Publishing Partner: Cambridge University Press CUP Extra Wiley-Blackwell Publisher Login
amazon logo
More Info


New from Oxford University Press!

ad

Language Planning as a Sociolinguistic Experiment

By: Ernst Jahr

Provides richly detailed insight into the uniqueness of the Norwegian language development. Marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of the Norwegian nation following centuries of Danish rule


New from Cambridge University Press!

ad

Acquiring Phonology: A Cross-Generational Case-Study

By Neil Smith

The study also highlights the constructs of current linguistic theory, arguing for distinctive features and the notion 'onset' and against some of the claims of Optimality Theory and Usage-based accounts.


New from Brill!

ad

Language Production and Interpretation: Linguistics meets Cognition

By Henk Zeevat

The importance of Henk Zeevat's new monograph cannot be overstated. [...] I recommend it to anyone who combines interests in language, logic, and computation [...]. David Beaver, University of Texas at Austin


Book Information

   
Sun Image

Title: A Presuppositional Analysis of Specific Indefinites
Description:

A specific indefinite presupposes that someone has in mind an individual who has the property denoted by its descriptive content. Having an individual in mind means that the agent knows who the referent is, and thus it affects the information state of the agent, but not the others. The asymmetric information, shared by all participants in a conversation, cannot be represented when the common ground has only one information state. Thus a common ground must have multiple information states, each for each participant in a conversation. The information state of the agent who has an individual in mind must be differentiated from the others' by being structured into sub-information-states so that each sub-information-state associates the specific indefinite with a different unique individual. It then conveys the information that the agent has some individual in mind, but that it is not known yet who it is. This analysis thus requires a new dynamic semantics which is partially representational and partially denotational. This leads to a new analysis of proper names. Specific indefinites tend to have widest scope, which is explained by claiming that specific indefinites trigger presuppositions. Presuppositions are assumed to have various scopes with respect to operators in a sentence, and the strongest reading is preferred on rational and economic basis. It is shown that stronger readings roughly correspond to wider scopes. This book will be of interest to scholars who work on indefinite NPs, presuppositions, anaphora in belief contexts, and dynamic semantics in general.

Publication Year: 1998
Publisher: Garland Publishers
Review: Not available for review. If you would like to review a book on The LINGUIST List, please login to view the AFR list.
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Semantics
Issue: All announcements sent out by The LINGUIST List are emailed to our subscribers and archived with the Library of Congress.
Click here to see the original emailed issue.

Versions:
Format: Hardback
ISBN: 0815331754
ISBN-13: N/A
Prices: $65