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Concepts & Word Meaning In Relevance Theory

Concepts & Word Meaning In Relevance Theory

meaning of a word = concept (A psychological object consisting of a label or address, which performs 2 different complementary functions)

  • It may appear as a constituent of a logical form
  • It appears as an address in memory, a heading under which different types of information can be stored and retrieved

Different entries of concepts

  • logical entryConsists of a set of deductive rules which apply to logical forms of which that concept is a constituent

    Provides access to logical information, understood as licensing inferences which will follow from propositions containing that concept.

    Information is computational

  • encyclopaedic entryInformation about the extension and/or denotation of the conceptProvides access to information about objects, events or properties which will fall under the concept, which comes from background knowledge and an individual’s own experience of the world

    Information is representational

  • lexical entryContains information about the natural language counterpart of the concept: the word or phrase of natural language which expresses it… information about its syntactic category membership and co-occurrence possibilities, phonological structure and so onProvides access to linguistic information about the word

    e.g. word class & pronunciation

    3 different possible views of what constitutes the content of concepts:

  1. The logical and encyclopaedic entries of a concept constitutes the content of a concept.
  2. Conceptual addresses are simple, unanalyzable concepts whose entries do not constitute their content.
  3. The logical entry of a concept constitutes the content of that concept, while the information in the encyclopaedic entry does not contribute to the content of the concepts. The role of the encyclopaedic entry is to contribute to the context in which an utterance encoding the concept is interpreted.

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a nocturnal writer

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