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methods of resolving mismatches between place structures and number of overt sumti


On Apr 2, 2005 7:23 PM, John E Clifford wrote:
> I find this discussion baffling, perhaps because
> I do not see a problem with putting {no da} in
> any place where it might fit to reflect the way
> the world is,

Hopefully nobody sees a problem with that.

> so {no da}ing the "lid" place of
> {botpi} seems perfectly meaningful and often
> involved in true descriptions of situations.

Of course. Does anyone oppose using {no da} there?

> But
> the descriptions of{zo'e} (and blank, if you take
> that as an abbreviation for {zo'e}) are a mess.

I think it's the other way around: zo'e is a way of
indicating blank when leaving it blank would change
the meaning: {broda zo'e ko'a} is not the same
as {broda ko'a}.

> Before it was talked about as
> an abbreviation for {zo'e}, the blank was just
> that: no sumti given, no arguemnt specified.

That's what both zo'e and blank are, as far as I understand.

> What that amounted to was to be worked out
> pragmatically: obvious, indifferent, unimportant,
> unknown, secret — all these interpretations had
> their uses.

Yes.

> To be sure, if what was skipped was
> known to be {no da}, a good Gricean might object
> to a speaker not mentioning that, if anything
> might hang on it, but in the case of indifference
> — and certainly of ignorance — {no da} is a
> possible value to be discovered.

I don't think {no da} can be skipped, either by blank
or by {zo'e}. That amounts to skipping {na ku}.

> If blank is really an abbreviation for {zo'e},
> then (or {zo'e} the blank made visible) surely it
> has this value (pragmatic, not semantic) "For
> some reason, I am not telling you about things
> that go in here" and usually this causes no
> problems.

Right. "What things" in the sense of what referents,
not in the sense of what words. zo'e or blank don't
stand for omitted words, they are the omision
of any mention of the arguments, the things, that
play the corresponding role in the corresponding
relationship with the other (mentioned) things.

mu'o mi'e xorxes

 


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