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Thoughts on nonlinear language & the geometry of propositional thought

From:And Rosta <and.rosta@...>
Date:Monday, May 1, 2006, 18:14
The last on-list discussion of nonlinear two-dimensional language (i.e. such as
could be written on a page, and is not merely a representation of linear
sppech) occurred at a time when I was too busy to participate. Reading Sai's
thoughts on the subject, at, made me decide to get round to posting my rather conservative take on the

Irrespective of the expressive potential of the medium, propositional thought has its own
intrinsic geometry, a geometry that resembles the structure of trees in
Transformational Grammar. A proposition has the structure of a tree: the
predicate is the mother node and its daughters are its arguments. Just as with
a movement chain in TG, one node can be a daughter (i.e. argument) of many
mothers (predicates). This geometry of propositional thought therefore defines
the essence of the task facing any conlinguistic scheme that aims to map
thoughts into a given expressive medium.



David G. Durand <dgd@...>