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Explicit Performatives

Tracing back performativity to the normative dimension of constative speech
Tectum,  2008, 384 Pages

ISBN 978-3-8288-9815-8

34,90 € incl. VAT
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In our daily life we usually draw a distinction between speaking and acting, between our words and our deeds. But in fact, for an essential part of social life speaking means acting, our words are our deeds: We make statements or claims, we promise things, we give orders or warn others, we thank and congratulate, we adjourn meetings, open buffets, and we even declare wars, etc. All these actions can be performed simply by saying that we perform them. We can warn simply by saying „I warn you“, we can adjourn a meeting simply by saying „I adjourn the meeting“, etc. This book is about such utterances where saying and doing coincide: Explicit performatives. It is about the question of how saying can be constitutive of a doing. Explicit performative utterances are one of the most difficult problems in the philosophy of language and speech act theory. They touch upon the demarcation line between semantics and pragmatics, and, even more, they involve matters of social reality and the theory of action. Andreas Runkel offers a thorough overview of the debate about performativity, presents a critical discussion of existing analyses and then sets out to develop a new account of the phenomenon of explicit performative utterances.