Linguistics and Philosophy

, Volume 25, Issue 5–6, pp 585–600

Negation in Logic and in Natural Language

  • Jaakko Hintikka


In game-theoretical semantics, perfectlyclassical rules yield a strong negation thatviolates tertium non datur when informationalindependence is allowed. Contradictorynegation can be introduced only by a metalogicalstipulation, not by game rules. Accordingly, it mayoccur (without further stipulations) onlysentence-initially. The resulting logic (extendedindependence-friendly logic) explains several regularitiesin natural languages, e.g., why contradictory negation is abarrier to anaphase. In natural language, contradictory negationsometimes occurs nevertheless witin the scope of aquantifier. Such sentences require a secondary interpretationresembling the so-called substitutionalinterpretation of quantifiers.This interpretation is sometimes impossible,and it means a step beyond thenormal first-order semantics, not an alternative to it.


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jaakko Hintikka
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyBoston UniversityBoston

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