The Speech Act of Naming in Fictional Discourse


acts of naming
proper names
Manuel García-Carpintero



This paper argues that García-Carpintero’s theory of proper names (the Mill-Frege theory) and his theory of fiction-making do not work well together. On the one hand, according to the Mill-Frege theory, proper names have metalinguistic senses which are involved in ancillary presuppositions. These metalinguistic senses and the name-bearing relation depend on acts of naming that create words for referential use. On the other hand, his theory of fiction-making claims that when the creator of a fiction uses sentences, she is not really performing the speech acts that one typically performs with those uses in default contexts; instead, they are merely pretended acts. Specifically, when she uses the sentences that typically perform speech acts of naming in default contexts, she merely pretends to do so. In this situation, these acts do not establish a name-bearing relation and thus these acts do not have a semantic significance. This result entails a flawed conceptualization of the speech act of fiction-making; specifically, one where such speech act is rendered defective.



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