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  1. Language as Literature: Characters in Everyday Spoken Discourse.Sergeiy Sandler - manuscript
    There are several linguistic phenomena that, when examined closely, give evidence that people speak through characters, much like authors of literary works do, in everyday discourse. However, most approaches in linguistics and in the philosophy of language leave little theoretical room for the appearance of characters in discourse. In particular, there is no linguistic criterion found to date, which can mark precisely what stretch of discourse within an utterance belongs to a character, and to which character. And yet, without at (...)
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  2. Semantics with Assignment Variables.Alex Silk - 2021 - Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    This book combines insights from philosophy and linguistics to develop a novel framework for theorizing about linguistic meaning and the role of context in interpretation. A key innovation is to introduce explicit representations of context — assignment variables — in the syntax and semantics of natural language. The proposed theory systematizes a spectrum of “shifting” phenomena in which the context relevant for interpreting certain expressions depends on features of the linguistic environment. Central applications include local and nonlocal contextual dependencies with (...)
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  3. Ineffability: The Very Concept.Sebastian Gäb - 2020 - Philosophia 48 (5):1-12.
    In this paper, I analyze the concept of ineffability: what does it mean to say that something cannot be said? I begin by distinguishing ineffability from paradox: if something cannot be said truly or without contradiction, this is not an instance of ineffability. Next, I distinguish two different meanings of ‘saying something’ which result from a fundamental ambiguity in the term ‘language’, viz. language as a system of symbols and language as a medium of communication. Accordingly, ‘ineffability’ is ambiguous, too, (...)
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  4. Multi-Modal Meaning – An Empirically-Founded Process Algebra Approach.Hannes Rieser & Insa Lawler - 2020 - Semantics and Pragmatics 13 (8):1-48.
    Humans communicate with different modalities. We offer an account of multi-modal meaning coordination, taking speech-gesture meaning coordination as a prototypical case. We argue that temporal synchrony (plus prosody) does not determine how to coordinate speech meaning and gesture meaning. Challenging cases are asynchrony and broadcasting cases, which are illustrated with empirical data. We propose that a process algebra account satisfies the desiderata. It models gesture and speech as independent but concurrent processes that can communicate flexibly with each other and exchange (...)
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  5. Linguistic Labor and its Division.Jeff Engelhardt - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (7):1855-1871.
    This paper exposes a common mistake concerning the division of linguistic labor. I characterize the mistake as an overgeneralization from natural kind terms; this misleads philosophers about which terms are subject to the division of linguistic labor, what linguistic labor is, how linguistic labor is divided, and how the extensions of non-natural kind terms subject to the division of linguistic labor are determined. I illustrate these points by considering Sally Haslanger’s account of the division of linguistic labor for social kind (...)
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  6. Relinquishing Control: What Romanian De Se Attitude Reports Teach Us About Immunity To Error Through Misidentification.Marina Folescu - 2019 - In Alessandro Capone, Una Stojnic, Ernie Lepore, Denis Delfitto, Anne Reboul, Gaetano Fiorin, Kenneth A. Taylor, Jonathan Berg, Herbert L. Colston, Sanford C. Goldberg, Edoardo Lombardi Vallauri, Cliff Goddard, Anna Wierzbicka, Magdalena Sztencel, Sarah E. Duffy, Alessandra Falzone, Paola Pennisi, Péter Furkó, András Kertész, Ágnes Abuczki, Alessandra Giorgi, Sona Haroutyunian, Marina Folescu, Hiroko Itakura, John C. Wakefield, Hung Yuk Lee, Sumiyo Nishiguchi, Brian E. Butler, Douglas Robinson, Kobie van Krieken, José Sanders, Grazia Basile, Antonino Bucca, Edoardo Lombardi Vallauri & Kobie van Krieken (eds.), Indirect Reports and Pragmatics in the World Languages. Springer. pp. 299-313.
    Higginbotham argued that certain linguistic items of English, when used in indirect discourse, necessarily trigger first-personal interpretations. They are: the emphatic reflexive pronoun and the controlled understood subject, represented as PRO. PRO is special, in this respect, due to its imposing obligatory control effects between the main clause and its subordinates ). Folescu & Higginbotham, in addition, argued that in Romanian, a language whose grammar doesn’t assign a prominent role to PRO, de se triggers are correlated with the subjunctive mood (...)
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  7. Chomskyan Arguments Against Truth-Conditional Semantics Based on Variability and Co-predication.Agustín Vicente - 2019 - Erkenntnis 86 (4):919-940.
    In this paper I try to show that semantics can explain word-to-world relations and that sentences can have meanings that determine truth-conditions. Critics like Chomsky typically maintain that only speakers denote, i.e., only speakers, by using words in one way or another, represent entities or events in the world. However, according to their view, individual acts of denotations are not explained just by virtue of speakers’ semantic knowledge. Against this view, I will hold that, in the typical cases considered, semantic (...)
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  8. Normalizing Slurs and Out‐Group Slurs: The Case of Referential Restriction.Justina Diaz Legaspe - 2018 - Analytic Philosophy 59 (2):234-255.
    The relation between slurs and their neutral counterparts has been put into question recently by the fact that some slurs can be used to refer to subsets of the referential classes determined by their associated counterparts. This paper aims to reinforce this relation by offering a way of explaining referential restriction that distinguishes between two kinds of slurs: those performing a normalizing role upon (some) individuals inside a class (mostly, a gender) and those used to derogate a marginalized out- group.
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  9. A Unified Analysis of the Future as Epistemic Modality.Anastasia Giannakidou and Alda Mari - 2018 - Natural Language and Linguistic Theory 36:85-129.
    We offer an analysis of future morphemes as epistemic operators. The main empirical motivation comes from the fact that future morphemes have systematic purely epistemic readings—not only in Greek and Italian, but also in Dutch, German, and English will. The existence of epistemic readings suggests that the future expressions quantify over epistemic, not metaphysical alternatives. We provide a unified analysis for epistemic and predictive readings as epistemic necessity, and the shift between the two is determined compositionally by the lower tense. (...)
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  10. Strict and Non-Strict Negative Concord in Hungarian: A Unified Analysis.Anna Szabolcsi - 2018 - In Huba Bartos, Bánréti, M. Den Dikken & Váradi (eds.), Boundaries Crossed. Dordrecht: Springer.
    Surányi (2006) observed that Hungarian has a hybrid (strict + non-strict) negative concord system. This paper proposes a uniform analysis of that system within the general framework of Zeijlstra (2004, 2008) and, especially, Chierchia (2013), with the following new ingredients. Sentential negation NEM is the same full negation in the presence of both strict and non-strict concord items. Preverbal SENKI `n-one’ type negative concord items occupy the specifier position of either NEM `not' or SEM `nor'. The latter, SEM spells out (...)
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  11. Properties, Predicates, Davidson and Deflation.Justin Clarke - 2017 - Philosophia 45 (3):1085-1090.
    I want to motivate an account of what it is for an object to have a property, which may as well be called a deflationary view about properties. Such a view follows from a conception of predication I ground in the work of Donald Davidson, some of which remains unpublished. I claim that if we take seriously Davidson’s account of predication, by maintaining that sentences are the primary linguistic unit, we can define properties in terms of predicates. The aim of (...)
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  12. On How Verification Tasks Are Related to Verification Procedures: A Reply to Kotek Et Al.Tim Hunter, Jeffrey Lidz, Darko Odic & Alexis Wellwood - 2017 - Natural Language Semantics 25 (2):91-107.
    Kotek et al. argue on the basis of novel experimental evidence that sentences like ‘Most of the dots are blue’ are ambiguous, i.e. have two distinct truth conditions. Kotek et al. furthermore suggest that when their results are taken together with those of earlier work by Lidz et al., the overall picture that emerges casts doubt on the conclusions that Lidz et al. drew from their earlier results. We disagree with this characterization of the relationship between the two studies. Our (...)
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  13. Moral Realism and Faultless Disagreement.Daniel Cohnitz - 2016 - Ratio 29 (2):202-212.
    Is moral realism compatible with the existence of moral disagreements? Since moral realism requires that if two persons are in disagreement over some moral question at least one must be objectively mistaken, it seems difficult to uphold that there can be moral disagreements without fault. Alison Hills argued that moral realism can accommodate such disagreements. Her strategy is to argue that moral reasoners can be faultless in making an objectively false moral judgement if they followed the relevant epistemic norm, i.e. (...)
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  14. Kłopoty z „widzeniem”. O filozoficznie istotnych użyciach wyrażenia „widzieć”.Paweł Grabarczyk - 2016 - Studia Semiotyczne 30 (1):23-42.
    Celem artykułu jest wyróżnienie dwóch, funkcjonujących w języku potocznym sensów wyrażenia „widzieć” – obiektywnego i subiektywnego bez jednoczesnego przypisywania obserwatorom przekonań. Celem jest zatem ekstensjonalna eksplikacja. Pozwala to na opisywanie percepcji wzrokowej bez przesądzania o wyższych zdolnościach kognitywnych podmiotu percepcji. Wprowadzenie przekonań obserwatora pozwala następnie na wyrażenie większej ilości rozróżnień występujących w literaturze poświęconej filozoficznym zagadnieniom percepcji zmysłowej.
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  15. The Many Uses of Predicates of Taste and the Challenge From Disagreement.Dan Zeman - 2016 - Studies in Logic, Grammar and Rhetoric 46 (1):79-101.
    In the debate between contextualism and relativism about predicates of taste, the challenge from disagreement (the objection that contextualism cannot account for disagreement in ordinary exchanges involving such predicates) has played a central role. This paper investigates one way of answering the challenge consisting on appeal to certain, less focused on, uses of predicates of taste. It argues that the said thread is unsatisfactory, in that it downplays certain exchanges that constitute the core disagreement data. Additionally, several arguments to the (...)
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  16. Epistemic Modality De Re.Seth Yalcin - 2015 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 2:475-527.
    Focusing on cases which involve binding into epistemic modals with definite descriptions and quantifiers, I raise some new problems for standard approaches to all of these expressions. The difficulties are resolved in a semantic framework that is dynamic in character. I close with a new class of problems about de re readings within the scope of modals.
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  17. Remarks on The Semantics of Racial Slurs.Adam M. Croom - 2014 - Linguistic and Philosophical Investigations 13:11-32.
    In “The Semantics of Racial Slurs,” an article recently published in Linguistic and Philosophical Investigations, Hedger draws upon Kaplan’s distinction between descriptive and expressive content to argue that slurs are expressions with purely expressive content. Here I review the key considerations presented by Hedger in support of his purely expressive account of slurs and provide clear reasons for why it must ultimately be rejected. After reviewing the key cases Hedger offers for consideration in support of his view that slurs are (...)
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  18. Slurring and Common Knowledge of Ordinary Language.Richard Vallee - 2014 - Journal of Pragmatics 61:78-90.
    Ethnic slurs have recently raised interest in philosophy of language. Consider (1) Yao is Chinese and (2) Yao is a chink. A theory of meaning should take into account the fact that sentence (2) has the property of containing a slur, a feature plausibly motivating an utterance of (2) rather than (1), and conveys contempt because it contains that word. According to multipropositionalism, two utterances can have the same official truth conditions and the same truth-value but differ in cognitive significance (...)
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  19. Slurring Words.Luvell Anderson & Ernie Lepore - 2013 - Noûs 47 (1):25-48.
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  20. Review of Paul Elbourne, Meaning: A Slim Guide to Semantics. [REVIEW]Nat Hansen - 2013 - Philosophy in Review 33 (1):31-33.
  21. Criteria for Logical Formalization.Jaroslav Peregrin & Vladimír Svoboda - 2013 - Synthese 190 (14):2897-2924.
    The article addresses two closely related questions: What are the criteria of adequacy of logical formalization of natural language arguments, and what gives logic the authority to decide which arguments are good and which are bad? Our point of departure is the criticism of the conception of logical formalization put forth, in a recent paper, by M. Baumgartner and T. Lampert. We argue that their account of formalization as a kind of semantic analysis brings about more problems than it solves. (...)
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  22. DegP Scope Revisited.Sigrid Beck - 2012 - Natural Language Semantics 20 (3):227-272.
