Abstract of "contrast and implication in natural language"

In this paper we introduce a theoretical framework and a logical application for analyzing the semantics and pragmatics of contrastive conjunctions in natural language. It is shown how expressions like "although", "nevertheless", "yet" and "but" are semantically definable as connectives using an operator for implication in natural language, and how similar pragmatic principles affect the behaviour of both contrastive conjunctions and indicative conditionals. Following previous proposals, conditions on contrast in a conjunction are analyzed as presuppositions of the conjunction. Further linguistic evidence leads to a distinction between restrictive and non-restrictive connectives of contrast, and consequently between direct and indirect contrast, which are given a precise definition.
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