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  1. jutfrank's Avatar
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    #31

    Re: co-opt and inferences

    Quote Originally Posted by raymondaliasapollyon View Post
    Which part of "they are asked by that group to become a member, rather than joining or being elected in the normal way" allows us to infer the person becomes a member?
    No part of it.

    As I've already said in post #28, the inference comes from the if-clause.

  2. jutfrank's Avatar
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    #32

    Re: co-opt and inferences

    Quote Originally Posted by raymondaliasapollyon View Post
    I should have said the Cobuild definition presupposes that the reader already knows the person in the example sentence was a member, not that the person was already a member.
    Okay, I think it's becoming clear to me now that the problem you're having is with the if-clause.

    If you simply replaced the word If with the word When, would that change your interpretation?

  3. Member
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    #33

    Re: co-opt and inferences

    Quote Originally Posted by jutfrank View Post
    No part of it.

    As I've already said in post #28, the inference comes from the if-clause.
    That's probably the root of the problem. The dictionary is supposed to define co-opt, which is in the if-clause. How can it assume the meaning of something it is expected to define?

  4. jutfrank's Avatar
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    #34

    Re: co-opt and inferences

    Right. I think I understand now. I think you have a reasonable cause to have misunderstood.

    The fact is that, rightly or wrongly, dictionaries do tend to phrase definitions in this way. You're not supposed to read them as logical statements.

    So you might see such a dictionary entry for the adjective dead as the following (which I've just made up to illustrate my point):

    If somebody is dead, they are no longer alive.

    As a logical assertion, this is of course meaningless, but it isn't a logical assertion—it's just meant as a definition. The if-clause is asking us to imagine a dead person, I assume to help us get our heads around the meaning.

  5. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #35

    Re: co-opt and inferences

    Quote Originally Posted by raymondaliasapollyon View Post
    Which part of "they are asked by that group to become a member, rather than joining or being elected in the normal way" allows us to infer the person becomes a member?
    This part "rather than joining or being elected in the normal way", which should be omitted if the person does not become a member.
    I am not a teacher.

  6. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #36

    Re: co-opt and inferences

    1. He was asked to quit.
    We don't know whether he actually quit.

    2. He was asked to quit rather than quitting of his own accord.
    The red part suggests he actually quit.
    I am not a teacher.

  7. Tarheel's Avatar
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    #37

    Re: co-opt and inferences

    Quote Originally Posted by raymondaliasapollyon View Post
    Your response indicates the Cobuild definition is inaccurate.
    Two things. One, I don't care about the Cobuild definition. (Is there a reason I should?) Two, I suggest that you move on to something else.
    Not a professional teacher

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