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International Journal of Applied Philosophy

Volume 33, Issue 2, Fall 2019

James Stacey Taylor
Pages 243-257

Satz and Semiotics
Brennan and Jaworski’s Misplaced Criticisms

Jason Brennan and Peter M. Jaworski have recently developed an argument against semiotic objections to markets. They argue that all such semiotic arguments are unsound because they fail to recognize that the meaning of market transactions is a contingent socially-constructed fact. They attribute this type of argument to Debra Satz. This paper argues both that Brennan and Jaworski are mistaken to attribute this particular semiotic objection to Satz and that they are mistaken to attribute to her a semiotic objection of this type. It then argues that Brennan and Jaworski have fundamentally misunderstood the nature of Satz’s project. It concludes by defending Satz against Brennan and Jaworski’s charge that one of her criticisms of markets is based on an equivocation.

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