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Profile: Robyn Anne Carston (University College London)
  1. Thoughts and Utterances: The Pragmatics of Explicit Communication.Robyn Carston - 2002
     
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  2. Linguistic Communication and the Semantics/Pragmatics Distinction.Robyn Carston - 2008 - Synthese 165 (3):321-345.
    Most people working on linguistic meaning or communication assume that semantics and pragmatics are distinct domains, yet there is still little consensus on how the distinction is to be drawn. The position defended in this paper is that the semantics/pragmatics distinction holds between encoded linguistic meaning and speaker meaning. Two other ‘minimalist’ positions on semantics are explored and found wanting: Kent Bach’s view that there is a narrow semantic notion of context which is responsible for providing semantic values for a (...)
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  3.  81
    Implicature, Explicature, and Truth-Theoretic Semantics.Robyn Carston - 2013 - In Maite Ezcurdia & Robert J. Stainton (eds.), The Semantics–Pragmatics Boundary in Philosophy. Broadview Press. pp. 261.
  4. Informativeness, Relevance and Scalar Implicature.Robyn Carston - unknown
    The idea is that, in a wide range of contexts, utterances of the sentences in (a) in each case will communicate the assumption in (b) in each case (or something closely akin to it, there being a certain amount of contextually governed variation in the speaker's propositional attitude and so the scope of the negation). These scalar inferences are taken to be one kind of (generalized) conversational implicature. As is the case with pragmatic inference quite generally, these inferences are defeasible (...)
     
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  5. Metaphor, Relevance and the 'Emergent Property' Issue.Deirdre Wilson & Robyn Carston - 2006 - Mind and Language 21 (3):404–433.
    The interpretation of metaphorical utterances often results in the attribution of emergent properties, which are neither standardly associated with the individual constituents in isolation nor derivable by standard rules of semantic composition. An adequate pragmatic account of metaphor interpretation must explain how these properties are derived. Using the framework of relevance theory, we propose a wholly inferential account, and argue that the derivation of emergent properties involves no special interpretive mechanisms not required for the interpretation of ordinary, literal utterances.
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  6. Metaphor: Ad Hoc Concepts, Literal Meaning and Mental Images.Robyn Carston - 2010 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 110 (3pt3):295-321.
    I propose that an account of metaphor understanding which covers the full range of cases has to allow for two routes or modes of processing. One is a process of rapid, local, on-line concept construction that applies quite generally to the recovery of word meaning in utterance comprehension. The other requires a greater focus on the literal meaning of sentences or texts, which is metarepresented as a whole and subjected to more global, reflective pragmatic inference. The questions whether metaphors convey (...)
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  7. Metalinguistic Negation and Echoic Use.Robyn Carston - unknown
    What I hope to achieve in this paper is some rather deeper understanding of the semantic and pragmatic properties of utterances which are said to involve the phenomenon of metalinguistic negation[FN1]. According to Laurence Horn, who has been primarily responsible for drawing our attention to it, this is a special non-truthfunctional use of the negation operator, which can be glossed as 'I object to U' where U is a linguistic utterance. This is to be distinguished from descriptive truthfunctional negation which (...)
     
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  8. Linguistic Meaning, Communicated Meaning and Cognitive Pragmatics.Robyn Carston - 2002 - Mind and Language 17 (1&2):127–148.
    Within the philosophy of language, pragmatics has tended to be seen as an adjunct to, and a means of solving problems in, semantics. A cognitive-scientific conception of pragmatics as a mental processing system responsible for interpreting ostensive communicative stimuli (specifically, verbal utterances) has effected a transformation in the pragmatic issues pursued and the kinds of explanation offered. Taking this latter perspective, I compare two distinct proposals on the kinds of processes, and the architecture of the system(s), responsible for the recovery (...)
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  9.  22
    Multiple Review.Robyn Carston - 1987 - Mind and Language 2 (4):333-349.
  10. Semantics/Pragmatics Distinction.Robyn Carston & Gower Street - unknown
    Most people working on linguistic meaning or communication assume that semantics and pragmatics are distinct domains, yet there is still little consensus on how the distinction is to be drawn. The position defended in this paper is that the semantics/pragmatics distinction holds between (context-invariant) encoded linguistic meaning and speaker meaning. Two other ‘minimalist’ positions on semantics are explored and found wanting: Kent Bach’s view that there is a narrow semantic notion of context which is responsible for providing semantic values for (...)
     
