Analogy as Structure and Process: Approaches in Linguistics, by Esa Itkonen

By Esa Itkonen

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Extra resources for Analogy as Structure and Process: Approaches in Linguistics, Cognitive Psychology and Philosophy of Science (Human Cognitive Processing, Volume 14)

Sample text

The latter alternative entails the possibility of linguistic change. Thus, it seems natural to view linguistic change as an exemplification of Type 3, even if the amount of ‘creativity’ involved in linguistic change should not be exaggerated. The difference between Types 3 and 4 turns out to be a matter of degree. On a large time scale, linguistic typology seems to combine invention/creation and discovery. e. particular languages; and then the conscious human mind discovered this analogy. To conclude this section, a profound (and most probably, insoluble) problem surrounding the notion of analogy needs to be addressed.

There is a certain relativity of viewpoints lurking here, however. g. ) – For the sake of completeness, it may be added that also two systems which neither exist nor are known would be symmetric both ontologically and epistemically; but this case can safely be ignored because there is not much that can be said about it. Type 2 (= ‘ontologically symmetric, epistemically asymmetric’) represents the case where two analogous systems exist in the same way, but one of them is known later than, and with the aid of, the other.

19 represent inductive, deductive, and abductive inferences, respectively. 21 might be said to represent the abductive-analogical inference. It can be illustrated by showing, in a schematic form (cf. 22), how a prototypical grammatical rule is learned. First, the ‘systems’ dog/dogs (= O1) and cat/cats (= O2) are observed. Then follows the realization that if there is a rule like ‘For all x, if x is a thing-word N, then the plural of x is N-s’, then O1 and O2, instead of being unconnected, are exemplifications of a common structure.

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