Paul Grice (1913-1988) is best known for his psychological account of meaning, and for his theory of conversational implicature. This is the first book to consider Grice's work as a whole. Drawing on the range of his published writing, and also on unpublished manuscripts, lectures and notes, Siobhan Chapman discusses the development of his ideas and relates his work to the major events of his intellectual and professional life.
ABSTRACT This article focuses on Arne Naess's work in the philosophy of language, which he began in the mid-1930s and continued into the 1960s. This aspect of his work is nowadays relatively neglected, but it deserves to be revisited. Firstly, it is intrinsically interesting to the history of analytic philosophy in the twentieth century, because Naess questioned some of the established philosophical methodologies and assumptions of his day. Secondly, it suggests a compelling but unacknowledged intellectual pedigree for some recent developments (...) in linguistics. Naess's philosophy of language developed from his reaction against logical positivism, in particular against what he saw as its unempirical assumptions about language. He went on to establish ?empirical semantics?, in which the study of language was based on real-life linguistic data, drawn primarily from questionnaires issued to philosophically naïve subjects. He also experimented with methods for ?occurrence analysis?, but concluded that the collection and analysis of sufficiently large bodies of naturally-occurring data was impractical. Empirical semantics was not well received by Naess's philosophical contemporaries. It was also seen as being at odds with contemporary trends in linguistics. However, some present-day branches of linguistics have striking resonances with Naess's work from as much as seventy years ago. In sociolinguistics, questionnaires have become an established means of collecting linguistic data. In corpus linguistics, advances in technology have made Naess's unobtainable ideal of ?occurrence analysis? a viable methodology. Some of the principal conclusions reached as a result of this methodology are strikingly similar to Naess's own findings. (shrink)
This book compares attitudes to empiricism in language study from mid-twentieth century philosophy of language and from present-day linguistics. It focuses on responses to the logical positivism of the Vienna Circle, particularly in the work of British philosopher J. L. Austin and the much less well-known work of Norwegian philosopher Arne Naess.
Analyst in training -- Becoming a philosopher -- Science, logic, and language -- Cambridge analysis -- Logical positivism and philosophy of language -- Wider audience -- Politics and critical thinking -- Logic and ideals -- Stebbing, philosophy, and linguistics.
ABSTRACTExperimental philosophy often draws its data from questionnaire-based surveys of ordinary intuitions. Its proponents are keen to identify antecedents in the work of philosophers who have referred to intuition and everyday understanding [e.g. Knobe, Joshua, and Shaun Nichols, ‘An Experimental Philosophy Manifesto’. In Experimental Philosophy, edited by Joshua Knobe and Shaun Nichols, 3–14. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007]. In this context, ‘Empirical Semantics’, pioneered by Arne Naess early in the twentieth century, offers striking parallels. Naess believed that much contemporary philosophy (...) was unempirical because it made no reference to ordinary understanding or use of language. In response, he attempted large-scale studies of ordinary understanding of philosophically significant terms [e.g. Naess, Arne. ‘Truth’ as Conceived by Those Who Are Not Professional Philosophers. Oslo: Jacob Dybwad, 1938]. This article will compare Empirical Semantics and experimental philosophy, and assess what su... (shrink)
In the autumn of 1959, Arne Naess and J. L. Austin, both pioneers of empirical study in the philosophy of language, discussed their points of agreement and disagreement at a meeting in Oslo. This article considers the fragmentary record that has survived of that meeting, and investigates what light it can shed on the question of why the two philosophers apparently found so little common ground, given their shared commitment to the importance of data in the study of language. Naess (...) and Austin held different views about two significant aspects of the relationship between scientific method and philosophical investigation. The first aspect concerns the nature of experimental data; Naess used the statistical analysis of data collected from non-philosophical informants while Austin advocated deliberation leading to agreement over usage by a few skilled experts. The second aspect relates to their respective attitudes to the role of theory in philosophical inquiry, attitudes which drew on discussions of scientific method, and its relevance to philosophy, from the early decades of the twentieth century. This article traces the evidence for these views on scientific method in Naess’s and Austin’s respective published work, and in the record of their Oslo meeting. It concludes with a brief overview of opinions about scientific method manifest in the decades since that meeting in various branches of linguistics. These opinions speak to the enduring importance of attitudes to scientific method in relation to our study and understanding of human language. (shrink)
This book offers introductory entries on 80 ideas that have shaped the study of language up to the present day. Entries are written by experts in the fields of linguistics and the philosophy of language to reflect the full range of approaches and modes of thought. Each entry includes a brief description of the idea, an account of its development, and its impact on the field of language study. The book is written in an accessible style with clear descriptions of (...) technical terms, guides to further reading, and extensive cross-referencing between entries. A useful additional feature of this book is that it is cross-referenced throughout with Key Thinkers in Linguistics and the Philosophy of Language, revealing significant connections and continuities in the two related disciplines. Ideas covered range from Sense Data, Artificial Intelligence, and Logic, through Generative Semantics, Cognitivism, and Conversation Analysis, to Political Correctness, Deconstruction, and Corpora. (shrink)
Pragmatics and Literature is an important collection of new work by leading practitioners working at the interface between pragmatic theory and literary analysis. The individual studies collected here draw on a variety of theoretical approaches and are concerned with a range of literary genres. All have a shared focus on applying ideas from specific pragmatic frameworks to understanding the production, interpretation and evaluation of literary texts. A full-length introductory chapter highlights distinctions and contrasts between pragmatic theories, but also brings out (...) complementarities, shared aims and assumptions, and ways in which different pragmatic theories can make different contributions to our understanding of literary texts. The book as a whole encourages a sense of coherence for the field and presents insights from various approaches for systematic comparison. Building on previous work by the editors, the contributors and others, it makes a significant contribution to the growing field of pragmatic literary stylistics. (shrink)
Philosophy for Linguists provides students with a clear, concise introduction to the main topics in the philosophy of language. Focusing on what linguists need to know and how philosophy relates to modern linguistics, the book is structured around key branches of linguistics: semantics, pragmatics, and language acquisition. Assuming no prior knowledge of philosophy, Siobhan Chapman traces the history and development of ideas in the philosophy of language and outlines the contributions of specific philosophers. The book is highly accessible and includes: (...) a general introduction and introductions to each chapter; numerous examples and quotations; comprehensive suggestions for further reading and an extensive glossary of linguistic terms. (shrink)