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Coreference and modality

In Shalom Lappin (ed.), Handbook of Contemporary Semantic Theory. Blackwell. pp. 179-216 (1996)

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  1. A dynamic semantics for vague predicates.Akihiro Yoshimitsu - 2004 - Annals of the Japan Association for Philosophy of Science 12 (2):109-128.
  • New surprises for the Ramsey Test.Malte Willer - 2010 - Synthese 176 (2):291 - 309.
    In contemporary discussions of the Ramsey Test for conditionals, it is commonly held that (i) supposing the antecedent of a conditional is adopting a potential state of full belief, and (ii) Modus Ponens is a valid rule of inference. I argue on the basis of Thomason Conditionals (such as ' If Sally is deceiving, I do not believe it') and Moore's Paradox that both claims are wrong. I then develop a double-indexed Update Semantics for conditionals which takes these two results (...)
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  • An Update on Epistemic Modals.Malte Willer - 2015 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 44 (6):835–849.
    Epistemic modals are a prominent topic in the literature on natural language semantics, with wide-ranging implications for issues in philosophy of language and philosophical logic. Considerations about the role that epistemic "might" and "must" play in discourse and reasoning have led to the development of several important alternatives to classical possible worlds semantics for natural language modal expressions. This is an opinionated overview of what I take to be some of the most exciting issues and developments in the field.
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  • Advice for Noncognitivists.Malte Willer - 2017 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 98 (S1):174–207.
    Metaethical noncognitivists have trouble arriving at a respectable semantic theory for moral language. The goal of this article is to make substantial progress toward demonstrating that these problems may be overcome. Replacing the predominant expressivist semantic agenda in metaethics with a dynamic perspective on meaning and communication allows noncognitivists to provide a satisfying analysis of negation and other constructions that have been argued to be problematic for metaethical noncognitivism, including disjunctions. The resulting proposal preserves some of the key insights from (...)
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  • Contexts in dynamic predicate logic.Albert Visser - 1998 - Journal of Logic, Language and Information 7 (1):21-52.
    In this paper we introduce a notion of context for Groenendijk & Stokhof's Dynamic Predicate Logic DPL. We use these contexts to give a characterization of the relations on assignments that can be generated by composition from tests and random resettings in the case that we are working over an infinite domain. These relations are precisely the ones expressible in DPL if we allow ourselves arbitrary tests as a starting point. We discuss some possible extensions of DPL and the way (...)
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  • Exhaustivity in dynamic semantics; referential and descriptive pronouns.Robert Van Rooy - 2001 - Linguistics and Philosophy 24 (5):621-657.
    In this paper I argue that anaphoric pronouns should always be interpreted exhaustively. I propose that pronouns are either used referentially and refer to the speaker's referents of their antecedent indefinites, or descriptively and go proxy for the description recoverable from its antecedent clause. I show how this view can be implemented within a dynamic semantics, and how it can account for various examples that seemed to be problematic for the view that for all unbound pronouns there always should be (...)
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  • Truth and Context Change.Andreas Stokke - 2012 - Journal of Philosophical Logic (1):1-19.
    Some dynamic semantic theories include an attempt to derive truth-conditional meaning from context change potential. This implies defining truth in terms of context change. Focusing on presuppositions and epistemic modals, this paper points out some problems with how this project has been carried out. It then suggests a way of overcoming these problems. This involves appealing to a richer notion of context than the one found in standard dynamic systems.
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  • A Uniform Theory of Conditionals.William B. Starr - 2014 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 43 (6):1019-1064.
    A uniform theory of conditionals is one which compositionally captures the behavior of both indicative and subjunctive conditionals without positing ambiguities. This paper raises new problems for the closest thing to a uniform analysis in the literature (Stalnaker, Philosophia, 5, 269–286 (1975)) and develops a new theory which solves them. I also show that this new analysis provides an improved treatment of three phenomena (the import-export equivalence, reverse Sobel-sequences and disjunctive antecedents). While these results concern central issues in the study (...)
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  • Presupposition and accommodation: Understanding the Stalnakerian picture.Mandy Simons - 2003 - Philosophical Studies 112 (3):251 - 278.
    This paper offers a critical analysis of Stalnaker''s work on presupposition (Stalnaker1973, 1974, 1979, 1999, 2002). The paper examines two definitions of speaker presupposition offered by Stalnaker – the familiar common ground view, and the earlier,less familiar, dispositional account – and how Stalnaker relates this notion to the linguistic phenomenon of presupposition. Special attention is paid to Stalnaker's view of accommodation. I argue that given Stalnaker's views, accommodation is not rightly seen as driven by the presuppositional requirements of utterances, but (...)
