Subsentential Speech Acts: Between Ellipsis and Unenriched Situated Illocution

  • Joanna Odrowąż-Sypniewska Department of Analytic Philosophy, Institute of Philosophy at the University of Warsaw;
Keywords: case-matching; ellipsis; moderate relativism; subsentential speech acts; unenriched subsentential illocutions


In this paper, I analyse the standpoint according to which alleged subsentential speech acts are in fact ellipses. I argue that extralinguistic context usually does not determine unique linguistic expression which could be regarded as the elided fragment. Next, I critically examine the view which regards subsentential utterances as unenriched situated illocutions and claim that it is not adequate, since it does not satisfactorily explain why such acts are successful. Finally, I propose a pragmatics-oriented view based on Recanati’s moderate relativism. Contrary to Recanati, I postulate unarticulated constituents in the content of subsentential utterances. I argue that this view can disarm the objection from case-matching which is one of the most powerful objections against all pragmatics-oriented views.