Studia Semiotyczne 31 (2):139-159 (2017)

Erich Rast
New University of Lisbon
In a series of publications Burgess, Plunkett and Sundell have developed a metalinguistic negotiation view that they call ‘Conceptual Ethics.’ I argue that their position adequately captures our intuition that some cases of value disputes are metalinguistic, but that they reverse the direction of justification when they state that speakers ‘negotiate’ the best use of a term or concept on the basis of its prior social role. Borrowing ideas from Putnam, I instead suggest distinguishing two meanings of general terms and value predicates. Core meaning represents the lowest common denominator between speakers and is primarily based on our needs to coordinate behavior. In contrast to this, the noumenal meaning of a general term or value predicate is intended to capture an aspect of reality and represents what a term really means. Like many other disputes about theoretical terms, terms for abstract objects, and predicates, metalinguistic value disputes are about noumenal meaning on the basis of a shared core meaning. This direction towards reality is what sets the account apart from mere metalinguistic negotiation.
Keywords metalinguistic negotiation, value disagreement, relativism, meaning theory, externalism
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.26333/sts.xxxi2.07
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 70,192
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Demonstratives: An Essay on the Semantics, Logic, Metaphysics and Epistemology of Demonstratives and Other Indexicals.David Kaplan - 1989 - In Joseph Almog, John Perry & Howard Wettstein (eds.), Themes From Kaplan. Oxford University Press. pp. 481-563.
Principia Ethica.George Edward Moore - 1903 - Dover Publications.
From a Logical Point of View.W. V. O. Quine - 1953 - Harvard University Press.
The Meaning of 'Meaning'.Hillary Putnam - 1975 - Minnesota Studies in the Philosophy of Science 7:131-193.

View all 36 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

How to Have a Metalinguistic Dispute.Poppy Mankowitz - 2021 - Synthese 199 (3-4):5603-5622.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Value Disagreement and Two Aspects of Meaning.Erich Rast - 2017 - Croatian Journal of Philosophy 17 (51):399-430.
Identity Display: Another Motive for Metalinguistic Disagreement.Alexander Davies - 2021 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 64 (8):861-882.
Which Concepts Should We Use?: Metalinguistic Negotiations and The Methodology of Philosophy.David Plunkett - 2015 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 58 (7-8):828-874.
What Metalinguistic Negotiations Can't Do.Teresa Marques - 2017 - Phenomenology and Mind (12):40-48.
Metalinguistic Proposals.Nat Hansen - 2019 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy (1-2):1-19.
Metalinguistic Negotiation and Speaker Error.David Plunkett & Tim Sundell - 2021 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 64 (1-2):142-167.
Simplement, as a Metalinguistic Operator.T. Nyan - 1999 - Argumentation 13 (3):275-295.


Added to PP index

Total views
7 ( #1,067,939 of 2,507,129 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #277,393 of 2,507,129 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes