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Philosophical Papers Volume I$
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David Lewis

Print publication date: 1983

Print ISBN-13: 9780195032048

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0195032047.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 01 August 2021

Languages and Language

Languages and Language

Chapter:
(p.163) Eleven Languages and Language
Source:
Philosophical Papers Volume I
Author(s):

David Lewis

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0195032047.003.0011

Lewis attempts the synthesis of two rival accounts: the thesis, according to which languages are a semantic system abstracted from the nature and history of human affairs; and the antithesis, according to which language is a rational, convention‐governed human social activity. Upon answering an extended series of objections, Lewis concludes that the philosophy of language is best understood as a single subject.

Keywords:   artificial language, Chomsky, convention, grammar, Saul Kripke, natural language, philosophy of language, pragmatics, Quine, semantics, truthfulness

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