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  1. Modus Ponens and the Logic of Decision.Nate Charlow - forthcoming - Journal of Philosophical Logic.
    If modus ponens is valid, then you should take up smoking.
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  • Semantic expressivism for epistemic modals.Peter Hawke & Shane Steinert-Threlkeld - 2021 - Linguistics and Philosophy 44 (2):475-511.
    Expressivists about epistemic modals deny that ‘Jane might be late’ canonically serves to express the speaker’s acceptance of a certain propositional content. Instead, they hold that it expresses a lack of acceptance. Prominent expressivists embrace pragmatic expressivism: the doxastic property expressed by a declarative is not helpfully identified with that sentence’s compositional semantic value. Against this, we defend semantic expressivism about epistemic modals: the semantic value of a declarative from this domain is the property of doxastic attitudes it canonically serves (...)
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  • The History and Prehistory of Natural-Language Semantics.Daniel W. Harris - 2017 - In Sandra Lapointe & Christopher Pincock (eds.), Innovations in the History of Analytical Philosophy. Palgrave-MacMillan. pp. 149--194.
    Contemporary natural-language semantics began with the assumption that the meaning of a sentence could be modeled by a single truth condition, or by an entity with a truth-condition. But with the recent explosion of dynamic semantics and pragmatics and of work on non- truth-conditional dimensions of linguistic meaning, we are now in the midst of a shift away from a truth-condition-centric view and toward the idea that a sentence’s meaning must be spelled out in terms of its various roles in (...)
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  • Relativism and the Expressivist Bifurcation.Javier González de Prado Salas - 2018 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 48 (3-4):357-378.
    Traditional expressivists want to preserve a contrast between the representational use of declarative sentences in descriptive domains and the non-representational use of declarative sentences in other areas of discourse. However, expressivists have good reasons to endorse minimalism about representational notions, and minimalism seems to threaten the existence of such a bifurcation. Thus, there are pressures for expressivists to become global anti-representationalists. In this paper I discuss how to reconstruct in non-representationalist terms the sort of bifurcation traditional expressivists were after. My (...)
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  • Expressivism, Meaning, and All That.Sebastian Köhler - 2018 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 48 (3-4):337-356.
    It has recently been suggested that meta-normative expressivism is best seen as a meta-semantic, rather than a semantic view. One strong motivation for this is that expressivism becomes, thereby, compatible with truth-conditional semantics. While this approach is promising, however, many of its details are still unexplored. One issue that still needs to be explored in particular, is what accounts of propositional contents are open to meta-semantic expressivists. This paper makes progress on this issue by developing an expressivist-friendly deflationary account of (...)
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  • Expressivism and Collectives.Michael Ridge - 2018 - Mind 127 (507):833-861.
    Expressivists have a problem with collectives. I initially illustrate the problem against the background of Allan Gibbard’s expressivist theory, where it is especially stark. I then argue that the problem generalizes. Gibbard’s account entails that judgments about what collective agents ought to do are contingency plans for what to do if one is in the circumstances facing the relevant collective agent. So, for example, my judgment that the United States ought not to have invaded Iraq is a contingency plan for (...)
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  • Force and Choice.Sam Carter - forthcoming - Linguistics and Philosophy:1-38.
    Some utterances of imperative clauses have directive force—they impose obligations. Others have permissive force—they extend permissions. The dominant view is that this difference in force is not accompanied by a difference in semantic content. Drawing on data involving free choice items in imperatives, I argue that the dominant view is incorrect.
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  • Interpretative Expressivism: A Theory of Normative Belief.James L. D. Brown - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies:1-20.
    Metaethical expressivism is typically characterised as the view that normative statements express desire-like attitudes instead of beliefs. However, in this paper I argue that expressivists should claim that normative statements express beliefs in normative propositions, and not merely in some deflationary sense but in a theoretically robust sense explicated by a theory of propositional attitudes. I first argue that this can be achieved by combining an interpretationist understanding of belief with a nonfactualist view of normative belief content. This results in (...)
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  • Wanting What’s Not Best.Kyle Blumberg & John Hawthorne - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies:1-22.
