The Logical Semantic Project: Symbolizing and Structuring Language-Transcendent Meaning

DEFINITION

The foundation of theoretical semantics is the systematic syntactic framework that defines through logical analysis the formalized structure necessary for transparently representing linguistic sense and reference as applied to the set of all possible natural languages. Consequently, logical semanticism is named as such in order to draw attention to the comparative historical and conceptual differences of the philosophical project of logical atomism.

BASIC QUESTIONS

(1) How can meaning be quantified into logical terms that syntactically preserve the semantic content and relations of natural language? (2) What is necessary for the possibility of accurately quantifying the intensional classes that represent the semantic content and relations of natural language free of substituitivity paradox, ambiguity of descriptive scope, or referential opacity of propositional attitudes and doxastic modification? (3) What is necessary for the possibility of accurately transforming a name or definiendum between natural langauges (i.e. intensional systems) free of incommensurability?

EXPLICATION

Being committed to the theory of language-transcendent meaning is philosophically postulating that while meaning is relative to the unique referential apparatus and the unique etymological stipulations of any given natural language, there is an underlying objective standard of formally representing meaning, and the objects referenced by meaning. This theory proposes that the analysis of a natural language can be studied successfully without having to beg the question by recursively relying upon the very natural language under study for an analysis of its own references and meanings. To be able to study language in this manner is to be engaged in a transcendental method. Concurrently, the philosophical function of the foundation of theoretical semantics is outlining the logical principles necessary for satisfying the possibility of engaging in linguistic analysis using a formalized method that preserves the nature and structure of a particular natural language’s references and meanings while simultaneously transcending the need to limit one’s study to the referential apparatus and semantic ontology of the particular natural language. It is in this sense that sentential meaning would be language-transcedent and that formulating the rules of theoretical semantics for natural language provides the necessary ontological parameters for this transcendental study to be possible.

SIGNIFICANCE

The ultimate philosophical goal of theoretical semantics is outlining the framework for the ideal language. The foundation of theoretical semantics is the set of logical principles sufficient for completing this goal. Language-transcendent meaning is a significant component of the ideal language project. The analytic, the a priori, and the necessary are valid ontological categories that possess a language-transcendent character that are concurrently fundamental to the ideal language. To have a comprehensive view of language one must therefore account for how these categories philosophically function. What this ultimately requires is a theory of particulars and a theory of universals that demarcate the relationship of the logic of language to ontology. In this regard, the foundation of theoretical semantics is a methodologically fundamental aspect of this greater philosophical process for both epistemological and metaphysical reasons.

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~ by Scott Pellegrino on October 21, 2008.

One Response to “The Logical Semantic Project: Symbolizing and Structuring Language-Transcendent Meaning”

  1. What happened to this project?

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