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Goldstein, Laurence (2009)
Publisher: Springer Netherlands
Languages: English
Types: Article
Subjects: B
I examine how context is a determinant of the content of a speaker’s utterance. My concern is, obviously, with utterances in situ, but what may not be quite so obvious is why it is particularly profitable to study comic utterances. What is distinctive about situation comedy is that one form of humour that it features springs from the influence of context (situation). Much situation comedy is crude, barely amusing and completely devoid of philosophical interest. However, there is one element of the best-written sitcoms, the study of which beautifully illustrates a deep problem for cognitive science, throws a flood of light on central themes in Wittgenstein’s late, and late late, philosophy and provides the key to the solution of a number of outstanding problems in the philosophy of language. These are the large claims defended in this essay.
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