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I propose a new theory of scalar implicatures: the speaker should be in the same epistemic status with respect to alternatives obtained via similar transformations (e.g., replacements of a scalar items with various stronger items). This theory extends naturally to explain presupposition projection. Cases where scalar items and presupposition triggers(More)
Universal inferences like (i) have been taken as evidence for a local/syntactic treatment of scalar implicatures (i.e. theories where the enrichment of 'some' into 'some but not all' can happen sub-sententially): (i) Everybody read some of the books Everybody read [some but not all the books]. In this paper, I provide experimental evidence which casts doubt(More)
Since the 1980's, the analysis of presupposition projection has been dominated by dynamic theories, whose main tenet is that the meaning of a clause should not be analyzed in terms of its truth conditions, but rather in terms of its 'context change potential' (i.e. of the effect it has on the context in which it is uttered). Despite striking empirical(More)
Mintz (2003) described a distributional environment called a frame, defined as the co-occurrence of two context words with one intervening target word. Analyses of English child-directed speech showed that words that fell within any frequently occurring frame consistently belonged to the same grammatical category (e.g. noun, verb, adjective, etc.). In this(More)
Recent semantic research has made increasing use of a principle, 'Maximize Presupposition', which requires that under certain circumstances the strongest possible presupposition be marked (Sauerland 2006). This principle is generally taken to be irreducible to standard (neo-) Gricean reasoning because, by definition, the forms that are in competition have(More)
Upon hearing a novel word, language learners must identify its correct meaning from a diverse set of situationally relevant options. Such referential ambiguity could be reduced through repetitive exposure to the novel word across diverging learning situations, a learning mechanism referred to as cross-situational learning. Previous research has focused on(More)
has claimed that Grice's 'conventional implicatures' offer a powerful argument in favor of a multidimensional semantics, one in which certain expressions fail to interact scopally with various operators because their meaning is located in a separate dimension. Focusing on Non-Restrictive Relative Clauses (= NRRs), we explore an alternative to Potts's(More)
A Scalar Implicature (SI) arises when the use of a relatively weak sentence (e.g., some politicians are corrupt) implies the denial of an alternative, stronger sentence (e.g., not all politicians are corrupt). The cognitive effort associated with the processing of SIs involves central memory resources (De Neys and Schaeken, 2007; Dieussaert et al., 2011;(More)
This paper presents experimental results showing that four-year-old Mandarin-speaking children draw free choice inferences from disjunctive statements, though they are not able to compute inferences of exclusivity for disjunctive statements or other scalar implicatures. The findings connect to those of Chemla & Bott (under review) who report differences in(More)
On a static model of conversational update, there is a mapping from sentences of the relevant language fragment to propositions, and the characteristic discourse effect of successfully asserting a sentence is the addition of the corresponding proposition to the common ground of the conversation. Given the influence of the static picture on much linguistic(More)