Robert M. Martin

Robert M. Martin is Professor of Philosophy (retired) at Dalhousie University, Halifax.

  • The Meaning Of Language, Second Edition

    Robert M. Martin and Heidi Savage

    A new edition of a comprehensive introduction to the philosophy of language, substantially updated and reorganized.

    The philosophy of language aims to answer a broad range of questions about the nature of language, including “what is a language?” and “what is the source of meaning?” This accessible comprehensive introduction to the philosophy of language begins with the most basic properties of language and only then proceeds to the phenomenon of meaning. The second edition has been significantly expanded and reorganized, putting the original content in a contemporary context and offering substantial new material, with extended discussions and entirely new chapters.

    After establishing the basics, the book discusses general criteria for an adequate theory of meaning, takes a first pass at describing meaning at an abstract level, and distinguishes between meaning and other related phenomena. Building on this, the book then addresses various specific theories of meaning, beginning with early foundational theories and proceeding to more contemporary ones. New to this edition are expanded discussions of Chomsky's work and compositional semantics, among other topics, and new chapters on such subjects as propositions, Montague grammar, and contemporary theories of language. Each chapter has technical terms in bold, followed by definitions, and offers a list of main points and suggested further readings. The book is suitable for use in undergraduate courses in philosophy and linguistics. Some background in philosophy is assumed, but knowledge of philosophy of language is not necessary.

    • Paperback $35.00 £27.00
  • The Meaning Of Language

    The Meaning Of Language

    Robert M. Martin

    Philosophy of language is one of the hardest areas for the beginning student; it is full of difficult questions technical arguments, and jargon. Written in a straightforward and explanatory way and filled with examples, this text provides a comprehensive introduction to the field, suitable for students with no background in the philosophy of language or formal logic. The eleven chapters in the book's first part take up a variety of matters connected to questions about what language is for - what meaning has to do with people's ideas and intentions, and with social communication. Included are chapters on the innateness controversy, the private language argument, the possibility of animal and machine language, language as rule-governed or conventional behavior, and the speech act theory. In the second part, thirteen chapters concentrate on what language is about; treating sense and reference, extensionality, truth conditions, and the theories of proper names, definite descriptions, indexicals, general terms, and psychological attributions. Many recent books and courses in the philosophy of language treat the issues and approaches covered in the first or second part of this book; however, this is the first time they are presented together (although either part may be read and/or taught independently). The book's style is pedagogic, not polemical. It shows students how much has been accomplished by philosophers of language in this century while making them keenly aware of the fundamental controversies that remain.

    A Bradford Book.

    • Hardcover $22.50 £17.95
    • Paperback $35.00 £27.00