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  • Uncertainty and Persistence: a Bayesian Update Semantics for Probabilistic Expressions.Deniz Rudin - 2018 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 47 (3):365-405.
    This paper presents a general-purpose update semantics for expressions of subjective uncertainty in natural language. First, a set of desiderata are established for how expressions of subjective uncertainty should behave in dynamic, update-based semantic systems; then extant implementations of expressions of subjective uncertainty in such models are evaluated and found wanting; finally, a new update semantics is proposed. The desiderata at the heart of this paper center around the contention that expressions of subjective uncertainty express beliefs which are not persistent, (...)
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  • Three notions of dynamicness in language.Daniel Rothschild & Seth Yalcin - 2016 - Linguistics and Philosophy 39 (4):333-355.
    We distinguish three ways that a theory of linguistic meaning and communication might be considered dynamic in character. We provide some examples of systems which are dynamic in some of these senses but not others. We suggest that separating these notions can help to clarify what is at issue in particular debates about dynamic versus static approaches within natural language semantics and pragmatics.
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  • Weak Negation in Inquisitive Semantics.Vít Punčochář - 2015 - Journal of Logic, Language and Information 24 (3):323-355.
    This paper introduces and explores a conservative extension of inquisitive logic. In particular, weak negation is added to the standard propositional language of inquisitive semantics, and it is shown that, although we lose some general semantic properties of the original framework, such an enrichment enables us to model some previously inexpressible speech acts such as weak denial and ‘might’-assertions. As a result, a new modal logic emerges. For this logic, a Fitch-style system of natural deduction is formulated. The main result (...)
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  • Mental Graphs.James Pryor - 2016 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 7 (2):309-341.
    I argue that Frege Problems in thought are best modeled using graph-theoretic machinery; and that these problems can arise even when subjects associate all the same qualitative properties to the object they’re thinking of twice. I compare the proposed treatment to similar ideas by Heck, Ninan, Recanati, Kamp and Asher, Fodor, and others.
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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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  • Coreference and meaning.N. Ángel Pinillos - 2011 - Philosophical Studies 154 (2):301 - 324.
    Sometimes two expressions in a discourse can be about the same thing in a way that makes that very fact evident to the participants. Consider, for example, 'he' and 'John' in 'John went to the store and he bought some milk'. Let us call this 'de jure' coreference. Other times, coreference is 'de facto' as with 'Mark Twain' and 'Samuel Clemens' in a sincere use of 'Mark Twain is not Samuel Clemens'. Here, agents can understand the speech without knowing that (...)
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  • The psychological representation of modality.Jonathan Phillips & Joshua Knobe - 2018 - Mind and Language 33 (1):65-94.
    A series of recent studies have explored the impact of people's judgments regarding physical law, morality, and probability. Surprisingly, such studies indicate that these three apparently unrelated types of judgments often have precisely the same impact. We argue that these findings provide evidence for a more general hypothesis about the kind of cognition people use to think about possibilities. Specifically, we suggest that this aspect of people's cognition is best understood using an idea developed within work in the formal semantics (...)
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  • Epistemic modality and truth conditions.Anna Papafragou - unknown
    Within the linguistics literature it is often claimed that epistemic modality, unlike other kinds of modality, does not contribute to truth-conditional content. In this paper I challenge this view. I reanalyze a variety of arguments which have been used in support of the non-truth-conditional view and show that they can be handled on an alternative analysis of epistemic modality. # 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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  • On Dependent Pronouns and Dynamic Semantics.Rick Nouwen - 2007 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 36 (2):123-154.
    Within natural language semantics, pronouns are often thought to correspond to variables whose values are contributed by contextual assignment functions. This paper concerns the application of this idea to cases where the antecedent of a pronoun is a plural quantifiers. The paper discusses the modelling of accessibility patterns of quantifier antecedents in a dynamic theory of interpretation. The goal is to reach a semantics of quantificational dependency which yields a fully semantic notion of pronominal accessibility. I argue that certain dependency (...)
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  • Naming and epistemic necessity.Dilip Ninan - 2021 - Noûs 55 (2):334-362.
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  • Unbound Anaphoric Pronouns: E-Type, Dynamic, and Structured-Propositions Approaches.Friederike Moltmann - 2006 - Synthese 153 (2):199-260.
    Unbound anaphoric pronouns or ‘E-type pronouns’ have presented notorious problems for semantic theory, leading to the development of dynamic semantics, where the primary function of a sentence is not considered that of expressing a proposition that may act as the object of propositional attitudes, but rather that of changing the current information state. The older, ‘E-type’ account of unbound anaphora leaves the traditional notion of proposition intact and takes the unbound anaphor to be replaced by a full NP whose semantics (...)
