Minds and Machines 12 (1):3-59 (2002)
|Abstract||This essay continues my investigation of `syntactic semantics': the theory that, pace Searle's Chinese-Room Argument, syntax does suffice for semantics (in particular, for the semantics needed for a computational cognitive theory of natural-language understanding). Here, I argue that syntactic semantics (which is internal and first-person) is what has been called a conceptual-role semantics: The meaning of any expression is the role that it plays in the complete system of expressions. Such a `narrow', conceptual-role semantics is the appropriate sort of semantics to account (from an `internal', or first-person perspective) for how a cognitive agent understands language. Some have argued for the primacy of external, or `wide', semantics, while others have argued for a two-factor analysis. But, although two factors can be specifiedâ-one internal and first-person, the other only specifiable in an external, third-person wayâ-only the internal, first-person one is needed for understanding how someone understands. A truth-conditional semantics can still be provided, but only from a third-person perspective|
|Keywords||Computer Holism Science Semantics Syntax|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Similar books and articles
Emar Maier (2008). What Syntax Doesn't Feed Semantics: Fake Indexicals as Indexicals. In Maribel Romero (ed.), Proceedings of the Esslli 2008 Workshop `What Syntax Feeds Semantics?'.
William J. Rapaport (2006). How Helen Keller Used Syntactic Semantics to Escape From a Chinese Room. Minds and Machines 16 (4):381-436.
Claire Horisk (2007). The Expressive Role of Truth in Truth-Conditional Semantics. Philosophical Quarterly 57 (229):535–557.
Shalom Lappin (ed.) (1996). The Handbook of Contemporary Semantic Theory. Blackwell Reference.
Ralph Wedgwood (2001). Conceptual Role Semantics for Moral Terms. Philosophical Review 110 (1):1-30.
William J. Rapaport (1988). Syntactic Semantics: Foundations of Computational Natural Language Understanding. In James H. Fetzer (ed.), Aspects of AI. Kluwer.
William J. Rapaport (2000). How to Pass a Turing Test. Journal of Logic, Language and Information 9 (4):467-490.
William J. Rapaport (2000). How to Pass a Turing Test: Syntactic Semantics, Natural-Language Understanding, and First-Person Cognition. Journal of Logic, Language, and Information 9 (4):467-490.
William J. Rapaport (2003). What Did You Mean by That? Misunderstanding, Negotiation, and Syntactic Semantics. Minds and Machines 13 (3):397-427.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads64 ( #17,310 of 722,745 )
Recent downloads (6 months)3 ( #25,873 of 722,745 )
How can I increase my downloads?