9781575862347

The Ontology of Language: Properties, Individuals and Discourse

by
  • ISBN13:

    9781575862347

  • ISBN10:

    1575862344

  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2000-06-01
  • Publisher: Univ of Chicago Pr
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Summary

How can the meaning of language be represented by formal logic? Similar research regarding the semantics of natural language has suggested that standard, 'classical' logical systems must be extended to account for the meaning of pronouns and other nominal expressions. But Chris Fox argues that by reconsidering how natural language in a formal logic is represented, the extension of classical logical systems is not required. The Ontology of Language explores how semantic issues can be addressed in a way that minimizes the ontological commitments of the resulting semantics. The book works within a version of Property Theory stemming from a combination of the lambda calculus with Aczel's Frege structures-a combination originally developed by Raymond Turner. Fox then improves on this version and substantially extends it with original applications to plurals and mass nouns, to 'intensional individuals', and to the dynamics of discourse. Some useful appendixes on further extensions and alternatives are included.

Table of Contents

Preface ix
Introduction
1(10)
Individuals, Properties and Guises
2(4)
The Methodology of Least Commitment
6(2)
Plurals and Mass Terms
8(2)
Discourse Representation
10(1)
Summary
10(1)
Property Theory
11(26)
Motivation
11(6)
PT: An Axiomatic Property Theory
17(5)
Definitions of Types
22(2)
The Paradoxes as a Category Mistake
24(1)
Internal Definability
25(1)
Model
26(2)
Syntax-Semantics Interface
28(2)
PTQ-like Interpretation
30(3)
Other Approaches
33(4)
Plurals and Mass Terms
37(70)
Plurals
37(39)
Mass Terms
76(23)
A Unification
99(2)
A Model of PT with Boolean Terms
101(3)
Conclusions
104(3)
Roles and Guises
107(18)
Intensional Individuals
107(2)
Landman's Formal Theory
109(2)
Roles in PT
111(3)
Property Modifers
114(4)
Appropriate Guises
118(1)
Semantics with Property Modifiers
119(1)
The Behaviour of Property Modifiers
120(2)
Conclusions
122(3)
Discourse Representations
125(38)
Discourse in Classical Logic
126(5)
Discourse in Property Theory
131(6)
A Sketch of the Basic Theory
137(13)
PTdt: PT with Discourse Terms
150(4)
Relative Clauses
154(1)
Summary
155(2)
Consistency of PTdt
157(5)
Conclusions
162(1)
Conclusions
163(6)
Properties
163(1)
Individuals
164(1)
Discourse
165(1)
The Methodology of Least Commitment
166(3)
A Dynamic Property Theory 169(4)
B Dependent Types and Discourse 173(4)
C Semantics of NL in PTdt 177(6)
C.1 Examples
179(4)
D Negation and Disjunction in Discourse 183(8)
D.1 Negation of Classical Propositions
183(1)
D.2 Negation of Types
184(1)
D.3 Double Negation and Disjunction
185(1)
D.4 Proper Nouns and Negation
186(2)
D.5 Axioms for negation in PTdt
188(3)
References 191(10)
Author Index 201(3)
Formal Index 204(3)
General Index 207

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