    In this paper, we propose a novel account of desire reports, i.e. sentences of the form 'S wants p'. Our theory is partly motivated by Phillips-Brown's (2021) observation that subjects can desire things even if those things aren't best by the subject's lights. That is, being best isn't necessary for being desired. We compare our proposal to existing theories, and show that it provides a neat account of the central phenomenon.
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  • Content in a Dynamic Context.Una Stojnić - 2019 - Noûs 53 (2):394-432.
    The standing tradition in theorizing about meaning, since at least Frege, identifies meaning with propositions, which are, or determine, the truth-conditions of a sentence in a context. But a recent trend has advocated a departure from this tradition: in particular, it has been argued that modal claims do not express standard propositional contents. This non-propositionalism has received different implementations in expressivist semantics and certain kinds of dynamic semantics. They maintain that the key aspect of interpretation of modal claims is the (...)
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  • Advice for Noncognitivists.Malte Willer - 2017 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 98 (S1):174–207.
    Metaethical noncognitivists have trouble arriving at a respectable semantic theory for moral language. The goal of this article is to make substantial progress toward demonstrating that these problems may be overcome. Replacing the predominant expressivist semantic agenda in metaethics with a dynamic perspective on meaning and communication allows noncognitivists to provide a satisfying analysis of negation and other constructions that have been argued to be problematic for metaethical noncognitivism, including disjunctions. The resulting proposal preserves some of the key insights from (...)
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  • Decision-Theoretic Relativity in Deontic Modality.Nate Charlow - 2018 - Linguistics and Philosophy 41 (3):251-287.
    This paper explores the idea that a semantics for ‘ought’ should be neutral between different ways of deciding what an agent ought to do in a situation. While the idea is, I argue, well-motivated, taking it seriously leads to surprising, even paradoxical, problems for theorizing about the meaning of ‘ought’. This paper describes and defends one strategy—a form of Expressivism for the modal ‘ought’—for navigating these problems.
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  • Practical Commitment in Normative Discourse.Pekka Väyrynen - forthcoming - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy.
    Many normative judgments play a practical role in our thought. This paper concerns how their practical role is reflected in language. It is natural to wonder whether the phenomenon is semantic or pragmatic. The standard assumption in moral philosophy is that at least terms which can be used to express “thin” normative concepts – such as 'good', 'right', and 'ought' – are associated with certain practical roles somehow as a matter of meaning. But this view is rarely given explicit defense (...)
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  • Emojis as Pictures.Emar Maier - manuscript
    I argue that emojis are pictures, not a species of words, gestures, or expressives. ???? means that the world looks like that, from some viewpoint. I formalize this in terms of geometric projection with stylization. Since such a pictorial semantics delivers only very minimal contents I add an account of pragmatic enrichment, driven by coherence and metaphor. The apparent semantic distinction between emojis depicting entities and those depicting facial expressions I analyze as a difference between truth-conditional and use-conditional pictorial content: (...)
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  • Epistemic Multilateral Logic.Luca Incurvati & Julian J. Schlöder - forthcoming - Review of Symbolic Logic:1-44.
    We present epistemic multilateral logic, a general logical framework for reasoning involving epistemic modality. Standard bilateral systems use propositional formulae marked with signs for assertion and rejection. Epistemic multilateral logic extends standard bilateral systems with a sign for the speech act of weak assertion (Incurvati and Schlöder 2019) and an operator for epistemic modality. We prove that epistemic multilateral logic is sound and complete with respect to the modal logic S5 modulo an appropriate translation. The logical framework developed provides the (...)
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  • Clause-Type, Force, and Normative Judgment in the Semantics of Imperatives.Nate Charlow - 2018 - In Daniel Fogal Daniel Harris & Matt Moss (eds.), New Work on Speech Acts. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 67–98.
