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Incomplete Understanding of Concepts
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Philosophy.
2017 (English)In: Oxford handbooks onlineArticle in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article discusses the thesis that a subject can have a concept, think thoughts containing it, that she incompletely understands. The central question concerns how to construe the distinction between having a concept and understanding it. Two important versions of the thesis are distinguished: a metasemantic version and an epistemic version. According to the first, the subject may have concept C without being a fully competent user, in virtue of deference to other speakers or to the world. According to the second, the subject may have a concept without being able to provide a proper explication of it. It is argued that whereas the epistemic version is plausible, the metasemantic version faces some challenges. First, it needs to be explained precisely how deference enables a speaker to have C. Second, metasemantic incomplete understanding is in tension with the idea that concepts serve to capture the subject’s cognitive perspective.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017.
Keywords [en]
incomplete understanding, concept, meaning, Tyler Burge, metasemantics, deference, explication, conceptions, cognitive role
National Category
Philosophy
Research subject
Philosophy
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-141011DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199935314.013.49OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-141011DiVA, id: diva2:1085208
Available from: 2017-03-28 Created: 2017-03-28 Last updated: 2018-09-18Bibliographically approved

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