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Semantics
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List of Figures and Tables xv Preface xvii Abbreviations and Symbols xix Part I Preliminaries 1 1 Semantics in Linguistics 3 1.1 Introduction 3 1.2 Semantics and Semiotics 5 1.3 Three Challenges in Doing Semantics 5 1.4 Meeting the Challenges 7 1.5 Semantics in a Model of Grammar 8 1.5.1 Introduction 8 1.5.2 Word meaning and sentence meaning 9 1.6 Some Important Assumptions 10 1.6.1 Reference and sense 11 1.6.2 Utterances, sentences, and propositions 11 1.6.3 Literal and non-literal meaning 13 1.6.4 Semantics and pragmatics 15 1.7 Summary 17 Exercises 17 Further Reading 19 Notes 19 References 20 2 Meaning, Thought, and Reality 22 2.1 Introduction 22 2.2 Reference 24 2.2.1 Types of reference 24 2.2.2 Names 26 2.2.3 Nouns and noun phrases 27 2.3 Reference as a Theory of Meaning 29 2.4 Mental Representations 31 2.4.1 Introduction 31 2.4.2 Concepts 32 2.4.3 Necessary and sufficient conditions 33 2.4.4 Prototypes 34 2.4.5 Relations between concepts 36 2.4.6 Acquiring concepts 37 2.5 Words, Concepts, and Thinking 37 2.5.1 Linguistic relativity 38 2.5.2 The language of thought hypothesis 40 2.5.3 Thought and reality 41 2.6 Summary 42 Exercises 43 Further Reading 44 Notes 44 References 45 Part II Semantic Description 49 3 Word Meaning 51 3.1 Introduction 51 3.2 Words and Grammatical Categories 52 3.3 Words and Lexical Items 53 3.4 Problems with Pinning Down Word Meaning 56 3.5 Lexical Relations 59 3.5.1 Homonymy 60 3.5.2 Polysemy 60 3.5.3 Synonymy 61 3.5.4 Opposites (antonymy) 63 3.5.5 Hyponymy 65 3.5.6 Meronymy 66 3.5.7 Member collection 67 3.5.8 Portion mass 67 3.6 Derivational Relations 67 3.6.1 Causative verbs 68 3.6.2 Agentive nouns 68 3.7 Lexical Typology 69 3.7.1 Polysemy 70 3.7.2 Color terms 71 3.7.3 Core vocabulary 73 3.7.4 Universal lexemes 74 3.8 Summary 75 Exercises 76 Further Reading 78 Notes 79 References 80 4 Sentence Relations and Truth 84 4.1 Introduction 84 4.2 Logic and Truth 86 4.3 Necessary Truth, A Priori Truth, and Analyticity 91 4.4 Entailment 94 4.5 Presupposition 97 4.5.1 Introduction 97 4.5.2 Two approaches to presupposition 98 4.5.3 Presupposition failure 100 4.5.4 Presupposition triggers 101 4.5.5 Presuppositions and context 103 4.5.6 Pragmatic theories of presupposition 104 4.6 Summary 105 Exercises 106 Further Reading 108 Notes 108 References 110 5 Sentence Semantics 1: Situations 112 5.1 Introduction 112 5.2 Classifying Situations 113 5.2.1 Introduction 113 5.2.2 Verbs and situation types 115 5.2.3 A system of situation types 118 5.2.4 Tests for situation types 120 5.2.5 Tense 122 5.2.6 Aspect 125 5.2.7 Comparing aspect across languages 130 5.2.8 Combining situation type and aspect 132 5.3 Modality and Evidentiality 134 5.3.1 Modality 134 5.3.2 Mood 138 5.3.3 Evidentiality 140 5.4 Summary 142 Exercises 143 Further Reading 146 Notes 146 References 147 6 Sentence Semantics 2: Participants 149 6.1 Introduction: Classifying Participants 149 6.2 Thematic Roles 150 6.3 Grammatical Relations and Thematic Roles 155 6.4 Verbs and Thematic Role Grids 156 6.5 Problems with Thematic Roles 158 6.6 The Motivation for Identifying Thematic Roles 161 6.7 Causation 164 6.8 Voice 166 6.8.1 Passive voice 166 6.8.2 Comparing passive constructions across languages 169 6.8.3 Middle voice 172 6.9 Classifiers and Noun Classes 175 6.9.1 Classifiers 175 6.9.2 Noun classes 177 6.10 Summary 178 Exercises 179 Further Reading 182 Notes 182 References 184 7 Context and Inference 189 7.1 Introduction 189 7.2 Deixis 190 7.2.1 Spatial deixis 190 7.2.2 Grammaticalization of context 193 7.2.3 Extensions of spatial deixis 194 7.2.4 Person deixis 194 7.2.5 Social deixis 195 7.3 Reference and Context 196 7.4 Knowledge as Context 197 7.4.1 Discourse as context 198 7.4.2 Background knowledge as context 199 7.4.3 Mutual knowledge 200 7.4.4 Giving background knowledge to computers 201 7.5 Information Structure 203 7.5.1 The information status of nominals 203 7.5.2 Focus and topic 205 7.5.3 Information structure and comprehension 208 7.6 Inference 208 7.7 Conversational Implicature 210 7.7.1 Grice s maxims of conversational cooperation 211 7.7.2 Generalizing the Gricean