    I argue that imperatives express contents that are both cognitively and semantically related to, but nevertheless distinct from, modal propositions. Imperatives, on this analysis, semantically encode features of planning that are modally specified. Uttering an imperative amounts to tokening this feature in discourse, and thereby proffering it for adoption by the audience. This analysis deals smoothly with the problems afflicting Portner's Dynamic Pragmatic account and Kaufmann's Modal account. It also suggests an appealing reorientation of clause-type theorizing, in which the cognitive (...)
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  • The counterfactual direct argument.Simon Goldstein - 2020 - Linguistics and Philosophy 43 (2):193-232.
    Many have accepted that ordinary counterfactuals and might counterfactuals are duals. In this paper, I show that this thesis leads to paradoxical results when combined with a few different unorthodox yet increasingly popular theses, including the thesis that counterfactuals are strict conditionals. Given Duality and several other theses, we can quickly infer the validity of another paradoxical principle, ‘The Counterfactual Direct Argument’, which says that ‘A> ’ entails ‘A> ’. First, I provide a collapse theorem for the ‘counterfactual direct argument’. (...)
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  • Grading Modal Judgement.Nate Charlow - 2020 - Mind 129 (515):769-807.
    This paper proposes a new model of graded modal judgment. It begins by problematizing the phenomenon: given plausible constraints on the logic of epistemic modality, it is impossible to model graded attitudes toward modal claims as judgments of probability targeting epistemically modal propositions. This paper considers two alternative models, on which modal operators are non-proposition-forming: (1) Moss (2015), in which graded attitudes toward modal claims are represented as judgments of probability targeting a “proxy” proposition, belief in which would underwrite belief (...)
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  • Dynamic Expressivism About Deontic Modality.William B. Starr - 2016 - In Nate Charlow Matthew Chrisman (ed.), Deontic Modality. Oxford University Press. pp. 355-394.
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  • The Expressive Function of Folk Psychology.Victor Fernandez Castro - 2017 - Filosofia Unisinos 18 (1).
    The aim of this paper is to present a challenge to the received view in folk psychology. According to this challenge, the semantic assumption behind the received view, which considers that propositional attitude ascriptions are descriptions of the internal causally efficacious states underlying behavior, cannot account for the main function of reasons in terms of mental states.
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  • Moral Cognitivism Vs. Non-Cognitivism.Mark van Roojen - 2013 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy 2013 (1):1-88.
    Non-cognitivism is a variety of irrealism about ethics with a number of influential variants. Non-cognitivists agree with error theorists that there are no moral properties or moral facts. But rather than thinking that this makes moral statements false, noncognitivists claim that moral statements are not in the business of predicating properties or making statements which could be true or false in any substantial sense. Roughly put, noncognitivists think that moral statements have no truth conditions. Furthermore, according to non-cognitivists, when people (...)
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  • Expressivism by Force.Seth Yalcin - forthcoming - In D. Fogal, D. Harris & M. Moss (eds.), New Work on Speech Acts. Oxford University Press.
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  • Metanormative Theory and the Meaning of Deontic Modals.Matthew Chrisman - 2016 - In Nate Charlow & Matthew Chrisman (eds.), Deontic Modality. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 395-424.
    Philosophical debate about the meaning of normative terms has long been pulled in two directions by the apparently competing ideas: (i) ‘ought’s do not describe what is actually the case but rather prescribe possible action, thought, or feeling, (ii) all declarative sentences deserve the same general semantic treatment, e.g. in terms of compositionally specified truth conditions. In this paper, I pursue resolution of this tension by rehearsing the case for a relatively standard truth-conditionalist semantics for ‘ought’ conceived as a necessity (...)
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  • Speech Acts: The Contemporary Theoretical Landscape.Daniel W. Harris, Daniel Fogal & Matt Moss - 2018 - In Daniel Fogal, Matt Moss & Daniel Harris (eds.), New Work on Speech Acts. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
    What makes it the case that an utterance constitutes an illocutionary act of a given kind? This is the central question of speech-act theory. Answers to it—i.e., theories of speech acts—have proliferated. Our main goal in this chapter is to clarify the logical space into which these different theories fit. -/- We begin, in Section 1, by dividing theories of speech acts into five families, each distinguished from the others by its account of the key ingredients in illocutionary acts. Are (...)
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