Polski Zjazd Filozoficzny

wrzesień, 2019

2019czw12wrz17:3018:00Is there a unique speaker’s content? Against the Principle of Content Determinacymgr Maria Matuszkiewicz (Uniwersytet Warszawski)17:30 - 18:00 CTW-217 (Centrum Transferu Wiedzy) organizator: Sekcja Semiotyki i Filozofii Języka


There has been an extensive discussion about the role of speaker’s intentions and linguistic conventions (and sometimes also about the role of the hearers’ interpretation) for the determination of what is said by an utterance. There may be a gap between the proposition that the speaker’s words (and gestures) express and the proposition she wants to express by uttering these words. The problem which is less often addressed concerns the speaker’s belief in such cases. It is usually assumed that regardless of the conflict between the conventional meaning and the intended meaning (when the thinker is either mistaken about linguistic conventions, or about the world), there is a simple answer to the question what the content of her belief is. That assumption is related to the Principle of Content Determinacy, according to which for every episode of thinking (mental state) there is exactly one proposition which is its content.

In my presentation I will challenge the Principle of Content Determinacy by showing that sometimes – when the thinker is mistaken about the identity of the object in that she takes two distinct objects to be one – more than one proposition characterizes the thinker’s mental state. Moreover, this characterization depends on the broader situation in which the ascription is made (what was said before and afterwards, speaker’s and ascriber’s interests). Finally, I will consider two motivations for the Principle of Content Determinacy: (1) taking for granted the linguistic picture of the mental according to which thoughts have quasi-linguistic components, whose content is determinate (2) the idea that thoughts are transparent for the thinker. I will argue that both assumptions are questionable.

dzień i godzina

(Czwartek) 17:30 - 18:00


CTW-217 (Centrum Transferu Wiedzy)


Sekcja Semiotyki i Filozofii JęzykaPrzewodnicząca Sekcji: prof. dr hab. Joanna Odrowąż-Sypniewska (UW)
Sekretarz Sekcji: mgr Natalia Karczewska (UW)

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