LINGUIST List 22.4446

Mon Nov 07 2011

Calls: Semantics, Pragmatics/Germany

Editor for this issue: Alison Zaharee <>

        1.     Arndt Riester , Semantic and Pragmatic Properties of (Non-)Restrictivity

Message 1: Semantic and Pragmatic Properties of (Non-)Restrictivity
Date: 07-Nov-2011
From: Arndt Riester <>
Subject: Semantic and Pragmatic Properties of (Non-)Restrictivity
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Full Title: Semantic and Pragmatic Properties of (Non-)Restrictivity
Date: 19-Mar-2012 - 20-Mar-2012 Location: Stuttgart, Germany Contact Person: Arndt Riester
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >
Web Site:
Linguistic Field(s): Pragmatics; Semantics

Call Deadline: 06-Jan-2012

Meeting Description:

Workshop on the Semantic and Pragmatic Properties of (Non-)Restrictivity

Invited Speakers:

Cathrine Fabricius-Hansen (Universitetet i Oslo)Jutta Hartmann (Eberhard-Karls-Universität Tübingen)Christopher Piñon (Université de Lille 3)Carla Umbach (Universität Osnabrück)More speakers to be confirmed

Workshop Description:

Restrictivity - and its counterpart non-restrictivity - understood as properties of natural language modifiers such as relative clauses, adjectives, adverbials, PP- or nominal adjuncts, are fundamental concepts in linguistic theory.

The question whether the modifier of a head is restrictive or not depends on and has an influence on various linguistic levels. It is reflected in syntax (pre- vs. postnominal modifier, attachment) and prosody (accent placement, prosodic phrasing), and it is constrained by semantic and pragmatic factors (concept type, information status, information structure, entailment properties, projective meaning).

Despite the omnipresence of modification in natural discourse and various attempts at defining (non-)restrictivity, there is still no consensual definition which unites all structural and meaning-related aspects, and which is robust enough to be used, for instance, in corpus annotation.

Specific Questions:

i. Does the notion of (non-)restrictivity apply to modifiers in indefinites in the same way as in definites? Why is it often difficult to decide whether the modifier of an indefinite is restrictive or not?

ii. What difficulties arise when (non-)restrictivity applies in the non-nominal domain, as with adverbials that modify events or states? What is common and different between (non-)restrictive modifiers in the verbal and the nominal domain?

iii. Restricting the denotation of a noun intuitively only makes sense if its extension comprises more than one individual. Therefore, restriction creates a set of alternatives. Is there an intrinsic connection between restrictivity and focus?

iv. (Non-)restrictivity is often correlated with structural (syntactic) differences. Is this generally the case or is it possible that sometimes restrictive and non-restrictive phrases share the same structure?

v. What does information structure theory tell us about the prosody of (non-)restrictive phrases?

vi. What are the connections and the differences between the restrictivity of (in-)definite expressions and the restrictivity of other quantifiers?

vii. It has been proposed that evaluative modifiers are less easily used as restrictive modifiers than non-evaluative ones. Do modifiers more generally display a lexical bias for either a restrictive or a non-restrictive reading, and if yes, what are the properties responsible for those kinds of bias?

Call for Papers:

We invite anonymous submissions for 30-minute presentations. Abstracts should be 1-2 pages in length, with a font size not smaller than 12pt and margins of at least 2.5cm. Details for submission via easychair will be given on the workshop webpage.

Important Dates:

Submission deadline: 6 January 2012Notification: 27 January 2012Workshop: 19-20 March 2012

Page Updated: 07-Nov-2011