Philosophy of Language
Speaking a language is a complex form of behavior that plays a rich and varied role in human life. The philosophy of language seeks to give a philosophical account of this phenomenon, focusing on such questions as: How does language gain meaning? How does it differ from animal communication? Is language in some sense innate? Other topics to be addressed include: theories of reference and truth; the relation between language, thought, and reality; and theories of metaphor. Readings from philosophers and linguists will include works by Frege, Russell, Wittgenstein, Chomsky, and Pinker. (Previous course in philosophy or waiver; PHIL 0180 is also strongly recommended)3 hrs lect.