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Re: GLI Re: Indirect questions

Jorge the rearer:
> And:
> > In certain circumstances it can
> >be the case that "she knew whether he was hungry" is true iff
> >"she knew that he was hungry" is true, but these certain
> >circumstances depend on the state of the world being
> >described, and not on any inherent properties of the utterance.
> Well, an utterance inherently requires a state of the world
> in order to exist.
> Even if you disagree with that, I don't see what we gain by restricting
> {la'e lu ... li'u} to those meanings that arise from the _inherent_
> properties of uttering the text, rather than to those meanings that
> arise from any given uttering of the text.

First off, that would require {lu..li`u} to be a text-token, which
may or may not be a good thing.
But my main objection is that the "inherent meaning" is determinate
and the "noninherent meaning" is indeterminate.

In English one often gets exchanges like:

  A: What are you complaining about? You *asked* me to open the
  B: No I didn't. I just said it was warm in here.

  A: I've known women be better at maths than men.
  B: I strongly disagree that women are better at maths than men.

- based on misunderstandings, which in turn arise from an erroneous
inference of noninherent meaning from inherent meaning. Lojban's
cultural literalism is well-advised, and I think the distinction
should be carried over to the meaning of {la`e}.

> To those worried about the horribly arcane nature of this discussion,
> we are trying to decide whether {le sedu'u xukau ko'a badri} makes
> sense, as in {mi cusku le sedu'u xukau ko'a badri}, which to me
> means "I say whether she is sad".

My position is that I don't see how it makes sense if we simply
extrapolate from known cases. But that does not rule out declaring
this a valid usage.

>  >> But then, is {kucli da} = {djica le nu/du'u djuno da}?
>  >
> >{kucli} has two meanings, one where the x2 is an indirect
> >question, and one where it isn't. {kucli da} doesn't
> >mean {djica le nu/du'u djuno da}, but {kucli lo nu xu kau}
> >does mean {djica lo nu djuno lo nu xu kau}.
> But doesn't this go against the spirit of the language?

I think it does go against the spirit of the language, but it
is according to the letter of the language, which in this instance
contradicts the spirit. It has been ruled than when the spirit
and the letter are in conflic, the letter wins.

> Why not accept two meanings for {nitcu} then?

Depends on whether the gi`uste necessitates it. If it's at
all avoidable I'd rather avoid there being two definitions of
a given gismu, where the difference is contingent on what
its sumti are.

> >> Then we don't have an automatic way of expanding
> >> {broda le du'u xukau brode}, because it will depend on
> >> the meaning of {broda}. The expansion for {djuno} is
> >> different than the one for {kucli}.
> >
> >That's right.
> Not very nice, though.

The price of having the unexpanded forms is that they don't
all expand in the same way. If we required all expansions to
be automatic (i.e. insensitive to lexical semantics) then
either {djuno} or {kucli} could not have their current meaning.