Lexical semantics has the task of identifying and characterizing such systematic phemena. One of the hardest problems in giving an account of ambiguity is to figure out what are the objects that are said to be ambiguous. Ambiguity is important and it is worth examining what the phenomenon is and how it differs and relates to similar phenomena such as indexicality, polysemy, vagueness, and especially sense generality. Kimball ed : Syntax and Semantics, Vol. When dealing with syntactic ambiguity, it's helpful to use your to uncover the true meaning of the sentence or phrase.
For example, consider James who wants to meet a man who is overweight for a male model and Jane who wants to meet a man who is overweight for a plus sized model. Kripke 1977 and Searle 1979: p. Ambiguity in Literature Now, let's examine ambiguity used as a literary device in some of our favorite works. Thus, the description of some of the ambiguities as syntactic or structural rather than semantic can be somewhat controversial. Although ambiguity is fundamentally a property of linguistic expressions, people are also said to be ambiguous on occasion in how they use language. After van Gompel et al. One might argue that the clause 'so does Bill' is unambiguous and may be read unequivocally as saying in the context that Bill does the same thing that John does, and although there are two different possibilities for what counts as doing the same thing, these alternatives are not fixed semantically.
Clearly, this account is speculative and should be viewed as an early step in the process of understanding how lexical ambiguities are processed in context. In Syntax and Semantics, 1975. Now it could be argued that in each of these cases the derived sense does not really qualify as a second meaning of the word but is actually the result of a lexical operation on the underived sense. This approach was taken by Rudd et al. This could encourage one to posit an ambiguity or a polysemy since the putative lexical entries are closely related.
It studies combinations of words including word-structure and sentence-structure. The word twisted could be an adjective and is also morphologically ambiguous between the and forms of the verb to twist. When found in literature, ambiguity is sure to be intentional, forcing the reader to contemplate a central idea. Unfortunately the flute spade fell to the floor after he played it with a great flourish. The findings suggest that encountering a lexical ambiguity is dealt with by activating multiple meanings utilizing processes involving both hemispheres. He kicked the bucket last week and she did too, twice.
It is tempting to treat these as ambiguities involving the modal term. Yesterday the puppy boxer was miserable after its hind legs were injured in the accident. For each sentence within a condition, a base hemodynamic response function was convolved with a boxcar function; the onset of this boxcar was the time point at which a sentence appeared on the screen and the duration of the boxcar equaled the duration of the sentence. The fact that it appears in both types of ambiguous sentences indicates that if it does play an inhibitory role, this role must be more general. However, ambiguity need not be characterized by borderline cases nor by sorites-series susceptibility. This short, simple sentence could be interpreted in four different ways. Interestingly, these ambiguities are not always signaled by the content of the sentence.
The sentences containing balanced ambiguous words activated only the left inferior frontal gyrus when contrasted with sentences containing unambiguous matched control words. As mentioned above, Pietroski and Hornstein 2002 make a similar point regarding syntactic ambiguities. If these sorts of factors can interfere, we will indeed have to apply our tests gingerly. An utterance of such a sentence can be taken in either of two ways, but it is arguable that the sentence is not ambiguous but merely semantically underdeterminate with respect to its two alleged 'readings'. Modeling suppression in lexical access. Lexical access during sentence comprehension: Re consideration of context effects.
Consider the bound reading of the first sentence. The coarse coding of the word meanings by the right hemisphere may help to maintain the lower frequency interpretation. A I forgot my magazine in the car. Small boys and all girls are playing. In the name of Allah, the most Beneficent, the most Merciful. Van Gompel and Pickering refer to the unrestricted race model explicitly as a two-stage reanalysis model. The ambiguous words were of two classes: biased and balanced.
For example, in the ambiguous sentence 'The old men and women sat on the bench,' the women may or may not be old. Literal Meaning, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. The psychology of learning and motivation. We have a good idea of the conditions under which we can fail to get bound readings, as characterized by binding theory. Braun and Sider 2007 treat sentences with vague terms as expressing multiple distinct propositions and supervaluationism treats vague terms as expressing multiple distinct semantic values.
While some words can clearly be used to refer to things that are wildly different in ontic category, that has not been taken to be sufficient for a claim to ambiguity. In your speech, you might want to use ambiguity to make your audience consider things for themselves. Have you ever been accused of? Ambiguity occurs when a sentence or an expression has more than one possible meaning. Without the slightest hesitation, he went to the door on the right, and opened it. As you can see, ambiguity lends itself particularly well to comedy. In effect, this is the difference between ambiguity in sense and ambiguity in reference seen most clearly in pronominal cases.