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Fixing Reference$
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Imogen Dickie

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198755616

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198755616.001.0001

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Perceptual Demonstratives

Perceptual Demonstratives

(p.114) 4 Perceptual Demonstratives
Fixing Reference

Imogen Dickie

Oxford University Press

This chapter explains aboutness-fixing for perceptual demonstrative thoughts—thoughts of the kind standardly made available by attentional perceptual contact with ordinary objects, and standardly expressed using demonstratives ‘this’ and ‘that’. The first half combines empirical findings about perceptual attention with the ‘aboutness and justification’ principle from Chapter 2 and the account of justification for our most basic information marshalling from Chapter 3 to give a new kind of acquaintance-theoretic model of perceptual demonstrative aboutness-fixing. The rest of the chapter applies this model to a range of issues in the area: the connection between demonstrative reference and sortal classification; Evans’s questions about how much of an object a perceptual link that enables perceptual demonstrative thought must put the subject in contact with, and how direct the link must be; the problem of empty demonstratives; the debate between representationalism and relationalism about perception.

Keywords:   demonstrative, acquaintance, attention, sortal, perceptual link, Evans, empty demonstrative, representationalism, relationalism

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