LINGUIST List 14.2808

Fri Oct 17 2003

Books: Philosophy of Language: Barber (ed)

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  1. tom.perridge, Epistemology of Language: Barber (ed)

Message 1: Epistemology of Language: Barber (ed)

Date: Tue, 14 Oct 2003 05:48:14 +0000
From: tom.perridge <>
Subject: Epistemology of Language: Barber (ed)

Title: Epistemology of Language
Publication Year: 2003
Publisher: Oxford University Press,	
Book URL:

Editor: Alex Barber, Open University 

Hardback: ISBN: 019925057X, Pages: 420, Price: �70.00
Paperback: ISBN: 0199250588, Pages: 420, Price: �25.00
What must linguistic knowledge be like if it is to figure in the
description and explanation of the various phenomena pre-theoretically
classified as linguistic? All linguists and philosophers of language
presuppose some answer to this critical question, but all too often
the presupposition is tacit. In this collection of sixteen previously
unpublished essays, a distinguished international line-up of
philosophers and linguists address a variety of interconnected themes
concerning our knowledge of language:

KNOWLEDGE IN LINGUISTICS: Noam Chomsky's claim that ordinary speakers
possess complex structures of linguistic knowledge was a trigger for
the cognitive revolution nearly fifty years ago. This and an
associated claim, that linguistics is essentially in the business of
rendering such knowledge explicit, have been the target of an evolving
series of sceptical objections ever since.

UNDERSTANDING: Is linguistic understanding a special kind of semantic
knowledge? If so, what kind? Topics covered include the viability of
recent attempts to fuse Chomsky's cognitivism with Davidson's
truth-theoretic approach to interpretation; the merging of linguistic
and non-linguistic meaning in non-sentential speech; linguistic
understanding as a kind of perception; and the objectivity of semantic

LINGUISTIC EXTERNALISM: Some regard externalist intuitions about
reference as a vital contribution to our understanding of language,
mind, and metaphysics; others see them as a curious but relatively
unimportant component of folk linguistics, where the folk are
late-twentieth-century analytic philosophers. So just what is the
relation between externalist intuitions and our grasp of language?

EPISTEMOLOGY THROUGH LANGUAGE: The linguistic turn in philosophy may
have come full circle, but advances in epistemology and other areas of
philosophy can still take the form of a better appreciation of
language and our relation to it.
Lingfield(s): Philosophy of Language
Written In: English (Language Code: English)

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