, Volume 160, Issue 3, pp 465-476
Date: 31 Aug 2011

The pain of rejection, the sweetness of revenge

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I focus on Richard’s repudiation of Frege’s doctrine of the primacy of assertion and his proposal that a sui generis speech act/attitude of denial, or rejection,

The main chapters of When Truth Gives Out speak interchangeably of ‘denial’ and ‘rejection’, but the latter also features as a term for a third sui generis form of speech act in Appendix 1. I’ll frame the discussion to follow in terms of ‘rejection’ reserving ‘denial’—I’ll usually say: “proper denial”—for a form of illocution of P appropriate when P is false in the same way and to just the extent that the assertion of P is appropriate when P is true.

is needed to address both the phenomenon of borderline-case vagueness and the semantic paradoxes.

I

Richard’s driving thought about vagueness is encapsulated in the following passage:

If Jo is a borderline case of baldness, he is not bald. If so, it is a fact that Jo is not bald, and one can state that fact by seriously uttering

  • (0) Jo is not bald

  • And if Jo is a borderline case of baldn