Economics and Language
This paper is the Schwartz Memorial Lecture, delivered at Kellogg, Northwestern University in May 1998. The lecture introduces some ideas about the possible use of tools taken from the economics literature to explain language phenomena. Two specific issues are discussed: From the domain of semantics -- why linear orderings are so common in natural language; and from the domain of pragmatics -- why arguments and counterarguments are treated asymmetrically.
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