic maneuvering in the communicative activity types that were examined. Finally, some general conclusions are discussed. (shrink)
Stewart Shapiro's ambition in Vagueness in Context is to develop a comprehensive account of the meaning, function, and logic of vague terms in an idealized version of a natural language like English. It is a commonplace that the extensions of vague terms vary according to their context: a person can be tall with respect to male accountants and not tall (even short) with respect to professional basketball players. The key feature of Shapiro's account is that the extensions of (...) vague terms also vary in the course of conversations and that, in some cases, a competent speaker can go either way without sinning against the meaning of the words or the non-linguistic facts. As Shapiro sees it, vagueness is a linguistic phenomenon, due to the kinds of languages that humans speak; but vagueness is also due to the world we find ourselves in, as we try to communicate features of it to each other. (shrink)