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  • Tolerance logic.Maarten Marx - 2001 - Journal of Logic, Language and Information 10 (3):353-374.
    We expand first order models with a tolerance relation on thedomain. Intuitively, two elements stand in this relation if they arecognitively close for the agent who holds the model. This simplenotion turns out to be very powerful. It leads to a semanticcharacterization of the guarded fragment of Andréka, van Benthemand Németi, and highlights the strong analogies between modallogic and this fragment. Viewing the resulting logic – tolerance logic– dynamically it is a resource-conscious information processingalternative to classical first order logic. The (...)
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  • What ‘must’ adds.Matthew Mandelkern - 2019 - Linguistics and Philosophy 42 (3):225-266.
    There is a difference between the conditions in which one can felicitously use a ‘must’-claim like and those in which one can use the corresponding claim without the ‘must’, as in 'It must be raining out' versus 'It is raining out. It is difficult to pin down just what this difference amounts to. And it is difficult to account for this difference, since assertions of 'Must p' and assertions of p alone seem to have the same basic goal: namely, communicating (...)
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  • Witnesses.Matthew Mandelkern - 2022 - Linguistics and Philosophy 45 (5):1091-1117.
    The meaning of definite descriptions (like ‘the King of France’, ‘the girl’, etc.) has been a central topic in philosophy and linguistics for the past century. Indefinites (‘Something is on the floor’, ‘A child sat down’, etc.) have been relatively neglected in philosophy, under the Russellian assumption that they can be unproblematically treated as existential quantifiers. However, an important tradition, drawing from Stoic logic, has pointed to patterns which suggest that indefinites cannot be treated simply as existential quantifiers. The standard (...)
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  • Talking about worlds.Matthew Mandelkern - 2018 - Philosophical Perspectives 32 (1):298-325.
    I explore the logic of the conditional, using credence judgments to argue against Duality and in favor of Conditional Excluded Middle. I then explore how to give a theory of the conditional which validates the latter and not the former, developing a variant on Kratzer (1981)'s restrictor theory, as well as a proposal which combines Stalnaker (1968)'s theory of the conditional with the theory of epistemic modals I develop in Mandelkern 2019a. I argue that the latter approach fits naturally with (...)
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  • Practical Moore Sentences.Matthew Mandelkern - 2021 - Noûs 55 (1):39-61.
    I discuss what I call practical Moore sentences: sentences like ‘You must close your door, but I don’t know whether you will’, which combine an order together with an avowal of agnosticism about whether the order will be obeyed. I show that practical Moore sentences are generally infelicitous. But this infelicity is surprising: it seems like there should be nothing wrong with giving someone an order while acknowledging that you do not know whether it will obeyed. I suggest that this (...)
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  • Modality and expressibility.Matthew Mandelkern - 2019 - Review of Symbolic Logic 12 (4):768-805.
    When embedding data are used to argue against semantic theory A and in favor of semantic theory B, it is important to ask whether A could make sense of those data. It is possible to ask that question on a case-by-case basis. But suppose we could show that A can make sense of all the embedding data which B can possibly make sense of. This would, on the one hand, undermine arguments in favor of B over A on the basis (...)
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  • If P, Then P!Matthew Mandelkern - 2021 - Journal of Philosophy 118 (12):645-679.
    The Identity principle says that conditionals with the form 'If p, then p' are logical truths. Identity is overwhelmingly plausible, and has rarely been explicitly challenged. But a wide range of conditionals nonetheless invalidate it. I explain the problem, and argue that the culprit is the principle known as Import-Export, which we must thus reject. I then explore how we can reject Import-Export in a way that still makes sense of the intuitions that support it, arguing that the differences between (...)
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  • Import‐Export and ‘And’.Matthew Mandelkern - 2020 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 100 (1):118-135.
    Import-Export says that a conditional 'If p, if q, r' is always equivalent to the conditional 'If p and q, r'. I argue that Import-Export does not sit well with a classical approach to conjunction: given some plausible and widely accepted principles about conditionals, Import-Export together with classical conjunction leads to absurd consequences. My main goal is to draw out these surprising connections. In concluding I argue that the right response is to reject Import-Export and adopt instead a limited version (...)
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  • How to do things with modals.Matthew Mandelkern - 2020 - Mind and Language 35 (1):115-138.
    Mind &Language, Volume 35, Issue 1, Page 115-138, February 2020.
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  • Dynamic Non-Classicality.Matthew Mandelkern - 2020 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 98 (2):382-392.
