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Profile: Nissim Francez (Technion, Israel Institute of Technology)
  1. Nissim Francez (forthcoming). A Logic Inspired by Natural Language: Quantifiers As Subnectors. Journal of Philosophical Logic:1-20.
    Inspired by the grammar of natural language, the paper presents a variant of first-order logic, in which quantifiers are not sentential operators, but are used as subnectors (operators forming terms from formulas). A quantified term formed by a subnector is an argument of a predicate. The logic is defined by means of a meaning-conferring natural-deduction proof-system, according to the proof-theoretic semantics program. The harmony of the I/E-rules is shown. The paper then presents a translation, called the Frege translation, from the (...)
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  2. Nissim Francez (2014). Bilateral Relevant Logic. Review of Symbolic Logic 7 (2):250-272.
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  3. Nissim Francez (2014). Harmony in Multiple-Conclusion Natural-Deduction. Logica Universalis 8 (2):215-259.
    The paper studies the extension of harmony and stability, major themes in proof-theoretic semantics, from single-conclusion natural-deduction systems to multiple-conclusions natural-deduction, independently of classical logic. An extension of the method of obtaining harmoniously-induced general elimination rules from given introduction rules is suggested, taking into account sub-structurality. Finally, the reductions and expansions of the multiple-conclusions natural-deduction representation of classical logic are formulated.
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  4. Michael Kaminski & Nissim Francez (2014). Relational Semantics of the Lambek Calculus Extended with Classical Propositional Logic. Studia Logica 102 (3):479-497.
    We show that the relational semantics of the Lambek calculus, both nonassociative and associative, is also sound and complete for its extension with classical propositional logic. Then, using filtrations, we obtain the finite model property for the nonassociative Lambek calculus extended with classical propositional logic.
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  5. Nissim Francez (2013). Bilateralism in Proof-Theoretic Semantics. Journal of Philosophical Logic (2-3):1-21.
    The paper suggests a revision of the notion of harmony, a major necessary condition in proof-theoretic semantics for a natural-deduction proof-system to qualify as meaning conferring, when moving to a bilateral proof-system. The latter considers both forces of assertion and denial as primitive, and is applied here to positive logics, lacking negation altogether. It is suggested that in addition to the balance between (positive) introduction and elimination rules traditionally imposed by harmony, a balance should be imposed also on: (i) negative (...)
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  6. Nissim Francez & Roy Dyckhoff (2012). A Note on Harmony. Journal of Philosophical Logic 41 (3):613-628.
    In the proof-theoretic semantics approach to meaning, harmony , requiring a balance between introduction-rules (I-rules) and elimination rules (E-rules) within a meaning conferring natural-deduction proof-system, is a central notion. In this paper, we consider two notions of harmony that were proposed in the literature: 1. GE-harmony , requiring a certain form of the E-rules, given the form of the I-rules. 2. Local intrinsic harmony : imposes the existence of certain transformations of derivations, known as reduction and expansion . We propose (...)
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  7. Nissim Francez & Ian Pratt-Hartmann (2012). Editors' Preface. Studia Logica 100 (4):663-665.
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  8. Nissim Francez & Gilad Ben-avi (2011). Proof-Theoretic Semantic Values for Logical Operators. Review of Symbolic Logic 4 (3):466-478.
    The paper proposes a semantic value for the logical constants (connectives and quantifiers) within the framework of proof-theoretic semantics, basic meaning on the introduction rules of a meaning conferring natural deduction proof system. The semantic value is defined based on Fregecontributions” to sentential meanings as determined by the function-argument structure as induced by a type-logical grammar. In doing so, the paper proposes a novel proof-theoretic interpretation of the semantic types, traditionally interpreted in Henkin models. The compositionality of the resulting attribution (...)
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  9. Nissim Francez & Roy Dyckhoff (2010). Proof-Theoretic Semantics for a Natural Language Fragment. Linguistics and Philosophy 33 (6):447-477.
    The paper presents a proof-theoretic semantics (PTS) for a fragment of natural language, providing an alternative to the traditional model-theoretic (Montagovian) semantics (MTS), whereby meanings are truth-condition (in arbitrary models). Instead, meanings are taken as derivability-conditions in a dedicated natural-deduction (ND) proof-system. This semantics is effective (algorithmically decidable), adhering to the meaning as use paradigm, not suffering from several of the criticisms formulated by philosophers of language against MTS as a theory of meaning. In particular, Dummett’s manifestation argument does not (...)
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  10. Nissim Francez, Roy Dyckhoff & Gilad Ben-Avi (2010). Proof-Theoretic Semantics for Subsentential Phrases. Studia Logica 94 (3):381 - 401.
    The paper briefly surveys the sentential proof-theoretic semantics for fragment of English. Then, appealing to a version of Frege’s context-principle (specified to fit type-logical grammar), a method is presented for deriving proof-theoretic meanings for sub-sentential phrases, down to lexical units (words). The sentential meaning is decomposed according to the function-argument structure as determined by the type-logical grammar. In doing so, the paper presents a novel proof-theoretic interpretation of simple type, replacing Montague’s model-theoretic type interpretation (in arbitrary Henkin models). The domains (...)
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  11. Sharon Shoham & Nissim Francez (2008). Game Semantics for the Lambek-Calculus: Capturing Directionality and the Absence of Structural Rules. Studia Logica 90 (2):161 - 188.
    In this paper, we propose a game semantics for the (associative) Lambek calculus . Compared to the implicational fragment of intuitionistic propositional calculus, the semantics deals with two features of the logic: absence of structural rules, as well as directionality of implication. We investigate the impact of these variations of the logic on its game semantics.
