Edited by Manuel Padilla Cruz and Agnieszka Piskorska
[Pragmatics & Cognition 28:2] 2021
► pp. 416–440
Why truth matters
When relevance meets truthfulness
This article is about truth and relevance. It first discusses the concept of truth in formal semantics and pragmatics, mainly the Gricean, neo-Gricean and post-Gricean approaches to meaning. What is particularly crucial is the relationship between pragmatic meaning and truth, since, from a Gricean perspective, meaning is defined as non-truth-conditional, which in turn raises the question of how truth can be a pragmatic issue. A second issue is the relationship between truth and relevance, as developed in relevance theory. A third key point is how truth matters as regards the common ground. In order to illustrate how truth is connected to the common ground, bullshit, post-truth, fake news and lies are discussed, which raise the issue of how truth can be defeated in verbal communication, and mainly how false assumptions can be entertained as true.
- 2.Truth and meaning
- 3.Truth in Gricean and neo-Gricean pragmatics
- 4.Relevance and truth in communication
- 5.Truth and the common ground
- 6.The defeat of truth in verbal communication
- 7.What does the common ground consist of?