Chapter published in:Implicitness: From lexis to discourse
Edited by Piotr Cap and Marta Dynel
[Pragmatics & Beyond New Series 276] 2017
► pp. 37–66
Pronouns and implicature
In this chapter I investigate how differences among pronouns are related to differences in implicature. I characterize pronouns within my foundational theory of meaning, according to which words are conventional signs of mental states, principally thoughts and concepts, and meaning consists in their expressions. Indexicals express concepts that are distinctive in the way they link to other concepts or presentations. Indexical concepts are individuated by their sortal and determiner components. Indexicals have deictic, demonstrative and anaphoric uses. Pronouns are indexical words that can be used anaphorically with nouns as antecedents. After reviewing previous findings that the distinction between reflexive and non-reflexive pronouns cannot be explained in terms of implicature or pragmatic principles, I describe a wide range of implicatures that are generated by pronoun use. Some are semantic – what Grice called “conventional implicatures”. Sentences have these uncancelable implicatures because of the specific concepts expressed by the pronouns. Pronoun use also generates a wide range of conversational or pragmatic implicatures, through both non-semantic convention and specific contextual factors.
Keywords: pronouns, conventional implicature, conversational implicature, indexicals, foundational theory of meaning
Published online: 30 June 2017
Davis, W. A.
2014 Implicature. In The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. ed. by. E. N. Zalta, Palo Alto, CA: CSLI Publications. https://benjamins.com/#catalog/journals/ps.8.2.02hau/details
Davis, Wayne A.
forthcoming) “The Property Theory and de se Attitudes.” In Reference and Representation in Thought and Language ed. by Maria de Ponte Oxford Oxford University Press
Dinneen, Francis P.
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Cited by 1 other publications
Davis, Wayne A.
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