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Croatian Journal of Philosophy

Volume 17, Issue 3, 2017
On Stephen Neale’s manuscript "Silent Reference"

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Displaying: 1-10 of 12 documents


introduction
1. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 17 > Issue: 3
Dunja Jutronić, On Stephen Neale’s manuscript Silent Reference
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on stephen neale’s manuscript silent reference
2. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 17 > Issue: 3
Stephen Schiffer, Gricean Semantics and Vague Speaker-Meaning
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Presentations of Gricean semantics, including Stephen Neale’s in “Silent Reference,” totally ignore vagueness, even though virtually every utterance is vague. I ask how Gricean semantics might be adjusted to accommodate vague speaker-meaning. My answer is that it can’t accommodate it: the Gricean program collapses in the face of vague speaker-meaning. The Gricean might, however, find some solace in knowing that every other extant meta-semantic and semantic program is in the same boat.
3. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 17 > Issue: 3
Daniel W. Harris, Speaker Reference and Cognitive Architecture
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Philosophers of language inspired by Grice have long sought to show how facts about reference boil down to facts about speakers’ communicative intentions. I focus on a recent attempt by Stephen Neale (2016), who argues that referring with an expression requires having a special kind of communicative intention—one that involves representing an occurrence of the expression as standing in some particular relation to its referent. Neale raises a problem for this account: because some referring expressions are unpronounced, most language users don’t realize they exist, and so seemingly don’t have intentions about them. Neale suggests that we might solve this problem by supposing that speakers have nonconscious or “tacit” intentions. I argue that this solution can’t work by arguing that our representations of unpronounced bits of language all occur within a modular component of the mind, and so we can’t have intentions about them. From this line of thought, I draw several conclusions. (i) The semantic value of a referring expression is not its referent, but rather a piece of partial and defeasible evidence about what a speaker refers to when using it literally. (ii) There is no interesting sense in which speakers refer with expressions; referring expressions are used to give evidence about the sort of singular proposition one intends to communicate. (iii) The semantics–pragmatics interface is coincident with the interface between the language module and central cognition.
4. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 17 > Issue: 3
Elmar Unnsteinsson, Saying without Knowing What or How
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In response to Stephen Neale (2016), I argue that aphonic expressions, such as PRO, are intentionally uttered by normal speakers of natural language, either by acts of omitting to say something explicitly, or by acts of giving phonetic realization to aphonics. I argue, also, that Gricean intention-based semantics should seek divorce from Cartesian assumptions of transparent access to propositional attitudes and, consequently, that Stephen Schiffer’s so-called meaning-intention problem is not powerful enough to banish alleged cases of over-intellectualization in contemporary philosophy of language and mind.
5. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 17 > Issue: 3
Jesse Rappaport, Is There a Meaning-Intention Problem?
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Stephen Schiffer introduced the “meaning-intention problem” as an argument against certain semantic analyses that invoke hidden indexical expressions. According to the argument, such analyses are incompatible with a Gricean view of speaker’s meaning, for they require speakers to refer to things about which they are ignorant, such as modes of presentation. Stephen Neale argues that a complementary problem arises due to the fact that speakers may also be ignorant of the very existence of such aphonic expressions. In this paper, I attempt to articulate the assumptions that support the meaning-intention problem. I argue that these assumptions are incompatible with some basic linguistic data. For instance, a speaker could have used a sentence like “The book weighs five pounds” to mean that the book weighs five pounds on Earth, even before anyone knew that weight was a relativized property. The existence of such “extrinsic parameters” undermines the force of the meaning-intention problem. However, since the meaning-intention problem arises naturally from a Gricean view of speaker’s meaning and speaker’s reference, the failure of the argument raises problems for the Gricean. I argue that the analysis of referring-with offered by Schiffer, and defended by Neale, is defective.
articles
6. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 17 > Issue: 3
Erich Rast, Value Disagreement and Two Aspects of Meaning
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The problem of value disagreement and contextualist, relativist and metalinguistic attempts of solving it are laid out. Although the metalinguistic account seems to be on the right track, it is argued that it does not sufficiently explain why and how disagreements about the meaning of evaluative terms are based on and can be decided by appeal to existing social practices. As a remedy, it is argued that original suggestions from Putnam’s “The Meaning of ‘Meaning’” ought to be taken seriously. The resulting dual aspect theory of meaning can explain value disagreement in much the same way as it deals with disagreement about general terms. However, the account goes beyond Putnam’s by not just defending a version of social externalism, but also defending the thesis that the truth conditional meaning of many evaluative terms is not fixed by experts either and instead constantly contested as part of a normal function of language.
7. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 17 > Issue: 3
Mark Steen, Temporally Restricted Composition
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I develop and defend a novel answer to Peter van Inwagen’s ‘Special Composition Question,’ (SCQ) namely, under what conditions do some things compose and object? My answer is that things will compose an object when and only when they exist simultaneously relative to a reference frame (I call this ‘Temporally Restricted Composition’ or TREC). I then show how this view wards off objections given to ‘Unrestricted Mereology’ (UM). TREC, unlike other theories of Restricted Composition, does not fall prey to worries about vagueness, anthropocentrism, or arbitrariness. TREC also has advantages over all the other answers to the SCQ. TREC is an account an A-theorist anti-Eternalist who wants an unrestricted mereology should accept. I also engage in some conceptual hygiene by showing how UM, as it should be used, should not, in itself, entail or contain a commitment to either Eternalism or Four-Dimensionalism.
book discussion
8. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 17 > Issue: 3
Joško Žanić, The Power of Language: Discussion of Charles Taylor’s The Language Animal: The Full Shape of the Human Linguistic Capacity
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The paper is a discussion of Charles Taylor’s recent book The Language Animal. The criticism of Taylor’s view of language clusters around two main themes: first, that he seems to “mysterianize” language somewhat, whereas the topics he addresses can be adequately dealt with within standard formal approaches in the philosophy of language and cognitive science; second, that his focus on language is in many cases misplaced, and should indeed be replaced with a focus on human conceptual structure, which language only fragmentarily expresses.
book reviews
9. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 17 > Issue: 3
Nenad Miščević, Subjectivity and Perspective in Truth-Theoretic Semantics
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10. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 17 > Issue: 3
Iris Vidmar, The Possibility of Culture: Pleasure and Moral Development in Kant’s Aesthetics
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