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  11. Explicature and Semantics.Robyn Carston - unknown
    A standard view of the semantics of natural language sentences or utterances is that a sentence has a particular logical structure and is assigned truth-conditional content on the basis of that structure. Such a semantics is assumed to be able to capture the logical properties of sentences, including necessary truth, contradiction and valid inference; our knowledge of these properties is taken to be part of our semantic competence as native speakers of the language. The following examples pose a problem for (...)
     
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  12. A Unitary Approach to Lexical Pragmatics: Relevance, Inference and Ad Hoc Concepts.Deirdre Wilson & Robyn Carston - 2007 - In Noel Burton-Roberts (ed.), Pragmatics. Palgrave-Macmillan. pp. 3.
  13. Truth-Conditional Content and Conversational Implicature.Robyn Carston - 2004 - In Claudia Bianchi (ed.), The Semantics/Pragmatics Distinction. CSLI Publications. pp. 65--100.
     
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  14.  63
    Metaphor and the Literal–Nonliteral Distinction.Robyn Carston - 2012 - In Keith Allan & Kasia Jaszczolt (eds.), Cambridge Handbook of Pragmatics. Cambridge University Press. pp. 469--492.
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  15. The Semantics/Pragmatics Distinction: A View From Relevance Theory.Robyn Carston - 1999 - In Ken Turner (ed.), The Semantics/Pragmatics Interface From Different Points of View. Elsevier. pp. 85125.
  16. Negation, `Presupposition' and the Semantics/ Pragmatics Distinction.Robyn Carston - 1998 - Journal of Linguistics 34:309-350.
    A cognitive pragmatic approach is taken to some long-standing problem cases of negation, the so-called presupposition denial cases. It is argued that a full account of the processes and levels of representation involved in their interpretation typically requires the sequential pragmatic derivation of two different propositions expressed. The first is one in which the presupposition is preserved and, following the rejection of this, the second involves the echoic (metalinguistic) use of material falling in the scope of the negation. The semantic (...)
     
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  17. The Architecture of the Mind: Modularity and Modularization.Robyn Carston - forthcoming - Cognitive Science: An Introduction.
     
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  18. How Many Pragmatic Systems Are There?Robyn Carston - 2007 - In María José Frápolli (ed.), Saying, Meaning and Referring: Essays on François Recanati's Philosophy of Language. Palgrave-Macmillan.
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  19. Enrichment and Loosening: Complementary Processes in Deriving the Proposition Expressed?Robyn Carston - unknown
    Within relevance theory the two local pragmatic processes of enrichment and loosening of linguistically encoded conceptual material have been given quite distinct treatments. Enrichments of various sorts, including those which involve a logical strengthening of a lexical concept, contribute to the proposition expressed by the utterance, hence to its truth-conditions. Loosenings, including metaphorical uses, do not enter into the proposition expressed by the utterance or affect its truth-conditions; they stand in a relation of 'interpretive resemblance' with the linguistically encoded concept (...)
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  20.  46
    Metaphor and the 'Emergent Property' Problem: A Relevance-Theoretic Approach.Deirdre Wilson & Robyn Carston - 2007 - The Baltic International Yearbook of Cognition, Logic and Communication 3.
    The interpretation of metaphorical utterances often results in the attribution of emergent properties; these are properties which are neither standardly associated with the individual constituents of the utterance in isolation nor derivable by standard rules of semantic composition. For example, an utterance of ‘Robert is a bulldozer’ may be understood as attributing to Robert such properties as single-mindedness, insistence on having things done in his way, and insensitivity to the opinions/feelings of others, although none of these is included in the (...)
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  21. Relevance Theory and the Saying/Implicating Distinction.Robyn Carston - 2004 - In . pp. 155--181.
    It is widely accepted that there is a distinction to be made between the explicit content and the implicit import of an utterance. There is much less agreement about the precise nature of this distinction, how it is to be drawn, and whether any such two-way distinction can do justice to the levels and kinds of meaning involved in utterance interpretation. Grice’s distinction between what is said by an utterance and what is implicated is probably the best known instantiation of (...)
     
