MIT Press (1990)

Terence Parsons
University of California, Los Angeles
This extended investigation of the semantics of event (and state) sentences in their various forms is a major contribution to the semantics of natural language, simultaneously encompassing important issues in linguistics, philosophy, and logic. It develops the view that the logical forms of simple English sentences typically contain quantification over events or states and shows how this view can account for a wide variety of semantic phenomena. Focusing on the structure of meaning in English sentences at a &"subatomic&" level&-that is, a level below the one most theories accept as basic or &"atomic&"&-Parsons asserts that the semantics of simple English sentences require logical forms somewhat more complex than is normally assumed in natural language semantics. His articulation of underlying event theory explains a wide variety of apparently diverse semantic characteristics of natural language, and his development of the theory shows the importance of seeing the distinction between events and states. Parsons demonstrates that verbs, also, indicate kinds of actions rather than specific, individual actions. Verb phrases, too, he argues, depend on modifiers to make their function and meaning in a sentence specific. An appendix gives many of the details needed to formalize the theory discussed in the body of the text and provides a series of templates that permit the generation of atomic formulas of English.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Reprint years 1994
Buy this book $151.86 used   Amazon page
ISBN(s) 0262660938   0262161206   0212110721   9780262660938
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 63,323
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Events.Roberto Casati & Achille C. Varzi - 2020 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
The Cognitive Functions of Language.Peter Carruthers - 2002 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 25 (6):657-674.

View all 245 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles


Added to PP index

Total views
20 ( #536,637 of 2,448,705 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
13 ( #49,460 of 2,448,705 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes