David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Journal of Semantics 26 (1):49-86 (2008)
This paper deals with a newly observed phenomenon which lies at the interface of the semantics and pragmatics of aspectual still (as in John is still asleep), namely the fact that still is infelicitous when it appears in past tense sentences whose reference time is not specified by some temporal adverbial or the utterance context. The main claim of the paper is that in such sentences, the truth of the assertion and that of the ‘prior time’ presupposition this particle triggers can be both inferred from the truth of the minimally contrasting still-less counterpart. Moreover, in such cases the presuppositional status of the ‘prior time’ claim is lost. Hence, the use of still in such sentences is uninformative and thus infelicitous. The analysis has several more general theoretical implications. Concerning the semantics of still, it shows that the novel data cannot be accounted for by using current definitions of the presupposition triggered by still. Instead, a modified definition of still is developed, which, following Ippolito (2007), uses one eventuality variable in both the assertion and the presupposition of sentences with still but, unlike this theory, does not require the denotation of this variable to be contextually salient. As for the analysis of tense and temporal structure of clauses, the interaction of still with frame adverbials supports the view that such adverbials denote intervals identical to the reference time of the sentence, rather than including it. In addition, the paper argues that the contrast between felicitous and infelicitous cases of still can only be explained if, contrary to many current analyses, we assume that past tense is not necessarily anaphoric but can be represented in some cases as a new variable bound by existential closure. Given the proposed analysis, the felicity or infelicity of still in past tense sentences can be seen as a diagnostic for determining whether or not the reference time in such sentences is anaphoric or not
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
|Through your library||Configure|
References found in this work BETA
Ron Artstein (2005). Quantificational Arguments in Temporal Adjunct Clauses. Linguistics and Philosophy 28 (5):541 - 597.
Johan Auwera (1993). 'Already' and 'Still': Beyond Duality. [REVIEW] Linguistics and Philosophy 16 (6):613 - 653.
Sigrid Beck (2006). Focus on Again. Linguistics and Philosophy 29 (3):277 - 314.
Michela Ippolito (2007). On the Meaning of Some Focus-Sensitive Particles. Natural Language Semantics 15 (1):1-34.
M. Israel (1996). Polarity Sensitivity as Lexical Semantics. Linguistics and Philosophy 19 (6):619 - 666.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Hazel Pearson, Presupposition Accommodation in Local Contexts: Why Global Accommodation is Not Enough.
Mandy Simons (2003). Presupposition and Accommodation: Understanding the Stalnakerian Picture. [REVIEW] Philosophical Studies 112 (3):251 - 278.
Kai von Fintel (2008). What is Presupposition Accommodation, Again? Philosophical Perspectives 22 (1):137-170.
Hans Smessaert & Alice G. B. Ter Meulen (2004). Temporal Reasoning with Aspectual Adverbs. Linguistics and Philosophy 27 (2):209-261.
Philippe Schlenker (2012). Maximize Presupposition and Gricean Reasoning. Natural Language Semantics 20 (4):391-429.
Jennifer Spenader (2003). Factive Presuppositions, Accommodation and Information Structure. Journal of Logic, Language and Information 12 (3):351-368.
Maciej Witek (forthcoming). How to Establish Authority with Words: Imperative Utterances and Presupposition Accommodation. In Anna Brożek (ed.), Logic, Methodology and Philosophy of Science at Warsaw University, Warszawa 2013.
H. J. Verkuyl (1989). Aspectual Classes and Aspectual Composition. Linguistics and Philosophy 12 (1):39 - 94.
Christopher Gauker (2008). Against Accommodation: Heim, van der Sandt, and the Presupposition Projection Problem. Noûs 42 (1):171 - 205.
Uli Sauerland & Penka Stateva (eds.) (2007). Presupposition and Implicature in Compositional Semantics. Palgrave Macmillan.
Craige Roberts (1997). Anaphora in Intensional Contexts. In Shalom Lappin (ed.), The Handbook of Contemporary Semantic Theory. Blackwell. 215--246.
Henk Zeevat (1992). Presupposition and Accommodation in Update Semantics. Journal of Semantics 9 (4):379-412.
Added to index2010-09-14
Total downloads3 ( #223,982 of 1,088,616 )
Recent downloads (6 months)0
How can I increase my downloads?