Date: 2 December 2015
Rae Langton, Professor of Philosophy at Cambridge University
What we do with words can help or hinder justice in ways that exploit rules of accommodation: a process of adjustment that tends to make speech acts count as correct play (Lewis). The attitudes of hearers assist speakers in two ways: as felicity conditions for the speech act (uptake, authority, failure to block presuppositions); and as effects of the speech act (beliefs, desires, and emotions). There are implications for hate speech, and for hearers' responsibility, if we do things together with words.
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