Children's Computation of Implicatures


This article maybe used for research, teaching and private study purposes. Any substantial or systematic reproduction, redistribution , reselling , loan or sub-licensing, systematic supply or distribution in any form to anyone is expressly forbidden. The publisher does not give any warranty express or implied or make any representation that the contents will be complete or accurate or up to date. The accuracy of any instructions, formulae and drug doses should be independently verified with primary sources. The publisher shall not be liable for any loss, actions, claims, proceedings, demand or costs or damages whatsoever or howsoever caused arising directly or indirectly in connection with or arising out of the use of this material. 1. INTRODUCTION This article focuses on a familiar kind of conversational implicature known as scalar implicature (SI): (1) A: Do you like California wines? B: I like some of them. Implicature: B doesn't like all California wines. Even though some is semantically compatible with all, it is used in (1) to communicate " some but not all. " According to the traditional Gricean account of such examples , given that B could have used a more informative term (all) and as it would have been relevant to use all if it were true, A is entitled to infer that B is not, in fact, in a position to offer a statement containing all—most probably because such a statement is not true. Similar interpretations arise with logical con-nectives (" A or B " ® not A and B), modals (" possibly x " ® not certainly x), and a variety of other terms that can be seen to fall on an informational scale (see Grice Meroni, Chierchia, and Guasti (2001) discovered that, in scenarios that made a statement containing the stronger term on a scale true (e.g., " Every boy chose a skateboard and a bike "), 5-year-old children—unlike adults—failed to reject a statement containing a weaker scalar term (e.g., " Every boy chose a skateboard or a bike "). In a related set of studies, Noveck (2001) found that 7-to 9-year-old children are more likely than adults to accept statements such as " Some giraffes have long necks, " again presumably because they fail to generate the implicature Not all giraffes have long necks (cf. also Braine and Rumain (1981), Smith (1980)). More recent work by Papafragou and Musolino (2003) showed that children's performance with implicatures …

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@inproceedings{Papafragou2004ChildrensCO, title={Children's Computation of Implicatures}, author={Anna Papafragou and Niki Tantalou}, year={2004} }