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  1. Ariel Cohen & Manfred Krifka (2014). Superlative Quantifiers and Meta-Speech Acts. Linguistics and Philosophy 37 (1):41-90.
    Recent research has shown that the superlative quantifiers at least and at most do not have the same type of truth conditions as the comparative quantifiers more than and fewer than. We propose that superlative quantifiers are interpreted at the level of speech acts. We relate them to denegations of speech acts, as in I don’t promise to come, which we analyze as excluding the speech act of a promise to come. Calling such conversational acts that affect future permissible speech (...)
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  2. Ariel Cohen & Manfred Krifka (2011). Superlative Quantifiers as Modifiers of Meta-Speech Acts. The Baltic International Yearbook of Cognition, Logic and Communication 6 (1):11.
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  3. Ariel Cohen (2008). Indiscriminability as Indiscernibility by Default. Studia Logica 90 (3):369 - 383.
    Most solutions to the sorites reject its major premise, i.e. the quantified conditional . This rejection appears to imply a discrimination between two elements that are supposed to be indiscriminable. Thus, the puzzle of the sorites involves in a fundamental way the notion of indiscriminability. This paper analyzes this relation and formalizes it, in a way that makes the rejection of the major premise more palatable. The intuitive idea is that we consider two elements indiscriminable by default, i.e. unless we (...)
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  4. Ariel Cohen (2008). No Alternative to Alternatives. Journal of Semantics 26 (1):1-48.
    Rooth's (1985, 1992) theory of focus requires, in addition to the ordinary semantic value of an expression, the focus semantic value, which is a set of alternatives generated by focus. Rooth claims that the union (disjunction) of the focus semantic value is accommodated into the restrictor of an adverbial quantifier. More recently, however, some researchers (Krifka 2001; Geurts & van der Sandt 2004) have argued convincingly that what is accommodated is, in fact, the existential presupposition induced by focus. It would (...)
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  5. Ariel Cohen, Michael Kaminski & Johann A. Makowsky (2008). Notions of Sameness by Default and Their Application to Anaphora, Vagueness, and Uncertain Reasoning. Journal of Logic, Language and Information 17 (3):285-306.
    We motivate and formalize the idea of sameness by default: two objects are considered the same if they cannot be proved to be different. This idea turns out to be useful for a number of widely different applications, including natural language processing, reasoning with incomplete information, and even philosophical paradoxes. We consider two formalizations of this notion, both of which are based on Reiter’s Default Logic. The first formalization is a new relation of indistinguishability that is introduced by default. We (...)
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  6. Ariel Cohen (2004). Existential Generics. Linguistics and Philosophy 27 (2):137-168.
    While opinions on the semantic analysis of generics vary widely, most scholars agree that generics have a quasi-universal flavor. However, there are cases where generics receive what appears to be an existentialinterpretation. For example, B''s response is true, even though only theplatypus and the echidna lay eggs:(1) A: Birds lay eggs. B: Mammals lay eggs too.
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  7. Ariel Cohen (2004). Generics and Mental Representations. Linguistics and Philosophy 27 (5):529-556.
    It is widely agreed that generics tolerate exceptions. It turns out, however, thatexceptions are tolerated only so long as they do not violate homogeneity:when the exceptions are not concentrated in a salient ``chunk'''' of the domain ofthe generic. The criterion for salience of a chunk is cognitive: it is dependent onthe way in which the domain is mentally represented. Findings of psychologicalexperiments about the ways in which different domains are represented, and thefactors affecting such representations, account for judgments of generic (...)
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  8. Igal Galili, Ayelet Weizman & Ariel Cohen (2004). The Sky as a Topic in Science Education. Science Education 88 (4):574-593.
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  9. Ariel Cohen & Nomi Erteschik-Shir (2002). Topic, Focus, and the Interpretation of Bare Plurals. Natural Language Semantics 10 (2):125-165.
    In this paper we show that focus structure determines the interpretation of bare plurals in English: topic bare plurals are interpreted generically, focused bare plurals are interpreted existentially. When bare plurals are topics they must be specific, i.e. they refer to kinds. After type-shifting they introduce variables which can be bound by the generic quantifier, yielding characterizing generics. Existentially interpreted bare plurals are not variables, but denote properties that are incorporated into the predicate.The type of predicate determines the interpretation of (...)
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  10. Ariel Cohen (2001). Relative Readings of Many, Often, and Generics. Natural Language Semantics 9 (1):41-67.
    In addition to the familiar cardinal and proportional readings of many and few, there is yet another interpretation, the relative proportional reading. This reading, unlike the ordinary absolute proportional reading, is not conservative. Under the relative reading, 'Many ψs are φs' is true just in case the proportion of φs among ψs is greater than the proportion of φs among members of contextually given alternatives to ψ. I provide a definition of proportional readings that reduces the differences between absolute and (...)
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  11. Ariel Cohen (2000). The King of France Is, In Fact, Bald. Natural Language Semantics 8 (4):291-295.
    According to current theories, sentences with definite descriptions that fail to refer are either false or lack a truth value; but they cannot be true. However, I present examples where such sentences are, in fact, judged true. I propose that a definite description may be accommodated as a conditional, and that, in such cases, it is precisely the failure to refer that makes the sentence true.
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  12. Ariel Cohen (1999). Generics, Frequency Adverbs, and Probability. Linguistics and Philosophy 22 (3):221-253.
    Generics and frequency statements are puzzling phenomena: they are lawlike, yet contingent. They may be true even in the absence of any supporting instances, and extending the size of their domain does not change their truth conditions. Generics and frequency statements are parametric on time, but not on possible worlds; they cannot be applied to temporary generalizations, and yet are contingent. These constructions require a regular distribution of events along the time axis. Truth judgments of generics vary considerably across speakers, (...)
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  13. Amnon Rapoport & Ariel Cohen (1984). Expected Frequency and Mean Size of the Paradox of New Members. Theory and Decision 17 (1):29-45.
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