1932

Abstract

Propositionalism is the view that all intensional constructions (including nominal and clausal attitude reports) can be interpreted as relations to truth-evaluable propositional content. While propositionalism has long been silently assumed in semantics and the philosophy of language, it has only recently entered center stage in linguistic research. This article surveys the properties of intensional constructions, which require the introduction of fine-grained semantic values (intensions). It contrasts two ways of obtaining such values: through the introduction of either Russellian propositions or Frege-Church-style senses. The article identifies propositionalism with a specific variant of the Russellian strategy, reviews key arguments for propositionalism, and compares familiar varieties of propositionalism on the basis of instructive examples. It closes by discussing various challenges for propositionalism and suggesting a generalization of propositionalism that meets some of these challenges. Because of the association of propositions with semantic information, the article also addresses the more general question of whether all information content (including mental and pictorial content) is propositional.

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2024-01-16
2024-04-17
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