Semantics, in philosophy, often refers to "relation between signs and the things to which they refer and is seen, often, within the school of rhetoric.

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Does the existence of the proposition require language to be referential?

If we grant that there is a proposition wherein something meaningful is being asserted, does that require us to think of language as essentially representative in some way? If language didn't contain ...
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How do we know that Wyman and McX aren't the same person?

Quine thought that only that which exists can be referred to, or in other words 'to be is to be the value of a bound variable'. However, what of his equally famous fictional characters Wyman and McX?...
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How is self-reference understood in the pragmatist tradition?

Gödel and Tarski's works have been especially influential in the pragmatist tradition, but what exactly did their theorems usher in? What is left of self-reference in the pragmatist tradition? More ...
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What does later Wittgenstein and earlier Wittgenstein have in common?

Wittgenstein, while previously advocating a picture theory of semantics, later came to revoke his support of this position. But did Wittgenstein still hold on to certain ideas of his old school? ...
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How can one refute John Searle's “syntax is not semantics” argument against strong AI?

There are many refutations of John Searle's Chinese Room argument against Strong AI. But they seem to be addressing the structure of the thought experiment itself, as opposed to the underlying ...
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Tarski's semantic conception of truth

Does Tarski's semantic conception of truth X is true if and only if p (where X is the name of a sentence, and p is the sentence itself) apply to all sentences or only to facts (understood as ...
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What is the difference between propositional sign and proposition in Wittgenstein's Tractatus?

While explaining the problem of what philosophy is according to Wittgenstein's Tractatus, Frank P. Ramsey says: a propositional sign is clear insofar as the internal properties of its sense are ...
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Do Wittgenstein and Quine give the same criticisms of semantics?

What is the connection between the criticisms offered by Wittgenstein and Quine of meaning and language? Are both philosophers generally criticizing the same semantic theories with similar arguments, ...
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53 views

Is there a systematic way of checking semantics? [closed]

Is there a systematic and preferably rigorous way of checking whether a framework of concept interpretations is consistent?
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218 views

Is there a way to avoid Gödel incompleteness affecting mathematics as a whole?

I have been thinking about Gödel's incompleteness theorems and their ramifications for the whole of mathematics. In this question I assume some fixed formal system F expressive enough for the ...
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Doubt about the relationships in the Semantic Triangle

I was reading the wiki on The Semantic TriangleWikipedia, but it is not as good, so I have few doubts: As I read on many places an example for the vertices could be (I may have written incorrectly):...
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Why “philosophy never ends” for the tractarian Wittgenstein?

In the Prototractatus Wittgenstein wrote an additional section (called 6.55) which is seen as a possible third solution to the matter of building a perfect system of logic. This conclusion was ...
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In which sense Wittgenstein criticizes Schopenhauer's WILL?

In the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, the section 6.53 may be treated as "a criticism of Schopenhauer's Will". As far as I understood there is also another concept involved: the russellian idea that ...
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What does bedeutung refer to in the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus?

Given that the literal translation of the german word bedeutung is "sense", what does it refer to in the semantics of the tractarian Wittgenstein, among these options? the meaning of the subatomic ...
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265 views

How to implement the so called 'principle of charity'?

The 'principle of charity' has been considered of great importance especially in scholarly communication. It is not very clear, nonetheless, how the principle can be implemented, even in simple ...
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55 views

What's the difference between intentionality and meaning?

Intentionality is for something to be about something. But this definition could also suffice for meaning: something can have meaning if it is about something. What is the major distinction between ...
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On what logic is all of classical mathematics true but undecidable statements are neither true nor false?

Not on classical logic obviously since it validates excluded middle, but less obviously not on intuitionistic logic either. Intuitionists identify truth and provability and discard excluded middle, ...
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What can be said about characteristics of objects and relations among them without using space?

If we start from the premise that all our acquired knowledge of objects comes to us from having seen them in certain relations to other objects in space, how would we be able to describe an object if ...
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Shouldn't statements be considered equivalent based on their meaning rather than truth tables?

Consider the following truth table, which serves to define the logical connective ⇔, P | Q || P⇔Q T | T || T T | F || F F | T || F F | F || T According to the above truth table, the logical ...
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How to interpret “it is possible that x is impossible”?

The question is about the logical form of the sentence, x can be any object or process, actual infinity, tachyon, philosophical zombie, telepathy, etc. To conclude that x is impossible we are supposed ...
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Does “the experience of transition requires negotiation between sacrifice and opportunity” make sense logically? [closed]

I've thought about this statement enough to know it doesn't make logical sense, but I've not thought hard enough to determine why it doesn't make logical sense. The word 'and' conceptually links two ...
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Is there an idea of linguistic realism similar to moral realism?

The better way to phrase it is: "Are there objective truths about language?" -- this question is parallel to the question of moral realism: "Are there objective moral truths"? One way to interpret ...
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Can omnibenevolence be seen as a limit to omnipotence? [duplicate]

The existence of evil seems almost to be an arbitrary step in the problem of evil. This is because an omnibenevolent being cannot have the capacity to act malevolently, which an omnipotent being must ...
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What are the propositions?

I've asked before as to what propositions count as meaningful, and, as some commentators and responders helpfully pointed out, 'meaning' and 'propositions' appear to be identical entities in the ...
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when we express in words can it be anything else but an opinion based on learning and experience? [closed]

When we think and later express in works can it be anything else but an opinion, a summary of perceived learning and experience? Facts? There are more disproved facts in science than accepted ones. ...
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303 views

Suppose you know the premises of an argument are inconsistent. Do you have to do a truth table to know whether it is valid or invalid?

