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Quantification and Syntactic Theory

Dordrecht: Reidel (1983)

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  1. Computational Semantics.Patrick Blackburn & Johan Bos - 2003 - Theoria 18 (1):27-45.
    In this article we discuss what constitutes a good choice of semantic representation, compare different approaches of constructing semantic representations for fragments of natural language, and give an overview of recent methods for employing inference engines for natural language understanding tasks.
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  • Computational Semantics.Patrick Blackburn & Johan Bos - 2010 - Theoria 18 (1):27-45.
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  • The Philosophy of Generative Linguistics.Peter Ludlow - 2011 - Oxford University Press.
    Peter Ludlow presents the first book on the philosophy of generative linguistics, including both Chomsky's government and binding theory and his minimalist ...
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  • Proceedings of Sinn Und Bedeutung 9.Emar Maier, Corien Bary & Janneke Huitink (eds.) - 2005 - Nijmegen Centre for Semantics.
  • Definite Descriptions and Negative Existential Quantifiers.Paul Elbourne - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (7):1597-1612.
    Previous theorists have claimed that Russell’s theory of definite descriptions gives the wrong truth conditions to sentences in which definite descriptions are embedded under certain other operators; but the other operators used, such as conditionals and propositional attitude verbs, have introduced intensional and hyperintensional complications that might be thought to obscure the point against Russell. This paper shows that the same kind of problem arises when the operator in question allows the context to be extensional. It is further argued that (...)
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  • Quantificational Arguments in Temporal Adjunct Clauses.Ron Artstein - 2005 - Linguistics and Philosophy 28 (5):541 - 597.
    Quantificational arguments can take scope outside of temporal adjunct clauses, in an apparent violation of locality restrictions: the sentence few secretaries cried after each executive resigned allows the quantificational NP each executive to take scope above few secretaries. I show how this scope relation is the result of local operations: the adjunct clause is a temporal generalized quantifier which takes scope over the main clause (Pratt and Francez, Linguistic and Philosophy 24(2), 187–222. [2001]), and within the adjunct clause, the quantificational (...)
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  • Lying and Misleading in Discourse.Andreas Stokke - 2016 - Philosophical Review 125 (1):83-134.
    This essay argues that the distinction between lying and misleading while not lying is sensitive to discourse structure. It shows that whether an utterance is a lie or is merely misleading sometimes depends on the topic of conversation, represented by so-called questions under discussion. It argues that to mislead is to disrupt the pursuit of the goal of inquiry—that is, to discover how things are. Lying is seen as a special case requiring assertion of disbelieved information, where assertion is characterized (...)
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  • Syntax and Semantics: An Overview.Arnim von Stechow - 2012 - In Klaus von Heusinger, Claudia Maienborn & Paul Portner (eds.), Semantics: An International Handbook of Natural Language Meaning. De Gruyter Mouton.
     
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  • Relational Semantics and Domain Semantics for Epistemic Modals.Dilip Ninan - 2018 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 47 (1):1-16.
    The standard account of modal expressions in natural language analyzes them as quantifiers over a set of possible worlds determined by the evaluation world and an accessibility relation. A number of authors have recently argued for an alternative account according to which modals are analyzed as quantifying over a domain of possible worlds that is specified directly in the points of evaluation. But the new approach only handles the data motivating it if it is supplemented with a non-standard account of (...)
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  • Montague Semantics.Theo M. V. Janssen - forthcoming - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  • Implicature.Wayne Davis - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  • Pronouns.Alex Byrne - manuscript
    An opinionated survey article on the social/ethical issues raised by English third person singular pronouns like "she", "he", "hers", and "his". Is it simply considerate to use "she" when speaking of a transgender woman, or is there more at stake? What about using "they" for a non-binary person? And is non-binary "they"—not to be confused with the long-established singular "they"—a good idea anyway? Is it feasible to follow the Swedes and add a sex-neutral (epicene) pronoun, or imitate Finnish and Hungarian (...)
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  • What’s Positive and Negative About Generics: A Constrained Indexical Approach.Junhyo Lee & Anthony Nguyen - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 179 (5):1739-1761.
    Nguyen argues that only his radically pragmatic account and Sterken’s indexical account can capture what we call the positive data. We present some new data, which we call the negative data, and argue that no theory of generics on the market is compatible with both the positive data and the negative data. We develop a novel version of the indexical account and show that it captures both the positive data and the negative data. In particular, we argue that there is (...)
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  • Semantics Without Semantic Content.Daniel W. Harris - 2022 - Mind and Language 37 (3):304-328.
