December 19, 1998

4:00pm, December 19, 1998 (Note time change.)
Room L-620, 6th floor, Central Library, Sophia University.
Ann Copestake (CSLI, Stanford)
Integrating the lexicon and pragmatics
I will describe a formal framework for interpretation of words, compounds and idioms in a discourse context which integrates a symbolic lexicon/grammar, word-sense probabilities, and a pragmatic component. The approach is motivated by the need to handle productive word use in general, but in the talk I will concentrate on English compound nominals. Standard treatments of compounds have tended to treat their interpretation as either wholly lexico-grammatical or wholly pragmatic. However a variety of data suggests that neither of these extremes can be correct and that compound interpretation is partly a matter of context and partly governed by convention. I will also argue that it is necessary, both theoretically and practically, to provide an account of why some interpretations are usual, while others can only occur in very marked contexts. The proposed approach can be formalized in a theoretical framework which combines the use of a typed constraint language augmented with defaults and probabilities and a nonmonotonic discourse component.

Last modified: Sat Dec 5 00:06:37 JST 1998