    The semantic literature takes degree operators like the comparative, but also measure phrases, the equative, the superlative and so on, to be quantifiers over degrees. This is well motivated by their semantic contribution, but leads one to expect far more scope interaction than is actually observed. This paper proposes an alternative-semantic analysis of certain degree constructions, in particular constructions with little and other negative antonyms. Restrictions on scope can then be explained as intervention effects.
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  23. The Scope of Even and Quantifier Raising.Kimiko Nakanishi - 2012 - Natural Language Semantics 20 (2):115-136.
    This paper addresses the question of whether the preverbal even (VP-even) embedded in a nonfinite clause can take wide scope (e.g., Bill refused to even drink WATER). The paper presents novel evidence for wide scope VP-even that is independent of the presuppositions of even. The evidence is based on examples of antecedent-contained deletion (ACD), where embedded VP-even associates with a nominal constituent (or part of it) that raises out of the embedded clause via quantifier raising. Assuming that even must c-command (...)
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  24. A Constructive Type-Theoretical Formalism for the Interpretation of Subatomically Sensitive Natural Language Constructions.Bartosz Więckowski - 2012 - Studia Logica 100 (4):815-853.
    The analysis of atomic sentences and their subatomic components poses a special problem for proof-theoretic approaches to natural language semantics, as it is far from clear how their semantics could be explained by means of proofs rather than denotations. The paper develops a proof-theoretic semantics for a fragment of English within a type-theoretical formalism that combines subatomic systems for natural deduction [20] with constructive (or Martin-Löf) type theory [8, 9] by stating rules for the formation, introduction, elimination and equality of (...)
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  25. Modals Without Scales.Amy Rose Deal - 2011 - Language 87 (3):559-585.
    Some natural languages do not lexically distinguish between modals of possibility and modals of necessity. From the perspective of languages like English, modals in such languages appear to do double duty: they are used both where possibility modals are expected and where necessity modals are expected. The Nez Perce modal suffix o’qa offers an example of this behavior. I offer a simple account of the flexibility of the o’qa modal centered on the absence of scalar implicatures. O’qa is a possibility (...)
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  26. Minimalism and Speakers' Intuitions.Matías Gariazzo - 2011 - Ideas Y Valores 60 (146):97-110.
    Minimalism proposes a semantics that does not account for speakers' intuitions about the truth conditions of a range of sentences or utterances. Thus, a challenge for this view is to offer an explanation of how its assignment of semantic contents to these sentences is grounded in their use. Such an ..
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  27. Between Non-Cognitivism and Realism in Ethics: A Three Fold Model.Olga Ramirez - 2011 - Prolegomena (Croatia) 10 (1):101-11202.
    Abstracts The aim of the paper is to propose an alternative model to realist and non-cognitive explanations of the rule-guided use of thick ethical concepts and to examine the implications that may be drawn from this and similar cases for our general understanding of rule-following and the relation between criteria of application, truth and correctness. It addresses McDowell’s non-cognitivism critique and challenges his defence of the entanglement thesis for thick ethical concepts. Contrary to non-cognitivists, however, I propose to view the (...)
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  28. Intensionality, Modality, Rationality: Some Presemantic Considerations.John-Michael Kuczynski - 2010 - Journal of Pragmatics 42 (8):2314-2346.
    On the basis of arguments put forth by (Kripke, 1977a) and (Kripke, 1980), it is widely held that one can sometimes rationally accept propositions of the form "P and not-P" and also that there are necessary a posteriori truths. We will find that Kripke's arguments for these views appear probative only so long as one fails to distinguish between semantics and presemantics—between the literal meanings of sentences, on the one hand, and the information on the basis of which one identifies (...)
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  29. A FailedCassatio? A Note on Valor and Martínez on Goldstein.Laureano Luna - 2010 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 110 (3pt3):383-386.
    I address the claim by Valor and Martínez that Goldstein's cassationist approach to Liar-like paradoxes generates paradoxes it cannot solve. I argue that these authors miss an essential point in Goldstein's cassationist approach, namely the thesis that paradoxical sentences are not able to make the statement they seem to make.
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  30. Three Kinds of Ellipsis: Syntactic, Semantic, Pragmatic?Jason Merchant - 2010 - In Francois Recanati, IIsidora Stojanovic & Neftali Villanueva (eds.), Context-Dependence, Perspective, and Relativity (pp. 141-192).
