Holism, language acquisition, and algebraic logic

Linguistics and Philosophy 25 (4):419-452 (2002)
In the first section of this paper I present a well known objection to meaning holism, according to which holism is inconsistent with natural language being learnable. Then I show that the objection fails if language acquisition includes stages of partial grasp of the meaning of at least some expressions, and I argue that standard model theoretic semantics cannot fully capture such stages. In the second section the above claims are supported through a review of current research into language acquisition. Finally, in the third section it is argued that contemporary algebraic logical systems consist in a superior formal vehicle through which to capture stages of partial grasp of meaning; this claim is supported by concrete examples.
Keywords Linguistics   Philosophy of Language   Artificial Intelligence   Computational Linguistics   Semantics   Syntax
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DOI 10.1023/A:1020895422437
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Eli Dresner (2012). Meaning Holism. Philosophy Compass 7 (9):611-619.

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