Abstract

As interesting as it is, my aim in this paper, however, is not to mark the various trends that have come and gone in the history of semantics. Rather, I consider how semantics has treated a small portion of language that involving demonstrative expressions in order to flesh out how semantics simpliciter has fallen on a mistake; or more accurately, a misdiagnosis. This misdiagnosis has either led incorrect semantic treatments of demonstratives, or has created a "shadow-sickness"; which is bound to be left untreated b)' any account semantics can give, because those accounts process machinery ill-equipped to deal with such a sickness. To push the medical metaphor a bit further, the former result of the misdiagnosis is like the doctor who, after being mislead by one of a patient's symptoms, is led to offer the wrong method of treatment. The latter result of the misdiagnosis is like the specialized doctor who, upon encountering a patient with two distinct illnesses, is misled into trying to treat both illnesses; though one happens to be outside of her specialization.

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Philosophy



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