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ProtoSociology

Volume 10, 1997

Cognitive Semantics I

Peter Ludlow
Pages 191-196
DOI: 10.5840/protosociology1997108

Semantics, Tense, and Time
a Note on Tenseless Truth-Conditions for Token-Reflexive Tensed Sentences

According to a number of authors it is possible to give tenseless (B-series) truth conditions for tensed sentences by utilizing token indexicals in something like the following fashion. (1a) An utterance u of 'Past S' is true iff at some time earlier than u, S is true (1b) An utterance u of 'Pres S' is true iff at some time overlapping u, S is true This strategy has been challenged on the grounds that it will break down in cases like (2). (2) There was no spoken language A number of strategies have been attempted to circumvent this difficult, including the introduction of possible utterances, etc. In this paper I argue that such moves are unnecessary — that the problem turns on scope interactions with hidden modals in the theorems of the T-theory.