The Semantics of Media

The Semantics of Media

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Media are objects with content and character that we describe using in- phrases: in the story, in the picture, in the movie, in the dream... Like the propositional attitudes, these objects present a variety of hard problems for semantic and philosophical analysis. The Semantics of Media is an organized exploration of fundamental questions in the semantics of media.
The first three chapters set out a straightforward model within the possible-worlds framework, and consider how it might account for a range of notions applying to media generally: implicit vs. explicit content, propositional vs. individual content, causal vs. intentional content and the idea of a single World of the Medium.
The final three chapters examine ways of elaborating the model to cover a range of phenomena keyed to the functionality of particular forms of media. Chapter Four is a discussion of fiction and our apparent reference to fictional characters. Chapter Five deals with the phenomenon of viewpoint in pictorial media. Chapter Six is a study of interactions between users and characters of media centering on the puzzling case of seeing in films.
The Semantics of Media will be of interest to specialists in the fields of linguistics, philosophy and communications.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 141 pages
  • 154.9 x 238.8 x 17.8mm | 340.2g
  • Dordrecht, Netherlands
  • English
  • 1997 ed.
  • VII, 141 p.
  • 0792343891
  • 9780792343899

Table of contents

1. Media.- 1. Language and the Study of Content.- 2. The Notion of Media.- 3. Media and Attitudes.- 4. The Mechanics of Media.- 2. Basic Propositional Content.- 1. Possible-Worlds Semantics.- 2. Modality.- 3. Counterfactuals.- 4. Media.- 5. The Language L.- 6. The Semantics of Media Terms.- 7. Validity in L.- 8. Summary - The Intensional Package.- 3. Reflections on Content.- 1. Explicit and Implicit Content.- 2. Appearance and Existence.- 3. `The World of the Medium'.- 4. With Reference to Characters.- 1. The Particularity Problem.- 2. Character-Sentences.- 3. The Problem of Accidental Reference.- 5. The Semantics of Viewpoint.- 1. Viewpoint.- 2. Categorial Semantics.- 3. Property Semantics.- 4. Viewpoint and the Viewer.- 6. The Semantics of Interaction.- 1. The Problem of Interactions.- 2. Seeing.- 3. Seeing in Films I - The Causal Account.- 4. Content and Causation.- 5. Seeing in Films II - The Intensional Account.- 6. The Intensional Account Probed.- 7. Contexts as Media.- Notes.- References.
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