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Replacing Truth?

In Brett Sherman & Alexis Burgess (eds.), Metasemantics (2014)

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  1. The phenomenon objection to conceptual engineering.Mark Pinder - 2022 - Philosophical Studies 179 (11):3281-3305.
    Conceptual engineering is sometimes presented as an alternative to conceptual analysis. But one important objection to conceptual analysis threatens to carry across: that philosophy investigates phenomena—knowledge, truth, freedom, etc.—rather than concepts of those phenomena. This poses a prima facie problem insofar as conceptual engineering targets concepts or terms rather than phenomena. Call it the ‘phenomenon objection’. I begin by examining recent discussions of the phenomenon objection by Cappelen and Scharp, rejecting their responses. I then clarify and strengthen the objection, discussing (...)
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  • Revision, endorsement and the analysis of meaning.Paul-Mikhail Catapang Podosky & Kai Tanter - 2020 - Analysis 80 (4):693-704.
    Recently there has been much philosophical interest in the analysis of concepts to determine whether they should be removed, revised, or replaced. Enquiry of this kind is referred to as conceptual engineering or conceptual ethics. We will call it revisionary conceptual analysis (RCA). It standardly involves describing the meaning of a concept, evaluating whether it serves its purposes, and prescribing what it should mean. However, this stands in tension with prescriptivism, a metasemantic view which holds that all meaning claims are (...)
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  • The ‘should’ in conceptual engineering.Mona Simion - 2018 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 61 (8):914-928.
    ABSTRACTSeveral philosophers have inquired into the metaphysical limits of conceptual engineering: ‘Can we engineer? And if so, to what extent?’. This paper is not concerned with answering these questions. It does concern itself, however, with the limits of conceptual engineering, albeit in a largely unexplored sense: it cares about the normative, rather than about the metaphysical limits thereof. I first defend an optimistic claim: I argue that the ameliorative project has, so far, been too modest; there is little value theoretic (...)
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  • The Importance of Concepts.Sarah Sawyer - 2018 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 118 (2):127-147.
    Words change meaning over time. Some meaning shift is accompanied by a corresponding change in subject matter; some meaning shift is not. In this paper I argue that an account of linguistic meaning can accommodate the first kind of case, but that a theory of concepts is required to accommodate the second. Where there is stability of subject matter through linguistic change, it is concepts that provide the stability. The stability provided by concepts allows for genuine disagreement and ameliorative change (...)
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  • Content internalism and conceptual engineering.Joey Pollock - 2020 - Synthese 198 (12):11587-11605.
    Cappelen proposes a radically externalist framework for conceptual engineering. This approach embraces the following two theses. Firstly, the mechanisms that underlie conceptual engineering are inscrutable: they are too complex, unstable and non-systematic for us to grasp. Secondly, the process of conceptual engineering is largely beyond our control. One might think that these two theses are peculiar to the Austerity Framework, or to metasemantic externalism more generally. However, Cappelen argues that there is no reason to think that internalism avoids either commitment. (...)
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  • How To Conceptually Engineer Conceptual Engineering?Manuel Gustavo Isaac - 2020 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy:1–24.
    Conceptual engineering means to provide a method to assess and improve our concepts working as cognitive devices. But conceptual engineering still lacks an account of what concepts are (as cognitive devices) and of what engineering is (in the case of cognition). And without such prior understanding of its subject matter, or so it is claimed here, conceptual engineering is bound to remain useless, merely operating as a piecemeal approach, with no overall grip on its target domain. The purpose of this (...)
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  • Disagreement about logic.Ole Thomassen Hjortland - 2022 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 65 (6):660-682.
    ABSTRACT What do we disagree about when we disagree about logic? On the face of it, classical and nonclassical logicians disagree about the laws of logic and the nature of logical properties. Yet, sometimes the parties are accused of talking past each other. The worry is that if the parties to the dispute do not mean the same thing with ‘if’, ‘or’, and ‘not’, they fail to have genuine disagreement about the laws in question. After the work of Quine, this (...)
