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What Is Said. An Inquiry into Reference, Meaning, and Content.

Abstract : I investigate the relationship among the notions of meaning, content, and what is said. It is widely held that indexicals – words like 'this', 'I', or 'today' – contribute their reference, and nothing but their reference, to the semantic content, and thereby undermine any tentative identification of semantic content with lexical meaning. Against the mainstream view, I argue that semantic content is lexical meaning, for indexical and non-indexical expressions alike. In Chapter 1, I lay down this proposal in all due detail, explaining how to think of the semantic content of sentences containing indexicals, and articulating the relationship between content, truth, and reference. In Chapter 2, I present a number of problems for the existing accounts of what is said, and then show that if we think of semantic content along the lines of my proposal, we may account for the problematic cases while identifying the asserted content (or what is said) with semantic content. In Chapter 3, I show how my account extends, on the one hand, to definite descriptions and proper names, and, on the other, to epistemic modals and predicates of taste.
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Contributor : Isidora Stojanovic <>
Submitted on : Monday, April 30, 2007 - 2:49:54 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, January 12, 2021 - 3:29:08 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Wednesday, April 7, 2010 - 2:11:00 AM


  • HAL Id : tel-00144054, version 1



Isidora Stojanovic. What Is Said. An Inquiry into Reference, Meaning, and Content.. Philosophy. Stanford University, 2007. English. ⟨tel-00144054⟩



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