    The term ‘ellipsis’ can be used to refer to a variety of phenomena: syntactic, semantic, and pragmatic. In this article, I discuss the recent comprehensive survey by Stainton 2006 of these kinds of ellipsis with respect to the analysis of nonsententials and try to show that despite his trenchant criticisms and insightful proposal, some of the criticisms can be evaded and the insights incorporated into a semantic ellipsis analysis, making a ‘divide-and-conquer’ strategy to the properties of nonsententials feasible after all. (...)
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  31. Turning Representation Inside Out: An Adverbial Approach to the Metaphysics of Language and Mind.Steven F. Geisz - 2009 - Philosophical Forum 40 (4):437-471.
    In order to resolve problems about the normative aspects of representation without having to (1) provide a naturalized theory of intentional/semantic properties, (2) accept non-natural intentional/semantic properties into our worldview, or (3) eliminate intentionality, this article questions a basic assumption about the metaphysics of representation: that representation involves representation-objects. An alternative, nonreifying approach to the metaphysics of representation is introduced and developed in detail. The argumentative strategy is as follows. First, an adverbial view of linguistic representation is introduced. Two potential (...)
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  32. Category Mistakes Are Meaningful.Ofra Magidor - 2009 - Linguistics and Philosophy 32 (6):553-581.
    Category mistakes are sentences such as ‘Colourless green ideas sleep furiously’ or ‘The theory of relativity is eating breakfast’. Such sentences are highly anomalous, and this has led a large number of linguists and philosophers to conclude that they are meaningless (call this ‘the meaninglessness view’). In this paper I argue that the meaninglessness view is incorrect and category mistakes are meaningful. I provide four arguments against the meaninglessness view: in Sect. 2, an argument concerning compositionality with respect to category (...)
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  33. An Impossibility Result on Semantic Resemblance.Hannes Leitgeb - 2008 - Dialectica 62 (3):293-306.
    We show that a set of prima facie plausible assumptions on the relation of meaning resemblance – one of which is a compositionality postulate – is inconsistent. On this basis we argue that either there is no theoretically useful notion of semantic resemblance at all, or the traditional conception of the compositionality of meaning has to be adapted. In the former case, arguments put forward by Nelson Goodman and Paul Churchland in favor of the concept of meaning resemblance are defeated. (...)
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  34. Truth Vs. Pretense in Discourse About Motion (or, Why the Sun Really Does Rise).Brendan Jackson - 2007 - Noûs 41 (2):298–317.
    These days it is widely agreed that there is no such thing as absolute motion and rest; the motion of an object can only be characterized with respect to some chosen frame of reference.1 This is a fact of which many of us are well-aware, and yet a cursory consideration of the ways we ascribe motion to objects gives the impression that it is a fact we persistently ignore. We insist to the police officer that we came to a full (...)
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  35. Proceedings of Sinn Und Bedeutung 9.Emar Maier, Corien Bary & Janneke Huitink (eds.) - 2005 - Nijmegen Centre for Semantics.
  36. Evidentiality.A. I͡U Aĭkhenvalʹd - 2004 - Oxford University Press.
    In some languages every statement must contain a specification of the type of evidence on which it is based: for example, whether the speaker saw it, or heard it, or inferred it from indirect evidence, or learnt it from someone else. This grammatical reference to information source is called 'evidentiality', and is one of the least described grammatical categories. Evidentiality systems differ in how complex they are: some distinguish just two terms (eyewitness and noneyewitness, or reported and everything else), while (...)
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  37. Quantification and Second-Order Quantification.Paul M. Pietroski - 2003 - Philosophical Perspectives 17 (1):259--298.
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  38. Peter Ludlow, Semantics, Tense and Time, an Essay in the Metaphysics of Natural Language.Andrea Bonomi - 2002 - Linguistics and Philosophy 25 (1):81-95.
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  39. For a Structured Meaning Account of Questions and Answers.Manfred Krifka - 2001 - In Audiatur Vox Sapientia. A Festschrift for Arnim von Stechow. Academie Verlag. pp. 287-320.
