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Content, Cognition, and CommunicationPhilosophical Papers II$
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Nathan Salmon

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199284726

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199284726.001.0001

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Two Conceptions of Semantics (2004) *

Two Conceptions of Semantics (2004) *

(p.340) 19 Two Conceptions of Semantics (2004)*
Content, Cognition, and Communication

Nathan Salmon (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter distinguishes two conceptions of semantics. On the ‘expression centered’ conception, semantic attributes (designation, content, truth value, meaning) are attributed to expression types (relative to such parameters as contexts, times, and/or possible worlds). On the ‘speech-act centered’ conception (evidently the currently favored), semantic attributes are attributed instead to such things as utterances or tokens. The former conception allows for the possibility of widespread and even systematic deviation between what a speaker means or designates (etc.) and what his/her words mean or designate. The latter conception is more reductionist in spirit. The expression centered conception is defended against the alternative conception.

Keywords:   expression, semantics, speaker, speech

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