Mayfest 2016: Context

May 6, 2016 - May 7, 2016
Department of Linguistics, University of Maryland, College Park

Maryland Room
Marie Mount Hall, University of Maryland
College Park 20742
United States

Main speakers:

Robyn Carston
University College London
Lyn Frazier
University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Andrew Kehler
University of California, San Diego
Ernie Lepore
Rutgers University
Shevaun Lewis
Johns Hopkins University
Stephen Neale
City University of New York
Craige Roberts
The Ohio State University
Petra Schumacher
University of Cologne
Mandy Simons
Carnegie Mellon


Michael McCourt
University of Maryland, College Park

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Mayfest is a workshop in the Department of Linguistics at the University of Maryland that brings together researchers from a variety of disciplines and perspectives to discuss fundamental issues in linguistics. This year's Mayfest concerns the uses of context in theories of linguistic understanding. It also doubles as PHLINC3, the third biennial conference of PHLING, our reading and research group in Philosophy and Linguistics.

Context can play several roles in the general study of meaning: among others, mapping from sentences to semantic contents; coordinating actions in a rational conversation; and facilitating, via its representation in memory, the rapid comprehension of speakers. In each case our view of how context is involved shapes the theory of meaning to which it is auxiliary. At this Mayfest, we invite several scholars to discuss their own work on the role of context in a given area: semantics, pragmatics, adult or child psycholinguistics. We also ask them to speculate on how their view might, or might not, bear on the roles of context in other areas. How should theories of semantic content respond to the role of context in theories of conversation? How should theories of content or conversation respond to the representation of context in online comprehension? Or to the developmental course of its development in children? And how should views of context in semantics or pragmatics affect the agenda of psycholinguistics?

The workshop will be held on May 6 and 7, 2016 at the University of Maryland College Park campus. There is no registration fee and we welcome all visitors to the workshop; however, for organizational purposes we do ask all guests to register:

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April 25, 2016, 9:00am EST

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