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Toby Napoletano
University of California, Merced
  1.  76
    Compositionality as Weak Supervenience.Toby Napoletano - 2015 - Synthese 192 (1):201-220.
    This paper argues against Zoltán Szabó’s claim in “Compositionality as Supervenience” that we ought to understand the principle of compositionality as the idea that in natural language, the meanings of complex expressions strongly supervene on the meanings of their constituents and how the constituents are combined. The argument is that if we understand compositionality Szabó’s way, then compositionality can play no role in explanations of the acquirability of natural languages, because it makes these explanations circular. This, in turn, would undermine (...)
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    How important are truth-conditions for truth-conditional semantics?Toby Napoletano - 2019 - Linguistics and Philosophy 42 (6):541-575.
    In this paper, I argue that while truth-conditional semantics in generative linguistics provides lots of good semantic explanations, truth-conditions do not play an important role in these explanations. That is, the fact that expressions have the particular truthconditional contents they have does not even partly explain facts about semantic phenomena. Rather, explanations of semantic phenomena appeal to extra-truth-conditional properties attributed to expressions via their lexical entries. Focusing on recent truth-conditional work on gradable adjectives and degree modifiers by Kennedy and McNally, (...)
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    Measurement and Desert: Why Grades Cannot Be Deserved.Toby Napoletano - 2021 - Wiley: Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 10 (4):282-292.
    It is typically thought that a student deserves—or at least can deserve—a grade in a class. The students who perform well on assessments, who display a high degree of competence, and who complete all of the required work, deserve a good grade. Students who perform poorly on assessments, who fail to understand the course material, and who fail to complete the required work, deserve a bad grade. In this paper, I raise a challenge to this conventional view about grades. In (...)
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    Why Truth-Conditional Semantics in Generative Linguistics is Still the Better Bet.Toby Napoletano - 2017 - Erkenntnis 82 (3):673-692.
    In his “Meaning and Formal Semantics in Generative Grammar” (Erkenntnis 2015, 61–87), Stephen Schiffer argues that truth-conditional semantics is a poor fit with generative linguistics. In particular, he thinks that it fails to explain speakers’ abilities to understand the sentences of their language. In its place, he recommends his “Best Bet Theory”—a theory which aims to directly explain speakers’ abilities to mean things by their utterances and know what others mean by their utterances. I argue that Schiffer does not provide (...)
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