• Corpus ID: 170909894

The Presupposition of Subjunctive Conditionals

@inproceedings{Fintel1997ThePO,
  title={The Presupposition of Subjunctive Conditionals},
  author={Kai von Fintel},
  year={1997}
}
Why are some conditionals subjunctive? It is often assumed that at least one crucial difference is that subjunctive conditionals presuppose that their antecedent is false, that they are counterfactual (Lakoff 1970). The traditional theory has apparently been refuted. Perhaps the clearest counter-example is one given by Alan Anderson (1951: 37): If Jones had taken arsenic, he would have shown just exactly those symptoms which he does in fact show. A typical place to use such a subjunctive… 
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