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  1. Philosophy of Syntax - Foundational Topics.Mieszko Talasiewicz - 2009 - Dordrecht, Holandia: Springer.
    Since 1970-ties in the theory of syntax of natural language quite a number of competing, incommensurable theoretic frameworks have emerged. Today the lack of a leading paradigm and kaleidoscope of perspectives deprives our general understanding of syntax and its relation to semantics and pragmatics. The present book is an attempt to reestablish the most fundamental ideas and intuitions of syntactic well-formedness within a new general account. The account is not supposed to compete with any of today’s syntactic frameworks, but to (...)
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  • Semantics with Assignment Variables.Alex Silk - 2021 - Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    This book combines insights from philosophy and linguistics to develop a novel framework for theorizing about linguistic meaning and the role of context in interpretation. A key innovation is to introduce explicit representations of context — assignment variables — in the syntax and semantics of natural language. The proposed theory systematizes a spectrum of “shifting” phenomena in which the context relevant for interpreting certain expressions depends on features of the linguistic environment. Central applications include local and nonlocal contextual dependencies with (...)
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  • Formal Semantics: Origins, Issues, Early Impact.Barbara H. Partee - 2011 - The Baltic International Yearbook of Cognition, Logic and Communication 6:13.
    Formal semantics and pragmatics as they have developed since the late 1960's have been shaped by fruitful interdisciplinary collaboration among linguists, philosophers, and logicians, among others, and in turn have had noticeable effects on developments in syntax, philosophy of language, computational linguistics, and cognitive science.In this paper I describe the environment in which formal semantics was born and took root, highlighting the differences in ways of thinking about natural language semantics in linguistics and in philosophy and logic. With Montague as (...)
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  • Formal Semantics: Origins, Issues, Early Impact.Barbara H. Partee - 2010 - The Baltic International Yearbook of Cognition, Logic and Communication 6 (1).
    Formal semantics is an approach to SEMANTICS1, the study of meaning, with roots in logic, the philosophy of language, and linguistics, and since the 1980’s a core area of linguistic theory. Characteristics of formal semantics to be treated in this article include the following: Formal semanticists treat meaning as mind-independent (though abstract), contrasting with the view of meanings as concepts “in the head” (see I-LANGUAGE AND E-LANGUAGE and MEANING EXTERNALISM AND INTERNALISM); formal semanticists distinguish semantics from knowledge of semantics (Lewis (...)
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  • On the Pragmatics of Counterfactuals.Sarah Moss - 2012 - Noûs 46 (3):561-586.
    Recently, von Fintel (2001) and Gillies (2007) have argued that certain sequences of counterfactuals, namely reverse Sobel sequences, should motivate us to abandon standard truth conditional theories of counterfactuals for dynamic semantic theories. I argue that we can give a pragmatic account of our judgments about counterfactuals without giving up the standard semantics. In particular, I introduce a pragmatic principle governing assertability, and I use this principle to explain a variety of subtle data concerning reverse Sobel sequences.
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  • Montague Semantics.Theo M. V. Janssen - forthcoming - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  • The Structure of Semantic Competence: Compositionality as an Innate Constraint of The Faculty of Language.Guillermo Del Pinal - 2015 - Mind and Language 30 (4):375–413.
    This paper defends the view that the Faculty of Language is compositional, i.e., that it computes the meaning of complex expressions from the meanings of their immediate constituents and their structure. I fargue that compositionality and other competing constraints on the way in which the Faculty of Language computes the meanings of complex expressions should be understood as hypotheses about innate constraints of the Faculty of Language. I then argue that, unlike compositionality, most of the currently available non-compositional constraints predict (...)
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  • Composition in Distributional Models of Semantics.Jeff Mitchell & Mirella Lapata - 2010 - Cognitive Science 34 (8):1388-1429.
    Vector-based models of word meaning have become increasingly popular in cognitive science. The appeal of these models lies in their ability to represent meaning simply by using distributional information under the assumption that words occurring within similar contexts are semantically similar. Despite their widespread use, vector-based models are typically directed at representing words in isolation, and methods for constructing representations for phrases or sentences have received little attention in the literature. This is in marked contrast to experimental evidence (e.g., in (...)
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  • Ghosts, Murderers, and the Semantics of Descriptions.Anders Johan Schoubye - 2013 - Noûs 47 (3):496-533.