    I argue that semantics is the study of the proprietary database of a centrally inaccessible and informationally encapsulated input–output system. This system’s role is to encode and decode partial and defeasible evidence of what speakers are saying. Since information about nonlinguistic context is therefore outside the purview of semantic processing, a sentence’s semantic value is not its content but a partial and defeasible constraint on what it can be used to say. I show how to translate this thesis into a (...)
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  • Resolution of Quantifier Scope Ambiguities.Howard S. Kurtzman & Maryellen C. MacDonald - 1993 - Cognition 48 (3):243-279.
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  • Compositionality as an Empirical Problem.David Dowty - 2007 - In Chris Barker & Pauline I. Jacobson (eds.), Direct Compositionality. Oxford University Press. pp. 14--23.
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  • Reference and Monstrosity.Paolo Santorio - 2012 - Philosophical Review 121 (3):359-406.
    According to the orthodox account developed by Kaplan, indexicals like I, you, and now invariably refer to elements of the context of speech. This essay argues that the orthodoxy is wrong. I, you, and the like are shifted by certain modal operators and hence can fail to refer to elements of the context, for example, I can fail to refer to the speaker. More precisely, indexicals are syntactically akin to logical variables. They can be free, in which case they work, (...)
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  • Underspecified Interpretations in a Curry-Typed Representation Language.Chris Fox & Shalom Lappin - 2005 - Journal of Logic and Computation 15 (2):131--143.
    In previous work we have developed Property Theory with Curry Typing (PTCT), an intensional first-order logic for natural language semantics. PTCT permits fine-grained specifications of meaning. It also supports polymorphic types and separation types. We develop an intensional number theory within PTCT in order to represent proportional generalized quantifiers like "most", and we suggest a dynamic type-theoretic approach to anaphora and ellipsis resolution. Here we extend the type system to include product types, and use these to define a permutation function (...)
     
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  • Protagonist Projection.Andreas Stokke - 2013 - Mind and Language 28 (2):204-232.
    This article provides a semantic analysis of Protagonist Projection, the phenomenon by which things are described from a point of view different from that of the speaker. Against what has been argued by some, the account vindicates the intuitive idea that Protagonist Projection does not give rise to counterexamples to factivity, and similar plausible principles. A pragmatics is sketched that explains the attitude attributions generated by Protagonist Projection. Further, the phenomenon is compared to Free Indirect Discourse, and the proposed account (...)
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  • Context of Thought and Context of Utterance: A Note on Free Indirect Discourse and the Historical Pr.Philippe Schlenker - 2004 - Mind and Language 19 (3):279-304.
    Based on the analysis of narrations in Free Indirect Discourse and the Historical Present, we argue that the grammatical notion of context of speech should be ramified into a Context of Thought and a Context of Utterance. Tense and person depend on the Context of Utterance, while all other indexicals are evaluated with respect to the Context of Thought. Free Indirect Discourse and the Historical Present are analyzed as special combinatorial possibilities that arise when the two contexts are distinct, and (...)
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  • Gender in Conditionals.Sandro Zucchi & Fabio Del Prete - 2021 - Linguistics and Philosophy 44 (4):953-980.
    The 3sg pronouns “he” and “she” impose descriptive gender conditions on their referents. These conditions are standardly analysed as presuppositions. Cooper argues that, when 3sg pronouns occur free, they have indexical presuppositions: the gender condition must be satisfied by the pronoun’s referent in the actual world. In this paper, we consider the behaviour of free 3sg pronouns in conditionals and focus on cases in which the pronouns’ gender presuppositions no longer seem to be indexical and project locally instead. We compare (...)
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  • Gender in Conditionals.Fabio Del Prete & Alessandro Zucchi - 2021 - Linguistics and Philosophy 44:953–980.
    The 3sg pronouns “he” and “she” impose descriptive gender conditions on their referents. These conditions are standardly analysed as presuppositions. Cooper argues that, when 3sg pronouns occur free, they have indexical presuppositions: the gender condition must be satisfied by the pronoun’s referent in the actual world. In this paper, we consider the behaviour of free 3sg pronouns in conditionals and focus on cases in which the pronouns’ gender presuppositions no longer seem to be indexical and project locally instead. We compare (...)
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  • Against the Russellian Open Future.Anders J. Schoubye & Brian Rabern - 2017 - Mind 126 (504): 1217–1237.
