Plurivaluationism, supersententialism and the problem of the many languages

Synthese 197 (4):1697-1723 (2020)
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Abstract

According to the plurivaluationist, our vague discourse doesn’t have a single meaning. Instead, it has many meanings, each of which is precise—and it is this plurality of meanings that is the source of vagueness. I believe plurivaluationist positions are underdeveloped and for this reason unpopular. This paper attempts to correct this situation by offering a particular development of plurivaluationism that I call supersententialism. The supersententialist leverages lessons from another area of research—the Problem of the Many—in service of the plurivaluationist position. The Problem reveals theoretical reasons to accept that there are many cats where we thought there was one; the supersententialist claims that we are in a similar situation with respect to languages, propositions and sentences. I argue that the parallel suggested by the supersententialist reveals unappreciated advantages and lines of defense for plurivaluationism.

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Rohan Sud
Virginia Tech

Citations of this work

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Vague perception.Patrick McKee - 2024 - Philosophical Studies 181 (5):977-999.
Semantic Indecision.Michael Caie - 2018 - Philosophical Perspectives 32 (1):108-143.
Identity of Dynamic Meanings.Pavel Arazim - 2022 - Croatian Journal of Philosophy 22 (64):69-90.

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References found in this work

Convention: A Philosophical Study.David Kellogg Lewis - 1969 - Cambridge, MA, USA: Wiley-Blackwell.
Vagueness.Timothy Williamson - 1996 - New York: Routledge.
Material beings.Peter Van Inwagen - 1990 - Ithaca: Cornell University Press.
General semantics.David K. Lewis - 1970 - Synthese 22 (1-2):18--67.

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