Call for Papers

Workshop: Formal Semantics Meets Cognitive SemanticsJanuary 22-23, 2015, NijmegenSemantics is a divided discipline. On one side we have Formal Semantics, which has its roots in logic and analytical philosophy (Frege, Montague). Meaning here is viewed as a relation between language and external reality, formalized in terms of reference, truth, possible worlds, etc. On the other side we have Cognitive Semantics, a central part of the Cognitive Linguistics movement, which grew out of dissatisfaction with formal linguistics (in particular, formal semantics and generative syntax) in the seventies (Fauconnier, Lakoff, Talmy). In this framework meaning is primarily a relation between language and the mind, described in terms of mental spaces, conceptual schemata, frames, etc.Today, the split between the two is as wide as ever. Both are evidently thriving disciplines, but in almost complete isolation from each other. Given the apparent overlap in subject matter - natural language meaning - this lack of interaction is surprising.

In this workshop we want to bring together researchers from both sides who contribute to bridging the gap in some way.

More specifically, we solicit submissions dealing with, for instance,

* Formal semantic approaches to phenomena typically reserved for cognitive linguistics, such as metaphor, polysemy, perspective, narrativity -- especially when they explicitly engage with existing cognitive semantic approaches.

* Cognitive semantic approaches to phenomena typically associated with formal semantics, such as anaphora, quantification or intensional operators -- especially when they explicitly engage with existing formal semantic approaches.

* Hybrid frameworks that combine aspects of both, such as cognitive interpretations of Discourse Representation Theory, or Gärdenfors' Conceptual Semantics.

* Philosophical, foundational and/or historical investigations of the opposition between formal and cognitive semantics.


- Arie Verhagen (Leiden)

- Henk Zeevat (Amsterdam)

- Nicholas Asher (Toulouse)


We invite submissions of anonymous two-page abstracts (including references etc.) for 25 minute talks (plus 10 minutes discussion), via Easychair:


Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands


- Workshop: Thu, January 22, 2015 -- Fri, January 23, 2015

- Deadline for abstract submission: Friday, November 21, 2014

- Notification: December 1, 2014


- Lotte Hogeweg (Nijmegen):

- Emar Maier (Groningen):



NWO (project "Lexical Flexibility: formal semantics meets experimental psycholinguistics") & ERC (Project BLENDS)