    Todd (2016) proposes an analysis of future-directed sentences, in particular sentences of the form 'will(φ)', that is based on the classic Russellian analysis of definite descriptions. Todd's analysis is supposed to vindicate the claim that the future is metaphysically open while retaining a simple Ockhamist semantics of future contingents and the principles of classical logic, i.e. bivalence and the law of excluded middle. Consequently, an open futurist can straightforwardly retain classical logic without appeal to supervaluations, determinacy operators, or any further (...)
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  • On Recent Analyses of the Semantics of Control.David R. Dowty - 1985 - Linguistics and Philosophy 8 (3):291 - 331.
  • The Worst and the Best of Propaganda.Bianca Cepollaro & Giuliano Torrengo - 2018 - Disputatio 1 (51):289-303.
    In this paper we discuss two issues addressed by Stanley in How Propaganda Works: the status of slurs (Section 1) and the notion of positive propaganda (Section 2). In particular, in Section 1 we argue contra Stanley that code words like ‘welfare’ are crucially different from slurs in that the association between the lexical item and an additional social meaning is not as systematic as it is for slurs. In this sense, slurs bring about a special kind of propagandistic effect, (...)
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  • Compositionality II: Arguments and Problems.Peter Pagin & Dag Westerståhl - 2010 - Philosophy Compass 5 (3):265-282.
    This is the second part of a two-part article on compositionality, i.e. the principle that the meaning of a complex expression is determined by the meanings of its parts and the way they are put together. In the first, Pagin and Westerståhl (2010), we provide a general historical background, a formal framework, definitions, and a survey of variants of compositionality. It will be referred to as Part I. Here we discuss arguments for and against the claim that natural languages have (...)
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  • Into the Conventional-Implicature Dimension.Christopher Potts - 2007 - Philosophy Compass 2 (4):665–679.
    Grice coined the term ‘conventional implicature’ in a short passage in ‘Logic and conversation’. The description is intuitive and deeply intriguing. The range of phenomena that have since been assigned this label is large and diverse. I survey the central factual motivation, arguing that it is loosely uni- fied by the idea that conventional implicatures contribute a separate dimen- sion of meaning. I provide tests for distinguishing conventional implicatures from other kinds of meaning, and I briefly explore ways in which (...)
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  • Linguistics and the Explanatory Economy.Gabe Dupre - 2019 - Synthese 199 (Suppl 1):177-219.
    I present a novel, collaborative, methodology for linguistics: what I call the ‘explanatory economy’. According to this picture, multiple models/theories are evaluated based on the extent to which they complement one another with respect to data coverage. I show how this model can resolve a long-standing worry about the methodology of generative linguistics: that by creating too much distance between data and theory, the empirical credentials of this research program are tarnished. I provide justifications of such methodologically central distinctions as (...)
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  • The Cooper Storage Idiom.Gregory M. Kobele - 2018 - Journal of Logic, Language and Information 27 (2):95-131.
    Cooper storage is a widespread technique for associating sentences with their meanings, used in diverse linguistic and computational linguistic traditions. This paper encodes the data structures and operations of cooper storage in the simply typed linear \-calculus, revealing the rich categorical structure of a graded applicative functor. In the case of finite cooper storage, which corresponds to ideas in current transformational approaches to syntax, the semantic interpretation function can be given as a linear homomorphism acting on a regular set of (...)
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  • Modal Indefinites.Luis Alonso-Ovalle & Paula Menéndez-Benito - 2010 - Natural Language Semantics 18 (1):1-31.
    Across languages, we find indefinites that trigger modal inferences. This article contributes to a semantic typology of these items by contrasting Spanish algún with indefinites like German irgendein or Italian uno qualsiasi. While irgendein-type indefinites trigger a Free Choice effect (Kratzer and Shimoyama 2002; Chierchia 2006), algún simply signals that at least two individuals in its domain are possibilities. Additionally, algún, but not irgendein, can convey that the speaker does not know how many individuals satisfy the existential claim in the (...)
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  • Temporal Adjectives and the Structure of Possessive DPs.Richard Larson & Sungeun Cho - 2003 - Natural Language Semantics 11 (3):217-247.
    The presence of temporal adjectives in possessive nominals like John's former car creates two interpretations. On one reading, the temporal adjective modifies the common noun (N-modifying reading). On the other, it modifies the possession relation (POSS-modifying reading). An explanation for this behavior is offered that appeals to what occurs in possessive sentences like John has a former car (N-modifying reading) and John formerly had a car (POSS-modifying reading). In the sentential cases, the source of two readings is two distinct, modifiable (...)