maxims 214 7.7.3 Relevance Theory 215 7.8 Lexical Pragmatics 217 7.9 Summary 219 Exercises 220 Further Reading 224 Notes 224 References 225 8 Functions of Language: Speech as Action 229 8.1 Introduction 229 8.2 Austin s Speech Act Theory 232 8.2.1 Introduction 232 8.2.2 Evaluating performative utterances 234 8.2.3 Explicit and implicit performatives 234 8.2.4 Statements as performatives 235 8.2.5 Three facets of a speech act 237 8.3 Categorizing Speech Acts 237 8.4 Indirect Speech Acts 239 8.4.1 Introduction 239 8.4.2 Understanding indirect speech acts 241 8.4.3 Indirect acts and politeness 242 8.5 Sentence Types 245 8.6 Summary 247 Exercises 248 Further Reading 250 Notes 250 References 252 Part III Theoretical Approaches 257 9 Meaning Components 259 9.1 Introduction 259 9.2 Lexical Relations in CA 260 9.2.1 Binary features 261 9.2.2 Redundancy rules 261 9.3 Katz s Semantic Theory 262 9.3.1 Introduction 262 9.3.2 The Katzian dictionary 262 9.3.3 Projection rules 263 9.4 Grammatical Rules and Semantic Components 265 9.4.1 The methodology 265 9.4.2 Thematic roles and linking rules 269 9.5 Talmy s Typology of Motion Events 273 9.6 Jackendoff s Conceptual Structure 278 9.6.1 Introduction 278 9.6.2 The semantic components 279 9.6.3 Localist semantic fields 281 9.6.4 Complex events and states 282 9.6.5 THINGS: Semantic classes of nominals 283 9.6.6 Cross-category generalizations 284 9.6.7 Processes of semantic combination 284 9.7 Pustejovsky s Generative Lexicon 287 9.7.1 Event structure 288 9.7.2 Qualia structure 291 9.8 Problems with Components of Meaning 294 9.9 Summary 295 Exercises 295 Further Reading 299 Notes 300 References 301 10 Formal Semantics 305 10.1 Introduction 305 10.2 Model-Theoretical Semantics 307 10.3 Translating English into a Logical Metalanguage 308 10.3.1 Introduction 308 10.3.2 Simple statements in predicate logic 309 10.3.3 Quantifiers in predicate logic 311 10.3.4 Some advantages of predicate logic translation 313 10.4 The Semantics of the Logical Metalanguage 315 10.4.1 Introduction 315 10.4.2 The semantic interpretation of predicate logic symbols 315 10.4.3 The domain 316 10.4.4 The denotation assignment function 316 10.5 Checking the Truth-Value of Sentences 317 10.5.1 Evaluating a simple statement 318 10.5.2 Evaluating a compound sentence with and 318 10.5.3 Evaluating sentences with the quantifiers and 320 10.6 Word Meaning: Meaning Postulates 321 10.7 Natural Language Quantifiers and Higher-Order Logic 323 10.7.1 Restricted quantifiers 325 10.7.2 Generalized quantifiers 326 10.7.3 The strong/weak distinction and existential there sentences 327 10.7.4 Monotonicity and negative polarity items 329 10.7.5 Section summary 330 10.8 Intensionality 331 10.8.1 Introduction 331 10.8.2 Modality 332 10.8.3 Tense and aspect 334 10.9 Dynamic Approaches to Discourse 336 10.9.1 Anaphora in and across sentences 337 10.9.2 Donkey sentences 338 10.9.3 DRT and discourse anaphora 339 10.10 Summary 344 Exercises 345 Further Reading 348 Notes 348 References 350 11 Cognitive Semantics 353 11.1 Introduction 353 11.2 Categorization 356 11.2.1 The rejection of classical categories 356 11.2.2 Embodiment and image schemas 358 11.2.3 Linguistic and encyclopedic knowledge 362 11.3 Polysemy 363 11.3.1 Prepositions 363 11.3.2 Modal verbs 368 11.4 Metaphor 369 11.4.1 Introduction 369 11.4.2 Conceptual Metaphor Theory 371 11.4.3 Features of metaphor 372 11.4.4 The influence of metaphor 375 11.5 Metonymy 376 11.6 Mental Spaces 377 11.6.1 Connections between spaces 378 11.6.2 Referential opacity 381 11.6.3 Presupposition 384 11.6.4 Conceptual integration theory 385 11.6.5 Section summary 388 11.7 Langacker s Cognitive Grammar 388 11.7.1 Nouns, verbs, and clauses 389 11.7.2 Construal 390 11.8 Construction Grammar 392 11.9 Summary 394 Exercises 395 Further Reading 398 Notes 398 References 400 Solutions to Exercises 405 Glossary 435 Index 458

About the Author

John I. Saeed is a Fellow of Trinity College, University of Dublin, Ireland, where he is a professor of linguistics. He is the author of several books, including Irish Sign Language: A Cognitive Linguistic Approach (with Lorraine Leeson, 2012), and Somali (1999).

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