Words and Thoughts: Subsentences, Ellipsis, and the Philosophy of Language (Hardcover) - Stainton, Robert J.

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Product Overview

It is a near truism of philosophy of language that sentences are prior to words--that they are the only things that fundamentally have meaning. Robert''s Stainton''s study interrogates this idea, drawing on a wide body of evidence to argue that speakers can and do use mere words, not sentences, to communicate complex thoughts.

Specifications

Publisher Oxford University Press, USA
Mfg Part# 9780199250387
SKU 203092651
Format Hardcover
ISBN10 0199250383
Release Date 6/11/2013
Physical
Dimensions (in Inches) 9.25H x 6.5L x 0.75T
From the Publisher
Editors Note It is a near truism of philosophy of language that sentences are prior to words. Sentences, it is said, are what we believe, assert, and argue for; uses of them constitute our evidence in semantics; only they stand in inferential relations, and are true or false. Sentences are, indeed, the only things that fundamentally have meaning. Does this near truism really hold of human languages? Robert Stainton, drawing on a wide body of evidence, argues forcefully that speakers can and do use mere words, not sentences, to communicate complete thoughts. He then considers the implications of this empirical result for language-thought relations, various doctrines of sentence primacy, and the semantics-pragmatics boundary. The book is important both for its philosophical and empirical claims, and for the methodology employed. Stainton illustrates how the methods and detailed results of the various cognitive sciences can bear on central issues in philosophy of language. At the same time, he applies philosophical distinctions with subtlety and care, to show that arguments which seemingly support the primacy of sentences do not really do so. The result is a paradigm example of The New Philosophy of Language: a rich melding of empirical work with traditional philosophy of language.
Product Attributes
Book Format Hardcover
Number of Pages 0272
Publisher Oxford University Press, USA
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