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The Philosophy of Daniel Dennett$
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Bryce Huebner

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780199367511

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199367511.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 04 March 2021

Representations and Rules in Language

Representations and Rules in Language

Chapter:
(p.95) 4.1 Representations and Rules in Language
Source:
The Philosophy of Daniel Dennett
Author(s):

Ray Jackendoff

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780199367511.003.0007

In both traditional grammar and cognitive science, the standard view of language distinguishes sharply between words (lexicon) and rules (grammar). Here I undermine this distinction, presenting a continuum of phenomena that lie between undisputed words like cat and undisputed “rules” such as the pattern for transitive verb phrases. Mainstream linguistics makes a further distinction between productive rules “in the grammar,” such as the regular English past tense, and partially productive rules “in the lexicon,” such as forming a noun like construction by affixing –tion to a verb. I show that this distinction too has been misconceived: productive rules have all the properties of partially productive rules, but have in addition “gone viral.” These phenomena argue that rules of grammar are declarative schemas for licensing well-formed sentences, rather than either procedures for assembling sentences, as in mainstream generative grammar, or simple association and analogy, as in connectionist and exemplar-based approaches.

Keywords:   language faculty, phonology, syntax, semantics, Daniel Dennett

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