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This paper strives to characterize the relation between accent placement and discourse in terms of independent constraints operating at the interface between syntax and interpretation. The GIVENness Constraint requires un-F-marked constituents to be GIVEN. Key here is our definition of GIVENness which synthesizes insights from the literature on the(More)
We observe that the facts pertaining to the acceptability of negative polarity items (henceforth, NPIs) in interrogative environments are more complex than previously noted. Since Klima (1964), it has been typically assumed that NPIs are grammatical in both matrix and embedded questions, however, on closer scrutiny it turns out that there are differences(More)
There was a party at Todd's house last week at which various movies were discussed. When dinner was over, the guests considered several ways to entertain themselves. In the end, (1) everyone at the party voted to watch a movie that Phil said was his favorite. Let's assume that somehow or other indefinites receive an existential interpretation. In that case,(More)
by the author This dissertation is based on the compositional model theoretic approach to natural language semantics that was initiated by Montague (1970) and developed by subsequent work. In this general approach, coordination and negation are treated following Keenan & Faltz (1978, 1985) using boolean algebras. As in Barwise & Cooper (1981) noun phrases(More)
The notion of measurement plays a central role in human cognition. We measure people's height, the weight of physical objects, the length of stretches of time, or the size of various collections of individuals. Measurements of height, weight, and the like are commonly thought of as mappings between objects and dense scales, while measurements of collections(More)
(1) is an example of an adjectival comparative. In it, the adjective important is flanked by more and a comparative clause headed by than. This article is a survey of recent ideas about the interpretation of comparatives, including (i) the underlying semantics based on the idea of a threshold; (ii) the interpretation of comparative clauses that include(More)
The association of only with focus is explained in terms of (a) a semantics for only which makes no mention of focus and (b) discourse appropriateness conditions on the use of focus and principles of quantifier domain selection. This account differs from previous ones in giving sufficient conditions for association with focus but without stipulating it in(More)
(1) John is taller than Mary. (2) \!d \!dS John is d-tall ‚ (d B dS) ‚ Jill is d Stall. (3) \!d \!dS ϕ(d) ‚ (d B dS) ‚ ψ(d S). (p-p) (4) SNEAKERS. Grant expresses interest in a pair of sneakers. I offer to buy them for him, having the impression that they cost somewhere in the $20-$30 range. We arrive at the store and to my horror I discover that the(More)