2017年6月30日


Photo Credit: kami68k -all over- Flickr via Compfight cc

Shalom Lappin 主編的 The Handbook of Contemporary Semantic Theory 前年出了第二版,內容幾乎全部翻新。第一版由 Laurence R. Horn 撰寫的 “Presupposition and Implicature” ,在第二版換成 Christopher Potts 寫的同名文章。 Potts 這篇鳥瞰式的文章非常全面,點出目前語言學各種關於「預設」 (presupposition) 和「暗示」 (implicature) 的研究分佈和連繫。不過,裡面介紹 Paul Grice 的 “conventional implicature” ,有個細節恐怕 Grice 不會同意。

Grice 解釋 conventional implicature 的段落不多, Potts 引用了他在 “Logic and Conversation” 最知名的例子:
If I say (smugly), “He is an Englishman; he is, therefore, brave”, I have certainly committed myself, by virtue of the meaning of my words, to its being the case that his being brave is a consequence of (follows from) his being an Englishman. But while I have said that he is an Englishman and said that he is brave, I do not want to say that I have said (in the favored sense) that it follows from his being an Englishman that he is brave, though I have certainly indicated, and so implicated, that this is so. (Grice, 1989a, p. 25)
這例子要表達的是:當某個人說「 p, therefore q 」,他所說的內容包含了 p ,也包含了 q ,但卻不包含 p⇒q (即是: p支持q )。最後的 p⇒q 屬於暗示 (implicature) ,而不屬於所說的內容 (what is said)。James McCawley 認為這個例子犯了個「微妙但嚴重的錯誤」 (subtle but serious error) ,參考 McCawley (1993, pp. 318-319) 。

Potts 這樣解釋那個段落:
Grice’s intuition seems to be that the at-issue content of his example (“what is said (in the favored sense)”) is simply a conjunction E(x)∧B(x), while the conventional implicature conveyed by “therefore” is more like E⇒B, where ⇒ is some kind of default inference relation.
這段解釋的大意並沒有錯,壞就壞在 “a conjunction E(x)∧B(x)” 。「E(x)∧B(x)」即是「E(x)而且B(x)」,在此解作「他是英國人,而且,他是勇敢的」 (He is an Englishman and he is brave) 。

留意, Grice 的原文寫的是:

I have said that he is an Englishman and said that he is brave
[ = I have said that E(x) ∧ I have said that B(x) ]

而不是

I have said that he is an Englishman and he is brave
[ = I have said that E(x)∧B(x) ]

這樣寫其實有用意。 Grice 在另一篇文章 “Utterer’s Meaning, Sentence-Meaning, and Word-Meaning” 表明,「某個句子的意思包含三部分」和「那句子的意思包含那三部分的連言 (conjunction) 」並不是同一回事「某個句子的三個意思」並不是在講句子有歧義的情況。:(可跳到最後兩句)
Consider the sentence “Bill is a phi­losopher and he is, therefore, brave” (S1). It would be appropriate, I think, to make a partial specification of the timeless meaning of S1 by saying “Part of one meaning of S1 is ‘Bill is occupationally engaged in philosophical studies.’ ” One might, indeed, give a full specification of timeless meaning for S1 by saying “One meaning of S1 includes ‘Bill is occupationally engaged in philosophical studies’ and ‘Bill is courageous’ and ‘That Bill is courageous follows from his being occupationally engaged in philosophical studies,’ and that is all that is in­cluded.” We might re-express this as “One meaning of S1 comprises ‘Bill is occupationally engaged (etc.),’ ‘Bill is courageous,’ and ‘That Bill is courageous follows (etc.).’ ” It is preferable to specify the time­-less meaning of S1 in this way than to do so as follows: “One meaning of S1 is ‘Bill is occupationally engaged (etc.) and Bill is courageous and that Bill is courageous follows (etc.),’ ” for the latter formulation at least suggests that S1 is synonymous with the conjunctive sentence quoted in the formulation, which does not seem to be the case. (Grice, 1989b, p.120)
這當然不代表 Grice 不同意邏輯學上的連言律 (the law of conjunction) :

p,   q   ⊨   p∧q

最多只代表他不同意

S的意思是p,   S的意思是q   ⊨   S的意思是p∧q

或者

A說了p,   A說了q   ⊨   A說了p∧q留意這裡的「說了」並不是用來提及 (mention) 所說的文字,而是用來表示所說的內容,或者是所說的 commitment 。若果是在提及文字, Grice 肯定是對的,但若果是關於內容和 commitment ,便沒有那麼明顯。

至於他的看法是對是錯,則是另一回事。



參考文獻
Grice, H. P. (1989a). Logic and Conversation. In his (1898) Studies in the Way of Words. Harvard University Press.
Grice, H. P. (1989b). Utterer’s Meaning, Sentence-Meaning, and Word-Meaning. In his (1898) Studies in the Way of Words. Harvard University Press.
McCawley, James (1993). Everything Linguists Have Always Wanted to Know About Logic -- But Were Ashamed to Ask. University of Chicago Press.
Potts, Christopher (2015). Presupposition and Implicature. In Shalom Lappin and Chris Fox (eds.)  The Handbook of Contemporary Semantic Theory (2nd ed., pp. 168-202). Wiley Blackwell.

0 comments:

張貼留言

 
Toggle Footer