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Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages


Semantics, Pragmatics & Philosophy

Convenor: Professor Kasia Jaszczolt

This seminar addresses cutting-edge questions concerning meaning in language system and meaning in discourse from a linguistic as well as philosophical perspective. This year we will focus on the role of pragmatics in the representation of meaning and the debate between semantic minimalists and contextualists (the latter mostly in the post-Gricean tradition). In this way we will address the big question as to what kind of meaning a theory should model: sentence meaning or rather utterance meaning as intended by the speaker and/or recovered by the addressee. Within this broad framework, we will also cover some topics proposed by members of the year group. Examples include referring expressions, belief reports, the literal/nonliteral distinction, tense and temporal reference, indexicalism in semantics, intentions in communication, compositionality of meaning, defaults in semantics and pragmatics.