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Truth, context and the reference of statements

Aasen, S.; (2010) Truth, context and the reference of statements. Masters thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

The overall project of this MPhil thesis is to defend a version of the view that is often called contextualism in philosophy of language, namely the version of the view that I take Charles Travis to hold. His view is that the meaning a sentence is insufficient for deciding on questions about truth and falsity, and that in arriving at the truth-conditions of an utterance the occasion on which the utterance is made always plays a determining role. In order to defend this view, I focus on a particular sort of example – which I refer to as a ‘Travis case’ – and that Travis uses to support his view. Travis cases, as I present Travis as conceiving of them, are supposed to show that the truth-values of utterances made by using the same sentence can differ, although the meaning of constituent expressions is the same and the sentence is used to speak about the same state of things in the world. I consider two alternative ways of analysing the example, from which Travis’s view does not receive support, and I give arguments as to why these analyses are problematic. By doing this, I aim both to give reasons as to why Travis cases support Travis’s view and to highlight in what respects his view differs from the views that are assumed in the alternative analyses.

Type: Thesis (Masters)
Title: Truth, context and the reference of statements
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Dept of Philosophy
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/623278
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