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Human Action, Consciousness, and Problems of Representation$
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Geeta Ramana

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780198097266

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198097266.001.0001

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Representation and Content

Representation and Content

(p.209) 8 Representation and Content
Human Action, Consciousness, and Problems of Representation

Geeta Ramana

Oxford University Press

In this chapter the nature of representation and what determines its content is elaborated upon. A few theories are considered to ‘observe that it is the intentional that is representable’. Content is radically contextual, actualized by argument and discourse, as some philosophers say, requiring us to make optimum use of our rational abilities. We see that the conditions of representation are embedded ultimately in the subject’s interpretative abilities that may nevertheless yield a viable theory of representational semantics. There is also a further discussion on how the content of speech act is determined by the context which is quite significant for successful communication. The chapter concludes with an explanation about how our environment is complex and may extend infinitely to a range of seemingly remote actions and events. Yet our situation and habitat provide a perspective which is able to translate the complexity to a pattern which helps the seemingly insignificant acquire significance.

Keywords:   representation, intentionality, propositional content, communication, ideal speech act

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