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Reference to Abstract Objects in Discourse

Dordrecht, Boston, and London: Kluwer (1993)

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  1. Bias in semantic and discourse interpretation.Nicholas Asher, Julie Hunter & Soumya Paul - 2022 - Linguistics and Philosophy 45 (3):393-429.
    In this paper, we show how game theoretic work on conversation combined with a theory of discourse structure provides a framework for studying interpretive bias and how bias affects the production and interpretation of linguistic content. We model the influence of author bias on the discourse content and structure of the author’s linguistic production and interpreter bias on the interpretation of ambiguous or underspecified elements of that content and structure. Interpretive bias is an essential feature of learning and understanding but (...)
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  • Proceedings of Sinn Und Bedeutung 21.Rob Truswell, Chris Cummins, Caroline Heycock, Brian Rabern & Hannah Rohde (eds.) - 2018 - Semantics Archives.
    The present volume contains a collection of papers presented at the 21st annual meeting “Sinn und Bedeutung” of the Gesellschaft fur Semantik, which was held at the University of Edinburgh on September 4th–6th, 2016. The Sinn und Bedeutung conferences are one of the leading international venues for research in formal semantics.
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  • Structured Propositions and Trivial Composition.Bryan Pickel - 2020 - Synthese 197 (7):2991-3006.
    Structured propositions are often invoked to explain why intensionally equivalent sentences do not substitute salva veritate into attitude ascriptions. As the semantics is standardly developed—for example, in Salmon, Soames :47–87, 1987) and King :516–535, 1995), the semantic value of a complex expression is an ordered complex consisting of the semantic values of its components. Such views, however, trivialize semantic composition since they do not allow for independent constraints on the meaning of complexes. Trivializing semantic composition risks “trivializing semantics” Semantics versus (...)
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  • Truth in Fiction.Franck Lihoreau (ed.) - 2011 - Ontos Verlag.
    The essays collected in this volume are all concerned with the connection between fiction and truth. This question is of utmost importance to metaphysics, philosophy of language, philosophical logic and epistemology, raising in each of these areas and at their intersections a large number of issues related to creation, existence, reference, identity, modality, belief, assertion, imagination, pretense, etc. All these topics and many more are addressed in this collection, which brings together original essays written from various points of view by (...)
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  • Discourse Representation Theory.Bart Geurts - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  • Natural Language Ontology (SEP Entry).Moltmann Friederike - forthcoming - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    This is my entry on natural language ontology that is forthcoming in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  • Presupposition.David I. Beaver - 1997 - In Johan van Bentham & Alice ter Meulen (eds.), Handbook of Logic and Language. MIT Press.
    We discuss presupposition, the phenomenon whereby speakers mark linguistically the information that is presupposed or taken for granted, rather than being part of the main propositional content of a speech act. Expressions and constructions carrying presuppositions are called “presupposition triggers”, forming a large class including definites and factive verbs. The article first introduces the range of triggers, the basic properties of presuppositions such as projection and cancellability, and the diagnostic tests used to identify them. The reader is then introducedto major (...)
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  • Towards a Semantics for Mass Expressions Derived From Gradable Expressions.David Nicolas - 2010 - Recherches Linguistiques de Vincennes 39:163-198.
    What semantics should we attribute to mass expressions like "wisdom" and "love", which are derived from gradable expressions? We first examine how these expressions are used, then how they are interpreted in their various uses. We then propose a model to account for these data, in which derived mass nouns denote instances of properties.
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  • The Semantics of Nouns Derived From Gradable Adjectives.David Nicolas - 2003 - In Proceedings of Sinn und Bedeutung 8. pp. 197-207.
    What semantics should we attribute to nouns like "wisdom" and "generosity", which are derived from gradable adjectives? We show that, from a morphosyntactic standpoint, these nouns are mass nouns. This leads us to consider and answer the following questions. How are these nouns interpreted in their various uses? What formal representations may one associate with their interpretations? How do these depend on the semantics of the adjective? And where lies the semantic unity of nouns like wisdom and generosity with the (...)
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  • Variables and Attitudes.Bryan Pickel - 2015 - Noûs 49 (2):333-356.
