A unitary approach to lexical pragmatics: relevance, inference and ad hoc concepts.

  title={A unitary approach to lexical pragmatics: relevance, inference and ad hoc concepts.},
  author={Deirdre Wilson and Robyn Carston},
According to recent work in the new field of lexical pragmatics, the meanings of words are frequently pragmatically adjusted and fine-tuned in context, so that their contribution to the proposition expressed is different from their lexically encoded sense. Well-known examples include lexical narrowing (e.g. ‘drink’ used to mean ALCOHOLIC DRINK), approximation (or loosening) (e.g. ‘flat’ used to mean RELATIVELY FLAT) and metaphorical extension (e.g. ‘bulldozer’ used to mean FORCEFUL PERSON… 
Lexical pragmatics, explicature and ad hoc concepts
This chapter presents recent work in lexical pragmatics from the point of view of a contextualist approach to utterance interpretation, and discusses some of the current issues being debated.
The lexical entry in lexical pragmatics - a relevance-theoretic view
This paper is an attempt to examine the status of lexical entries in the relevancetheoretic framework enriched with some insights from the relatively new but rapidly developing field of lexical
Lexical pragmatics, ad hoc concepts and metaphor: A Relevance Theory perspective
Ostensive communication, the paradigm case of which is verbal communication, is the domain of a dedicated cognitive system, according to Relevance Theory (RT). This ‘pragmatics’ module is responsible
Going Beyond Semantics: The Development of Pragmatic Enrichment
Many expressions whose meaning varies from context to context to have a single core meaning, which may be enriched at the pragmatic level by context-dependent assumptions (i.e. conversational implicatures).
Metaphor, hyperbole and simile: A pragmatic approach
It is proposed that a distinction should be drawn between the kind of ad hoc concepts derived for hyperbolic and other loose uses, on the one hand, and metaphorical uses, and that the understanding of some metaphorical use is achieved by a different mode of processing altogether, one which gives much greater weight to the literal meaning.
Relevance Theory, Semantic Content and Pragmatic Enrichment
The relevance-theoretic view that the semantics-pragmatics distinction corresponds to the distinction between linguistically encoded and pragmatically provided meaning is outlined, and the reasons for the rejection of any intermediate level of semantic content such as a minimal proposition are outlined.
Lexical Pragmatic Adjustment and the Nature of Ad hoc Concepts
It is argued that difference in extension should not be taken as the crucial feature of lexical pragmatics, since ad hoc concepts can have the same extension as the lexicalized concept.
The Semantics and Pragmatics of Three Potential Slurring Terms
  • K. Allan
  • Linguistics
    Studies in Ethnopragmatics, Cultural Semantics, and Intercultural Communication
  • 2019
In this chapter, I propose a lexical semantics with interlaced pragmatic elements for three potential slurring terms: bitch, cunt, and nigger. These controversial lexical items are worthy of


Pragmatics and the Lexicon
This contribution investigates the interactions between the (mental) lexicon and pragmatics. It aims to give an overview about pragmatic phenomena that are connected with the semantic
Pragmatics and the Lexicon
This contribution investigates the interactions between the (mental) lexicon and pragmatics. It aims to give an overview about pragmatic phenomena that are connected with the semantic
Lexical Pragmatics
The basic pragmatic mechanism rests on conditions of updating the common ground and allows to give a precise explication of notions as generalized conversational implicature and pragmatic anomaly and turned out to be capable of giving a principled account of lexical blocking, the pragmatics of adjectives, and systematic polysemy.
The Content and Acquisition of Lexical Concepts
A view of concept acquisition as involving a complex interplay between innate constraints and environmental input supports Fodor’s recent move away from radical concept nativism: concept acquisition requires innate mechanisms, but does not require that concepts themselves be innate.
Pragmatics, modularity and mindreading
Pragmatic studies of verbal communication start from the assumption that an essential feature of most human communication is the expression and recognition of intentions, and that the hearer infers the speaker’s intended meaning from evidence she has provided for this purpose.
Relevance Theory *
Relevance theory is a cognitive approach to pragmatics which starts from two broadly Gricean assumptions: (a) that much human communication, both verbal and non-verbal, involves the overt expression
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This book offers a pragmatic account of the interpretation of everyday metaphorical and idiomatic expressions. Using the framework of Relevance Theory, it reanalyses the results of recent
Enrichment and loosening: complementary processes in deriving the proposition expressed? Linguistisc
One important consequence of the relevance-theoretic view of cognition and communication is the following: we can think many thoughts that our language cannot encode, and we can communicate many