Presentation on theme: "Paradox of oppositeness of meaning Simultaneous closeness and distance Closeness: almost identical distributions Distance: maximally separated meanings."— Presentation transcript:
Paradox of oppositeness of meaning Simultaneous closeness and distance Closeness: almost identical distributions Distance: maximally separated meanings Resolution of the paradox
Complementaries A pair of complementaries exhaustively divide between them a conceptual domain into two mutually exclusive compartments. What does not fall into one compartment must necessarily fall into the other. - Examples: true-false, dead-alive, open-shut
Complementaries Denying one word necessarily entails that the other word applies - Example: John is not dead = John is alive. The anomaly of a sentence denying both words is proof of complementarity. - Example: John is neither dead nor alive.
Complementarities Different levels of complementarity - Complementaries which hold true under all circumstances. - Complementaries which require the proviso ‘in all normal circumstances’. - Complementaries which require the proviso ‘generally speaking’
Complementaries The different levels of complementarity illustrate the continuum between: - contradiction - Example: This proposition is true – This proposition is false - contrariety - Example: John is tall – John is short
Try to formulate the felicity conditions on commands
Reversive The opposites describe respectively a continuance of state and a change to an alternative state. It describes a change of direction. Examples: live : die, start : keep on : stop
Satisfactive Opposites where one term denotes an attempt to do something and the opposite denotes successful performance. Example: try : succeed
Basic properties of antonymic pairs Antonymic pairs are gradable opposites TallShort
Basic properties of antonymic pairs Antonymic pairs are gradable opposites Very TallVery Short Tall Short The members of a pair denote degrees of some variable property
Basic properties of antonymic pairs Antonymic pairs are gradable opposites The members of a pair denote degrees of some variable property Very TallVery Short Tall Short When intensified the members of a pair move further away from each other on the scale
Basic properties of antonymic pairs Antonymic pairs are gradable opposites The members of a pair denote degrees of some variable property When intensified the members of a pair move further away from each other on the scale Very TallVery Short Tall ShortMedium height (pivotal region) There is an area on the scale where neither antonym can be properly referred to (the pivotal region)
Impartiality and Commitment Impartiality When used in a question the adjective does not imply a particular value Example: How tall is Pat? Commitment When used in a question the adjective implies a particular value Example: How short is Pat?
high:low, deep:shallow All 4 belong to group I, polar antonyms Polar antonyms: there is a pseudo-comparative corresponding to each member of a pair Example of pseudo-comparative: ”this box is light but it’s heavier than that one” (p. 207) (heavier meaning ’of greater weight’)
high:low, deep:shallow Polar antonyms are: evaluatively neautral objectively descriptive and they generally measure underlying sealed property in conventional units, e.g. inches, grams or miles per hour
high:low, deep:shallow In connection with ’how X is it’-questions Polar antonyms: only one member of a pair yields a normal ’how’-question and this question is then impartial, meaning it expresses no presumptions or expectations concerning for example the height or deepness of the questioned item (p. 208). ”how high is it?” ? ”how low is it?” ”how deep is it?” ? ”how shallow is it?”
high:low, deep:shallow Different senses/lexical units of the adjectives Using ’high’ as an example 1. ”it’s high” 2. ”This one is higher than that one” 3. ”how high is it?” 4. A: ”how high is it?” B: ? ”it isn’t”Zeugmatic Sentences 2 and 3 contain the same sense of ’high’, while 1 contains a different sense of ’high’ 4 is zeugmatic
high:low, deep:shallow The two different senses are systematically related and their respective units can be assigned to the same lexeme. Illustration A single scale underlies a pair of polar antonyms low 1 high 1 HEIGHT shallow 1 deep 1 DEPTH How high 2 …? higher 2 lower 2
high:low, deep:shallow A single scale underlies a pair of polar antonyms low 1 High 1 HEIGHT DEPTH shallow 1 deep 1
”how cheap is that coat?” Cheap and expensive are polar antonyms If you ask the ’how X is it’-question ”how expensive is that coat?” ? ”how cheap is that coat?” you can see that, as the book says, only one member of a pair of polar antonyms, yields a normal ’how’- question, in this case ’expensive’, and this question is then impartial.
”how cheap is that coat?” Also, the normality of the ’twice/half as’-expression and the ’how’-question, depends on the existence of a scale of ’X-ness’. Since there is no scale of ’cheapness’, the following sounds odd: ? ”half/twice as cheap as the other” ? ”how cheap is that coat?”
”inherentness” and speaker’s presupposition The definition of “inherentness” Bill’s accident was worse than John’s. ?John’s accident was better than Bill’s? Replacement of the term “worse” with the term “better” The addressee knows about the situation
”inherentness” and speaker’s presupposition The definition of speaker’s presupposition A presupposition is background belief, relating to an utterance, that must be mutually known or assumed by the speaker and addressee for the utterance to be considered appropriate in context generally will remain a necessary assumption whether the utterance is placed in the form of an assertion, denial, or question, and
”inherentness” and speaker’s presupposition can generally be associated with a specific lexical item or grammatical feature (presupposition trigger) in the utterance. John regrets that he stopped doing linguistics before he left Cambridge Someone uniquely identifiable to speaker and addressee as John
”inherentness” and speaker’s presupposition John stopped doing linguistics before he left Cambridge.= John was doing linguistics before he left Cambridge John left Cambridge.= John had been at Cambridge. The relationship between “inherentness” and (speaker’s) presupposition is that both the speaker and the addressee need to know something about the situation
Typical wordclasses that contain antonomous pairs implicit superlatives stative verbs These two wordclasses have these characteristics in common: They are not fully gradable ?I quite love him.? I hate him, a little. ?It is slightly beautiful. ?It is slightly ugly.
Typical wordclasses that contain antonomous pairs They are both modifiable by unstressed absolutely I absolutely love it! I absolutely hate it! It is absolutely beautiful! It is absolutely ugly! They can both be prosodically intensified I love it! I hate it! It is so beautiful! It is so ugly!
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