Flexibility Principles of Boolean Semantics
The Interpretation of Coordination, Plurality and Scope in Natural Language
By (author) Yoad Winter
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Flexibility Principles of Boolean Semantics by Yoad Winter
Book DescriptionSince the early work of Montague, Boolean semantics and its subfield of generalized quantifier theory have become the model-theoretic foundation for the study of meaning in natural languages. This book uses this framework to develop a new semantic theory of central linguistic phenomena involving coordination, plurality, and scope. The proposed theory makes use of the standard Boolean interpretation of conjunction, a choice-function account of indefinites, and a novel semantics of plurals that is not based on the distributive/collective distinction. The key to unifying these mechanisms is a version of Montagovian semantics that is augmented by flexibility principles: semantic operations that have no counterpart in phonology. This is the first book to cover these areas in a way that is both linguistically comprehensive and formally explicit. On one hand, it addresses questions of primarily linguistic concern: the semantic functions of words like and and or in different languages, the interpretation of indefinites and their scope, and the semantic typology of noun phrases and predicates. On the other hand, it addresses formal questions that are motivated by the treatment of these linguistic problems: the use of Boolean algebras in linguistics, the proper formalization of choice functions within generalized quantifier theory, and the extension of this theory to the domain of plurality. While primarily intended for readers with a background in theoretical linguistics, the book will also be of interest to researchers and advanced students in logic, computational linguistics, philosophy of language, and artificial intelligence.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780262232180
(229mm x 178mm x 25mm)
Imprint: MIT Press
Publisher: MIT Press Ltd
Publish Date: 1-Mar-2002
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Yoad Winter
Elements of Formal Semantics, Hardback (April 2016)» View all books by Yoad Winter
A series which supports the study of core topics that form substantial and identifiable parts of Linguistics degree courses as taught in the later years of undergraduate study. Each volume provides an in-depth introduction to a particular linguistic subdiscipline, while also engaging with the research on the subject.
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Author Biography - Yoad Winter
Yoad Winter is a lecturer in the Computer Science Department at Technion-Israel Institute of Technology.
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