Approaches to ‘Non-Truth-Conditional’ Meaning

  • Corinne Iten
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Pragmatics, Language and Cognition book series (PSPLC)


Although truth-conditional approaches to linguistic meaning have dominated the literature in linguistics and the philosophy of language over the last century, many theorists have recognised the existence of ‘non-truth-conditional’ expressions. This, as noted in the Strawson quote at the beginning of Chapter 1, is as true of those who are primarily interested in the abstract semantic properties of language as it is of those who focus on the meaning that sentences acquire when uttered in a context. In both cases, the most common response to the existence of linguistic expressions that aren’t amenable to truth-conditional treatment has been to supplement essentially truth-conditional frameworks with some new notion, or notions, to capture ‘non-truth-conditional’ meanings.


Truth Condition Linguistic Meaning Illocutionary Force Conventional Implicature Expressive Content 
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© Corinne Iten 2005

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  • Corinne Iten

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