The Linguistic Turn

Tobias Rosefeldt (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin)



Metaphysicians who conceive of their project as being in continuity with the sciences usually have a post-linguistic-turn attitude towards their own discipline: They think that ‚real’ metaphysics is concerned directly with the world and should bother as little about the semantics of the sentences by which we speak about the world as physics or chemistry does. I think that there are certain parts of metaphysics where this attitude is mistaken and in which the investigation of language should play an essential role. This does not mean however that this investigation cannot be scientific. The science by which it should be guided is the science of language, i.e. linguistics. In my talk I want to follow the new general trend of applying results from linguistics to philosophical debates and show some of its applications in the realm of ontology.