criticisms of his commitment to private Mentalese
items, Fodor makes a
Processing information and representation involves manipulating symbols, which can form the language of thought, or mentalese
Whether or not the neo-Gricean is correct that p-meaning can be defined in terms of t-meaning and then t-meaning defined in terms of the causal-functional roles of mentalese
expressions, it is apt to seem obvious that separate accounts are needed of p-meaning and t-meaning, since p-meaning, unlike t-meaning, must be understood at least partly in terms of communication.
Pinker (1995) called it mentalese
and defined it in the glossary of his book as follows: "The hypothetical language of thought, or representation of concepts and propositions in the brain, in which ideas, including the meanings of words and sentences, are couched.
The recent focus by Dretske, Fodor, Pinker, and others, on a semantics for mentalese
exists along side followers of Grice, who focus on the role speaker intent plays in determining the meaning of natural language.
She could believe Mark Twain is the author of Huckleberry Finn by accepting the mentalese
sentence "Mark Twain is the author of Huckleberry Finn.
If thought coincides with language, there is in each of us one true language, and this is not the English or German with which we may have grown up but mentalese
, (5) or the language of thought.
There is still no consensus on whether it is merely a stifled form of language or a kind of mentalese
preceding articulation, a line of inquiry that leads to an enduring dilemma in the philosophy of language: the status of thinking in words.
As Pinker (1994) and many others have observed, the mentalese
(or language of thought) must be very different from the structure of languages used to exchange information when we employ our senses as a medium.
Nor can the contemporary Cartesian advert to the tokening of Mentalese
symbols (or to brain states).
And finally, he argues, the expressive power of Mentalese
must be very rich, for one of the things we use it to do is to learn the vocabulary of our natural language.
The primary reason for Carruthers's revision of the orthodox Fodorean position, a position he largely accepts, is that introspection suggests that our conscious thought takes place in natural language rather than Mentalese