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  • Plurals, Presuppositions and the Sources of Distributivity.Roger Schwarzschild - 1993 - Natural Language Semantics 2 (3):201-248.
    This paper begins with a discussion ofcumulativity (e.g., ‘P(a) & P(b) implies P(a+b)’), formalized using a verb phrase operator. Next, the meanings of distributivity markers such aseach and non-distributivity indicators such astogether are considered. An existing analysis ofeach in terms of quantification over parts of a plurality is adopted. However,together is problematic, for it involves a cancellation or negation of the quantification associated witheach. (The four boys together owned exactly three cars could not be true if each of the boys (...)
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  • The Scope of Even.Karina Wilkinson - 1996 - Natural Language Semantics 4 (3):193-215.
    This paper is about even in downward entailing contexts. Karttunen and Peters (1979) have shown that there are two different sets of implicatures of even in such contexts. They argue that the two sets of implicatures are derived by allowing even to take scope either higher or lower than a negative polarity licenser. Rooth (1985) argues that even is lexically ambiguous, that is, there is a negative polarity even. I argue against Rooth's ambiguity theory and show that within Rooth's theory (...)
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  • Plausible Reasoning and the Resolution of Quantifier Scope Ambiguities.Walid S. Saba & Jean-Pierre Corriveau - 2001 - Studia Logica 67 (2):271-289.
    Despite overwhelming evidence suggesting that quantifier scope is a phenomenon that must be treated at the pragmatic level, most computational treatments of scope ambiguities have thus far been a collection of syntactically motivated preference rules. This might be in part due to the prevailing wisdom that a commonsense inferencing strategy would require the storage of and reasoning with a vast amount of background knowledge. In this paper we hope to demonstrate that the challenge in developing a commonsense inferencing strategy is (...)
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  • Putting Truth Into Universal Grammar.Norbert Hornstein - 1995 - Linguistics and Philosophy 18 (4):381 - 400.
  • Semantics and Property Theory.Gennaro Chierchia & Raymond Turner - 1988 - Linguistics and Philosophy 11 (3):261 - 302.
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  • Expressions in Focus.Poppy Mankowitz - 2020 - Semantics and Pragmatics 13 (13).
    It is commonly claimed that, when a constituent is the focus of an occurrence of a sentence, certain alternatives to that constituent are relevant to our understanding of the sentence. Normally these are alternatives to the denotation of the focused constituent. However, Krifka (2007) briefly discusses the notion of expression focus, where the alternatives are linguistic items. Yet an adequate account of expression focus has not been given within the literature. This is despite the fact that it holds the potential (...)
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  • Supersloppy Readings: Indexicals as Bound Descriptions.Isabelle Charnavel - 2019 - Journal of Semantics 36 (3):453-530.
    This article explores understudied dependent readings in ellipsis and focus constructions and their theoretical consequences. The main focus is on “supersloppy” readings of person indexicals in VP-ellipsis, in which you can be bound by I and vice versa. The empirical properties of these cases, tested in a large-scale systematically controlled questionnaire, show that I and you can be construed as e-type pronouns dependent on each other. This challenges the Kaplanian fixity theory of indexicals in a new way: not only can (...)
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  • Children's Command of Quantification.Jeffrey Lidz & Julien Musolino - 2002 - Cognition 84 (2):113-154.
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  • Interactions of Scope and Ellipsis.Stuart M. Shieber, Fernando C. N. Pereira & Mary Dalrymple - 1996 - Linguistics and Philosophy 19 (5):527 - 552.
    Systematic semantic ambiguities result from the interaction of the two operations that are involved in resolving ellipsis in the presence of scoping elements such as quantifiers and intensional operators: scope determination for the scoping elements and resolution of the elided relation. A variety of problematic examples previously noted - by Sag, Hirschbüihler, Gawron and Peters, Harper, and others - all have to do with such interactions. In previous work, we showed how ellipsis resolution can be stated and solved in equational (...)
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  • Talking About Trees and Truth-Conditions.Reinhard Muskens - 2001 - Journal of Logic, Language and Information 10 (4):417-455.
    We present Logical Description Grammar (LDG), a model ofgrammar and the syntax-semantics interface based on descriptions inelementary logic. A description may simultaneously describe the syntacticstructure and the semantics of a natural language expression, i.e., thedescribing logic talks about the trees and about the truth-conditionsof the language described. Logical Description Grammars offer a naturalway of dealing with underspecification in natural language syntax andsemantics. If a logical description (up to isomorphism) has exactly onetree plus truth-conditions as a model, it completely specifies thatgrammatical (...)