    In the logical, philosophical and linguistic literature, a number of theoretical frameworks have been proposed for the meaning of questions (see Ginzburg (1995), Groenendijk & Stokhof (1997) for recent overviews). I will concentrate on two general approaches that figured prominently in linguistic semantics, which I will call the proposition set approach and the structured meaning approach (sometimes called the “propositional” and the “categorial” or “functional” approach). I will show that the proposition set approach runs into three problems: It does not (...)
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  40. On Explaining That.Paul M. Pietroski - 2000 - Journal of Philosophy 97 (12):655-662.
    How can a speaker can explain that P without explaining the fact that P, or explain the fact that P without explaining that P, even when it is true (and so a fact) that P? Or in formal mode: what is the semantic contribution of 'explain' such that 'She explained that P' can be true, while 'She explained the fact that P' is false (or vice versa), even when 'P' is true? The proposed answer is that 'explained' is a semantically (...)
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  41. The Truth About Moods.Kirk Ludwig - 1997 - ProtoSociology 10:19-66.
    Assertoric sentences are sentences which admit of truth or falsity. Non-assertoric sentences, imperatives and interrogatives, have long been a source of difficulty for the view that a theory of truth for a natural language can serve as the core of a theory of meaning. The trouble for truth-theoretic semantics posed by non-assertoric sentences is that, prima facie, it does not make sense to say that imperatives, such as 'Cut your hair', or interrogatives such as 'What time is it?', are truth (...)
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  42. Ways of Scope Taking.Anna Szabolcsi (ed.) - 1997 - Kluwer Academic Publishers.
    Ways of Scope Taking is concerned with syntactic, semantic and computational aspects of scope. Its starting point is the well-known but often neglected fact that different types of quantifiers interact differently with each other and other operators. The theoretical examination of significant bodies of data, both old and novel, leads to two central claims. (1) Scope is a by-product of a set of distinct Logical Form processes; each quantifier participates in those that suit its particular features. (2) Scope interaction is (...)
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  43. Dynamics of Meaning: Anaphora, Presupposition, and the Theory of Grammar.Gennaro Chierchia - 1995 - University of Chicago Press.
    In The Dynamics of Meaning , Gennaro Chierchia tackles central issues in dynamic semantics and extends the general framework. Chapter 1 introduces the notion of dynamic semantics and discusses in detail the phenomena that have been used to motivate it, such as "donkey" sentences and adverbs of quantification. The second chapter explores in greater depth the interpretation of indefinites and issues related to presuppositions of uniqueness and the "E-type strategy." In Chapter 3, Chierchia extends the dynamic approach to the domain (...)
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  44. Epistemic Boundedness.Andre Kukla - 1993 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 7 (2):121 – 126.
    Abstract Fodor defines epistemic boundedness as a condition wherein there are epistemi?cally significant constraints on the beliefs that a mind is capable of entertaining. He discusses a type of (epistemic) boundedness wherein a hypothesis cannot be entertained because it is inexpressible in terms of the mind's stock of concepts. In addition to this semantic boundedness, I describe a number of different sources of boundedness having to do with syntactic, abductive, and implementational limitations. I also discuss the similarities and differences between (...)
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  45. Formalizing the Logic of Positive, Comparative, and Superlative.Ernest Adams - 1992 - Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 34 (1):90-99.
  46. Elucidations of Meaning.James Higginbotham - 1989 - Linguistics and Philosophy 12 (4):465 - 517.
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  47. Self-Reference: Reflections on Reflexivity.Steven James Bartlett & Peter Suber (eds.) - 1987 - Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer.
    From the Editor’s Introduction: -/- THE INTERNAL LIMITATIONS OF HUMAN UNDERSTANDING -/- We carry, unavoidably, the limits of our understanding with us. We are perpetually confined within the horizons of our conceptual structure. When this structure grows or expands, the breadth of our comprehensions enlarges, but we are forever barred from the wished-for glimpse beyond its boundaries, no matter how hard we try, no matter how much credence we invest in the substance of our learning and mist of speculation. -/- (...)
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  48. Degrees of comparison.Michael Clark - 1984 - Analysis 44 (4):178.
  49. Semantic Theory and Grammatical Structure.Barry Richards & R. M. Sainsbury - 1980 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 54 (1):133 - 172.
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  50. The Semantics of Generic The.John Bacon - 1973 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 2 (3):323 - 339.
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