The Referents of Noun Phrases (An Old and Rare Book)
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The Referents of Noun Phrases (An Old and Rare Book)

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Item Code: NAM057
Author: D. N. S. Bhat
Publisher: Deccan College Postgraduate and Research Institute
Language: English
Edition: 1979
Pages: 166
Cover: Paperback
Other Details: 8.5 inch x 5.5 inch
Weight 210 gm

I have primarily tried to establish, in this monograph, a sharp and clear-cut distinction between two varieties of referring expressions, namely names and descriptions. I have given arguments in support of this distinction from the point of view of both linguistics as well as philosophy. I have pointed out here that the above distinction is restricted to a particular variety of linguistic expressions, namely the noun phrases.

On the basis of the distinction so established, I have tried to re-interpret two other distinctions that are generally conceded to be occurring among referring expressions, namely (i) the distinction between proper names and common names, and (ii) the distinction between the so-called referential and non-referential uses of nominal expressions. I have pointed out that the generic, nonspecific, predicative, and the attributive uses of noun phrases can all be brought together into a single variety of use on the basis of the fact that all of them represent a reference to the underlying characteristics of the noun phrases concerned, instead of a reference to a specific (or particular) entity that shows those characteristics.

Since all these three distinctions are of great interest to philosophers, logicians, and linguists, and since some very important facts concerning these distinctions have been newly uncovered in this monograph (especially about the distinction between names and descriptions), I am hopeful that the scholars working on these topics would find this monograph interesting. In my forthcoming monograph entitled Predication, I plan to examine the distinction between predication and reference (and also modification) on the one hand, and between the major varieties of predication on the other, so that some of the topics left untouched in this present monograph can be examined in detail.

The present monograph has resulted from a seminar course I gave for the M.A. Students of the University of Poona during the year 1978. I am indebted to my students and to my colleagues at the Deccan College who have helped me either directly or indirectly in developing these ideas. I am especially thankful to Dr. H. S. Biligiri who has carefully gone through this monograph in its manuscript form and has given many helpful suggestions.


Chapter One: Names and Descriptions
1.2Differences in the relationship with referents16
1.3Two different double articulations18
1.4Two Varieties of meaning20
1.5The nature of the conventional meaning23
1.6Distinguishing characteristics27
1.7Rigid and nonrigid designators30
1.8Referential opacity33
1.9Two varieties of analytic statements36
1.10Selecting a characteristic40
1.11Finiteness of names42
1.12Irregularity of denvation44
1.13Creative and manipulative devices46
1.14Distinguishing names from words48
1.15Relative order of constituents51
1.16Familiar and novel compounds53
1.17Compactness of names55
1.18Permanent and transient characteristics56
1.19Classificatory relevance57
1.20Names of natural and synthetic objects58
1.21Distinguishing compounding from naming59
1.22Derived nominals as names61
1.23Distinction among de-adjectivals64
1.24The question of a continuum65
1.25Restriction to nominals67
1.26Naming devices : genitive constructions of Kannada70
1.27Linker distinction in Tagalog74
1.28The case of the Sanskrit language75
Chapter Two: Proper Names and Common Names
2.2Differences in application85
2.3Differences in recognition88
2.4Relevance of meaning92
2.5Relationship between names98
2.6Arguments based on analyticity100
2.7The criterion of translatability102
2.8The constraint of countability106
2.9The criterion of uniqueness108
2.10Definite and indefinite expressions111
2.11Proper names as homonymous terms114
2.12The question of a continuum116
Chapter Three: Objects and Concepts
3.2Identifying characteristics as concepts127
3.3Predicative noun phrases129
3.4Attributive noun phrases133
3.5Generic noun phrases137
3.6Problems of pronominalization142
3.7Dichotomy of the distinction145
3.8Hyponymic substitution148
3.9Parsing f referring expressions151

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