Gradability in Natural Language: Logical and Grammatical Foundations

Paperback | January 7, 2017

byHeather Burnett

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This book presents a new theory of the relationship between vagueness, context-sensitivity, gradability, and scale structure in natural language. Heather Burnett argues that it is possible to distinguish between particular subclasses of adjectival predicates - relative adjectives like tall,total adjectives like dry, partial adjectives like wet, and non-scalar adjectives like hexagonal- on the basis of how their criteria of application vary depending on the context; how they display the characteristic properties of vague language; and what the properties of their associated orders are.It has been known for a long time that there exist empirical connections between context-sensitivity, vagueness, and scale structure; however, a formal system that expresses these connections had yet to be developed. This volume sets out a new logical system, called DelTCS, that brings together insights from the Delineation Semantics framework and from the Tolerant, Classical, Strict non-classical framework, to arrive at a full theory of gradability and scale structure in the adjectival domain. The analysis isfurther extended to examine vagueness and gradability associated with particular classes of determiner phrases, showing that the correspondences that exist between the major adjectival scale structure classes and subclasses of determiner phrases can also be captured within the DelTCS system.

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This book presents a new theory of the relationship between vagueness, context-sensitivity, gradability, and scale structure in natural language. Heather Burnett argues that it is possible to distinguish between particular subclasses of adjectival predicates - relative adjectives like tall,total adjectives like dry, partial adjectives ...

Heather Burnett is a CNRS researcher in the Laboratoire de Linguistique Formelle at l'Universite Paris 7-Denis Diderot. In 2012, she completed her PhD thesis in the Department of Linguistics at the University of California, Los Angeles under the supervision of Edward Keenan and Dominique Sportiche. From 2012-2014, she was a SSHRC postd...
Format:PaperbackDimensions:240 pages, 9.69 × 6.73 × 0.68 inPublished:January 7, 2017Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198724802

ISBN - 13:9780198724803

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction2. Vagueness and linguistic analysis3. Context-sensitivity and vagueness patterns4. The Delineation TCS framework5. Scale structure in Delineation Semantics6. Beyond Delineation Semantics7. Beyond the adjectival domain8. Conclusion