Loading presentation...

Present Remotely

Send the link below via email or IM


Present to your audience

Start remote presentation

  • Invited audience members will follow you as you navigate and present
  • People invited to a presentation do not need a Prezi account
  • This link expires 10 minutes after you close the presentation
  • A maximum of 30 users can follow your presentation
  • Learn more about this feature in our knowledge base article

Do you really want to delete this prezi?

Neither you, nor the coeditors you shared it with will be able to recover it again.


Make your likes visible on Facebook?

Connect your Facebook account to Prezi and let your likes appear on your timeline.
You can change this under Settings & Account at any time.

No, thanks


No description

Rebecca Sear

on 3 February 2014

Comments (0)

Please log in to add your comment.

Report abuse

Transcript of Semantics

The study of what objects/entities are referred to by expressions such as words, phrases and sentences
The entity identified by an expression
such as a noun or noun phrase
These brownies are delicious!
Referent = these brownies
Speaker-reference is what the speaker intends to refer to, which is a pragmatic, not a semantic issue.
Linguistic-reference is what we're discussing in this presentation and it deals with the systematic function of the language, free of the speaker or the context
Essential Question 2: How do we know exactly what objects are meant by the words and phrases in a sentence? (RS)
The set of all potential
referents for an expression
If the referent is brownies, the
extension would be all the kinds
of brownies such as double-choc-
olate brownies, blond brownies,
chocolate chip brownies, etc.
A typical member of
the extension (the set
of all entities that could
be referred to by the
If the referent is brownies, a
prototype would be a dark
chocolate brownies. A blond
chocolate chip brownie muffin
would not be a prototype.
A list of characteristics describing
a prototype (a typical member of
the extension)
The stereotype of a dark chocolate
brownie could include the following:
dark brown
crumbly edges
about 2" x 2"
sweet and chocolate-y
(Hungry yet?)
Two linguistic expressions that
refer to the same entity are
"This dark chocolate brownie
is the best dessert ever!"
dark chocolate brownie
best dessert ever*
*Though these phrases are coreferential, we all know that they are not synonymous, and that by tomorrow we could be declaring strawberry cheesecake the best dessert ever!
A linguistic expression that refers
to another linguistic expression
(It is common, but not essential,
that coreference and anaphora
is the relation of a linguistic
expression to an entity in the real world
is the relation of two
linguistic expressions (that doesn't
necessarily exist in the real world).
"Whoever baked the brownies can
be the first to try them."
Whoever = the first
Son: Mom, I want you to bake brownies for my birthday!
Mom: I will buy brownies today after work.
Dad: Son, you and I will make them together tonight!
Throughout the conversation, "I" and "you"
refer to different people, based on who is
speaking and to whom each is speaking.
There are seven terms you should know
to help you understand reference.
Sense can be divided into two areas:

Linguistic Expression
is divided into properties
the study of word meaning
Essential Question..........Can words take on new meaning? (CL)
speaker’s intent to produce linguistic expression. For example,
"I wish you would open the door" could mean I dare you to open the door, as when a parent talks to their child. This is nonliteral meaning
expression in language. I wish you would open the door, could literally mean to open the door.
Lexical Decomposition
representation of the sense of a word in terms and its' semantic features. Values are represented (+ or -). It has several advantages: it explains our intuition as speakers of English such as the relationship that man and boy have. These two nouns are more related than man and girl. It’s also easy to characterize the senses of additional words by adding features such as adding stallion, mare, colt and filly. Nouns seem to lend themselves to lexical decomposition more readily than any other parts of speech.

Man woman boy girl
{adult} + + - -
{male} + - + -

Lexical Ambiguity
A word that has more than one sense. For example, the word fly is an insect. The term fly would be interpreted in the lexical entry being an insect. Another sense for the term fly would be ball. It's lexical entry as in Waldo witnessed a game of baseball in which they fly in and out, a hit, or a home run. Also, fly could represent a zipper. The lexical entry illustrates that Waldo saw a zipper. It does not identify where the zipper was located.

Two words are synonymous if they have the same sense. These words will have the same value for all the semantic features. For example, the pairs conceal and hide, stubborn and obstinate and big and large seem to be synonymous.

Differences that speakers have with
words, for instance senior citizen and old coot
Level of formality, for instance an adult male may be referred to as a guy when the speaker is telling a joke; but an adult male may be referred to as a man when the speaker is using formal language.
A word that contains the meaning of a more general word.
For example, oak contains the meaning of tree; therefore, oak is a hyponymy of tree.
Words overlap in meaning if they have the same value for some, but not all, of the semantic features that constitute their meaning.
For example, lets look at how some words can overlap .......
sister niece aunt mother nun mistress mare sow
human + + + + + + - -
male - - - - - - - -
kin + + + + - - - -

+ human
- male
+ kin
Two words are different if their meanings differ only in the value for a single semantic feature.
Examples of antonyms:
The meaning of these words look identical except for opposite values of some semantic features.
dead is marked {-living}
alive is marked {+living}
Three Groups of Antonyms
Pairs of words that exhaust all linguistic possibilities along some dimensions. Dead/Alive are perfect examples.

Pairs of words that describe opposite
ends of a continuous dimension. For example, Hot/Cold
We are now referring to pairs that describe the relationship between two items from opposite perspectives. For instance, Above/Below.

Oak is in including
Tree is included
the study of linguistic meaning; the meaning of words, phrases and sentences
Semantics can be divided into three areas: sense, reference and truth

1. The Study of Different Types of Truth Embedded in Sentences
The different types of truth for the first part are as follows: Analytical Sentences, Contradictory Sentences and Synthetic Sentences

Analytic Sentences
The sentence is true simply because of the words in it
Also called "linguistic truths" because it is true due to the language
For example: a dessert is sweet and is usually the last course of the meal, is an Analytic Sentence because in our English language... that is true
Contradictory Sentences
Opposite of Analytic Sentences
false because of the words used in them
sometimes referred to as "linguistic falsities"
For example, dessert is sour
May be true or false depending on the circumstances of the world
must be declared true or false by verifying sometimes called "empirical truths"
For example, Joanna ate dessert must be verified by asking or observing
When you are unclear on the status of a sentence, default on synthetic
Divided into two basic categories :
1. The study of different types of truth embedded in individual sentences and ...
2. The study of different types of truth relations that hold between sentences
Just like there are two types of desserts ...now and later
Synthetic Sentences
The Study of Different Types of Truth Relation that Hold Between Sentences

The different types of
truth relations
are as follows:
is a proposition
follows from another a sentence
makes sentence a true
for example: Mayra finished her ice cream follows an entailment that states that Maria had dessert
Test for Entailment
Sentence A entails sentence B if the truth or realness of sentence A confirms the Truth of sentence B.
also if....
The falsity or untruth of sentence B ensures the falsity of sentence A
For example : Nadia passed her baking class (a)entails that Nadia took a baking class (b).
A pair of sentences entail each other
When two sentences are synonymous
For example: Maria passed her baking class
Paraphrases: What Maria passed was baking
a proposition assumed to be true in order to judge another sentence
a test of presupposition is reliant upon the fact that the original sentence and its denial have the same set of presuppositions
test is known as
constancy under negation

Constancy Under Negation examined...
If Nadia passed her baking classes presupposes that Nadia took a baking class then the negation or denial also presupposes the sentence
For example, Nadia did not pass her baking class also presupposes that Nadia did take a baking class
it is important to negate the verb in the
main clause
of the sentence
Essential Questions
How do we determine the truth in sentences?
Does the truth or validity of a sentence change according to different languages?
Essential Questions Revisited
1. We determine the truth of sentences by classifying the different types of truths and then setting up tests to assess the validity of sentences.

2. Language does alter the validity of sentences. What is true in one language might not be true in another.

An expression that has one meaning but can refer to different entities depending on the speaker, spatial orientation or temporal orientation
Full transcript