How to Think about Zeugmatic Oddness

Review of Philosophy and Psychology:1-24 (forthcoming)
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Zeugmatic oddness is a linguistic intuition of oddness with respect to an instance of zeugma, i.e. a sentence containing an instance of a homonymous or polysemous word being used in different meanings or senses simultaneously. Zeugmatic oddness is important for philosophical debates as philosophers often use it to argue that a particular philosophically interesting expression is ambiguous and that the phenomenon referred to by the expression is disunified. This paper takes a closer look at zeugmatic oddness. Focusing on relevant psycholinguistic literature on homonymy and polysemy processing and representation, I argue that there are two different ways in which zeugmatic oddness can arise. Philosophical upshots concerning zeugmatic oddness are then drawn.

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Michelle Liu
Monash University


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