Actual vs. counterfactual dispositional metasemantics : a reply to Andow
Philosophia : Philosophical Quarterly of Israel
Dispositions, Metasemantics, Philosophy of language
In previous work (Johnson & Nado 2014) we proposed a sketch of a disposition-based metasemantictheory, which has recently been criticized by James Andow (2016). Andow claims, first, that our dispositionalmetasemantics threatens to render the meanings of our words indeterminate, and second, that our viewrisks a 'semantic apocalypse' according to which most of our terms fail to refer. We respond to Andow'scriticism by modifying and expanding our orignial, underspecified view. In particular, we propose that a viewthat appeals to actual dispositions rather than counterfactual dispositions avoids many difficulties that might confront a disposition-based metasemantics - issues even beyond those that Andow raises.
Copyright © 2017, Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht. Access to external full text or publisher's version may require subscription.
Johnson, M., & Nado, J. (2017). Actual vs. counterfactual dispositional metasemantics: A reply to Andow. Philosophia: Philosophical Quarterly of Israel, 45(2), 717-734. doi: 10.1007/s11406-017-9840-1