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date: 18 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This article discusses how assertion is an illocutionary act. Once assertion is taken to be an illocutionary act, the question arises of how it relates to other illocutionary acts. This is the main issue tackled in this article, and it is two-fold. It examines how assertion relates to illocutionary acts that are in some way similar to it, at least as to their involving the utterance of plain declarative sentences; and how assertion and its cognates should best be collocated within the whole gamut of illocutionary acts. The former exploration will rely upon a largely intuitive grasp of the “family” of assertive illocutionary acts; the latter will involve both a fuller characterization of assertion and reconsideration of illocutionary act classification. The article then turns to the question of the role or rank of assertion among illocutionary acts: whether it is “just” one among them, or there are reasons for granting it some primacy or some special function.

Keywords: assertion, illocution, illocutionary act, classification, rank

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