On Knowing One's Own Language

James Higginbotham

in Knowing Our Own Minds

Published in print October 2000 | ISBN: 9780199241408
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191598692 | DOI:
 On Knowing One's Own Language

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The paper challenges Smith's contention that disquotational knowledge amounts to substantial knowledge, arguing that nothing more than such knowledge, thinly conceived, is needed to account for first‐personal knowledge of one's meanings. However, a distinction is offered between the kind of authority that attaches to disquotational claims and that which attaches to our intuitive judgements about what we mean. The latter may fall short of genuine knowledge while still involving entitlement and a presumption of correctness. Each species of authority is assessed with respect to issues in Smith's paper, and the view is defended that neither species is threatened by externalism. The extent of our linguistic knowledge is further explored with respect to a particular range of linguistic data.

Keywords: disquotational knowledge; entitlement; externalism; first‐person authority; meaning

Chapter.  5786 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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