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Reference and Reflexivity cover

Reference and Reflexivity

Second Edition

John Perry

In this volume John Perry develops his “reflexive-referential” account of indexicals, demonstratives, proper names, and other fragments of language. On issues of meaning and reference, the philosophy of language in the twentieth century was shaped by two competing traditions, descriptivist and referentialist. The referentialist tradition holds that indexicals, demonstratives, and proper names contribute content that involves individuals without identifying conditions on them. In contrast, the descriptivist tradition holds that referential content does not explain all of the identifying conditions conveyed by names, demonstratives, and indexicals. Perry's theory, borrowing ideas from both traditions as well as from Burks and Reichenbach, diagnoses the problems as stemming from a fixation on a certain kind of content, coined “referential” or “fully incremental” content. He reveals a coherent and structured family of contents—from reflexive contents that place conditions on their actual utterance to fully incremental contents that place conditions only on the objects of reference—reconciling the legitimate insights of both the referentialist and descriptivist traditions.

For this new second edition, Perry has added a new preface and two chapters on the interface between semantics and pragmatics and on the semantics of attitude reports, along with summaries at the end of each chapter.

John Perry is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at the University of California, Riverside, and Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at Stanford University.

Translated into Chinese.

Contents

  • Preface to the Second Edition
  • Preface to the First Edition
  • 1 Two Problems About Reference
    • 1.1 Mach and the shabby pedagogue
    • 1.2 Paradigms, arguments and problems
    • 1.3 Has semantics rested on a mistake?
    • 1.4 The reflexive-referential theory
    • 1.5 Network content
    • 1.6 Plan
  • I Reflexivity and the Co-reference
  • 2 Contents and Propositions
    • 2.1 Introduction
    • 2.2 Meaning and
    • 2.3 Common sense and official content
    • 2.4 The classificatory concept of content
    • 2.5 Conditions and propositions
    • 2.6 Varieties of designation
  • 3 Utterance and Context
    • 3.1 Introduction
    • 3.2The reflexive-referential theory
    • 3.3 Signs, tokens and utterances
    • 3.4 Context
    • 3.5 Semantic uses of context
    • 3.6 Content-supplemental uses of context
  • 4 Context and Cognitive Paths
    • 4.1 Introduction
    • 4.2 Information games
    • 4.3 Cognitive paths
    • 4.4 Indexicals and contexts
    • 4.5 Stretch the dog
    • 4.6 Dthat
    • 4.7 Real, doxastic and fictional contexts
  • 5 Meanings and Contents
    • 5.1 Introduction
    • 5.2 Reichenbach, reflexivity and indexical content
    • 5.3 Indexical content and referential content
    • 5.4 Varieties of content
    • 5.5 Official content
    • 5.6 Stretching cognitive content
    • 5.7 Austin's two tubes
  • 6 Names and the Co-reference Problem
    • 6.1 Introduction
    • 6.2 The computer scientist
    • 6.3 Names and conventions
    • 6.4 Names and cognitive significance
    • 6.5 Reflexivity and names
    • 6.6 Paderewski
    • 6.7 Mach and the shabby pedagogue
    • 6.8 What is said? -I
  • 7 What Is Referentialism?
    • 7.1 Introduction
    • 7.2 Dialectical reversal?
    • 7.3 Frege's argument
    • 7.4 On being a (psychologized) Fregean
    • 7.5 Kaplan and direct reference
    • 7.6 Kaplan's arguments for direct reference
    • 7.7 Conclusion
  • II Networks and the No-reference
  • 8 Empty Names, Blocks and Networks
    • 8.1 Introduction
    • 8.2 Conventions and Networks
    • 8.3 Networks: A Simple theory
    • 8.4 No-reference reconsidered
    • 8.5 Network Content and What is Said
  • 9 File Networks
    • 9.1 Notions, Files and Networks
    • 9.2 Intersubjective file networks
    • 9.3 Etiological Structure: origins and parents
    • 9.4 The flow of ideas: intersubjective networks of files
    • 9.5 Networks and information games
    • 9.6 Playing with names
  • 10 Contents and Attitudes
    • 10.1 Introduction
    • 10.2 The original theory
    • 10.3 Two-faced attitudes
    • 10.4 Saying
    • 10.5 Belief Revisited
    • 10.6 Types of notions and threads
    • 10.7 Mach and quasi-indication
    • 10.8 Pierre and disquotation
    • 10.9 Back to Austin
    • 10.10 Conclusion
  • 11 Externalism
    • 11.1 Introduction
    • 11.2 The Two Faces of Motivation
    • 11.3 Meshing Explanations
    • 11.4 Conclusion
    • 11.5 Narrow Enough Content
  • Glossary
  • Examples
  • References
  • Index

May 2012

ISBN (Paperback): 9781575865249
ISBN (Cloth): 9781575865232
ISBN (electronic): 9781575865492

Books by John Perry at CSLI Publications:

John Perry's home page is http://john.jperry.net/

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