Imagination and Convention: Distinguishing Grammar and Inference in Language

Paperback | January 21, 2017

byErnie Lepore, Matthew Stone

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How do hearers manage to understand speakers? And how do speakers manage to shape hearers' understanding? Lepore and Stone show that standard views about the workings of semantics and pragmatics are unsatisfactory. They offer a new account of language as a specifically social competence formaking our ideas public. They argue that this approach is a good way to target the distinctive mechanisms and problems at play in explaining the human faculty of language. At the same time, this view embraces the diverse dimensions of meaning that linguists have discovered. This is the right way todelimit semantics.

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How do hearers manage to understand speakers? And how do speakers manage to shape hearers' understanding? Lepore and Stone show that standard views about the workings of semantics and pragmatics are unsatisfactory. They offer a new account of language as a specifically social competence formaking our ideas public. They argue that this ...

Ernie Lepore is Acting Director of the Rutgers Center for Cognitive Science. Matthew Stone is Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science, Rutgers University.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:304 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.07 inPublished:January 21, 2017Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198797419

ISBN - 13:9780198797418

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Table of Contents

Preface1. OverviewI: The Landscape of Pragmatic InferenceIntroduction to Part I2. The Gricean Framework3. The Linguistic Turn4. The Psychological TurnII: The Interpretive Effects of Linguistic RulesIntroduction to Part II5. The Scope of Linguistic Conventions6. Speech Act Conventions: Indirection and Relevance7. Presupposition and Anaphora: The Case of Tense and Aspect8. Information Structure: Intonation and ScalarsSummary of Part II and ProjectionIII: Varieties of Interpretive ReasoningIntroduction to Part III9. The Scope of Interpretive Reasoning10. Perspective Taking: Metaphor11. Presenting Utterances: Sarcasm, Irony, and Humor12. Leaving Things Open: HintingSummary of Part III and ProjectionIV: Theorizing Semantics and PragmaticsIntroduction to Part IV13. Interpretation and Intention Recognition14. Inquiry and the Formal Underpinnings of CommunicationConclusion

Editorial Reviews

"Lepore and Stone's articulation of direct intentionalism offers a strategy for combining into a unified theory both fundamental philosophical theories concerning the nature of intentions and cooperative activity and empirical theories in linguistics and cognitive science concerning theparticular mechanism of natural languages. This is a significant accomplishment . . . I wholeheartedly recommend their book for anyone interested in the relationship between conventional meaning and cooperative rational action and the attendant issue of how to understand the relationship betweenpragmatics and semantics." --Lenny Clapp, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews