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“Constructions of meaning: semantics, interpretation, argumentation”
Workshop in compared philosophy (India and the medieval West):
“Constructions of meaning: semantics, interpretation, argumentation”

On 25th and 26th February, a comparative philosophy workshop was held in the Pondicherry Centre of the EFEO, convened by Hugo David, Vincent Eltschinger (EPHE) and Irène Rosier-Catach (EPHE / CNRS).

This workshop followed a first comparative workshop held in May, 2017 at the Collège de France in Paris. Specialists of the philosophical traditions of classical India and the medieval West dealt from different points of view with a question shared by both traditions, namely the problem of universals. This second workshop was conceived to jointly explore contrasting historical perspectives on questions relative to language and semantics, the importance of which is well-known both in India and in the medieval West: problems regarding the classification of signs (linguistic signs as well as non-linguistic signs), the nature of the relation of signification, multiple meanings, mental speech, the analysis of non-assertive discourse, etc. The workshop included a presentation of the contents of some important texts of both tradition, but also the reading and discussion of selected text-passages in translation. Besides the possibility to isolate parallel trajectories among historically unrelated traditions, the speakers endeavoured to grasp how these philosophical themes are articulated with major fields of reflection in classical India and the medieval West: the interpretation of religious and secular texts, grammatical and rhetorical / poetical reflection, theology, etc.