I am not a Linguist, but I am curious about the question below:

Is there a linguistic theory that points out that syntactic understanding of a text constitutes the lowest level of semantical understanding of the text?

I think it is true that the syntactic understanding of a text can be said as the most elementary form of semantical knowledge of the text, since if we do not understand the syntax of a language, we can't really understand any semantics (since a lack of syntactic understanding implies the lack of familiarity with the language).

In other words, can syntactic understanding of a text be classified as the most basic form of semantic understanding of the text (i.e. that is, syntactic knowledge is essentially a particular type (the most basic type) of a semantic knowledge)? If yes, is there any academic paper that talks addresses this topic?

I hope I made my question clear.

Thank you,

  • 1
    Most basic compared to what?
    – Nardog
    Jun 12 '20 at 4:05
  • 1
    What is "syntactic understanding", and how is it different from "semantic(al) understanding"?
    – user6726
    Jun 12 '20 at 4:24
  • It’s not as you say but look at lexical semantics, which combines with syntax to provide a basis for formal semantics — in this sense syntax is the basis for meaning but the pieces of meaning (the “building blocks”) come from the lexicon.
    – Atamiri
    Jun 12 '20 at 6:39

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