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Croatian Journal of Philosophy

Volume 16, Issue 2, 2016

Esther Romero, Belén Soria
Pages 145-172

Against Lepore and Stone’s Sceptic Account of Metaphorical Meaning

In this paper, we discuss Lepore and Stone’s account of metaphor which is based on three of Davidson’s proposals: (i) the rejection of metaphorical meanings; (ii) the rejection of metaphors as conveying metaphorical propositional contents; and (iii) the defence of analogy as the key mechanism for understanding metaphors. Lepore and Stone defend these proposals because the non-sceptic strategy on metaphorical meanings, characterized in general by the negation of (i) and (ii), fails to come to grips with neither the power of metaphor nor the explanatory resources of traditional pragmatic theories. In this paper we show not only how our non-sceptic account of metaphorical meaning as a variety of ad hoc concept eliminates these diffi culties but also how it can solve two related difficulties that appear in Lepore and Stone’s account. One of them is that Lepore and Stone’s account involves the possibility of interpreting all metaphorical utterances literally (metaphors only have one meaning, the ordinary meaning) as a criterion of metaphorical identification; the other is that their proposal is not suited for explaining how speakers can agree or disagree when they use metaphorical utterances.

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