Volume 11, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0378-4169
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9927
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Semantics and approximation: the presquel'a peine problem."Scalar" linguistic items, such as those involving fuzziness and approximation, seemingly support the view that natural language is free from any deductive process, and calls rather for a sociology of arguing or applied fuzzy set theory. Observation suggests that some of these items are in fact correlated with complex reasoning-like features, in which linguistic hierarchies (most notably presuppositional ones) and dynamic logical properties (under the generic label of "partial inference") get entangled. In French, presque and à peine exhibit an operational structure: semantic features are activated according to a special ordering, which filters out some subsequent utterances, accounting for the contrast in pairs like: C'est presque cent francs, c'est cher / ? C'est presque cent francs, ce n'est pas cher. In this respect, the linking of utterances appears to be controlled by properties of lexical items.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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