    The phenomenon of quantification into attitude ascriptions has haunted broadly Fregean views, according to which co-referential proper names are not always substitutable salva veritate in attitude ascriptions. Opponents of Fregeanism argue that a belief ascription containing a proper name such as ‘Michael believes that Lindsay is charitable’ is equivalent to a quantified sentence such as ‘there is someone such that Michael believes that she is charitable, and that person is Lindsay’. They conclude that the semantic contribution of a name such (...)
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  • Event Semantics: A Husserlian Critique.Andrés Colapinto - 2018 - Husserl Studies 34 (2):123-143.
    Event semantics is concerned with the formal structure of sentences which appear to describe an event of some kind, e.g. ‘Brutus kills Caesar,’ or ‘My tooth fell out.’ Phenomenologists should be interested in work in this field, if they hope to rescue Husserl’s phenomenology of judgment from its narrow focus on copular judgments of the form ‘S is p.’ An adequate phenomenology of judgment must ultimately develop an account of judgments whose intentional correlates seem to be events, rather than states (...)
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  • Presupposition Cancellation: Explaining the ‘Soft–Hard’ Trigger Distinction.Márta Abrusán - 2016 - Natural Language Semantics 24 (2):165-202.
    Some presuppositions are easier to cancel than others in embedded contexts. This contrast has been used as evidence for distinguishing two fundamentally different kinds of presuppositions, ‘soft’ and ‘hard’. ‘Soft’ presuppositions are usually assumed to arise in a pragmatic way, while ‘hard’ presuppositions are thought to be genuine semantic presuppositions. This paper argues against such a distinction and proposes to derive the difference in cancellation from inherent differences in how presupposition triggers interact with the context: their focus sensitivity, anaphoricity, and (...)
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  • On Denying Presuppositions.Lenny Clapp - 2017 - Synthese 194 (6).
    Strawson :96–118, 1964) argued that definite NPs trigger presuppositions as an aspect of their conventional meanings, and this semantic conception of presupposition triggers is incorporated into the binding theory of presuppositions. The phenomenon of presupposition denials, however, presents a problem for the semantic conception of presupposition triggers, for in such denials the alleged semantic presuppositions seem to be “cancelled” by a negation operator. Geurts :274–307, 1998; Presupposition and pronouns, 1999) attempts to solve this problem by utilizing the binding theory’s allowance (...)
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  • Reasoning Dynamically About What One Says.Nicholas Asher & Alex Lascarides - 2011 - Synthese 183 (S1):5-31.
    ’s glue logic for computing logical form dynamic. This allows us to model a dialogue agent’s understanding of what the update of the semantic representation of the dialogue would be after his next contribution, including the effects of the rhetorical moves that he is contemplating performing next. This is a pre-requisite for developing a model of how agents reason about what to say next. We make the glue logic dynamic by using a dynamic public announcement logic ( pal ). We (...)
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  • The Semantics and Pragmatics of the Perfect.Paul Portner - 2003 - Linguistics and Philosophy 26 (4):459-510.
    The English perfect involves two fundamental components of meaning: a truth-conditional one involving temporal notions and a current relevance presupposition best expressed in terms drawn from the analysis of modality. The proposal made here draws much for the Extended Now theory, but improves on it by showing that many aspects of the perfect's meaning may be factored out into independent semantic or pragmatic principles.
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  • Applications of Rhetorical Structure Theory.William C. Mann & Maite Taboada - 2006 - Discourse Studies 8 (4):567-588.
    Rhetorical Structure Theory is a theory of text organization that has led to areas of application beyond discourse analysis and text generation, its original goals. In this article, we review the most important applications in several areas: discourse analysis, theoretical linguistics, psycholinguistics, and computational linguistics. We also provide a list of resources useful for work within the RST framework. The present article is a complement to our review of the theoretical aspects of the theory.
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  • Analyzing the Pragmatic Structure of Dialogues.Sarah Bigi & Fabrizio Macagno - 2017 - Discourse Studies 19 (2):148-168.
    In this article, we describe the notion of dialogue move intended as the minimal unit for the analysis of dialogues. We propose an approach to discourse analysis based on the pragmatic idea that the joint dialogical intentions are also co-constructed through the individual moves and the higher-order communicative intentions that the interlocutors pursue. In this view, our goal is to bring to light the pragmatic structure of a dialogue as a complex net of dialogical goals, which represent the communicative purposes (...)
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  • Truthmaker Semantics for Natural Language: Attitude Verbs, Modals, and Intensional Transitive Verbs.Friederike Moltmann - 2020 - Theoretical Linguistics 3:159-200.
    This paper gives an outline of truthmaker semantics for natural language against the background of standard possible-worlds semantics. It develops a truthmaker semantics for attitude reports and deontic modals based on an ontology of attitudinal and modal objects and on a semantic function of clauses as predicates of such objects. It also présents new motivations for 'object-based truthmaker semantics' from intensional transitive verbs such as ‘need’, ‘look for’, ‘own’, and ‘buy’ and gives an outline of their semantics. This paper is (...)
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  • Perspectival Plurality, Relativism, and Multiple Indexing.Dan Zeman - 2018 - In Rob Truswell, Chris Cummins, Caroline Heycock, Brian Rabern & Hannah Rohde (eds.), Proceedings of Sinn und Bedeutung 21, Vol. 2. Semantics Archives. pp. 1353-1370.
    In this paper I focus on a recently discussed phenomenon illustrated by sentences containing predicates of taste: the phenomenon of " perspectival plurality " , whereby sentences containing two or more predicates of taste have readings according to which each predicate pertains to a different perspective. This phenomenon has been shown to be problematic for (at least certain versions of) relativism. My main aim is to further the discussion by showing that the phenomenon extends to other perspectival expressions than predicates (...)
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  • Created Objects, Coherence, and Anaphora.McCready Eric - 2006 - Journal of Semantics 23 (3):251-279.
    This paper considers the possibility of anaphoric dependencies to the objects of creation verbs in progressive aspect. It is shown that such dependencies are possible in the right circumstances and a classification of the felicitous cases is proposed. A formal analysis making use of pragmatic information and discourse structure is given. Finally, some broader implications of the analysis are discussed.
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  • Parametrized Sum Individuals for Plural Anaphora.Manfred Krifka - 1996 - Linguistics and Philosophy 19 (6):555 - 598.
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  • Combining Montague Semantics and Discourse Representation.Reinhard Muskens - 1996 - Linguistics and Philosophy 19 (2):143 - 186.
    This paper embeds the core part of Discourse Representation Theory in the classical theory of types plus a few simple axioms that allow the theory to express key facts about variables and assignments on the object level of the logic. It is shown how the embedding can be used to combine core analyses of natural language phenomena in Discourse Representation Theory with analyses that can be obtained in Montague Semantics.
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  • Ontology and Objectivity.Thomas Hofweber - 1999 - Dissertation, Stanford University
    Ontology is the study of what there is, what kinds of things make up reality. Ontology seems to be a very difficult, rather speculative discipline. However, it is trivial to conclude that there are properties, propositions and numbers, starting from only necessarily true or analytic premises. This gives rise to a puzzle about how hard ontological questions are, and relates to a puzzle about how important they are. And it produces the ontologyobjectivity dilemma: either (certain) ontological questions can be trivially (...)
     
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  • Indirect Speech Acts.Nicholas Asher & Alex Lascarides - 2001 - Synthese 128 (1-2):183 - 228.
    In this paper, we address several puzzles concerning speech acts, particularly indirect speech acts. We show how a formal semantictheory of discourse interpretation can be used to define speech acts and to avoid murky issues concerning the metaphysics of action. We provide a formally precise definition of indirect speech acts, including the subclass of so-called conventionalized indirect speech acts. This analysis draws heavily on parallels between phenomena at the speech act level and the lexical level. First, we argue that, just (...)
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  • Evidence for Single-Type Semantics—An Alternative To $E$/$T$-Based Dual-Type Semantics.Kristina Liefke & Markus Werning - forthcoming - Journal of Semantics.
    Partee (2009) conjectures a formal semantics for natural language (hereafter, single-type semantics) that interprets CPs and referential DPs in the same semantic type: properties of situations. Partee’s semantics contrasts with Montague semantics and its recent contenders (dubbed dual- or multi-type semantics) which assume distinct basic types for the semantic values of referential DPs (i.e. individuals) and CPs (i.e. propositions, truth-values, or sets of assignment functions). Partee’s conjecture is motivated by results in event semantics and discourse representation theory, which support the (...)
