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LINGUIST List 24.1904

Thu May 02 2013

Books: Abstract Objects and the Semantics of Natural Language: Moltmann

Editor for this issue: Rebekah McClure <rebekahlinguistlist.org>

Date: 01-May-2013
From: Annie Leyman <annie.leymanoup.com>
Subject: Abstract Objects and the Semantics of Natural Language: Moltmann
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Title: Abstract Objects and the Semantics of Natural Language
Published: 2013
Publisher: Oxford University Press
                http://www.oup.com/us

Book URL: http://ukcatalogue.oup.com/product/9780199608744.do

Author: Friederike Moltmann
Hardback: ISBN: 9780199608744 Pages: 256 Price: U.K. £ 40.00
Abstract:

Abstract objects have been a central topic in philosophy since antiquity. Philosophers have defended various views about abstract objects by appealing to metaphysical considerations, considerations regarding mathematics or science, and, not infrequently, intuitions about natural language. This book pursues the question of how and whether natural language allows for reference to abstract objects in a fully systematic way. By making full use of contemporary linguistic semantics, it presents a much greater range of linguistic generalizations than has previously been taken into consideration in philosophical discussions, and it argues for an ontological picture is very different from that generally taken for granted by philosophers and semanticists alike. Reference to abstract objects such as properties, numbers, propositions, and degrees is considerably more marginal than generally held. Instead, natural language is rather generous in allowing reference to particularized properties (tropes), the use of nonreferential expressions in apparent referential position, and the use of 'nominalizing expressions', such as quantifiers like 'something'. Reference to abstract objects is achieved generally only by the use of 'reifying terms', such as 'the number eight'.

Linguistic Field(s): Philosophy of Language
                            Semantics

Written In: English (eng)

See this book announcement on our website:
http://linguistlist.org/pubs/books/get-book.cfm?BookID=65372


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