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Personae under uncertainty: The case of topoi

Abstract:
In this paper, we propose a probabilistic model of social signalling which adopts a persona-based account of social meaning. We use this model to develop a socio-semantic theory of conventionalised reasoning patterns, known as topoi. On this account the social meaning of a topos, as conveyed in a argument, is based on the set of idealogically-related topoi it indicates in context. We draw a connection between the role of personae in social meaning and the category adjustment effect, a well-known psychological phenomenon in which the representation of a stimulus is biased in the direction of the category in which it falls. Finally, we situate the interpretation of social signals as an update to the information state of an agent in a formal TTR model of dialogue.
Research areas:
Year:
2020
Type of Publication:
In Proceedings
Book title:
Proceedings of the Probability and Meaning Conference (PaM 2020)
Pages:
8-16
Address:
Gothenburg
Month:
June
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