Cats like plain crisps

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Posted by Whoop John ( on 19:44:23 16/September/07

Just came across this on the interweb:

2 Frege: the clash between compositionality and semantic innocence

Compositionality has been one of the primary desiderata of more or less all semantic theorising since Frege placed the compositionality of both sense and reference at the heart of his semantics. But why should we want a semantic theory to be compositional? Firstly, compositionality ties in with some deeply-felt intuitions: sentence (1), for instance,

(1) Cats like plain crisps appears to mean what it does because the words cats , like , plain and crisps mean what they do and because they re combined in the way they are. It s just because of this, that sentences (1) and (2) and (3):
(2) Plain crisps like cats
(3) Dogs like plain crisps
are similar in some semantic respects but different in others.

OK, which one of you is it?

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