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  • Inconsistency and replacement.Matti Eklund - 2019 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 62 (4):387-402.
    The article is an extended critical discussion of Kevin Scharp’s Replacing Truth. Scharp’s case for the claim that the concept of truth is inconsistent is criticized, and so is his case for the claim that the concept of truth must be replaced because of its inconsistency.
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  • Speaker’s reference, stipulation, and a dilemma for conceptual engineers.Max Deutsch - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (12):3935-3957.
    Advocates of conceptual engineering as a method of philosophy face a dilemma: either they are ignorant of how conceptual engineering can be implemented, or else it is trivial to implement but of very little value, representing no new or especially fruitful method of philosophizing. Two key distinctions frame this dilemma and explain its two horns. First, the distinction between speaker’s meaning and reference and semantic meaning and reference reveals a severe implementation problem for one construal of conceptual engineering. Second, the (...)
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  • Conceptual analysis without concepts.Max Deutsch - 2020 - Synthese 198 (11):11125-11157.
    “Conceptual analysis” is a misnomer—it refers, but it does not refer to a method or practice that involves the analysis of concepts. Once this is recognized, many of the main arguments for skepticism about conceptual analysis can be answered, since many of these arguments falsely assume that conceptual analyses target concepts. The present paper defends conceptual analysis from skepticism about its viability and, positively, presents an argument for viewing conceptual analyses as targeting philosophical phenomena, not our concepts of these phenomena.
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  • Why Philosophers Shouldn’t Do Semantics.Herman Cappelen - 2017 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 8 (4):743-762.
    The linguistic turn provided philosophers with a range of reasons for engaging in careful investigation into the nature and structure of language. However, the linguistic turn is dead. The arguments for it have been abandoned. This raises the question: why should philosophers take an interest in the minutiae of natural language semantics? I’ll argue that there isn’t much of a reason - philosophy of language has lost its way. Then I provide a suggestion for how it can find its way (...)
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  • Explication as a Method of Conceptual Re-engineering.Georg Brun - 2016 - Erkenntnis 81 (6):1211-1241.
    Taking Carnap’s classic exposition as a starting point, this paper develops a pragmatic account of the method of explication, defends it against a range of challenges and proposes a detailed recipe for the practice of explicating. It is then argued that confusions are involved in characterizing explications as definitions, and in advocating precising definitions as an alternative to explications. Explication is better characterized as conceptual re-engineering for theoretical purposes, in contrast to conceptual re-engineering for other purposes and improving exactness for (...)
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  • Something is True.Jamin Asay - forthcoming - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
    The thesis that nothing is true has long been thought to be a self-refuting position not worthy of serious philosophical consideration. Recently, however, the thesis of alethic nihilism—that nothing is true—has been explicitly defended (notably by David Liggins). Nihilism is also, I argue, a consequence of other views about truth that have recently been advocated, such as fictionalism about truth and the inconsistency account. After offering an account of alethic nihilism, and how it purports to avoid the self-refutation problem, I (...)
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  • Intuitions, Conceptual Engineering, and Conceptual Fixed Points.Matti Eklund - 2015 - In Christopher Daly (ed.), The Palgrave Handbook of Philosophical Methods.
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  • Post-Truth Conceptual Engineering.Manuel Gustavo Isaac - 2021 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy:1–16.
    Conceptual engineering is the method for assessing and improving our concepts. Some have recently claimed that the implementation of such method in the form of ameliorative projects is truth-driven and should thus be epistemically constrained, ultimately at least (Simion 2018; cf. Podosky 2018). This paper challenges that claim on the assumption of a social constructionist analysis of ideologies, and provides an alternative, pragmatic and cognitive framework for determining the legitimacy of ameliorative conceptual projects overall. The upshot is that one should (...)
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