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According to the received view of linguistic communication, the primary function of language is to enable speakers to reveal the propositional contents of their thoughts to hearers. Speakers are...

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Bibliographic data

This edition of book was issued in Paperback. The volume of the book is 312 pages (approximate value, can be different depending on the edition).

Original Title
Words Without Meaning
ISBN13
9780262571623
Edition Format
Paperback
Book Language
English
Number of Pages
312 pages
Ebook Format
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Words Without Meaning

Words Without Meaning - book cover

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Book Description

According to the received view of linguistic communication, the primary function of language is to enable speakers to reveal the propositional contents of their thoughts to hearers. Speakers are able to do this because they share with their hearers an understanding of the meanings of words. Christopher Gauker rejects this conception of language, arguing that it rests on an According to the received view of linguistic communication, the primary function of language is to enable speakers to reveal the propositional contents of their thoughts to hearers.

Speakers are able to do this because they share with their hearers an understanding of the meanings of words. Christopher Gauker rejects this conception of language, arguing that it rests on an untenable conception of mental representation and yields a wrong account of the norms of discourse. Gauker's alternative starts with the observation that conversations have goals and that the best way to achieve the goal of a conversation depends on the circumstances under which the conversation takes place.

These goals and circumstances determine a context of utterance quite apart from the attitudes of the interlocutors. The fundamental norms of discourse are formulated in terms of the conditions under which sentences are assertible in such contexts. Words without Meaning contains original solutions to a wide array of outstanding problems in the philosophy of language, including the logic of quantification, the logic of conditionals, the semantic paradoxes, the nature of presupposition and implicature, and the nature and attribution of beliefs.

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