Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 99 (4):749-762 (2018)

Authors
Emanuel Viebahn
Humboldt-University, Berlin
Abstract
In arguing against a supposed ambiguity, philosophers often rely on the zeugma test. In an application of the zeugma test, a supposedly ambiguous expression is placed in a sentence in which several of its supposed meanings are forced together. If the resulting sentence sounds zeugmatic, that is taken as evidence for ambiguity; if it does not sound zeugmatic, that is taken as evidence against ambiguity. The aim of this article is to show that arguments based on the second direction of the test are misguided: ambiguous expressions, and in particular philosophically contested ones, do not reliably lead to zeugmaticity, so an absence of zeugmaticity provides no meaningful evidence for an absence of ambiguity.
Keywords ambiguity  polysemy  ambiguity tests  zeugma test
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1111/papq.12229
Options
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: 71,489
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

The Concept of Mind.Gilbert Ryle - 1949 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 141:125-126.
Speaker's Reference and Semantic Reference.Saul A. Kripke - 1977 - In Peter A. French, Theodore E. Uehling Jr & Howard K. Wettstein (eds.), Studies in the Philosophy of Language. University of Minnesota Press. pp. 255-296.
Speaker’s Reference and Semantic Reference.Saul Kripke - 1977 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 2 (1):255-276.
Knowing.Jason Stanley - 2011 - Noûs 45 (2):207-238.
On Words.John Hawthorne & Ernest Lepore - 2011 - Journal of Philosophy 108 (9):447-485.

View all 24 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Ambiguity.Adam Sennet - 2011 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Descriptions and Tests for Polysemy.Andrei Moldovan - 2021 - Axiomathes 31 (3):229-249.
Rational Supererogation and Epistemic Permissivism.Robert Weston Siscoe - 2022 - Philosophical Studies 179 (2):571-591.
Real and Ideal Rationality.Robert Weston Siscoe - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 179 (3):879-910.

View all 8 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Negation, Ambiguity, and the Identity Test.John N. Martin - 1982 - Journal of Semantics 1 (3-4):251-274.
Ambiguity in Architecture.Christoph Baumberger - 2009 - In G. Ernst, O. Scholz & J. Steinbrenner (eds.), Nelson Goodman: From Logic to Art. Ontos. pp. 293--319.
Jaffray’s Ideas on Ambiguity.Peter P. Wakker - 2011 - Theory and Decision 71 (1):11-22.
An Ambiguity Test for Definite Descriptions.Adam Sennet - 2002 - Philosophical Studies 111 (1):81-95.
A Linguistic Grounding for a Polysemy Theory of ‘Knows’.Mark Satta - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (5):1163-1182.
On Religious Ambiguity.Robert Mckim - 2008 - Religious Studies 44 (4):373-392.
Two Types of Semantic Ambiguity.Laurie Jeanne Shrage - 1983 - Dissertation, University of California, San Diego
Religious Ambiguity in Hick’s Religious Pluralism.Amir Dastmalchian - 2009 - International Journal of Hekmat 1:75-89.
A Generalization of Specker's Theorem on Typical Ambiguity.Richard Kaye - 1991 - Journal of Symbolic Logic 56 (2):458-466.
Ambiguity in Argument.Jan Albert van Laar - 2010 - Argument and Computation 1 (2):125-146.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2018-07-05

Total views
12 ( #813,169 of 2,520,788 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #205,225 of 2,520,788 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes