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Re: RDF and speech acts

From: Graham Klyne <GK@ninebynine.org>
Date: Wed, 26 Nov 2003 09:26:41 +0000
Message-Id: <>
To: Garret Wilson <garret@globalmentor.com>, www-rdf-interest@w3.org

At 17:25 24/11/03 -0800, Garret Wilson wrote:
>I'm adding loads of fun to RDF by reading Searle's _Speech Acts_. In 
>particular, his discussion of predication (Chapter 5, page 97) is 
>interesting---he claims that while a subject can "refer" to a particular, 
>predication does not in the same sense involve "referring" to a universal.
>I've discussed on this list the need to identify the resource an RDF 
>literal represents using, for example, a URI; RDF does not allow this. I 
>have considered the distinction between resource nodes and literal nodes 
>to be of syntactic convenience only. However, upon reflection it seems 
>that historically literal nodes have been used to represent universals 
>(e.g. "red" or "heavy")---although of late the RDF community seems to be 
>encouraging URI-identified resources for this purpose---and resource nodes 
>have been used to represent particulars. There is a certain empirical 
>parallel, at least. Searle's explanations the analysis more interesting.
>My question is ancillary: Can someone recommend a reading list that 
>addresses the intersection of the philosophy of language, semiotics, RDF, 
>and the semantic web?

I'd recommend Quine's Ontological Relativity and Other Essays ... I found 
the discussion of reference of terms in one of the early essays to be 
particularly enlightening ... my copy's mysteriously gone into hiding right 
now, so I can't be more specific.  But there's a reference and more comment 


Graham Klyne
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Received on Wednesday, 26 November 2003 05:24:15 UTC

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