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Contextual adjustment of meaning

Carston, RA; (2015) Contextual adjustment of meaning. In: The Routledge Handbook of Semantics. Routledge Green open access

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Abstract

This chapter focuses on the pragmatic adjustment (or modulation) of word meanings in context, a process which is often required in order to recover the concept that a speaker intends to communicate on a particular occasion of use of a word. According to the relevance-theoretic account, which is outlined here, the interpretation process involves the construction of an ad hoc concept whose denotation differs from that of the encoded meaning of the word. Different positions on encoded word meaning, whether it is fully conceptual or semantically underspecified, are also reviewed. The discussion inevitably involves assessment of ‘minimalist’ versus ‘contextualist’ positions on truth-conditional semantics, as well as the more communication-based view labelled ‘pragmaticism’.

Type: Book chapter
Title: Contextual adjustment of meaning
ISBN: 0415661730
ISBN-13: 978-0415661737
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Linguistics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1470339
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