    I show that standard dynamic approaches to the semantics of epistemic modals invalidate the classical laws of excluded middle and non-contradiction, as well as the law of epistemic non-contradiction. I argue that these facts pose a serious challenge.
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  • Bounded Modality.Matthew Mandelkern - 2019 - Philosophical Review 128 (1):1-61.
    What does 'might' mean? One hypothesis is that 'It might be raining' is essentially an avowal of ignorance like 'For all I know, it's raining'. But it turns out these two constructions embed in different ways, in particular as parts of larger constructions like Wittgenstein's 'It might be raining and it's not' and Moore's 'It's raining and I don't know it', respectively. A variety of approaches have been developed to account for those differences. All approaches agree that both Moore sentences (...)
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  • Descriptions, pronouns, and uniqueness.Karen S. Lewis - 2022 - Linguistics and Philosophy 45 (3):559-617.
    Both definite descriptions and pronouns are often anaphoric; that is, part of their interpretation in context depends on prior linguistic material in the discourse. For example: A student walked in. The student sat down. A student walked in. She sat down. One popular view of anaphoric pronouns, the d-type view, is that pronouns like ‘she’ go proxy for definite descriptions like ‘the student who walked in’, which are in turn treated in a classical Russellian or Fregean fashion. I argue for (...)
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  • Anaphora and negation.Karen S. Lewis - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 178 (5):1403-1440.
    One of the central questions of discourse dynamics is when an anaphoric pronoun is licensed. This paper addresses this question as it pertains to the complex data involving anaphora and negation. It is commonly held that negation blocks anaphoric potential, for example, we cannot say “Bill doesn’t have a car. It is black”. However, there are many exceptions to this generalization. This paper examines a variety of types of discourses in which anaphora on indefinites under the scope of negation is (...)
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  • Simple Contextualism about Epistemic Modals Is Incorrect.Benjamin Lennertz - 2014 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 3 (4):252-262.
    I argue against a simple contextualist account of epistemic modals. My argument, like the argument on which it is based , charges that simple contextualism cannot explain all of the conversational data about uses of epistemic modals. My argument improves on its predecessor by insulating itself from recent contextualist attempts by Janice Dowell and Igor Yanovich to get around that argument. In particular, I use linguistic data to show that an utterance of an epistemic modal sentence can be warranted, while (...)
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  • Might-beliefs and asymmetric disagreement.Benjamin Lennertz - 2019 - Synthese 196 (11):4775-4805.
    What we can call asymmetric disagreement occurs when one agent is in disagreement with another, but not vice-versa. In this paper, I give an example of and develop a framework for understanding this phenomenon. One pivotal feature of my example is that one of the agents in the scenario has a belief about what might be the case—a might-belief. I show that a traditional account of might-beliefs and disagreement cannot explain the initially surprising phenomenon of asymmetric disagreement. In order to (...)
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  • The dynamics of negative concord.Jeremy Kuhn - 2022 - Linguistics and Philosophy 45 (1):153-198.
    Concord describes a natural language phenomenon in which a single logical meaning is expressed syntactically on multiple lexical items. The canonical example is negative concord, in which multiple negative expressions are used, but a single negation is interpreted. Formally similar phenomena have been observed for the redundant marking of distributivity and definiteness. Inspired by recent dynamic analyses of these latter two phenomena, we extend a similar dynamic analysis to negative concord. We propose that negative concord items introduce a discourse referent, (...)
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  • Context as knowledge.Torfinn Thomesen Huvenes & Andreas Stokke - 2022 - Mind and Language 37 (4):543-563.
    It has been argued that common ground information is unsuited to the role that contexts play in the theory of indexical and demonstrative reference. This paper explores an alternative view that identifies shared information with what is common knowledge among the participants. We argue this view of shared information avoids the problems for the common ground approach concerning reference while preserving its advantages in accounting for communication.
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  • Semantic expressivism for epistemic modals.Peter Hawke & Shane Steinert-Threlkeld - 2021 - Linguistics and Philosophy 44 (2):475-511.
    Expressivists about epistemic modals deny that ‘Jane might be late’ canonically serves to express the speaker’s acceptance of a certain propositional content. Instead, they hold that it expresses a lack of acceptance. Prominent expressivists embrace pragmatic expressivism: the doxastic property expressed by a declarative is not helpfully identified with that sentence’s compositional semantic value. Against this, we defend semantic expressivism about epistemic modals: the semantic value of a declarative from this domain is the property of doxastic attitudes it canonically serves (...)
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  • Triviality Results For Probabilistic Modals.Goldstein Simon - 2019 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 99 (1):188-222.
