LINGUIST List 31.2219

Wed Jul 08 2020

Books: Something out of Nothing: Cohen

Editor for this issue: Jeremy Coburn <>

Date: 02-Jul-2020
From: Clovis Jaillet <>
Subject: Something out of Nothing: Cohen
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Title: Something out of Nothing
Subtitle: The Semantics and Pragmatics of Implicit Quantification
Series Title: Current Research in the Semantics / Pragmatics Interface
Published: 2020
Publisher: Brill

Book URL:

Author: Ariel Cohen
Electronic: ISBN: 9789004432598 Pages: 173 Price: Europe EURO 110
Hardback: ISBN: 9789004431485 Pages: 173 Price: Europe EURO 110

Some sentences contain no overt quantifier, yet are interpreted quantificationally, e.g., Plumbers are available (entailing that some plumbers are available), or Plumbers are intelligent (whose entailment is less clear, but seems to be saying that a large number of plumbers are intelligent). Where does the quantifier come from? In this book, Ariel Cohen makes the novel proposal that the quantifier is not simply an empty category, but is generated by reinterpretations mechanisms, which are governed by well specified principles. He demonstrates how the puzzling and sometimes mysterious properties of such sentences can be naturally derived from the reinterpretation mechanisms that generate them. The resulting picture has substantial implications that language contains hidden elements, underlying its surface structure.

Linguistic Field(s): History of Linguistics
                            Philosophy of Language

Written In: English (eng)

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Page Updated: 08-Jul-2020