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Article Dans Une Revue Philosophia Année : 2022

Abstract Events in Semantics


Here, we defend the thesis whereby the event (conceived as a mental and social abstract entity) plays a main role of sense in the meaning of certain sentences. This thesis is based on the one hand on recent work in the metaphysics of so-called “happening” entities, which has led to a distinction between concrete physical processes and abstract events, the latter being conceived as psychological constructs accounting for stabilities or changes in the world. Furthermore, we look back at the work on intentionality carried out in the Brentanian school at the turn of the 20th century and we relate abstract events to the mental states of affairs studied by Twardowski but which were then neglected by contemporary philosophers of language. Abstract events, thus characterized, have the contingent property of occurring, when facts obtain and realize (or satisfy) them. We suggest that the facts in question (qualified by us as “occurrence-makers”) correspond to Wittgensteinian states of affairs (giving them a connectionist rather than a relational interpretation).
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Dates et versions

hal-04009418 , version 1 (01-03-2023)



Gilles Kassel. Abstract Events in Semantics. Philosophia, 2022, 50 (4), pp.1913-1930. ⟨10.1007/s11406-022-00498-9⟩. ⟨hal-04009418⟩
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