[Wittrs] Dualism Cooties: Ontologically Basic Ambiguity: Basicality

  • From: Joseph Polanik <jpolanik@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: wittrsamr@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Mon, 22 Mar 2010 05:49:20 -0400

SWM wrote:

Joseph Polanik wrote:

>>my claim is that, in the phrase 'ontological basics', 'basics' is
>>functioning syntactically as a noun; but, that this is misleading.
>>semantically, 'basics' is an adjective.

>"Basic" is an adjective. "A basic" is a noun.

in colloquial speech where a sentence doesn't always express a complete
thought, 'basic' sometimes appears in the position where a native
speaker of english expects to find a noun; meaning that, 'basic'
sometimes looks like it is functioning syntactically as a noun.

nevertheless, 'basic' is semantically an adjective. this is shown by the
following procedure.

>>when we ask 'ontologically basic what?' we can recover the implicit
>>noun subject of the phrase 'ontologically basic [noun here]'.

>Whatever underlies what we encounter in our experience and what we
>encounter in our experience is very broad.

how does that vague generality clarify the syntactic/semantic confusion
as to basicality?

in your use of 'ontological basic', are there any circumstances under
which one may not ask 'ontologically basic *what*?' to recover the true
noun subject of the phrase?

Joe


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Nothing Unreal is Self-Aware

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