    In recent years, a number of theorists have claimed that beliefs about probability are transparent. To believe probably p is simply to have a high credence that p. In this paper, I prove a variety of triviality results for theses like the above. I show that such claims are inconsistent with the thesis that probabilistic modal sentences have propositions or sets of worlds as their meaning. Then I consider the extent to which a dynamic semantics for probabilistic modals can capture (...)
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  • Generalized Update Semantics.Simon Goldstein - 2019 - Mind 128 (511):795-835.
    This paper explores the relationship between dynamic and truth conditional semantics for epistemic modals. It provides a generalization of a standard dynamic update semantics for modals. This new semantics derives a Kripke semantics for modals and a standard dynamic semantics for modals as special cases. The semantics allows for new characterizations of a variety of principles in modal logic, including the inconsistency of ‘p and might not p’. Finally, the semantics provides a construction procedure for transforming any truth conditional semantics (...)
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  • The dynamic turn in twentieth century logic.Paul Gochet - 2002 - Synthese 130 (2):175 - 184.
    The dynamic nature ofGame-Theoretical Semantics is emphasized. The role of strategic meaning in accounting for linguistic competence is examined. The semantics of epistemic possibility is shown to involve a dynamic ingredient. Update semantics has been designed to capture it. The paper focuses on the interplay betweenlogical and linguistic competences indiscourse understanding.
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  • What Might be the Case after a Change in View.Anthony S. Gillies - 2006 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 35 (2):117-145.
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  • Epistemic conditionals and conditional epistemics.Anthony S. Gillies - 2004 - Noûs 38 (4):585–616.
  • A new solution to Moore's paradox.Anthony S. Gillies - 2001 - Philosophical Studies 105 (3):237-250.
    Moore's paradox pits our intuitions about semantic oddnessagainst the concept of truth-functional consistency. Most solutions tothe problem proceed by explaining away our intuitions. But``consistency'' is a theory-laden concept, having different contours indifferent semantic theories. Truth-functional consistency is appropriateonly if the semantic theory we are using identifies meaning withtruth-conditions. I argue that such a framework is not appropriate whenit comes to analzying epistemic modality. I show that a theory whichaccounts for a wide variety of semantic data about epistemic modals(Update Semantics) buys (...)
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  • The structure of communicative acts.Sarah E. Murray & William B. Starr - 2021 - Linguistics and Philosophy 44 (2):425-474.
    Utterances of natural language sentences can be used to communicate not just contents, but also forces. This paper examines this topic from a cross-linguistic perspective on sentential mood. Recent work in this area focuses on conversational dynamics: the three sentence types can be associated with distinctive kinds of conversational effects called sentential forces, modeled as three kinds of updates to the discourse context. This paper has two main goals. First, it provides two arguments, on empirical and methodological grounds, for treating (...)
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  • Inquisitive Logic.Ivano Ciardelli & Floris Roelofsen - 2011 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 40 (1):55-94.
    This paper investigates a generalized version of inquisitive semantics. A complete axiomatization of the associated logic is established, the connection with intuitionistic logic and several intermediate logics is explored, and the generalized version of inquisitive semantics is argued to have certain advantages over the system that was originally proposed by Groenendijk (2009) and Mascarenhas (2009).
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  • Fatalism and the Logic of Unconditionals.Justin Bledin - 2020 - Noûs 54 (1):126-161.
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  • Believing epistemic contradictions.Beddor Bob & Simon Goldstein - 2018 - Review of Symbolic Logic (1):87-114.
    What is it to believe something might be the case? We develop a puzzle that creates difficulties for standard answers to this question. We go on to propose our own solution, which integrates a Bayesian approach to belief with a dynamic semantics for epistemic modals. After showing how our account solves the puzzle, we explore a surprising consequence: virtually all of our beliefs about what might be the case provide counterexamples to the view that rational belief is closed under logical (...)
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  • The optimization of discourse anaphora.David I. Beaver - 2004 - Linguistics and Philosophy 27 (1):3-56.
    In this paper the Centering model of anaphoraresolution and discourse coherence(Grosz et al. 1983, 1995)is reformulated in terms of Optimality Theory (OT)(Prince and Smolensky 1993). One version of the reformulated modelis proven to be descriptively equivalent to an earlier algorithmicstatement of Centering due to Brennan, Friedman and Pollard(1987). However, the new model is stated declaratively, and makesclearer the status of the various constraints used in the theory. Inthe second part of the paper, the model is extended, demonstratingthe advantages of the (...)
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  • Proceedings of Sinn und Bedeutung 9.Emar Maier, Corien Bary & Janneke Huitink (eds.) - 2005 - Nijmegen Centre for Semantics.