Is Radical Millianism Worth Its Methodological Costs? A Critique of Jonathan Berg's Theory of Direct Belief

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    Abstract

    This article focuses on Jonathan Berg’s Theory of Direct Belief as presented in his 2012 book Direct Belief. An Essay on the Semantics, Pragmatics, and Metaphysics of Belief. After regimenting Berg’s key theses and discussing the sources of their general unpopularity (which is acknowledged by Berg), I proceed to reconstruct Berg’s book-length argument for his conclusions. I here make explicit that Berg relies on a range of strong meta-semantic principles and assumptions. I conclude that even if Berg has brought considerable methodological rigor to the on-going debate over the semantics of natural language attitude ascriptions, and has proposed an elegant and consistent theory, he has not offered compelling reasons to accept his preferred methodological constraints in light of the difficulties, which those constraints impose upon attitude ascription semantics.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalPhilosophia
    Volume45
    Issue number1
    Pages (from-to)73-100
    ISSN0048-3893
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2017

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