    It is widely agreed that sentences containing a non-denoting description embedded in the scope of a propositional attitude verb have true de dicto interpretations, and Russell's (1905) analysis of definite descriptions is often praised for its simple analysis of such cases, cf. e.g. Neale (1990). However, several people, incl. Elbourne (2005, 2009), Heim (1991), and Kripke (2005), have contested this by arguing that Russell's analysis yields incorrect predictions in non-doxastic attitude contexts. Heim and Elbourne have subsequently argued that once certain (...)
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  • Against the Russellian Open Future.Anders J. Schoubye & Brian Rabern - 2017 - Mind 126 (504): 1217–1237.
    Todd (2016) proposes an analysis of future-directed sentences, in particular sentences of the form 'will(φ)', that is based on the classic Russellian analysis of definite descriptions. Todd's analysis is supposed to vindicate the claim that the future is metaphysically open while retaining a simple Ockhamist semantics of future contingents and the principles of classical logic, i.e. bivalence and the law of excluded middle. Consequently, an open futurist can straightforwardly retain classical logic without appeal to supervaluations, determinacy operators, or any further (...)
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  • Model-Theoretic Semantics as Model-Based Science.Brendan Balcerak Jackson - 2020 - Synthese 199 (1-2):3061-3081.
    In the early days of natural language semantics, Donald Davidson issued a challenge to those, like Richard Montague, who would do semantics in a model-theoretic framework that gives a central role to a model-relative notion of truth. Davidson argued that no theory of this kind can claim to be an account of real truth conditions unless it first makes clear how the relativized notion relates to our ordinary non-relativized notion of truth. In the 1990s, Davidson’s challenge was developed by Etchemendy (...)
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  • Where Have All the Californian Tense-Logicians Gone?Woosuk Park - 2016 - Synthese 193 (11):3701-3712.
    Arthur N. Prior, in the Preface of Past, Present and Future, made clear his indebtedness to “the very lively tense-logicians of California for many discussions”. Strangely,with a notable exception of Copeland, there is no extensive discussion of these scholars in the literature on the history of tense logic. In this paper, I propose to study how Nino B. Cocchiarella, as one of the Californian tense-logicians, interacted with Prior in the late 1960s. By gathering clues from their correspondence available at Virtual (...)
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  • The History and Prehistory of Natural-Language Semantics.Daniel W. Harris - 2017 - In Sandra Lapointe & Christopher Pincock (eds.), Innovations in the History of Analytical Philosophy. Palgrave-MacMillan. pp. 149--194.
    Contemporary natural-language semantics began with the assumption that the meaning of a sentence could be modeled by a single truth condition, or by an entity with a truth-condition. But with the recent explosion of dynamic semantics and pragmatics and of work on non- truth-conditional dimensions of linguistic meaning, we are now in the midst of a shift away from a truth-condition-centric view and toward the idea that a sentence’s meaning must be spelled out in terms of its various roles in (...)
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  • Content, Context and Composition.M. Bierwisch - unknown
    In the recent debate on the semantic/pragmatic divide, Herman Cappelen and Ernie Lepore (2005) on the one hand, and Fran¸cois Recanati (2004) on the other, occupy almost diametrically opposed positions as regards the role of semantics for communication, while largely agreeing on important features of pragmatics. According to Cappelen and Lepore (CL), semantic context sensitivity of natural language sentences is restricted to what is determined by a particular minimal set of canonically context sensitive expressions. If you try to go beyond (...)
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  • Perspectival Thought: A Plea for (Moderate) Relativism.François Récanati - 2007 - Critica 42 (124):77-100.
    MY NEW BOOK, TO BE PUBLISHED BY OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS IN THE FALL.
     
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  • Epistemic Modals and Epistemic Modality.Brian Weatherson & Andy Egan - 2009 - In Andy Egan & Brian Weatherson (eds.), Epistemic Modality. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 1-18.
    There is a lot that we don’t know. That means that there are a lot of possibilities that are, epistemically speaking, open. For instance, we don’t know whether it rained in Seattle yesterday. So, for us at least, there is an epistemic possibility where it rained in Seattle yesterday, and one where it did not. It’s tempting to give a very simple analysis of epistemic possibility: • A possibility is an epistemic possibility if we do not know that it does (...)
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  • Meaning and Formal Semantics in Generative Grammar.Stephen Schiffer - 2015 - Erkenntnis 80 (1):61-87.
    A generative grammar for a language L generates one or more syntactic structures for each sentence of L and interprets those structures both phonologically and semantically. A widely accepted assumption in generative linguistics dating from the mid-60s, the Generative Grammar Hypothesis , is that the ability of a speaker to understand sentences of her language requires her to have tacit knowledge of a generative grammar of it, and the task of linguistic semantics in those early days was taken to be (...)
