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Speech Acts: The Contemporary Theoretical Landscape

In Daniel Fogal, Matt Moss & Daniel Harris (eds.), New Work on Speech Acts. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press (2018)

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  1. Is that a Threat?Henry Ian Schiller - 2021 - Erkenntnis 86 (5):1161-1183.
    I introduce game-theoretic models for threats to the discussion of threats in speech act theory. I first distinguish three categories of verbal threats: conditional threats, categorical threats, and covert threats. I establish that all categories of threats can be characterized in terms of an underlying conditional structure. I argue that the aim—or illocutionary point—of a threat is to change the conditions under which an agent makes decisions in a game. Threats are moves in a game that instantiate a subgame in (...)
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  • We talk to people, not contexts.Daniel W. Harris - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (9):2713-2733.
    According to a popular family of theories, assertions and other communicative acts should be understood as attempts to change the context of a conversation. Contexts, on this view, are publicly shared bodies of information that evolve over the course of a conversation and that play a range of semantic and pragmatic roles. I argue that this view is mistaken: performing a communicative act requires aiming to change the mind of one’s addressee, but not necessarily the context. Although changing the context (...)
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  • Intention and Commitment in Speech Acts.Daniel W. Harris - 2019 - Theoretical Linguistics 45 (1–2):53–67.
    What is a speech act, and what makes it count as one kind of speech act rather than another? In the target article, Geurts considers two ways of answering these questions. His opponent is intentionalism—the view that performing a speech act is a matter of acting with a communicative intention, and that speech acts of different kinds involve intentions to affect hearers in different ways. Geurts offers several objections to intentionalism. Instead, he articulates and defends an admirably clear and resolute (...)
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  • Illocutionary pluralism.Marcin Lewiński - forthcoming - Synthese:1-28.
    This paper addresses the following question: Can one and the same utterance token, in one unique speech situation, intentionally and conventionally perform a plurality of illocutionary acts? While some of the recent literature has considered such a possibility Perspectives on pragmatics and philosophy. Springer, Cham, pp 227–244, 2013; Johnson in Synthese 196:1151–1165, 2019), I build a case for it by drawing attention to common conversational complexities unrecognized in speech acts analysis. Traditional speech act theory treats communication as: a dyadic exchange (...)
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  • Provincialism in Pragmatics.Josh Armstrong - 2018 - Philosophical Perspectives 32 (1):5-40.
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