Syntax meets semantics during brain logical computations

Progress in Biophysics and Molecular Biology 140:133-141 (2018)
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Abstract

The discrepancy between syntax and semantics is a painstaking issue that hinders a better comprehension of the underlying neuronal processes in the human brain. In order to tackle the issue, we at first describe a striking correlation between Wittgenstein's Tractatus, that assesses the syntactic relationships between language and world, and Perlovsky's joint language-cognitive computational model, that assesses the semantic relationships between emotions and “knowledge instinct”. Once established a correlation between a purely logical approach to the language and computable psychological activities, we aim to find the neural correlates of syntax and semantics in the human brain. Starting from topological arguments, we suggest that the semantic properties of a proposition are processed in higher brain's functional dimensions than the syntactic ones. In a fully reversible process, the syntactic elements embedded in Broca's area project into multiple scattered semantic cortical zones. The presence of higher functional dimensions gives rise to the increase in informational content that takes place in semantic expressions. Therefore, diverse features of human language and cognitive world can be assessed in terms of both the logic armor described by the Tractatus, and the neurocomputational techniques at hand. One of our motivations is to build a neuro-computational framework able to provide a feasible explanation for brain's semantic processing, in preparation for novel computers with nodes built into higher dimensions.

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Andrew And Alexander Fingelkurts
BM-Science - Brain and Mind Technologies Research Centre

Citations of this work

Why Should Natural Principles Be Simple?Arturo Tozzi - 2021 - Philosophia 50 (1):321-335.

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References found in this work

Philosophical Investigations.Ludwig Wittgenstein - 1953 - New York, NY, USA: Wiley-Blackwell. Edited by G. E. M. Anscombe.
Syntax: a generative introduction.Andrew Carnie - 2007 - Malden, MA: Blackwell.

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