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  • Salience and Attention in Surprisal-Based Accounts of Language Processing.Alessandra Zarcone, Marten van Schijndel, Jorrig Vogels & Vera Demberg - 2016 - Frontiers in Psychology 7.
  • Nominalizations: The Case of Nominalizations of Modal Predicates.Friederike Moltmann - forthcoming - In Lisa Matthewson, Cécile Meier, Hotze Rullman, Thomas Ede Zimmermann & Daniel Gutzmann (eds.), Blackwell Companion to Semantics. Wiley.
    Nominalizations of modal predicates have received little, if any, attention in the semantic or philosophical literature. This paper will argue that nominalizations of modal predicates require recognizing a novel ontological category of modal objects and it will outline a new semantics of modals based on modal objects.
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  • Nominals and Event Structure.Friederike Moltmann - 2019 - In Robert Truswell (ed.), Oxford Handbook of Event Structure. Oxford: Oxford UP.
    This paper discusses three approaches to the semantics of event nominalizations and adverbial modification: the Davidsonian account, the Kimian account, and the truthmaker account. It argues that a combination of all three accounts is needed for the semantics of the full range of event, trope, and state nominalizations in English.
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  • Úvod Do Teoretické Sémantiky.Jaroslav Peregrin - manuscript
    Když jsem v roce 1992 začínal na filosofické fakultě UK přednášet teorii sémantiky, cítil jsem intenzivní potřebu poskytnout studentům nějaký učební text. O překotném vývoji tohoto interdisciplinárního oboru, který odstartovalo v sedmdesátých letech úspěšné “zkřížení logiky s lingvistikou” Richardem Montaguem a dalšími a který se nezpomalil dodnes, totiž v češtině neexistovaly prakticky žádné zprávy (s čestnou výjimkou přístupu tzv. transparentní intenzionální logiky, který byl dílem českého emigranta Pavla Tichého a o kterém u nás psal Pavel Materna). Přehledové publikace, jaké jsou (...)
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  • Reductionism About Understanding Why.Insa Lawler - 2016 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 116 (2):229-236.
    Paulina Sliwa (2015) argues that knowing why p is necessary and sufficient for understanding why p. She tries to rebut recent attacks against the necessity and sufficiency claims, and explains the gradability of understanding why in terms of knowledge. I argue that her attempts do not succeed, but I indicate more promising ways to defend reductionism about understanding why throughout the discussion.
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  • Structured Propositions in a Generative Grammar.Bryan Pickel - 2019 - Mind (510):329-366.
    Semantics in the Montagovian tradition combines two basic tenets. One tenet is that the semantic value of a sentence is an intension, a function from points of evaluations into truth-values. The other tenet is that the semantic value of a composite expression is the result of applying the function denoted by one component to arguments denoted by the other components. Many philosophers object to intensional semantics on the grounds that intensionally equivalent sentences do not substitute salva veritate into attitude ascriptions. (...)
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  • Discourse Semantics with Information Structure.Noortje J. Venhuizen, Johan Bos, Petra Hendriks & Harm Brouwer - 2018 - Journal of Semantics 35 (1):127-169.
  • D-LTAG System: Discourse Parsing with a Lexicalized Tree-Adjoining Grammar. [REVIEW]Katherine Forbes, Eleni Miltsakaki, Rashmi Prasad, Anoop Sarkar, Aravind Joshi & Bonnie Webber - 2003 - Journal of Logic, Language and Information 12 (3):261-279.
    We present an implementation of a discourse parsing system for alexicalized Tree-Adjoining Grammar for discourse, specifying the integrationof sentence and discourse level processing. Our system is based on theassumption that the compositional aspects of semantics at thediscourse level parallel those at the sentence level. This coupling isachieved by factoring away inferential semantics and anaphoric features ofdiscourse connectives. Computationally, this parallelism is achievedbecause both the sentence and discourse grammar are LTAG-based and the sameparser works at both levels. The approach to an (...)
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  • Causality and Tense--Two Temporal Structure Builders.L. Oversteegen - 2005 - Journal of Semantics 22 (3):307-337.
