Article/Publication Details

How to Make the Concepts Clear: Searle’s Discussion with Derrida

(Original title: How to Make the Concepts Clear: Searle’s Discussion with Derrida)
Organon F, 2012, vol. 19, Supplementary Issue 2, pp. 161-169.
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Abstract

The first part of the paper deals with the key question of the Searle-Derrida debate, namely, with the question of conceptual “exactness” and applicability of concepts to facts. I argue that Derrida makes a strict distinction between the exactness in the realm of concepts and the exactness in the realm of facts. Supposing that it is not correct to argue against him – as Searle does – that concepts cannot be exact because there are no strict boundaries between facts. The second part of the paper deals with a distinction used by John Searle: The distinction between linguistic meaning and speaker’s meaning. According to Searle linguistic meaning is constituted outside a particular context of use whereas speaker’s meaning is embedded in a particular situation. I argue this distinction is problematic as far as any meaning is constituted in a particular utterance and in a particular context of use.

Keywords

background, concept, linguistic meaning, speaker’s meaning, utterance

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