Readings in the Philosophy of Language

Ludlow, Peter

"This is easily the finest collection of essays in the philosophy of language assembled for students, for undergaduate or graduate students. There is not even a close second competitor." -- Ernie Lepore, Associate Director, Center for Cognitive Science RuCCS, Rutgers University "This is easily the best anthology in the philosophy of language; it is certain to become the standard textbook for years to come" -- Stephen Neale, Professor of Philosophy, Birkbeck College, University of London, and the University of California, Berkeley. Throughout the history of ideas, various branches of philosophy have spun off into the natural sciences, including physics, biology, and perhaps most recently, cognitive psychology. A central theme of this collection is that the philosophy of language, at least a core portion of it, has matured to the point where it is now being spun off into linguistic theory. Each section of the book contains historical twentieth-century readings and, where available, recent attempts to apply the resources of contemporary linguistic theory to the problems under discussion. This approach helps to root the naturalization project in the leading questions of analytic philosophy. Although the older readings predate the current naturalization project, they help to lay its conceptual foundations. The main sections of the book, each of which is preceded by an introduction, are Language and Meaning, Logical Form and Grammatical Form, Descriptions, Names, Demonstratives, and Attitude Reports. The collection is not intended as a final report on a mature line of philosophical inquiry. Rather, its purpose is to show students what doing real philosophy is all about and to let them share in the excitement as philosophers enter a period in which how philosophy of language is conducted could change in fundamental ways.

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