2012 Volume 29 Issue 1 Pages 38-68
The purpose of this paper is to show that the linguistic meaning of tautological sentences of the form X is X does not correspond to any propositional content and to propose an analysis based on Contextualism, in particular on Meaning Eliminativism, its most extreme form. On the one hand, the radical-pragmatic assumption, shared even by recent cognitive approaches, that X is X expresses a logical tautology leads to various paradoxes. On the other hand, the radical-semantic view that its interpretations cannot be fully calculated by universal principles suffers from theoretical shortcomings. I will argue that the simple fact that X is X consists of two applications of X to the same object provides the basis for the interpretation of X is X.