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Compositional Semantics: An Introduction to the Syntax/Semantics Interface

Compositional Semantics: An Introduction to the Syntax/Semantics Interface (Paperback)

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Synopsis

This book provides an introduction to compositional semantics and to the syntax/semantics interface. It is rooted within the tradition of model theoretic semantics, and develops an explicit fragment of both the syntax and semantics of a rich portion of English. Professor Jacobson adopts a Direct Compositionality approach, whereby the syntax builds the expressions while the semantics simultaneously assigns each a model-theoretic interpretation. Alongside this approach, the author also presents a competing view that makes use of an intermediate level, Logical Form. She develops parallel treatments of a variety of phenomena from both points of view with detailed comparisons. The book begins with simple and fundamental concepts and gradually builds a more complex fragment, including analyses of more advanced topics such as focus, negative polarity, and a variety of topics centering on pronouns and binding more generally. Exercises are provided throughout, alongside open-ended questions for students to consider. The exercises are interspersed with the text to promote self-discovery of the fundamentals and their applications.

The book provides a rigorous foundation in formal analysis and model theoretic semantics and is suitable for advanced undergraduate and graduate students in linguistics, philosophy of language, and related fields.

Languages with Grant & CutlerLinguisticsGrammar, syntaxLanguages with Grant & CutlerLinguisticsSemantics Publisher: Oxford University Press Publication Date: 11/09/2014 ISBN-13: 9780199677153  Details: Type: Paperback Format: Books
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Pauline Jacobson is currently Professor of Cognitive, Linguistic, and Psychological Sciences at Brown University. She has held visiting appointments at Ohio State University and Harvard University, and has been a Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Her research is mainly concerned with constructing formal models of the semantics and syntax of natural language - and in particular on the way that the syntax and the semantics interact. Her work has been published in a number of journals, including Journal of Semantics, Natural Language Semantics, and Linguistics and Philosophy, and she is co-editor, with Chris Barker, of Direct Compositionality (OUP 2007).

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