Davidson's philosophy of language
DOI link for Davidson's philosophy of language
Davidson's philosophy of language book
Donald Davidson agrees with W. V. Quine that linguistic phenomena should be investigated without making the sorts of presuppositions found in Gottlob Frege and Bertrand Russell. General philosophical knowledge about meaning – an explication of concept of meaning – can thus be summed up by describing the form of a theory of meaning, and how such a theory is confirmed. The use of brackets to indicate grouping has been suppressed. Davidson's way forward is to reject the idea that the meaning of a sentence should itself be an entity of some kind. For Davidson, the principal evidence available to the radical interpreter will be manifestations of the native's holding-true a certain sentence in a certain circumstance. Davidson's theory of language has been extraordinary fertile, setting philosophers and linguists to work on finding ways to interpret within a Davidsonian theory of truth-conditions recalcitrant beasts as adverbs, indexicals and demonstratives, tense, mood, and the propositional attitudes.