Abstract

I invent and explore a terminology about degrees of sentences, I explore how to negate sentences and sentence parts in english, I distinguish between verbs that can be used in sup-sentence parts and verbs that cannot, I discuss some problems with the verb “ought”, and lastly I explore the relationship between this terminology and predicate logic.

Negating sentences in english (PDF, 15 pages)

3 Responses

  • Simen

    Dude, you’re reinventing the wheel. You’re like a pre-Socratic philosopher here: you’re ignoring an entire field’s history here, including everything that field has ever learned or proven to be true. The pre-Socratics, at least, had an excuse: all of Western philosophy hadn’t been invented yet. You, on the other hand, living in 2009 with easy access to the internet and online book stores, do not have a good excuse. When analyzing language, you simply cannot ignore linguistics, the discipline that’s been studying language for thousands of years. Coming at this from a sort of naïve philosophical perspective isn’t going to get you anywhere. Just skimming this, there are numerous terminological and logical errors that you could correct by reading up on how linguists talk about language and what they’ve learned about how language works.

  • Emil Kirkegaard

    Which book do you recommend that I read for an updated terminology and the current thinking on language and linguistics?

  • Simen

    To be honest, I don’t think there’s any one book that adequately summarizes current thinking, and I certainly have read far too few books on the subject to recommend anything as the definite intro. I do own Describing Morphosyntax by Thomas Payne, which covers lots of terminology and many of the mechanisms of language. (It’s basically a “how to write a grammar” book, with explanations of the various terms you’d use and the linguistic flora you might encounter in documenting a poorly documented language. It’s a little dry and encyclopedic, so I haven’t read it from start to finish, but contains huge amounts of information. It’s also a favorite among conlangers.) You might be better off starting with something like the lecture notes to a Linguistics 101 course by a good teacher; in fact, I’m thinking of reading through these notes myself. Philosophical issues are touched on, e.g., here and here.

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