Nicholas Allott
University of Oslo
Lexical Modulation without concepts

Theorising about lexical modulation is guided by the assumption that words express concepts which in turn have extensions. In this framework lexical modulation is taken to be the narrowing/broadening of the extension of a concept. We argue that there are cases of lexical modulation that cannot be explained in terms of the guiding assumption about meaning. Lexical modulation, it turns out, is a more general phenomenon that can only be fully captured on a different view of meaning and understanding. In this paper we make first steps to identify such a view, suggesting that understanding a word is a matter of being immersed into a practice to the extent that one can (reasonably) intend to convey to conform with previous usage. We sketch analyses in this framework of loose use, Travis cases, metaphors, and cross-categorial uses.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016
4:00pm - 5:30pm

ASY 3211