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S E M A N T I C S. S E M A N T I C S. 1. Study of linguistic meanings 2. Explores the variety of meanings and meaning relationships that hold between words and sentences 3. Has 2 sub-domains: Lexical (words) and sentential (sentences). denotations VS referents.

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SEMANTICS


SEMANTICS

1. Study of linguistic meanings

2. Explores the variety of meanings and meaning relationships that hold between words and sentences

3. Has 2 sub-domains: Lexical (words) and sentential (sentences)


denotations VS referents

Denotation: literal meaning of word/phrase

Referent: the actual entity (ies) that a word signifies.

Reference: the relationship that exists between a word and its referent(s).


denotations VS referents

a) The President of the United States


denotations VS referents

b) Capital of Canada


denotations VS referents

c) The women who walked on the moon


denotations VS referents

d) My linguistic professor


metaphors we live by

The eye of a needle

The foot of the bed

The hands of the clock

The arm of a chair

Describes non-living entities in terms of physical human features


metaphors we live by

The lecture is easy to digest

He just eats up the lecturer’s words

Chew on this thought for a while

Listen to this juicy piece of gossip

Describes knowledgein terms of food-related terminology


metaphors we live by

Your claims are indefensible

He shotdown all my arguments

His criticisms were right on target

If you use that strategy, he’ll wipe you out

I demolished his argument

He attacked every weak point in my argument

Describes argumentsin terms of war terminology


metaphors we live by

He unleashed his anger

Her anger was aroused

Your temper is ferocious

She was bristling with rage

Describes wrathin terms of animalistic features


logical entailment

Sentential semantics – Relations between sentences AKA Logical connections

Paraphrase

Entailment

Contradiction

Presupposition


logical entailment

Definition of entailment:

Proposition A entails Proposition B if the truth of A makes B necessarily true.

i.e The truth of sentence A ensures the truth of sentence B.

Lecture example

A: I boiled an egg.

B: I cooked an egg.


logical entailment

“The truth of sentence A makes B necessarily true.”


logical entailment

“The truth of sentence A makes B necessarily true.”


logical entailment

“The truth of sentence A makes B necessarily true.”


logical entailment

“The truth of sentence A makes B necessarily true.”


logical entailment

“The truth of sentence A makes B necessarily true.”


logical entailment

“The truth of sentence A makes B necessarily true.”


Presupposition

Definition of Presupposition:

An implicit assumption about the world or background belief relating to a sentence whose truth is taken for granted, so to speak.


presupposition (A)

  • John regrets that Maria went to the graduation ceremony.

    John believes that Maria went to the graduation ceremony.

  • Ans: John regretsthat Maria went to the graduation ceremony.

  • Regrets: Presupposition that Maria has gone to the graduation ceremony already.

  • Believes: Encapsulates a personal opinion.


presupposition (A)

  • The captain thought that the ship was in danger.

    The captain realized that the ship was in danger.

  • Ans: The captain realizedthat the ship was in danger.

  • Realized: Presupposition that the ship is already in danger.

  • Thought: Encapsulates a personal opinion.


presupposition (A)

It is significant that the criminal was sentenced.

It is likely that the criminal was sentenced.

Answer: It is significantthat the criminal was sentenced.

Significant Presupposition that criminal is already

sentenced

Likely encapsulates a personal opinion and criminal might not be sentenced yet.


presupposition (B)

A. Who killed Sylvia?

  • Sylvia is dead

  • Murderer is unknown

  • There must be a Sylvia


presupposition (B)

B. Where did you put the cheese?

  • Cheese has to exist in this world

  • The cheese is not at its original position

  • Someone/something is responsible for misplacing the cheese


presupposition (B)

C. Why is there sadness in the world?

  • There is must be an emotion called sadness in the world

  • A world has to be in existence


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