Introduction to Ways of Scope Taking

In , Ways of Scope Taking. Kluwer (1997)
Syntactic and semantic theories of quantificational phenomena traditionally treat all noun phrases alike, thus predicting that noun phrases exhibit a uniform behavior. It is well-known that this is an idealization: in any given case, some noun phrases will support a desired reading more readily than others. Anyone who has lectured on quantifier scope ambiguities to a class of unbrainwashed undergraduates will recall the amount of preparation time that goes into coming up with two or three examples that the class will judge to be ambiguous in exactly the ways the theory under discussion predicts. The same experience with ``good citizens'' and ``bad citizens'' repeats itself in connection with branching, anaphora, distributive versus collective readings, extraction, event quantification, pair-list questions, and so on.
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