Why Philosophers should do Semantics : a Reply to Cappelen

Review of Philosophy and Psychology 10 (1):243-256 (2019)
  Copy   BIBTEX


In this paper, I address a series of arguments recently put forward by Cappelen Review of Philosophy and Psychology 8: 743–762 to the effect that philosophers should not do formal semantics or be concerned with the “minutiae of natural language semantics”. He offers two paths for accessing his ideas. I argue that his arguments fail in favour of the first and cast some doubt on the second in so doing. I then proffer an alternative conception of why exactly philosophers should continue to do formal linguistics which includes both semantics and syntax.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 76,346

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Why Philosophers Shouldn’t Do Semantics.Herman Cappelen - 2017 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 8 (4):743-762.
Formal semantics in the age of pragmatics.Juan Barba - 2007 - Linguistics and Philosophy 30 (6):637-668.
Relying on Intuitions: Where Cappelen and Deutsch Go Wrong.Michael Devitt - 2015 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 58 (7-8):669-699.
Formal Semantics: Origins, Issues, Early Impact.Barbara H. Partee - 2011 - The Baltic International Yearbook of Cognition, Logic and Communication 6:13.
What is Formal in Formal Semantics?Jan Woleński - 2004 - Dialectica 58 (3):427-436.
What is formal in formal semantics?Jan Woleński - 2004 - Dialectica 58 (3):427–436.
Relativism and Monadic Truth.Herman Cappelen & John Hawthorne - 2009 - Oxford University Press UK.
Better Semantics for the Pure Logic of Ground.Louis deRosset - 2015 - Analytic Philosophy 56 (3):229-252.
Reply to critics.Herman Cappelen & Ernie Lepore - 2006 - Mind and Language 21 (1):50-73.
The Handbook of Contemporary Semantic Theory.Shalom Lappin (ed.) - 1995 - Hoboken: Blackwell Reference.
Quotation.Herman Cappelen & Ernest Lepore - 2012 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.


Added to PP

76 (#161,177)

6 months
5 (#154,483)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Ryan Mark Nefdt
University of Cape Town

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations