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Chao, Wynn and Bach, Emmon (2009) 'On Semantic Universals and Typology.' In: Collins, Chris, Christiansen, Morten and Edelman, Shimon, (eds.), Language Universals. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 152-173.

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Starting from the assumption that syntactic categories can be universally identified or correlated (whether or not they are instantiated in every languages), this chapter investigates the relation between them and their semantic interpretations, focusing on the nominal domain. It considers two possibilities: first, there might be a universal stock of categories from which individual languages might draw; second, there may be hypotheses that all languages must instantiate particular categories. The situation in phonological systems is illuminating: the stock of possible sounds is given by a general theory of phonetics-phonology, but not all of the categories need be utilized in every language

Item Type: Book Chapters
Keywords: semantic universals, universal grammar, syntax-semantics mapping, cartography and compositionality, quantification, structure and interpretation in the nominal domain, lexical semantics
SOAS Departments & Centres: Legacy Departments > Faculty of Languages and Cultures > Department of Linguistics
ISBN: 9780195305432
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 10 Jul 2012 13:48

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