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Assertion and Conditionals (Cambridge Studies in Philosophy) [Paperback]

Anthony Appiah

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Book Description

August 28, 2008 0521071291 978-0521071291 Reissue
This book develops in detail the simple idea that assertion is the expression of belief. In it the author puts forward a version of 'probabilistic semantics' which acknowledges that we are not perfectly rational, and which offers a significant advance in generality on theories of meaning couched in terms of truth conditions. It promises to challenge a number of entrenched and widespread views about the relations of language and mind. Part I presents a functionalist account of belief, worked through a modified form of decision theory. In Part II the author generates a theory of meaning in terms of 'assertibility conditions', whereby to know the meaning of an assertion is to know the belief it expresses.

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Book Description

This book develops in detail the simple idea that assertion is the expression of belief. In it the author puts forward a version of 'probabilistic semantics' which acknowledges that we are not perfectly rational, and which offers a significant advance in generality on theories of meaning couched in terms of truth conditions.

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More About the Author

Kwame Anthony Appiah, the president of the PEN American Center, is the author of The Ethics of Identity, Thinking It Through: An Introduction to Contemporary Philosophy, The Honor Code and the prize-winning Cosmopolitanism. Raised in Ghana and educated in England, he has taught philosophy on three continents and is currently a professor at Princeton University. He maintains a website at www.appiah.net.

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