Formal Semantics and Philosophical Logic

Alex Davies (University of Tartu): Speech act pluralism: homeomerous or radical?

Speaker: Alex Davies (University of Tartu)
Title: Speech act pluralism: homeomerous or radical?
Time: 16:00 - 17:30
Location: ILLC seminar room, F1.15


Since 1997, Herman Cappelen and Ernie Lepore have defended a thesis they call"speech act pluralism". According to speech act pluralism, when you utter a sentence you do not just say one thing (the content of the sentence in context). You say many different things. They defend this thesis by appealing to the fact that for a single utterance of a sentence, there can be many true indirect speech reports of that utterance, whose that-clauses have different contents. I argue that the evidence provided by Cappelen and Lepore doesn't support the kind of pluralism they think it does. It supports only a homeomerous pluralism, not the radical kind they favour.