Department of Linguistics University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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Peter Nathan Lasersohn

Director of Undergraduate Studies
Professor of Linguistics
Professor of Philosophy

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  • Address:
    University of Illinois
    Dept. of Linguistics, MC-168
    707 South Mathews Avenue
    Urbana, IL 61801

    Office: 4096 Foreign Languages Bldg.
  • Telephone: (217) 333-1206
  • Email:
  • Homepage: Visit Website
CV: Download my C.V.

Research Interests

My main interest is in formal semantic theory for natural language. More particularly, my work has focussed on "event-based" semantic theories, on the semantics of plural and coordinate constructions, pragmatic vagueness, and relative truth. I also have broader interests in logic, pragmatics, mathematical linguistics, and the philosophy of language.


  • Ph.D., Ohio State University 1988
  • M.A., Ohio State University 1985
  • B.A., Earlham College 1981

Current Projects

  • My primary current project is on the semantics of common nouns, and the viability of treating them as variables. These requires a novel treatment of variables which allows them to be assigned denotations compositionally, and to be modally non-rigid.
  • Additional projects include work on the semantics of predicates of personal taste and other expressions which appear to motivate a partially subjective truth assignment; and work the principle of compositionality, particularly as it motivates a separation of grammatical theory from the theory of processing.
  • Publications


    Journal Articles

    Book Contributions

    Encyclopedia Entries


    • Rev. of Complex Demonstratives: A Quantificational Account, by Jeffrey C. King. Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 32.2 (2005): 91-94.
    • Rev. of Flexibility Principles in Boolean Semantics, by Yoad Winter. Applied Psycholinguistics 24.2 (2003): 317-319. <>.