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Meaning Diminished – Toward Metaphysically Modest Semantics - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Meaning Diminished: Toward Metaphysically Modest Semantics

Kenneth A. Taylor


This book examines the dialectical role of semantic analysis within metaphysical inquiry. It argues that semantic analysis ought to be modest in its metaphysical pretensions in the sense that linguistic and conceptual analysis should not be expected to yield deep insight into either what exists or the nature of what exists. The argument turns on distinctions among narrowly linguistic semantics in the generative tradition and two varieties of broadly philosophical semantics which correspond to broad approaches to semantically infused metaphysical inquiry. In particular it distinguishes ideation ... More

Keywords: semantics, metaphysics, metasemantics, referentialist semantics, ideational semantics, narrowly linguistic semantics

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2019 Print ISBN-13: 9780198803447
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2019 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198803447.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Kenneth A. Taylor, author
Henry Waldgrave Stuart Professor of Philosophy, Stanford University