Journal article

Semantic markers

Holdcroft D ...see all

Philosophia, vol. 2, issue 1-2 (1972) pp. 159-170 Published by Springer-Verlag

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The concept of a semantic marker plays a central role in the semantic theory proposed by j j katz in his book "the philosophy of language," since it is both used to specify the normal form of dictionary entries, and presupposed by his definitions of semantic concepts. two questions arise: can the concept be defined non-circularly? and, are semantic markers so defined empirically vacuous? though a negative answer has been urged to the first question, the case made in support of the answer is inadequate. on the other hand, whilst it is clear that semantic markers have some empirical content, their content is less than that katz intends them to have, so that his theory only partially escapes the charge of empirical vacuity.

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  • David Holdcroft

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