LINGUIST List 8.642

Thu May 1 1997

Books: Semantics

Editor for this issue: Ljuba Veselinova <>

Additional information on the following books, as well as a short backlist of the publisher's titles, is available at the end of this issue.


  1. Kristi Long, New Book-Semantics

Message 1: New Book-Semantics

Date: 01 May 97 16:42:12 +0100
From: Kristi Long <>
Subject: New Book-Semantics


Eugene Rohrbaugh; Scalar Interpretation in Deontic Speech Acts
0-8153-2885-0, cloth; 178 pages, $46; Garland Publishing;
Outstanding Dissertations in Linguistics

	This study examines the predictive success of various
formal framework s for modeling the meanings of scalar terms in
commands and permissions. A survey of previous works by Lewis,
Kamp, Stalnaker, and Merin introduce s three problems for
deontic modeling: spurious permission, free choice p ermission,
and full choice conjunction. Although only the last of these h
as been observed as a problem outside of the deontic realm,
evidence in t his study suggests that all three are problematic
in the epistemic realm as well, making their solution more
	The literature on scalar interpretation is reviewed,
including the wor ks of Grice, Horn, Fauconnier, and
Hirschberg. The notions of scalar enta ilment and scalar
implicature are introduced and their applicability to c ommands
and permissions considered. Since these accounts focus primarily
on assertions, they say little about the interpretation of
scalar terms i n commands and permissions, and several problems
specific to deontic cont exts remain.
	At the root of these problems is the choice of possible
worlds as theo retic primitives. Alternative frameworks based on
notions more fine-grain ed than possible worlds are able to more
successfully predict the entailm ents and implications of
deontic utterances having scalar terms. This boo k explores ways
to model scalar meaning in frameworks based on situations ,
states, events, and eventualities, discussing the relative
merits of ea ch and indicating problems that remain.

(Ph.D. dissertation, University of Texas at Austin, 1995;
revised wit h new introduction, bibliography, and index; 8
tables; 35 diagrams)

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-----------------------Publisher's backlists----------------------- The following contributing LINGUIST publishers have made their backlists available on the World Wide Web: Blackwells: Cascadilla Press: Cornell University Linguistics Dept: CSLI Publications: John Benjamins: OR Kluwer Academic Publishers: 0+0+NOTHING+COMBINED Lawrence Erlbaum: MIT Working papers in Linguistics: U. of Massachusetts Graduate Linguistics Association: Pacific Linguistics Publications: Summer Institute of Linguistics: