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Single Idea 21622

[catalogued under 7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 9. Vagueness / c. Vagueness as epistemic]

Full Idea

A common complaint against the epistemic view is that to postulate a matter of fact in borderline cases is to suppose, incoherently, that the meanings of our words draw a line where our use of them does not.

Gist of Idea

If there is a true borderline of which we are ignorant, this drives a wedge between meaning and use

Source

Timothy Williamson (Vagueness [1994], 7.5)

A Reaction

This doesn't necessarily seem to require the view that the meaning of words is their usage. Just that if there is one consensus on usage, it seem unlikely that there is a different underlying reality about the true meaning. Externalist meanings?

Book Reference

Williamson,Timothy: 'Vagueness' [Routledge 1996], p.205