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  22. Relevance Theory - New Directions and Developments.Robyn Carston & George Powell - 2006 - In Ernest Lepore & Barry Smith (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Language. Oxford University Press. pp. 341--360.
    As a post-Gricean pragmatic theory, Relevance Theory (RT) takes as its starting point the question of how hearers bridge the gap between sentence meaning and speaker meaning. That there is such a gap has been a given of linguistic philosophy since Grice’s (1967) Logic and Conversation. But the account that relevance theory offers of how this gap is bridged, although originating as a development of Grice’s co-operative principle and conversational maxims, differs from other broadly Gricean accounts in certain fundamental respects, (...)
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  23.  14
    Introduction to the 2nd Synthese Special Issue: Trends in Philosophy of Language and Mind.Hanoch Ben-Yami, Robyn Carston & Markus Werning - forthcoming - Synthese.
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  24. Metaphor, Ad Hoc Concepts and Word Meaning - More Questions Than Answers.Robyn Carston - unknown
    Recent work in relevance-theoretic pragmatics develops the idea that understanding verbal utterances involves processes of ad hoc concept construction. The resulting concepts may be narrower or looser than the lexical concepts which provide the input to the process. Two of the many issues that arise are considered in this paper: (a) the applicability of the idea to the understanding of metaphor, and (b) the extent to which lexical forms are appropriately thought of as encoding concepts.
     
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  25. Introduction: Representation and Metarepresentation.Robyn Carston - unknown
    “Utterances and thoughts have content: They represent (actual or imaginary) states of affairs.” This is the opening statement of François Recanati’s most sustained work on kinds of representation, Oratio Obliqua, Oratio Recta (2000) and it presents the core phenomenon which it is the task of the philosophy of language to explain. A primary function of language and thought, though not their only function, is to represent how things are or might be. As well as descriptively representing entities, properties, and states (...)
     
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  26.  7
    Linguistic Conventions and the Role of Pragmatics.Robyn Carston - 2016 - Mind and Language 31 (5):612-624.
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  27.  3
    Metaphor, Relevance and the 'Emergent Property' Issue.Deirdre Wilson & Robyn Carston - 2006 - Mind Language 21 (3):404-433.
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  28. Making Connections – Linguistic or Pragmatic?Robyn Carston - unknown
    In (1), the talking event described in the matrix clause is elaborated on in the following adjunct: the arguing about the data and the theories makes up the content of the talking referred to in the matrix clause. In (2), on the other hand, the events (or sub-events of a single complex event) described are in a causeconsequence relation, a result of the action described in the matrix clause being that the porcelain vase breaks. These two examples illustrate a central (...)
     
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  29. To Appear in Journal of Linguistics.Robyn Carston - unknown
    The basic thesis of this book is that there is a level of utterance-type meaning, which is distinct from, and intermediate between, sentence-type meaning and utterance-token meaning. That is, it is more than encoded linguistic meaning but generally less than the full interpretation of an utterance. Here are some examples, where (a) is a sentence and (b) is its utterance-type meaning in each case.
     
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  30.  21
    Metaphor and Hyperbole: Testing the Continuity Hypothesis.Paula Rubio-Fernández, Catherine Wearing & Robyn Carston - 2015 - Metaphor and Symbol 30 (1):24-40.
    In standard Relevance Theory, hyperbole and metaphor are categorized together as loose uses of language, on a continuum with approximations, category extensions and other cases of loosening/broadening of meaning. Specifically, it is claimed that there are no interesting differences between hyperbolic and metaphorical uses. In recent work, we have set out to provide a more fine-grained articulation of the similarities and differences between hyperbolic and metaphorical uses and their relation to literal uses. We have defended the view that hyperbolic use (...)
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  31. The Relationship Between Generative Grammar and (Relevance-Theoretic) Pragmatics.Robyn Carston & Gower Street - unknown
    The generative grammar approach to language seeks a fully explicit account of the modular systems of knowledge (competence) that underlies the human language capacity. Similarly, the relevance-theoretic approach to pragmatics attempts an explicit characterisation of the sub-personal systems involved in utterance interpretation. As an on-line performance system, however, it is subject to certain additional constraints; this is demonstrated by the way in which matters of computational (processing effort) economy are currently employed in the two types of theory. A sub-module of (...)
     
