Single Idea 21625

[catalogued under 7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 10. Vagueness / d. Vagueness as linguistic]

Full Idea

Vagueness remains even when the context is fixed. In principle, a vague word might exhibit no context dependence whatsoever. ...For example, a dispute over whether someone has left a 'heap' of sand on the floor.

Gist of Idea

The vagueness of 'heap' can remain even when the context is fixed


Timothy Williamson (Vagueness [1994], 7.7)

Book Reference

Williamson,Timothy: 'Vagueness' [Routledge 1996], p.215

A Reaction

A fairly devastating rebuttal of what seems to be David Lewis's view. He talks of something being 'smooth' depending on context.

Related Ideas

Idea 9057 Vagueness is semantic indecision: we haven't settled quite what our words are meant to express [Lewis]

Idea 9671 Whether or not France is hexagonal depends on your standards of precision [Lewis]