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Subjectivity in Language and Thought

05.19.2017 – 05.20.2017

Event Summary

Expressions whose meaning have a distinctly subjective dimension, most notably predicates of personal taste, have received increased attention by linguists and philosophers in the last decade or so. In addition to the extensively debated phenomenon of faultless disagreement, the fact that across languages certain attitude verbs such as "find" require their complement to be subjective in a distinct way raises unique conceptual and empirical challenges to a comprehensive theory of natural language meaning. Several researchers have explored issues about subjective expressions beyond their significance for the relativism-vs-contextualism debate that is so prominent in linguistics and philosophy of language, including: the types of subjective meanings that natural languages encode, the subjective dimensions of modality, and the evidential dimension of subjective predicates and attitude verbs. The aim of this workshop was to continue this trend by bringing together innovative perspectives on subjective language and thought in an interdisciplinary setting.

The workshop was conducted as part of the Subjectivity in Language and Thought research project at the Neubauer Collegium.