Philosophy | Special Topics in Philosophy
P470 | 28109 | Ludwig

Topic: Philosophy of Language

Description: The fundamental questions of the philosophy of language
are how language relates to reality, on the one hand, and to the
mind, on the other. We will address these questions through a survey
of central areas of investigation in the philosophy language. We
will read a number of classical papers on the topics of reference
and description, truth and meaning, speech acts, metaphor, names and
demonstratives, propositional attitudes, and interpretation and
language. The primary readings will be drawn from an anthology
edited by A. P. Martinich. I will supplement these at some points
with articles made available on-line.  The course will provide
students with an understanding of a range of central issues in the
philosophy of language and their development in analytic
philosophy.  We will select some topic for more in-depth examination
in the last quarter of the course.

Requirements: Reading the assigned material, class attendance (more
than six unexcused absences will result in a failing grade), four 3-
page papers (20%), one 10 to15-page final paper (40%), and a two-
part take-home examination (40%).  The papers will be graded on
cogency, originality of argumentation, and clarity of writing. The
examination is an essay examination and will be graded on the basis
of clarity and correctness.

Required text: The Philosophy of Language, ed., A. P. Martinich, 5th
edition, Oxford University Press: 2008