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ProtoSociology

Volume 34, 2017

Meaning and Publicity

Madeleine L. Arseneault
Pages 44-56

Intentionality and Publicity

This paper analyzes the central relation between publicity, linguistic meaning, and the mental in the light of philosophical issues concerning intentionality. The concept of intentionality provides a way to articulate how the determinants of linguistic meaning are both public and private. A strength of this approach is that it accommodates desiderata of explaining compositionality and successful communication that initially seemed at odds with each other. A further benefit is that thinking about the case of linguistic meaning can help re-focus our understanding of the metaphysical status of the intentional objects of our thoughts.

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