What do speakers mean? What do they convey? What do they reveal? How do they invite us to think? Communication exploits conventional rules, deliberate choices, and many other faculties. How? A common answer invokes simple meanings and general ways to reinterpret them, as in H. P. Grice's theory of conversational implicature. Lepore and Stone show such answers are unsatisfactory. Instead, they argue that language provides diverse tools for making ideas public, and that communication recruits distinct kinds of imagination. The work synthesizes results from across cognitive science into a profoundly new account of meaning in language.
Ernie Lepore is Board of Governors, Professor of Philosophy and an Acting Director of the Center for Cognitive Science at Rutgers. Matthew Stone is Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Center for Cognitive Science at Rutgers.
I: THE LANDSCAPE OF PRAGMATIC INFERENCE; II: THE INTERPRETIVE EFFECTS OF LINGUISTIC RULES; III: VARIETIES OF INTERPRETIVE REASONING; IV: THEORIZING SEMANTICS AND PRAGMATICS