Kai von Fintel on Language, Semantics and Possible Worlds | Episode 5
Professor Kai von Fintel is a world-leading linguist (Section Head at MIT) who is well known for his contributions to Semantics, an academic fields which sits at the intersection of many disciplines which is typically concerned with the meaning of linguistic expressions. He is the co-founder of the open access journal Semantics & Pragmatics. You can find more about his work on his website: https://www.kaivonfintel.org
00:18 What is special about language?
03:31 How did we (as a species) get linguistic abilities?
05:24 What do people who work in Semantics do?
09:19 How can babies pick up language?
15:07 What is the meaning of words? Aren’t they just dictionary entries?
19:03 On idiolects
27:00 The meanings of sentences
33:43 What are possible worlds? Are they the same as the many-worlds of quantum theory?
39:52 Differences between ‘school’ grammar, syntax and formal logic
49:07 What is the meaning of ‘if’?
01:04:54 Does the research of Semanticists impact the field of Computational Linguistics?
01:07:39 The relationship between thought and language