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  1. The scope of alternatives: indefiniteness and islands.Simon Charlow - 2020 - Linguistics and Philosophy 43 (4):427-472.
    I argue that alternative-denoting expressions interact with their semantic context by taking scope. With an empirical focus on indefinites in English, I show how this approach improves on standard alternative-semantic architectures that use point-wise composition to subvert islands, as well as on in situ approaches to indefinites more generally. Unlike grammars based on point-wise composition, scope-based alternative management is thoroughly categorematic, doesn’t under-generate readings when multiple sources of alternatives occur on an island, and is compatible with standard treatments of binding. (...)
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  • Presuppositional and Negative Islands: A Semantic Account. [REVIEW]Márta Abrusán - 2011 - Natural Language Semantics 19 (3):257-321.
    This paper proposes a new explanation for the oddness of presuppositional and negative islands, as well as the puzzling observation that these islands can be obviated by certain quantificational elements. The proposal rests on two independently motivated assumptions: (i) the idea that the domain of manners contains contraries and (ii) the notion that degree expressions range over intervals. It is argued that, given these natural assumptions, presuppositional and negative islands are predicted to lead to a presupposition failure in any context.
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  • Proceedings of Sinn Und Bedeutung 15, Saarbruecken.Ingo Reich (ed.) - 2010 - Saarbrücken: Universitätsverlag des Saarlandes.
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  • Reference Processes in Intensional Contexts.Francesca Delogu - 2009 - In Arndt Riester & Torgrim Solstad (eds.), Proceedings of Sinn Und Bedeutung 13.
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  • Restrictions on Quantifier Domains.Kai von Fintel - 1994 - Dissertation, University of Massachusetts at Amherst
    This dissertation investigates the ways in which natural language restricts the domains of quantifiers. Adverbs of quantification are analyzed as quantifying over situations. The domain of quantifiers is pragmatically constrained: apparent processes of "semantic partition" are treated as pragmatic epiphenomena. The introductory Chapter 1 sketches some of the background of work on natural language quantification and begins the analysis of adverbial quantification over situations. Chapter 2 develops the central picture of "semantic partition" as a side-effect of pragmatic processes of anaphora (...)
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  • Certain Verbs Are Syntactically Explicit Quantifiers.Anna Szabolcsi - 2011 - The Baltic International Yearbook of Cognition, Logic and Communication 6:5.
    Quantification over individuals, times, and worlds can in principle be made explicit in the syntax of the object language, or left to the semantics and spelled out in the meta-language. The traditional view is that quantification over individuals is syntactically explicit, whereas quantification over times and worlds is not. But a growing body of literature proposes a uniform treatment. This paper examines the scopal interaction of aspectual raising verbs (begin), modals (can), and intensional raising verbs (threaten) with quantificational subjects in (...)
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  • Overt Nominative Subjects in Infinitival Complements Cross-Linguistically: Data, Diagnostics, and Preliminary Analyses.Anna Szabolcsi - 2009 - NYU WPL in Syntax, Spring 2009, Ed. By Irwin and Vázquez Rojas. 2009.
    The typical habitat of overt nominative subjects is in finite clauses. But infinitival complements and infinitival adjuncts are also known to have overt nominative subjects, e.g. in Italian (Rizzi 1982), European Portuguese (Raposo 1987), and Spanish (Torrego 1998, Mensching 2000). The analyses make crucial reference to the movement of Aux or Infl to Comp, and to overt or covert infinitival inflection. This working paper is concerned with a novel set of data that appear to be of a different sort, in (...)
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  • Scope and Binding.Anna Szabolcsi - 2011 - In von Heusinger, Maienborn & Portner (eds.), Semantics: An International Handbook of Natural Language Meaning, Vol. 2. de Gruyter Mouton.
    The first part of this article (Sections 1–5) focuses on the classical notions of scope and binding and their formal foundations. It argues that once their semantic core is properly understood, it can be implemented in various different ways: with or without movement, with or without variables. The second part (Sections 6–12) takes up the empirical issues that have redrawn the map in the past two decades. It turns out that scope is not a primitive. Existential scope and distributive scope (...)
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  • Proceedings of Sinn Und Bedeutung 9.Emar Maier, Corien Bary & Janneke Huitink (eds.) - 2005 - Nijmegen Centre for Semantics.
