LINGUIST List 30.1039

Tue Mar 05 2019

Calls: Pragmatics, Psycholinguistics, Semantics/Germany

Editor for this issue: Everett Green <>

Date: 04-Mar-2019
From: Alexander Wimmer <>
Subject: Workshop Exhaustivity in Questions and Answers - Experimental and Theoretical Approaches
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Full Title: Workshop Exhaustivity in Questions and Answers - Experimental and Theoretical Approaches
Short Title: ExQA

Date: 13-Jun-2019 - 14-Jun-2019
Location: Tübingen, Germany
Contact Person: Carla Bombi
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >
Web Site:

Linguistic Field(s): Pragmatics; Psycholinguistics; Semantics

Call Deadline: 15-Mar-2019

Meeting Description:

Understanding exhaustivity effects is central to the modeling of the semantics and pragmatics of questions, yet many issues regarding these effects remain unresolved. For more than 30 years, there have been theoretical debates on key components of the analysis of exhaustivity in questions and answers, including, but not limited to:

- the status of the exhaustivity inference (semantic/pragmatic) (Dayal 1996, Nicolae 2013)
- different levels of exhaustivity (strong, intermediate and weak) (Heim 1994, Beck & Rullmann 1999, Spector 2006, Klinedinst & Rothschild 2011)
- the availability of mention-some interpretations (Groenendijk & Stokhof 1982, George 2011, Xiang 2016, Fox 2017)
- the difference between matrix and embedded questions (George 2011)

Among the aspects influencing question exhaustivity (both embedded and unembedded) are discourse/exhaustifying particles, priority modals and conversation goals. Some of these aspects have been argued to license non-exhaustive, so-called mention-some, interpretations. As for embedded questions, one issue debated in the literature is how different types of question embedding verbs influence the availability of (non-)exhaustive readings of the question. For instance, while it is widely believed – at least since Heim (1994) – that know forces strong exhaustivity wherease surprise allows for weak exhaustivity, more recent theoretical and empirical approaches dispute this picture – either rejecting the notion of weak exhaustivity altogether (George 2011), or allowing for more readings for each verb (Uegaki 2015, Spector & Egré 2015, Cremers & Chemla 2016, 2017). Despite these recent debates concerning the exhaustivity effects of answers/questions, the above issues are far from resolved. Although there has been a surge in experimental approaches to exhaustivity in questions and answers (Cremers & Chemla 2016, 2017, Xiang & Cremers 2017, Moyer & Syrett in press), these topics have mostly been approached from a theoretical perspective. The cross-linguistic picture is largely unexplored.

Invited speakers:

Alexandre Cremers (ILLC, Amsterdam), Danny Fox (MIT), Maribel Romero (U Konstanz), Yimei Xiang (U Rutgers)


Nadine Bade (U Tübingen), Carla Bombi (U Potsdam), Lea Fricke (U Graz), Edgar Onea (U Graz), Malte Zimmermann (U Potsdam) (ExQ/ObTrex projects of priority program)

2nd Call for Papers:

The submission deadline has been extended!

The goal of our workshop is to bring together researchers modeling exhaustivity in questions and answers theoretically and those conducting empirical and cross-linguistic work on the topic. We welcome abstracts for 30 minutes talks (20 + 10) that address issues relevant to the workshop. Abstracts should be no longer than 2 Din A4 pages, with a 12 pt font and 2,5 cm/1 inch margins. The abstracts must be anonymous and not identifying the authors in any way.

Authors may submit at most two abstracts, at most one of which may be single-authored.

Submission link:
Submission deadline: 15 March 2019
Notification of acceptance: 15 April 2019

Page Updated: 05-Mar-2019