Philosophy | Philosophy and Language
P320 | 16850 | Savion


What are languages? How do we derive meanings from sentences? Are
meanings “fixed” objectively, conventionally by a community of
speakers, or are they “in the head”?  Is meaning independent on an
act of communication? What is the place of truth and of social
convention in a theory of meaning? Are conversations governed by
logical rules?  Do names have meanings, or just references?
This course focuses on the major conceptual tools and ideas used in
developing theories of meaning. We will read a number of original
writings, mostly by modern philosophers.

Knowledge of elementary logic is helpful, but not necessary.  Final
grade is based on several essay assignments, texts, and class
participation.