Okay, I'm not quite sure if i'm allowed to post this here. I had a look at the linguistics SE, but it seems that questions there have to be research-level, and this is extremely elementary however I guess it is language related so I'll try my luck. My questions necessitates reading this passage:
A or B
These schematic representations of arguments are called argument schemata. The letters A and B stand for arbitrary sentences. Filling in actual sentences for them we obtain an actual argument. Any such substitution into schema (11) results in a valid argument, which is why (11) is said to be a valid argument schema.
The form we said that could be represented by (11) is more than just a syntactic construction. The first premise is not just two sentence linked by a conjunction, for it is also important what conjunction we are dealing with. A different argument schema is obtained if the conjunction 'or' in (11) is replaced by another conjunction say, 'if'.
My questions are:
- What is meant by a 'syntactic construction'?
- Why is the argument schemata represented by (11) "more than just a syntactic construction"?
As syntax is essentially the structure of a sentence, I believe a syntactic construction is merely a schematic representation of the structure of a sentence as in (11). The confusion I seem to be experiencing stems from when the author says "The form we said that could be represented by (11) is more than just a syntactic construction". What makes it more than just a syntactic construction? I then believe he goes on to offer a reason: "for it is also important what conjunction we are dealing with"; surely the conjunction we are dealing with would be important in a syntactic construction too?
Could someone help me understand this please. Thanks.