    By force of causes precede effects, causality contributes to the temporal meaning of discourse. In case of semantic causal relations, this contribution is straightforward, but in case of epistemic causal relations, it is not. In order to gain insight into the semantics of epistemic causal relations, paradoxical cases are analyzed of text fragments in which temporal and causal meaning seem to be irreconcilable. A solution is proposed consisting of several parts: First, an analysis of epistemic causal coherence relations, in which (...)
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  • Agreement, Disputes and Commitments in Dialogue.A. Lascarides & N. Asher - 2009 - Journal of Semantics 26 (2):109-158.
    This paper provides a logically precise analysis of agreement and disputes in dialogue. The semantics distinguishes among the public commitments of each dialogue agent, including commitments to relational speech acts or rhetorical relations (e.g. Narration, Explanation and Correction). Agreement is defined to be the shared entailments of the agents' public commitments. We show that this makes precise predictions about implicit agreement. The theory also provides a consistent interpretation of disputes and models what content is agreed upon when a dispute has (...)
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  • Designing Meaningful Agents.Matthew Stone - 2004 - Cognitive Science 28 (5):781-809.
     
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  • Indefiniteness and Specificity in Old Italian Texts.E. Stark - 2002 - Journal of Semantics 19 (3):315-332.
    The present study shows the necessity to assume, in the process of nominal determiner grammaticalization, an intermediate period between the early facultative marking of important referents and fully grammaticalized article systems. In this intermediate period, especially indefinite determiners seem to be distributed in a quite clearcut way according to the specificity of the referents introduced by the respective noun phrases. Statistical evidence for this is drawn from the distribution of the indefinites uno, alcuno, certo and bare noun phrases in a (...)
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  • Specificity and Definiteness in Sentence and Discourse Structure.K. von Heusinger - 2002 - Journal of Semantics 19 (3):245-274.
    The paper gives a contrastive analysis of the two semantic categories specificity and definiteness. It argues against the traditional picture that assumes that specific expressions are a subclass of indefinite NPs. The paper rather assumes that the two categories are independent of each other. Definiteness expresses the discourse pragmatic property of familiarity, while specificity mirrors a more finely grained referential structure of the items used in the discourse. A specific NP indicates that it is referentially anchored to another discourse object. (...)
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  • Coherence and the Resolution of Ellipsis.Andrew Kehler - 2000 - Linguistics and Philosophy 23 (6):533-575.
    Despite the attention that various forms of ellipsis have received inthe literature, the conditions under which a representation of anutterance may serve as a suitable referent for interpreting subsequentelliptical forms remain poorly understood. This fundamental questionremains as a point of contention, particularly because there are datato support various conflicting approaches that attempt to characterizethese conditions within a single module of language processing. Weshow a previously unnoticed pattern in VP-ellipsis data with respectto the type of coherence relation extant between the antecedentand (...)
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  • A Handbook for Language Engineers.Matthew Stone - unknown
    cal practice: the enterprise of specifying information about the world for use in computer systems. Knowledge representation as a field also encompasses conceptual results that call practitioners’ attention to important truths about the world, mathematical results that allow practitioners to make these truths precise, and computational results that put these truths to work. This chapter surveys this practice and its results, as it applies to the interpretation of natural language utterances in implemented natural language processing systems. For a broader perspective (...)
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  • What Do Quantifier Particles Do?Anna Szabolcsi - 2015 - Linguistics and Philosophy 38 (2):159-204.
    In many languages, the same particles that form quantifier words also serve as connectives, additive and scalar particles, question markers, roots of existential verbs, and so on. Do these have a unified semantics, or do they merely bear a family resemblance? Are they aided by silent operators in their varied roles―if yes, what operators? I dub the particles “quantifier particles” and refer to them generically with capitalized versions of the Japanese morphemes. I argue that both MO and KA can be (...)
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  • Common Ground, Corrections, and Coordination.Nicholas Asher & Anthony Gillies - 2003 - Argumentation 17 (4):481-512.
  • Towards an Explanation of Copula Effects.Gerhard Jäger - 2003 - Linguistics and Philosophy 26 (5):557-593.
