Course Description: This is a course on 'surface reasoning' in natural language. The overall goal is to study logical systems which are based on natural language rather than (say) first-order logic. Most of the systems are complete and decidable, the class will see a lot of technical work in this direction. At the same time, the work is elementary. One needs to be comfortable with informal proofs, but only a small logic background is needed to follow the course.
Specific topics include: extended syllogistic logics; logics including verbs, relative clauses, and relative size quantifiers; the limits of syllogistic logics, monotonicity calculi; and algorithms, complexity, and implementations.
The topic of natural logic lends itself to philosophical reflections on the nature of semantics and is arguably something all formally-minded linguists and linguistically-minded logicians should know about.
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