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  12. Nissim Francez & Michael Kaminski (2007). Commutation-Augmented Pregroup Grammars and Mildly Context-Sensitive Languages. Studia Logica 87 (2-3):295 - 321.
    The paper presents a generalization of pregroup, by which a freely-generated pregroup is augmented with a finite set of commuting inequations, allowing limited commutativity and cancelability. It is shown that grammars based on the commutation-augmented pregroups generate mildly context-sensitive languages. A version of Lambek’s switching lemma is established for these pregroups. Polynomial parsability and semilinearity are shown for languages generated by these grammars.
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  13. Ron Artstein & Nissim Francez (2006). Plurality and Temporal Modification. Linguistics and Philosophy 29 (3):251 - 276.
    A semantics with plural entitles and plural times accounts for cumulative relations between plural arguments and temporal expressions. The semantics equips nominal, verbal and sentential meanings with temporal context variables and treats temporal modifiers as temporal generalized quantifiers; cumulative conjunction, however, takes place at types lower than generalized quantifiers. The mediation of temporal context variables allows cumulative relations to percolate between an argument in a main clause and one in a temporal clause, in apparent violation of locality restrictions. Plural times (...)
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  14. Nissim Francez & Mark Steedman (2006). Categorial Grammar and the Semantics of Contextual Prepositional Phrases. Linguistics and Philosophy 29 (4):381 - 417.
    The paper proposes a semantics for contextual (i.e., Temporal and Locative) Prepositional Phrases (CPPs) like during every meeting, in the garden, when Harry met Sally and where I’m calling from. The semantics is embodied in a multi-modal extension of Combinatory Categoral Grammar (CCG). The grammar allows the strictly monotonic compositional derivation of multiple correct interpretations for “stacked” or multiple CPPs, including interpretations whose scope relations are not what would be expected on standard assumptions about surfacesyntactic command and monotonic derivation. A (...)
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  15. Anna Zamansky, Nissim Francez & Yoad Winter (2006). A 'Natural Logic' Inference System Using the Lambek Calculus. Journal of Logic, Language and Information 15 (3):273-295.
    This paper develops an inference system for natural language within the ‘Natural Logic’ paradigm as advocated by van Benthem (1997), Sánchez (1991) and others. The system that we propose is based on the Lambek calculus and works directly on the Curry-Howard counterparts for syntactic representations of natural language, with no intermediate translation to logical formulae. The Lambek-based system we propose extends the system by Fyodorov et~al. (2003), which is based on the Ajdukiewicz/Bar-Hillel (AB) calculus Bar Hillel, (1964). This enables the (...)
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  16. Efrat Jaeger, Nissim Francez & Shuly Wintner (2005). Unification Grammars and Off-Line Parsability. Journal of Logic, Language and Information 14 (2):199-234.
    Unification grammars are known to be Turing-equivalent; given a grammar G and a word w, it is undecidable whether w L(G). In order to ensure decidability, several constraints on grammars, commonly known as off-line parsability (OLP), were suggested, such that the recognition problem is decidable for grammars which satisfy OLP. An open question is whether it is decidable if a given grammar satisfies OLP. In this paper we investigate various definitions of OLP and discuss their interrelations, proving that some of (...)
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  17. Martina Faller, Hana Filip, Nissim Francez, Angela Friederici, Marc Gawron, Bart Geurts, Anastasia Giannakidou, Jonathan Ginzburg, Paul Gochet & D. Graff (2003). 782 ACKNOWLEDGMENT Veneeta Dayal Regine Eckardt Paul Elbourne. Linguistics and Philosophy 26:781-782.
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  18. Ian Pratt & Nissim Francez (2001). Temporal Prepositions and Temporal Generalized Quantifiers. Linguistics and Philosophy 24 (2):187-222.
    In this paper, we show how the problem of accounting for the semanticsof temporal preposition phrases (tPPs) leads us to some surprisinginsights into the semantics of temporal expressions ingeneral. Specifically, we argue that a systematic treatment of EnglishtPPs is greatly facilitated if we endow our meaning assignments with context variables, a device which allows a tPP to restrict domainsof quantification arising elsewhere in a sentence. We observe that theuse of context variables implies that tPPs can modify expressions intwo ways, and (...)
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  19. Oesten Dahl, Mary Dalrymple, Paul Dekker, Josh Dever, Walter Edelberg, Kai von Fintel, Gilles Fauconnier, Nissim Francez, Peter Gärdenfors & Bart Geurts (1999). 680 ACKNOWLEDGMENT Fiona Cowie Max Cresswell Mark Crimmins. Linguistics and Philosophy 22:679-680.
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  20. Shuly Wintner & Nissim Francez (1999). Off-Line Parsability and the Well-Foundedness of Subsumption. Journal of Logic, Language and Information 8 (1):1-16.
    Typed feature structures are used extensively for the specification of linguistic information in many formalisms. The subsumption relation orders TFSs by their information content. We prove that subsumption of acyclic TFSs is well founded, whereas in the presence of cycles general TFS subsumption is not well founded. We show an application of this result for parsing, where the well-foundedness of subsumption is used to guarantee termination for grammars that are off-line parsable. We define a new version of off-line parsability that (...)
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  21. Shalom Lappin & Nissim Francez (1994). E-Type Pronouns, I-Sums, and Donkey Anaphora. Linguistics and Philosophy 17 (4):391 - 428.
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