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  • Aspect, Quantification and Plurality.Lucas Champollion - unknown
    The goal of this dissertation is twofold. First, we aim to identify the source of distributivity in natural language. Our hypothesis is that throughout the grammar, distributivity can be tracked down to a single operator. Two converging lines of reasoning help us identify this operator. One line emerges as a result of generalizing and unifying previously disparate treatments of distributivity in the domain of nominal quantifiers. The other line comes from analyzing the meaning of durative adverbials, with special attention to (...)
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  • Compositionality Without Word Boundaries: (The) More and (the) Most.Anna Szabolcsi - 2012 - Proceedings of Semantics and Linguistic Theory (SALT) 22.
    This paper seeks to illustrate the advantages of not treating phonological words as distinguished building blocks in compositional semantics. Following Bobaljik 2012, we derive the relative readings of amount superlatives in two steps, [[[d-many] comparative] superlative]. The existence of two comparative constructions is revealed, involving more vs. the more. Each builds a different superlative construction, explaining the conflicting intuitions about superlatives in the literature, as well as puzzles relating to the definite article in superlatives.
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  • Hidden in Plain Sight: Overt Subjects in Infinitival Control and Raising Complements, 2007-2009.Anna Szabolcsi - manuscript
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  • A Flexible Approach to Exhaustivity in Questions.Sigrid Beck & Hotze Rullmann - 1999 - Natural Language Semantics 7 (3):249-298.
    A semantics for interrogatives is presented which is based on Karttunen's theory, but in a flexible manner incorporates both weak and strong exhaustivity. The paper starts out by considering degree questions, which often require an answer picking out the maximal degree from a certain set. However, in some cases, depending on the semantic properties of the question predicate, reference to the minimal degree is required, or neither specifying the maximum nor the minimum is sufficient. What is needed is an operation (...)
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  • Vagueness in Degree Constructions.Galit Weidman Sassoon - 2009 - In Arndt Riester & Torgrim Solstad (eds.), Proceedings of Sinn Und Bedeutung 13.
    This paper presents a novel semantic analysis of unit names and gradable adjectives, inspired by measurement theory (Krantz et al 1971). Based on measurement theory's typology of measures, I claim that different predicates are associated with different types of measures whose special characteristics, together with features of the relations denoted by unit names, explain the puzzling limited distribution of measure phrases.
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  • Constructing Concessive Conditionals: In Case of Japanese.Ai Matsui - 2009 - In Arndt Riester & Torgrim Solstad (eds.), Proceedings of Sinn Und Bedeutung 13.
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  • Gapping Isn't (VP) Ellipsis.Kyle Johnson - manuscript
    Pseudogapping is no misnomer. Despite the many tempting similarities, Gapping and Pseudogapping are distinct constructions. Pseudogapping is a special instance of VP Ellipsis, while Gapping, I will argue, is a special instance of across-the-board movement. Squeezing Gapping into across-the-board movement has its own discomforts, however, which I will suggest can be remedied by re-tailoring our syntax to include string-based output constraints. I give a sketch of one such alteration that involves apparent Left Branch Condition violations.
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  • Split-Scope Definites: Relative Superlatives and Haddock Descriptions.Dylan Bumford - 2017 - Linguistics and Philosophy 40 (6):549-593.
    This paper argues for a particular semantic decomposition of morphological definiteness. I propose that the meaning of ‘the’ comprises two distinct compositional operations. The first builds a set of witnesses that satisfy the restricting noun phrase. The second tests this set for uniqueness. The motivation for decomposing the denotation of the definite determiner in this way comes from split-scope intervention effects. The two components—the selection of witnesses on the one hand and the counting of witnesses on the other—may take effect (...)
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  • Free Versus Bound Variables and the Taxonomy of Gaps.Luis Vicente - 2016 - Natural Language Semantics 24 (3):203-245.
    Potts et seq. presents an analysis of gap-containing supplements where the gap is modelled as a variable over the semantic type of the constituent that the as-clause adjoins to. This much allows the meaning of the gap to be resolved purely compositionally, by defining as as a function that allows the anchor to bind the gap variable. This article presents a class of as-clauses where Potts’s analysis seems to break down, in that the gap cannot be modelled as a variable (...)
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