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Reading: Meaning, Self-Reference & Verifiability


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Meaning, Self-Reference & Verifiability


Luc Batty

London School of Economics and Political Science; University of Warwick, GB
About Luc
MSc student in the Philosophy of Science (2014-2015). He holds a BA in Philosophy (2010-2013). His main interests are the Philosophy of Logic, Mathematics, and Language.
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The Verifiability Criterion of Meaning judges a sentence to be meaningful if and only if it is either verifiable empirically or is a logical truth or falsehood. This paper points out an issue with the verificationist project of employing the criterion to distinguish between meaningful sentences and nonsense. In particular, it is argued that the criterion is only successful if it can partition the set of all sentences into the meaningless and the meaningful, which is an impossible task. As such, the criterion is rejected as an inadequate arbiter of meaningfulness.

How to Cite: Batty, L., 2015. Meaning, Self-Reference & Verifiability. Rerum Causae, 7(2), pp.129–141.
Published on 01 Jul 2015.
Peer Reviewed


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