Suppose you know the premises of an argument are inconsistent. Do you have to do a truth table to know whether it is valid or invalid?
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Suppose the conclusion of an argument is logically equivalent to the conjunction of all the argument’s premises

Suppose the conclusion of an argument is logically equivalent to the conjunction of all the argument’s premises (the conjunction of all the arguments premises is just the statement obtained by taking ...
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Eventualities and their existence

Emmon Bach uses in "The algebra of events" the term 'eventuality' to denote states, events, processes, etc. How can their actual existence be expressed logically? For example, when I say "John came" ...
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How should motives be ordered?

Suppose a master baker gives me a cake recipe of which the instructions must be followed in a specific order, and they are: Mix wet ingredients Mix dry ingredients Add dry mixture to wet Bake ...
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Davidson, events, and states

Davidson argues that events are individuals. According to him, the meaning of Brutus stabbed Caesar is ∃e.stab(e,Brutus,Caesar), that is, there was a stabbing, Brutus did it, and Caesar ...
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A∧B-worlds and law of enrichment in Stalnaker semantics

In Stalnaker semantics a conditional A↦B is true in world u if either A is not logically possible (ex absurdo quodlibet holds in the semantics) or A is logically possible and B is true in the nearest ...
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118 views

What's the difference between true statements and real information? [closed]

In Sweden we have legislation about "Osant intygande" - "Untrue verification" e.g. false and fabricated Ph D diploma or similar "Oriktig uppgift" - "Not a real piece of information" e.g. ...
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176 views

Understanding why Quine thinks certain belief sentences are meaningless

According to Quine, the following sentence is literally nonsense: ∃x (Ralph believes that x is a spy) Question: Exactly how does the sentence above devolve into non-sense according to Quine? ...
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Understanding Grice's Theory of (Non-Natural) Meaning

I am trying to understand Paul Grice's famous essay "Meaning". So consider a computer system which is fed a dictionary of every English word in existence. The computer system then randomly spits out ...
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The basics of anti-propositionalism

Anti-propositionalism -- as I understand it -- is the view that sentences don't express propositions. But if everyday sentences (like "The dog is behind the curtain") don't express propositions, what ...
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“Proposition” vs. “The Meaning of a Proposition”

Do the terms "proposition" and "meaning of the proposition" mean the same thing? Put differently: let P denote a proposition. Do the terms P and "the meaning of P" mean the same thing? Do they ...
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Why do indicative conditionals always express propositions?

In "Do Indicative Conditionals Express Propositions?", Daniel Rothschild asserts the following: "Consider, for example, the property of not ruling out the proposition p as a doxastic possibility....
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Semantics vs Deduction [closed]

I know you can prove multiple ways, but I actually don't know what each means. Is semantics where you provide a paragraph proof and use objects and deduction where you do subproofs/elimations/intros ...
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Supervaluationism and Theories of Truth

How does the supervaluationalist defend his/her theory of truth since the correspondence theory of truth seems to presuppose bivalence? It would seem then that the only truth is Super-Truth. And, the ...
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Composite truth tables for sentence relations (entailment, synonymy,etc.)

I'm using John Saeed's 'Semantics'. Now in chap 4 I see he is trying to formalize sentence relations such as entailment, synonymy, contradiction, etc., by some kind of different truth tables he calls ...
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How should we understand the oracle's dilemma in making a prediction?

Let's look at a thought experiment: There is an oracle who has exact knowledge of the state of a deterministic universe, so her predictions about the universe's future have always turned out to be ...
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Abstract versus Concrete

Who drew the line between abstract/concrete and general/specific in the philosophy of language? Are there any comprehensive resources on the early history of their development specifically with ...
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Does the word 'And' refer?

The word 'house' and the word 'shed' refer - they are physical things we can point to (their referent). Now consider the word 'and' - this at first appears to not refer to anything. If one is trained ...
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Classical possible worlds semantics

It looks like to me that possible worlds semantics are closely associated with propositional modal logic (or interior/closure algebras). Is there any literature where possible worlds semantics is ...
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Nomenclatural/Semantic Question in re: Semiotics

I just had a quick nomenclatural/semantic question regarding the usage of the term "semiotics". Thought this would be a good place to ask it, so here I am. Anyways, my question has to do with using ...
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Term for skepticism about whether a concept is meaningful

What is the term for the philosophical stance that a given concept which people seem to imbue with meaning actually has no meaning, especially if this means it makes no sense to speak of believing in ...
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109 views

Is a couple living in symbiosis?

I think the answer is yes. Since male and female can live on their own. But for the sake of reproduction and child rearing some form of symbiosis can develop.
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*Gödel, Escher, Bach* quote illustrating syntax vs. semantics?

On what page of Hofstadter's Gödel, Escher, Bach (GEB) is the paragraph he quotes which is syntactically correct but almost completely void of any meaning except for a very esoteric group of ...
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Can a language be learned from a dictionary?

There's a nice question I thought about, and I'd like to know more about it. I would assume it has been discussed many times, but I'm not sure what its called so I'm having trouble finding any texts ...
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What is the difference between 'meaning' and 'reference' for Putnam?

In Reason, Truth and History, Putnam talks about 'meaning' and 'reference', but I don't understand the difference between the two for him. He says: what goes on inside our head does not determine ...