Semantics Research Group, 10/20

The Semantics Research Group will be meeting Friday, October 20th in room 117 from 15h-16h30. Bernhard Schwarz will be presenting a talk in preparation for NELS, titled “On the locus of question exhaustification”. The abstract and some suggested reading is below.

Heim (1994) argued that wh-questions are systematically ambiguous between non-exhaustive (Hamblin 1973, Karttunen 1977) and exhaustive (Groenendijk and Stokhof 1984) readings. Question exhaustivity has been credited to a syntactically represented operator, with two different views regarding its position: (i) “high exhaustification” applies to the question meaning as a whole (Heim 1994, Beck and Rullmann 1999); (ii) “low exhaustification” applies in the wh-question nucleus, below the wh-phrase (Guerzoni & Sharvit 2014, Nicolae 2015). I will offer an argument that only high exhaustification exists.

Suggested reading: Nicolae , Andreea: 2015. Questions with NPIs. Natural Language Semantics, Volume 23, Issue 1, pp 21–76

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