Rethinking Implicatures

Abstract

This paper advances the following criticisms against the received view of implicatures: (1) implicatures are relations of pragmatic implication and not attempts to convey particular speaker meanings; (2) conversational implicatures are non-cancellable; (3) generalised conversational implicatures and conventional implicatures are necessary to preserve the cooperative assumption employing a conversational maxim of conveyability; (4) implicatures should be divided into utterance implicatures and assumption implicatures, not speaker implicatures and sentence implicatures; (5) trivial implicatures are genuine implicatures; (6) Grice’s theory of conversation cannot explain most of his examples of particularised conversational implicatures; (7) the apparent attempts of explicit cancellation of implicatures are apologies, not attempts to avoid misunderstandings.

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2020-01-30

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