Probabilistic Approaches to Semantics
|Lecturer(s):||Ariel Cohen (Ben-Gurion University of the Negev)|
|Section:||Logic and Language|
|Time:|| 17.00-18.30 (Slot 4)|
The primary formal tool used in accounts of the
semantics of natural language is, of course, logic.
Increasingly, however, semantic problems have been
identified for whose account traditional logic is not
sufficient, and needs to be enriched with probabilistic
notions. In recent years there has been increased interest
in probabilistic approaches to language, with books and
workshops dedicated to these issues.
In this course we will discuss a sample of the
various phenomena that have received probabilistic accounts.
The emphasis will be on the manner in which probability is
used in these accounts, on the motivation for using
probability, and on how probabilistic approaches compare
with non-probabilistic ones.
The course will assume familiarity with elementary
formal semantics, but no prior knowledge of probability will
We will cover the following topics:
1. Introduction: probability and its meaning.
2. Generics and frequency adverbs.
4. Vagueness and vague quantifiers.
5. Truth-conditional or probability-conditional
||© ESSLLI 2005 Organising Committee