Structured Meanings: The Semantics of Propositional Attitudes

Cresswell, M.J.

Published by MIT Press, 1985
ISBN 10: 0262031086 / ISBN 13: 9780262031080
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Synopsis: M. J. Cresswell is a logician and philosopher of language who has been a major continuing influence on the growth and development of formal semantics over the past 15 years or more. This book is the outgrowth of years of work on propositional attitudes, the hardest problem in semantics. In it, he traces the problem to the foundations of semantics and solves it by distinguishing between the result of the composition of the simple parts of complex expressions and structure consisting of the uncomposed parts.

Cresswell explains the basis of the great intuitive appeal of structured meanings, and why previous attempts, from Carnap's notion of intensional isomorphism on, to use them to solve the propositional attitudes problem have been unsuccessful. His own formalization is integrated into a model-theoretic framework which is capable of incorporating and extending all the insights obtained from Montague's semantics.

M. J. Cresswell is Professor of Philosophy, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. He is the author of Logics and Languages, in which he developed an alternative version of Montague Grammar, as well as many articles on possible-worlds semantics; and coauthor with G. E. Hughes of An Introduction to Modal Logic and A Companion to Modal Logic, the standard works in the field.

A Bradford Book.

Review:

"Cresswell has been publishing articles on propositional attitudes and related problems for years; he has espoused a variety of approaches to treating them in different articles, and probably has a better perspective on the whole range of past and current approaches and their problems than any other single person.... The topic is particularly timely, now that Barwise and Perry's work on situation semantics and propositional attitudes is the focus of so much attention.... The book is a pleasure to read; Cresswell has taken pains to make it accessible to a wide audience without sacrificing any rigor. In short, I believe this is a major book by a major philosopher of language on a topic of great importance for the future of linguistics and philosophy."
- Barbara H. Partee, University of Massachusetts

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Title: Structured Meanings: The Semantics of ...
Publisher: MIT Press
Publication Date: 1985
Binding: Hard Cover
Book Condition: Very Good

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