Normativity and Community

Allan Gibbard

in Meaning and Normativity

Published in print December 2012 | ISBN: 9780199646074
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191741968 | DOI:
Normativity and Community

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We can explain how meaning might be normative in a way and yet dispositional by distinguishing properties from concepts. The concept of meaning is normative and non-naturalistic, whereas the property is natural and might be dispositional. Moore suggests that the concept good is non-naturalistic whereas the property of being good is natural. (The term ‘natural’ here does not mean of high explanatory primacy, as with David Lewis.) Whether meaning is solipsistic or communal concerns the property, whereas whether it is normative concerns the concept. A Kripke-like example illustrates this. Communal and solipsistic theorists of meaning disagree about what dispositions comprise meaning properties, and this issue is normative, a matter of what sentences to accept. One might want naturalistic concepts of meaning for some purposes and a normative concept for others.

Keywords: meaning; concept; normative; natural; dispositional; solipsistic; communal; Kripke

Chapter.  11657 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Language

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