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Lecture 2

Lecture 2 - Groundings in Language.doc

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Nate Charlow

Groundings in Language -Basic 3 questions about how arguments work: 1) Used for? (Justification and explanation) 2) Look like? Form? 3) When are they good? -Functions/role of justification and explanation don’t have to be played by language, generally are -Suggests that answers to Q2 and Q3 will be largely linguistic in character -Ex. Represent arguments using linguistic entities (set of premises and conclusion) -Good arguments are one whose premises bear special relationship to conclusion (e.g. guarantee conclusion or very probable) -Language L system of rules (“conventions”) telling us when certain linguistic strings are part of L (syntax of L) -Syntax: • Arrangement of words and phrases to create well-formed sentences in language • set of rules that tells us when its used in language, requires an object -Semantics (of L): • concerned with meaning • tells us interpretations -Transitive verbs require a subject and object: syntactic rules -Linguistic act is a meaningful utterance in a language Speech Acts -Speakers use linguistic acts to make meaningful utterances in order to accomplish specific goals -Conveying information (sheep sometimes scream) -Q: Primary function of meaningful utterances is to convey info, true/false? A: Use language to narrate fiction, not only convey info, consoling someone etc. -Commanding (shut the door already!) -Asking Questions (do goats eat cans?) Performatives -Used to make things the way they say things are -There is a gap between linguistic acts, sentence is suited for (claim) and what they sentence is used to do (declaring, speech act) Explicit Performative (EP) -“The thereby test”: Sentence of the form ‘I__’ is explicit performative if, when its uttered by a speaker, speaker thereby does -Verbs in EP usually names kind of speech act (e.g. command, promise, assert…) -One can perform th
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