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  • Concealed Causatives.Maria Bittner - 1999 - Natural Language Semantics 7 (1):1-78.
    Crosslinguistically, causative constructions conform to the following generalization: If the causal relation is syntactically concealed, then it is semantically direct. Concealed causatives span a wide syntactic spectrum, ranging from resultative complements in English to causative subjects in Miskitu. A unified type-driven theory is proposed which attributes the understood causal relation—and other elements of constructional meaning—to type lifting operations predictably licensed by type mismatch at LF. The proposal has far-reaching theoretical implications not only for the theory of compositionality and causation, but (...)
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  • Interactions with Context.Eric Swanson - 2006 - Dissertation, MIT
    My dissertation asks how we affect conversational context and how it affects us when we participate in any conversation—including philosophical conversations. Chapter 1 argues that speakers make pragmatic presuppositions when they use proper names. I appeal to these presuppositions in giving a treatment of Frege’s puzzle that is consistent with the claim that coreferential proper names have the same semantic value. I outline an explanation of the way presupposition carrying expressions in general behave in belief ascriptions, and suggest that substitutivity (...)
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  • A Unified Non Monstrous Semantics for Third Person Pronouns.Fabio Del Prete & Sandro Zucchi - 2017 - Semantics and Pragmatics 10.
    It is common practice in formal semantics to assume that the context specifies an assignment of values to variables and that the same variables that receive contextually salient values when they occur free may also be bound by quantifiers and λs. These assumptions are at work to provide a unified account of free and bound uses of third person pronouns, namely one by which the same lexical item is involved in both uses. One way to pursue this account is to (...)
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  • (In)Definiteness, Polarity, and the Role of Wh-Morphology in Free Choice.Anastasia Giannakidou & Lisa Cheng - 2006 - Journal of Semantics 23 (2):135-183.
    In this paper we reconsider the issue of free choice and the role of the wh-morphology employed in it. We show that the property of being an interrogative wh-word alone is not sufficient for free choice, and that semantic and sometimes even morphological definiteness is a pre-requisite for some free choice items (FCIs) in certain languages, e.g. in Greek and Mandarin Chinese. We propose a theory that explains the polarity behaviour of FCIs cross-linguistically, and allows indefinite (Giannakidou 2001) as well (...)
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  • 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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  • Sense and the Computation of Reference.Reinhard Muskens - 2004 - Linguistics and Philosophy 28 (4):473 - 504.
    The paper shows how ideas that explain the sense of an expression as a method or algorithm for finding its reference, preshadowed in Frege’s dictum that sense is the way in which a referent is given, can be formalized on the basis of the ideas in Thomason (1980). To this end, the function that sends propositions to truth values or sets of possible worlds in Thomason (1980) must be replaced by a relation and the meaning postulates governing the behaviour of (...)
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  • Cross-Linguistic Semantics for Questions.Maria Bittner - 1998 - Linguistics and Philosophy 21 (1):1-82.
    : The Hamblin-Karttunen approach has led to many insights about questions in English. In this article the results of this rule-by-rule tradition are reconsidered from a crosslinguistic perspective. Starting from the type-driven XLS theory developed in Bittner (1994a, b), it is argued that evidence from simple questions (in English, Polish, Lakhota and Warlpiri) leads to certain revisions. The revised XLS theory then immediately generalizes to complex questions — including scope marking (Hindi), questions with quantifiers (English) and multiple wh-questions (English, Hindi, (...)
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  • Type-Ambiguous Names.Anders J. Schoubye - 2017 - Mind 126 (503):715-767.
    The orthodox view of proper names, Millianism, provides a very simple and elegant explanation of the semantic contribution of referential uses of names–names that occur as bare singulars and as the argument of a predicate. However, one problem for Millianism is that it cannot explain the semantic contribution of predicative uses of names. In recent years, an alternative view, so-called the-predicativism, has become increasingly popular. According to the-predicativists, names are uniformly count nouns. This straightforwardly explains why names can be used (...)
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  • Inverse Linking Via Function Composition.Gregory M. Kobele - 2010 - Natural Language Semantics 18 (2):183-196.
    The phenomenon of inverse linking, where a noun phrase embedded within another behaves with respect to binding as though it were structurally independent, has proven challenging for theories of the syntax–semantics interface. In this paper I show that, using an LF-movement style approach to the syntax–semantics interface, we can derive all and only the appropriate meanings for such constructions using no semantic operations other than function application and composition. The solution relies neither on a proliferation of lexical ambiguity nor on (...)
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