Emotional states and linguistic events
A study of conceptual misconnections
This paper intends to contribute to the evaluation of the project of analyzing speech act concepts in terms of mental state concepts, by examining Searle's and Vanderveken's proposed analyses of certain types of illocutionary acts as expressions of corresponding types of emotional states. It is argued that the proposed analyses are all defective, that the assumptions about underlying speech act/mental state parallelisms from which their initial plausibility might be taken to derive are themselves mistaken, and that the fact that they have been proposed at all betrays insufficient attention to the distinction between semanti-cally and pragmatically determined aspects of utterance interpretation. It is concluded that these results disturb both the overall structure of Searle's and Vanderveken's theory of speech acts, and the logic of several other similarly reductionist claims in the philosophy of language.