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Semantics, 4th Edition

Semantics, 4th Edition

John I. Saeed

ISBN: 978-1-118-43026-2

Oct 2015, Wiley-Blackwell

496 pages

$49.95

Description

Revised and updated to reflect recent theoretical developments in the field, Semantics, 4th Edition, presents an engaging and accessible introduction to the study of meaning in language for students new to the field of semantics.

  • Covers all of the basic concepts and methods of the field of semantics, as well as some of the most important contemporary lines of research 
  • Features a series of new exercises, along with their solutions, that are arranged by level of difficulty 
  • Addresses componential theory, formal semantics, and cognitive semantics, the three main current theoretical approaches to semantics
  • Includes revisions and updates that reflect the most recent theoretical developments 
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