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  32.  4
    Pragmatic Enrichment: Beyond Gricean Rational Reconstruction – a Response to Mandy Simons.Robyn Carston - 2017 - Inquiry : An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 60 (5):517-538.
    It has been claimed that pragmatic effects that arise in embedded clauses pose a problem for the Gricean reasoning procedure. I maintain, however, that the real issue these phenomena raise for Grice, as he himself acknowledged, is their violation of his saying/implicating distinction. While these effects can be accounted for by Gricean reasoning, which Mandy Simons clearly demonstrates, there is no way round this latter problem other than a major revision of Grice’s notion of ‘saying’ and hence of the saying/implicating (...)
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  33. A Response to Noel Burton-Roberts.Robyn Carston - unknown
    Metalinguistic negation is interesting for at least the following two reasons: it is one instance of the much broader, very widespread and various, phenomenon of metarepresentational use in linguistic communication, whose semantic and pragmatic properties are currently being extensively explored by both linguists and philosophers of language; it plays a central role in recent accounts of presupposition-denial cases, such as "The king of France is not bald; there is no king of France". It is this latter employment that discussion of (...)
     
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  34.  42
    Minimal Semantics - by Emma Borg.Robyn Carston - 2008 - Mind and Language 23 (3):359–367.
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  35.  5
    Being Explicit.Robyn Carston - 1987 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 10 (4):713.
  36. Introduction: Neil Smith's Linguistics.Robyn Carston & Diane Blakemore - unknown
    Neil Smith has worked across the full range of the discipline of linguistics and explored its interfaces with other disciplines. In all this work he has maintained a commitment to a mentalist approach to the study of language and communication. The aim of this Special Issue is to honour his work and commitment with a collection of papers which brings together work by phonologists, syntacticians, psycholinguists, and pragmatists who share this interest in language as a central component of the human (...)
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  37.  27
    Introduction: Special Issue on Pragmatics and Cognitive Science.Robyn Carston, Samuel Guttenplan & Deirdre Wilson - 2002 - Mind and Language 17 (1&2):1–2.
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  38. Implicature, Explicature, and Truth-Theoretic Semantics.Robyn Carston - 1988 - In Ruth M. Kempson (ed.), Mental representations: The interface between language and reality. Cambridge Univ. Press. pp. 155–181.
     
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  39. A Review of E. Borg, 2004. Minimal Semantics. Oxford: Clarendon Press. [REVIEW]Robyn Carston - 2008 - Mind and Language 23:359-67.
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  40.  2
    Metaphor and the 'Emergent Property' Problem: A Relevance-Theoretic Approach.Deirdre Wilson & Robyn Carston - 2007 - Baltic International Yearbook of Cognition, Logic and Communication 3 (1).
    The interpretation of metaphorical utterances often results in the attribution of emergent properties; these are properties which are neither standardly associated with the individual constituents of the utterance in isolation nor derivable by standard rules of semantic composition. For example, an utterance of ‘Robert is a bulldozer’ may be understood as attributing to Robert such properties as single-mindedness, insistence on having things done in his way, and insensitivity to the opinions/feelings of others, although none of these is included in the (...)
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  41. .Robyn Carston - 2004
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  42. Implicature and Explicature.Robyn Carston & Alison Hall - 2012 - In Hans-Jörg Schmid (ed.), Cognitive Pragmatics. pp. 47-84.
     
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  43. Postscript (1995) to "Implicature, Explicature, and Truth-Theoretic Semantics".Robyn Carston - 1998 - In Asa Kasher (ed.), Pragmatics: Critical Concepts: Volume IV: Presupposition, Implicature and Indirect Speech Acts. Routledge. pp. 464-479.
     
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  44. Relevance Theory.Robyn Carston & George Powell - 2008 - In Ernest Lepore & Barry C. Smith (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Language. Oxford University Press.
     
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  45. XIII-Metaphor: Ad Hoc Concepts, Literal Meaning and Mental Images.Robyn Carston - 2010 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 110 (3pt3):295-321.
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