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Category Mistakes - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Category Mistakes

Ofra Magidor


Category mistakes are sentences such as ‘Green ideas sleep furiously’ or ‘The theory of relativity is eating breakfast’. Such sentences strike most speakers as highly infelicitous, and the main aim of the book is to account for the infelicity of category mistakes, while paying close attention to the various intricacies of the phenomenon. One thing that makes category mistakes particularly interesting is that a plausible case can be made for explaining the phenomenon in terms of each of syntax, semantics, and pragmatics. The structure of the book follows this division: four approaches to the ph ... More

Keywords: Category mistakes, sortal incorrectness, selectional violations, selectional restrictions, infelicity, anomaly, nonsense, presupposition, Colourless green ideas sleep furiously, syntax, semantics, pragmatics

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2013 Print ISBN-13: 9780199572977
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199572977.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Ofra Magidor, author
Balliol College, Oxford

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