What man does

Linguistics and Philosophy 31 (6):671-724 (2008)
This paper considers the meaning and use of the English particle man . It is shown that the particle does quite different things when it appears in sentence-initial and sentence-final position; the first use involves expression of an emotional attitude as well as, on a particular intonation, intensification; this use is analyzed using a semantics for degree predicates along with a separate dimension for the expressive aspect. Further restrictions on modification with the sentence-initial particle involving monotonicity and evidence are introduced and analyzed. The sentence-final use can be viewed as strengthening the action performed by the sentence. A formal semantics is given by making use of dynamic techniques and, in a sense, dynamically simulating the modification of certain speech acts. Some empirical and theoretical extensions of the analyses are proposed and some consequences discussed.
Keywords Particles  Degrees  Intensification  Definiteness  Evidentiality  Acquaintance  Dynamic semantics  Speech acts  Modal subordination  Expressive content  Conventional implicature
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Eric McCready (2012). Emotive Equilibria. Linguistics and Philosophy 35 (3):243-283.
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