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Title: Jose Zalabardo, "The Meaning of Meaning Ascription"
The Meaning of Meaning Ascriptions: Assertibility Conditions and Meaning FactsDescription:Presented on campus in the seminar room; simulcast via Zoom: finds in Wittgenstein an argument for the conclusion that there are no meaning facts, and considers the consequences of this outcome for the meaning of meaning-ascribing sentences, such as “Jones means addition by ‘plus’”. One immediate consequence is that their meaning cannot be given by their truth conditions—the states of affairs on whose obtaining their truth value depends. Kripke proposes instead that meaning ascriptions obtain their meaning from (a) their assertibility conditions and (b) the non-representational function that the practice of asserting these sentences in these conditions plays in our lives, accepting that these sentences can’t play the role of representing the world. I present a strategy for avoiding this outcome. Meaning ascriptions obtain their meanings from their assertibility conditions, but they successfully perform the function of representing the world. No other, non-representational function is part of their meaning. The states of affairs they represent can be singled out with definitions by abstraction, using the synonymy conditions generated by their assertibility conditions. When meaning facts are construed in this way, the argument that Kripke finds in Wittgenstein does not establish that they don’t exist.
When: Wed 25 May 2022 15:30 – 17:00 Eastern Australia Time - Sydney
Where: Philosophy Seminar Room
Calendar: Seminars
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