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  • Conditionals and Indexical Relativism.Brian Weatherson - 2009 - Synthese 166 (2):333-357.
    I set out and defend a view on indicative conditionals that I call “indexical relativism ”. The core of the view is that which proposition is expressed by an utterance of a conditional is a function of the speaker’s context and the assessor’s context. This implies a kind of relativism, namely that a single utterance may be correctly assessed as true by one assessor and false by another.
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  • Is Compositionality an a Priori Principle?Daniel Cohnitz - 2005 - In M. Wening, E. Machery & G. Schurz (eds.), The Compositionality of Concepts and Meanings: Foundational Issues. Ontos.
    When reasons are given for compositionality, the arguments usually purport to establish compositionality in an almost a priori manner. I will rehearse these arguments why one could think that compositionality is a priori true, or almost a priori true, and will find all of them inconclusive. This, in itself, is no reason against compositionality, but a reason to try to establish or defend the principle on other than quasi-a priori grounds.
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  • Compositional Natural Language Semantics Using Independence Friendly Logic or Dependence Logic.Theo M. V. Janssen - 2013 - Studia Logica 101 (2):453-466.
    Independence Friendly Logic, introduced by Hintikka, is a logic in which a quantifier can be marked for being independent of other quantifiers. Dependence logic, introduced by Väänänen, is a logic with the complementary approach: for a quantifier it can be indicated on which quantifiers it depends. These logics are claimed to be useful for many phenomena, for instance natural language semantics. In this contribution we will compare these two logics by investigating their application in a compositional analysis of the de (...)
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  • Knowledge-the and Propositional Attitude Ascriptions.Berit Brogaard - 2008 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 77 (1):147-190.
    Determiner phrases embedded under a propositional attitude verb have traditionally been taken to denote answers to implicit questions. For example, 'the capital of Vermont' as it occurs in 'John knows the capital of Vermont' has been thought to denote the proposition which answers the implicit question 'what is the capital of Vermont?' Thus, where 'know' is treated as a propositional attitude verb rather than an acquaintance verb, 'John knows the capital of Vermont' is true iff John knows that Montpelier is (...)
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  • Does the Principle of Compositionality Explain Productivity? For a Pluralist View of the Role of Formal Languages as Models.Ernesto Perini-Santos - 2017 - Contexts in Philosophy 2017 - CEUR Workshop Proceedings.
    One of the main motivations for having a compositional semantics is the account of the productivity of natural languages. Formal languages are often part of the account of productivity, i.e., of how beings with finite capaci- ties are able to produce and understand a potentially infinite number of sen- tences, by offering a model of this process. This account of productivity con- sists in the generation of proofs in a formal system, that is taken to represent the way speakers grasp (...)
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  • It is Raining (Somewhere).François Recanati - 2005 - Linguistics and Philosophy 30 (1):123-146.
    The received view about meteorological predicates like ‘rain’ is that they carry an argument slot for a location which can be filled explicitly or implicitly. The view assumes that ‘rain’, in the absence of an explicit location, demands that the context provide a specific location. In an earlier article in this journal, I provided a counter-example, viz. a context in which ‘it is raining’ receives a location-indefinite interpretation. On the basis of that example, I argued that when there is tacit (...)
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  • A Scope Freezing Effect with Negated Quantifier Phrases.Chris Collins - 2017 - Natural Language Semantics 25 (4):315-327.
    I document a scope freezing effect found with negated quantifier phrases ). In a sentence with a negated quantifier phrase of the form [NEG DP1], no quantifier phrase DP2 can take scope between NEG and DP1. I show how this scope freezing effect can be explained in terms of the analysis of negated quantifier phrases given in Collins and Postal and Collins.
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  • Non-Redundancy: Towards a Semantic Reinterpretation of Binding Theory.Philippe Schlenker - 2005 - Natural Language Semantics 13 (1):1-92.
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  • It is Raining . Expanded Version.François Recanati - unknown
    The received view about meteorological predicates like ‘rain' is that they carry an argument slot for a location which can be filled explicitly or implicitly. The view assumes that ‘rain', in the absence of an explicit location, demands that the context provide a specific location. In an earlier article, I have provided a counter-example to that claim, viz. a context in which ‘it is raining' receives a location-indefinite interpretation. On the basis of that example, I have argued that when there (...)
     
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