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Zeitschrift für Sprachwissenschaft

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CiteScore 2017: 0.38

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Volume 34, Issue 2


Konzepte des Lügens

Jörg Meibauer
Published Online: 2015-11-02 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/zfs-2015-0010


Although lying is an action which is fundamental for human communication, there are not many analyses that treat lying from a linguistic point of view. This paper treats lying on the background of recent discussions of the semantics-pragmatics interface. On the one hand, lying has to do with truth and falsehood; since these are semantic notions, there is a semantic side of lying. On the other hand, lying has to do with the speech act of assertion, and this is a genuine pragmatic notion. Semantic and pragmatic aspects go into a proper definition of lying as proposed in this paper. On the basis of typical scenarios it is shown how lying may be distinguished from deception and misleading. It is argued that lying is an act of verbal deception; however, deception has not to be implemented into the definition of lying as a separate condition. This line of argument runs against recent approaches in the philosophy of language (cf. Carson 2010) that defend the view that lying does not include deception. Furthermore, at least some cases of misleading in the sense of Saul (2012) may be analysed as cases of untruthful implicatures. The latter are considered as a part of the total act of lying (see Meibauer 2005, Meibauer 2011, Meibauer 2014a, Meibauer 2014b, and Meibauer 2014c). In the course of this paper further acts such as so-called bald-faced lies, selfless assertions, and bullshitting are discussed and related to the overall topic of lying.

Keywords: lying; deception; semantics-pragmatics interface; misleading; bald-faced lies; bullshitting

About the article

Published Online: 2015-11-02

Published in Print: 2015-11-01

Citation Information: Zeitschrift für Sprachwissenschaft, Volume 34, Issue 2, Pages 175–212, ISSN (Online) 1613-3706, ISSN (Print) 0721-9067, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/zfs-2015-0010.

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