Philosophy Dictionary of Arguments

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Use theory, philosophy of language: the term was formed following a thesis of L. Wittgenstein in his Philosophical Investigations, § 43. (Original in German) You can explain the use of the word "meaning" for a large class of cases - though not in all cases of its use - as the meaning of a word is its use in the language." - This thesis applies to words and cannot be extended to whole sentences. See also use, word meaning, sentence meaning, language acquisition, meaning theory, reference.

Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Item Summary Meta data
FodorVsUse Theory/Austin: it does not provide a complete grammar. It also does not show the semantic influence of the grammatical forms. There is no decision procedure as to which dictionary entry applies in a given sentence: then it is not possible to decide: when two words have the same use, when there is abuse.
II 118
Use Theory/Ryle: Sentences have no manners of use! Therefore sentences are a priori excluded from the study of philosophical language analysis. In addition: sentences do not belong at all to language, but only to speaking.
II 121
Use Theory/FodorVsUse Theory: it cannot answer: 1. Under what conditions do two words or expressions have the same use? - 2. How to distinguish use from abuse? - 3. What does it depend on whether a word has more than one usage? - VsVs: the use theory could answer with language rules: two expressions have the same use if they follow the same rules. But that is not possible: > language rules.
II 122
Use Theory/FodorVsUse Theory: Variant: considers the circumstances because the semantic and syntactic properties are not sufficient - but the circumstances cannot be systematized.
II 123
Use Theory/FodorVsUse Theory: does not provide a theory of meaning, but only a characterization of the data that would be relevant for such a theory. Behavior provides only empirical material for semantic research.
III 223
Use Theory/Fodor: must distinguish between object language ((s) as data material) and statements of the native speaker about his/her use (metalanguage). - Problem: if the linguist wants to distinguish between true and false statements, he has to know a lot about the language beforehand - ((s) >Radical Interpretation).

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Jerry Fodor
Ernest Lepore
Holism. A Shoppers Guide Cambridge USA Oxford UK 1992

Fodor I
Jerry Fodor
"Special Sciences (or The Disunity of Science as a Working Hypothesis", Synthese 28 (1974), 97-115
Kognitionswissenschaft, Dieter Münch, Frankfurt/M. 1992

Fodor II
Jerry Fodor
Jerrold J. Katz
Sprachphilosophie und Sprachwissenschaft
Linguistik und Philosophie, G. Grewendorf/G. Meggle, Frankfurt/M. 1974/1995

Fodor III
Jerry Fodor
Jerrold J. Katz
The availability of what we say in: Philosophical review, LXXII, 1963, pp.55-71
Linguistik und Philosophie, G. Grewendorf/G. Meggle, Frankfurt/M. 1974/1995

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2020-06-03
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