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CONLANG  September 2015, Week 1

CONLANG September 2015, Week 1

Subject:

Re: Conjunctional languages are boring!

From:

And Rosta <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Constructed Languages List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 3 Sep 2015 20:28:49 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

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text/plain (37 lines)

On 3 Sep 2015 08:32, "Patrik Austin" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> I also believe that the majority of linguists have not accepted - or
considered - the idea that natural languages are anyhow based on a
structure similar to PL.

I'm not sure what "based-on" means here. But I'll suppose it to mean that
the semantically interpreted structure of syntax is similar to PL. PL has
ingredients such as quantifiers and constants that aren't near-universally
considered to be part of the semantically interpreted structure of syntax.
But the fundamental ingredient of PL, PAS, is universally considered to be
part of the semantically interpreted structure of syntax: I know of no work
-- and indeed am unable to conceive of any -- on the interface between
syntax and semantic interpretation that does not take it to be PAS.

> What And Rosta wrote about linguistics earlier seemed pretty eccentric to
me,

I write many eccentric things (almost always because I have rational
grounds for thinking then correct...) but also some utterly mainstream
things, and my contributions to these threads have largely been mainstream
and commonsensical.

> but if the underlying assumption is that formal semantics is somehow
fundamental for linguistics,

Certainly not. I think formal semantics is irrelevant to the (small c)
cognitive linguistics that is the focus of my interest. (Small c cognitive
linguistics models what a knower of a language must know.) But that could
be partly because I find formal semantics very hard to understand.

My impression is that most linguists think formal semantics is irrelevant
to linguistics, but most linguists that actually work on semantic
compositionality -- how sentence meanings are built up -- work with formal
semantics.

--And.

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