It is widely acknowledged that metaethical expressivism requires taking on some substantive commitments in the theory of meaning. Those commitments, however, do not require abandoning orthodox views in compositional semantics. Instead, they should be understood as bearing on one aspect of the metasemantic project, namely that of interpreting a compositional semantic theory—what is here called ‘semantic hermeneutics’. The nature of this project is spelled out and distinguished from that of explaining why words have the meanings that they do. The chapter concludes with an outline of a hermeneutics for orthodox compositional semantics that does justice to the expressivist’s distinctive views in the philosophy of mind.
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