    This paper deals with a series of semantic contrasts between the copula be and the preposition as, two functional elements that both head elementary predication structures. It will be argued that the meaning of as is a type lowering device shifting the meaning of its complement NP from the type of generalized quantifiers to the type of properties (where properties are conceived as relations between individuals and situations), while the copula be induces a type coercion from (partial) situations to (total) (...)
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  • Order-Independence and Underspecification.Reinhard Muskens - 2004 - In Hans Kamp & Barbara Hall Partee (eds.), Context-Dependence in the Analysis of Linguistic Meaning. Elsevier. pp. 11--239.
  • An Ontology for Commitments in Multiagent Systems. [REVIEW]Munindar P. Singh - 1999 - Artificial Intelligence and Law 7 (1):97-113.
    Social commitments have long been recognized as an important concept for multiagent systems. We propose a rich formulation of social commitments that motivates an architecture for multiagent systems, which we dub spheres of commitment. We identify the key operations on commitments and multiagent systems. We distinguish between explicit and implicit commitments. Multiagent systems, viewed as spheres of commitment (SoComs), provide the context for the different operations on commitments. Armed with the above ideas, we can capture normative concepts such as obligations, (...)
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  • Anaphoric Presuppositions and Zero Anaphora.Kjell Johan Saeboe - 1996 - Linguistics and Philosophy 19 (2):187 - 209.
    The purpose of this paper is to use an anaphoric notion of presupposition for solving the problem of zero argument anaphora. Since Shopen (1973) it has been known that many missing arguments have an anaphoric interpretation, but it has not been known how this interpretation arises. I argue that these arguments are involved in presuppositions. On an anaphoric account of presuppositions as in van der Sandt (1992) or Kamp and Roßdeutscher (1992), it can be shown that the zero arguments acquire (...)
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  • Propositional Anaphors.Peter van Elswyk - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (4):1055-1075.
    Propositions are posited to perform a variety of explanatory roles. One important role is being what is designated by a dedicated linguistic expression like a "that"-clause. In this paper, the case that propositions are needed for such a role is bolstered by defending that there are other expressions dedicated to designating propositions. In particular, it is shown that natural language has anaphors for propositions. Complement "so" and the response markers "yes" and "no" are argued to be such expressions.
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  • Eventive Versus Stative Causation: The Case of German Causal von -Modifiers.Johanna Herdtfelder & Claudia Maienborn - 2017 - Linguistics and Philosophy 40 (3):279-320.
    Causation is generally conceived of as a relation that holds between events. Apart from a few cursory remarks, the case of stative causation has been widely neglected. The paper aims at contributing to a more balanced perspective by arguing for a stative variant of causation, on a par with eventive causation. The stative variant is analyzed in terms of Moltmann’s ontological notion of tropes. German causal von-modifiers are taken as a linguistic window into our understanding of causation. The study of (...)
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  • Discourse Grammar and Verb Phrase Anaphora.Hub Prüst, Remko Scha & Martin Berg - 1994 - Linguistics and Philosophy 17 (3):261-327.
    We argue that an adequate treatment of verb phrase anaphora must depart in two major respects from the standard approaches. First of all, VP anaphors cannot be resolved by simply identifying the anaphoric VP with an antecedent VP. The resolution process must establish a syntactic/semantic parallelism between larger units that the VPs occur in. Secondly, discourse structure has a significant influence on the reference possibilities of VPA. This influence must be accounted for.We propose a treatment which meets these requirements. It (...)
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  • An Event-Related Brain Potential (ERP) Study of Complex Anaphora in Spanish.Adrián García-Sierra, Juan Silva-Pereyra, Graciela Catalina Alatorre-Cruz & Noelle Wig - 2021 - Frontiers in Psychology 12.
    This study examines the event- related brain potential of 25 Mexican monolingual Spanish-speakers when reading Spanish sentences with single entity anaphora or complex anaphora. Complex anaphora is an expression that refer to propositions, states, facts or events while, a single entity anaphora is an expression that refers back to a concrete object. Here we compare the cognitive cost in processing a single entity anaphora [éstafeminine; La renuncia ] from a complex anaphora [estoneuter; La renuncia fue aceptada ]. Ésta elicited a (...)
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