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From Whorf to Montague – Explorations in the Theory of Language - Oxford Scholarship Online
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From Whorf to Montague: Explorations in the Theory of Language

Pieter A. M. Seuren


This book offers a critical view of a gamut of approaches to natural language, ranging from Whorfianism, via Relativism, both widespread in anthropological linguistics, to logic-based Possible World Semantics. It stresses the fact that each natural language is part of the social reality of the community in which it is spoken. It is argued that much in each language (variety) is the result of arbitrary ‘settling’, but within strict limits imposed by language universals (Chapter 1). The Whorfian hypothesis that language influences or even determines thought is, in principle, rejected: any such i ... More

Keywords: Chomsky Hierarchy, formalization, natural logic, Possible World Semantics, reflexivity, relativism, social reality, universals, Whorfianism

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2013 Print ISBN-13: 9780199682195
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199682195.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Pieter A. M. Seuren, author
Research Fellow, Max-Planck-Institute for Psycholinguistics, Nijmegen