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Ryan Mark Nefdt
University of Cape Town
  1. Languages and Other Abstract Structures.Ryan Mark Nefdt - 2018 - In Martin Neef & Christina Behme (eds.), Essays on Linguistic Realism. Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company. pp. 139-184.
    My aim in this chapter is to extend the Realist account of the foundations of linguistics offered by Postal, Katz and others. I first argue against the idea that naive Platonism can capture the necessary requirements on what I call a ‘mixed realist’ view of linguistics, which takes aspects of Platonism, Nominalism and Mentalism into consideration. I then advocate three desiderata for an appropriate ‘mixed realist’ account of linguistic ontology and foundations, namely (1) linguistic creativity and infinity, (2) linguistics as (...)
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    Inferentialism and Structuralism: A Tale of Two Theories.Ryan Mark Nefdt - 2018 - Logique Et Analyse 61 (244):489-512.
    This paper aims to unite two seemingly disparate themes in the philosophy of mathematics and language respectively, namely ante rem structuralism and inferentialism. My analysis begins with describing both frameworks in accordance with their genesis in the work of Hilbert. I then draw comparisons between these philosophical views in terms of their similar motivations and similar objections to the referential orthodoxy. I specifically home in on two points of comparison, namely the role of norms and the relation of ontological dependence (...)
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    Biolinguistics and biological systems: a complex systems analysis of language.Ryan Mark Nefdt - 2023 - Biology and Philosophy 38 (2):1-42.
    In their recent book, Ladyman and Wiesner (What is a complex system?, Yale University Press, 2020) delineate the bounds of the exciting interdisciplinary field of complexity science. In this work, they provide examples of generally accepted complex systems and common features which these possess to varying degrees. In this paper, I plan to extend their list to include the formal study of natural language, i.e. linguistics. In fact, I will argue that language exhibits many of the hallmarks of a complex (...)
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    Teaching and Learning Guide for: The Philosophy of Linguistics: Scientific Underpinnings and Methodological Disputes.Ryan Mark Nefdt - 2020 - Philosophy Compass 15 (1):e12647.
    This is a teaching guide companion to the main article published in Philosophy Compass. It offers insights into how one might go about designing a course in the philosophy of linguistics at advanced undergrad/graduate level. Readings and possible core questions are included.
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    The foundations of linguistics : mathematics, models, and structures.Ryan Mark Nefdt - 2016 - Dissertation, University of St Andrews
    The philosophy of linguistics is a rich philosophical domain which encompasses various disciplines. One of the aims of this thesis is to unite theoretical linguistics, the philosophy of language, the philosophy of science and the ontology of language. Each part of the research presented here targets separate but related goals with the unified aim of bringing greater clarity to the foundations of linguistics from a philosophical perspective. Part I is devoted to the methodology of linguistics in terms of scientific modelling. (...)
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    The Philosophy and Science of Language.Ryan Mark Nefdt, Carita Klippi & Bart Karstens (eds.) - 2020 - Palgrave Mcmillan.
    This volume brings together a diverse range of scholars to address important philosophical and interdisciplinary questions in the study of language. Linguistics throughout history has been a conduit to the study of the mind, brain, societal structure, literature and history itself. The epistemic and methodological transfer between the sciences and humanities in regards to linguistics has often been documented, but the underlying philosophical issues have not always been adequately addressed. -/- With 15 original and interdisciplinary chapters, this volume therefore tackles (...)
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