Single Idea 2559

[catalogued under 19. Language / C. Assigning Meanings / 6. Truth-Conditions Semantics]

Full Idea

A theory of meaning, for Davidson, is not an assemblage of "analyses" of the meanings of individual terms, but rather an understanding of the inferential relations between sentences.

Gist of Idea

Davidson's theory of meaning focuses not on terms, but on relations between sentences


Richard Rorty (Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature [1980], 6.1)

Book Reference

Rorty,Richard: 'Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature' [Blackwell 1980], p.260

A Reaction

Put that way, the influence of Frege on Davidson is obvious. Purely algebraic expressions can have inferential relations, using variables and formal 'sentences'.