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  1. Circumstantial and Temporal Dependence in Counterfactual Modals.Dorit Abusch - 2012 - Natural Language Semantics 20 (3):273-297.
    “Counterfactual” readings of might/could have were previously analyzed using metaphysical modal bases. This paper presents examples and scenarios where the assumptions of such a branching-time semantics are not met, because there are facts at the base world that preclude the complement of the modal becoming true. Additional arguments show that counterfactual readings are context dependent. These data motivate a semantics using a circumstantial (or factual) modal base, which refers to context-dependent facts about a world and time. The analysis is formulated (...)
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  2. Temporal and Circumstantial Dependence in Counterfactual Modals.Dorit Abusch - 2007 - In Dekker Aloni (ed.), Proceedings of the Sixteenth Amsterdam Colloquium.
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  3. Free Choice, Modals, and Imperatives.Maria Aloni - 2007 - Natural Language Semantics 15 (1):65-94.
    The article proposes an analysis of imperatives and possibility and necessity statements that (i) explains their differences with respect to the licensing of free choice any and (ii) accounts for the related phenomena of free choice disjunction in imperatives, permissions, and statements. Any and or are analyzed as operators introducing sets of alternative propositions. Free choice licensing operators are treated as quantifiers over these sets. In this way their interpretation can be sensitive to the alternatives any and or introduce in (...)
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  4. Modal Indefinites.Luis Alonso-Ovalle & Paula Menéndez-Benito - 2010 - Natural Language Semantics 18 (1):1-31.
    Across languages, we find indefinites that trigger modal inferences. This article contributes to a semantic typology of these items by contrasting Spanish algún with indefinites like German irgendein or Italian uno qualsiasi. While irgendein-type indefinites trigger a Free Choice effect (Kratzer and Shimoyama 2002; Chierchia 2006), algún simply signals that at least two individuals in its domain are possibilities. Additionally, algún, but not irgendein, can convey that the speaker does not know how many individuals satisfy the existential claim in the (...)
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  5. Fallibilism and the Flexibility of Epistemic Modals.Charity Anderson - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 167 (3):597-606.
    It is widely acknowledged that epistemic modals admit of inter-subjective flexibility. This paper introduces intra-subjective flexibility for epistemic modals and draws on this flexibility to argue that fallibilism is consistent with the standard account of epistemic modals.
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  6. Modality in Swedish.Erik Andersson - 2003 - Revue Belge de Philologie Et D’Histoire 81 (3):845-865.
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  7. Detaching If-Clauses From Should.Ana Arregui - 2010 - Natural Language Semantics 18 (3):241-293.
    This paper investigates some aspects of the semantics of deontic should-conditionals. The main objective is to understand which actual world facts make deontic statements true. The starting point for the investigation is a famous puzzle known as Chisholm’s Paradox. It is important because making sense of the data in Chisholm-style examples involves arriving at some conclusion regarding the interaction between what we consider ideal and what is actually true. I give an account of how facts affect the evaluation of should (...)
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  8. When Aspect Matters: The Case of Would-Conditionals. [REVIEW]Ana Arregui - 2007 - Natural Language Semantics 15 (3):221-264.
    Differences in the interpretation of would-conditionals with simple (perfective) and perfect antecedent clauses are marked enough to discourage a unified view. However, this paper presents a unified, Lewis–Stalnaker style semantics for the modal in such constructions. Differences in the interpretation of the conditionals are derived from the interaction between the interpretation of different types of aspect and the modal. The paper makes a distinction between perfective and perfect aspect in terms of whether they make reference to or quantify over Lewis-style (...)
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  9. Free Choice Permission is Strong Permission.Nicholas Asher & Daniel Bonevac - 2005 - Synthese 145 (3):303-323.
    Free choice permission, a crucial test case concerning the semantics/ pragmatics boundary, usually receives a pragmatic treatment. But its pragmatic features follow from its semantics. We observe that free choice inferences are defeasible, and defend a semantics of free choice permission as strong permission expressed in terms of a modal conditional in a nonmonotonic logic.
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  10. Meaning, Reference and Necessity.Victor H. Balowitz - 1976 - International Studies in Philosophy 8:216-217.
  11. A Fregean Look at Kripke's Modal Notion of Meaning.Gilead Bar-Elli - unknown
    In Naming and Necessity Kripke accuses Frege of conflating two notions of meaning (or sense), one is meaning proper, the other is determining of reference (p. 59). More precisely, Kripke argues that Frege conflated the question of how the meaning of a word is given or determined with the question of how its reference is determined. The criterial mark of meaning determination, according to Kripke, is a statement of synonymy: if we give the sense of “a” by means of “b”, (...)
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  12. Invariantism About 'Can' and 'May' (as Well as 'Might').David Braun - 2013 - Linguistics and Philosophy 36 (2):181-185.
    Braun (Linguistics & Philosophy 35, 461–489, 2012) argued for a non- relativist, invariantist theory of ‘might’. Yanovich (Linguistics & Philosophy, 2013) argues that Braun’s theory is inconsistent with certain facts concerning diachronic meaning changes in ‘might’, ‘can’, and ‘may’. This paper replies to Yanovich’s objection.
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  13. An Invariantist Theory of 'Might' Might Be Right.David Braun - 2012 - Linguistics and Philosophy 35 (6):461-489.
    Invariantism about ‘might’ says that ‘might’ semantically expresses the same modal property in every context. This paper presents and defends a version of invariantism. According to it, ‘might’ semantically expresses the same weak modal property in every context. However, speakers who utter sentences containing ‘might’ typically assert propositions concerning stronger types of modality, including epistemic modality. This theory can explain the phenomena that motivate contextualist theories of epistemic uses of ‘might’, and can be defended from objections of the sort that (...)
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  14. McGinn on Non-Existent Objects and Reducing Modality. [REVIEW]Phillip Bricker - 2004 - Philosophical Studies 118 (3):439-451.
    In this discussion of Colin McGinn's book, 'Logical Properties', I comment first on the chapter "Existence", then on the chapter "Modality." With respect to existence, I argue that McGinn's view that existence is a property that some objects have and other objects lack requires the property of existence to be fundamentally unlike ordinary qualitative properties. Moreover, it opens up a challenging skeptical problem: how do I know that I exist? With respect to modality, I argue that McGinn's argument that quantificational (...)
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  15. On Keeping Blue Swans and Unknowable Facts at Bay : A Case Study on Fitch's Paradox.Berit Brogaard - 2009 - In Joe Salerno (ed.), New Essays on the Knowability Paradox. Oxford University Press.
    (T5) ϕ → ◊Kϕ |-- ϕ → Kϕ where ◊ is possibility, and ‘Kϕ’ is to be read as ϕ is known by someone at some time. Let us call the premise the knowability principle and the conclusion near-omniscience.2 Here is a way of formulating Fitch’s proof of (T5). Suppose the knowability principle is true. Then the following instance of it is true: (p & ~Kp) → ◊K(p & ~Kp). But the consequent is false, it is not possible to know (...)
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  16. The Trivial Argument for Epistemic Value Pluralism. Or How I Learned to Stop Caring About Truth.Berit Brogaard - 2008 - In Adrian Haddock, Alan Millar & D. Pritchard (eds.), Epistemic Value. Oxford University Press.
    Relativism offers a nifty way of accommodating most of our intuitions about epistemic modals, predicates of personal taste, color expressions, future contingents, and conditionals. But in spite of its manifest merits relativism is squarely at odds with epistemic value monism: the view that truth is the highest epistemic goal. I will call the argument from relativism to epistemic value pluralism the trivial argument for epistemic value pluralism. After formulating the argument, I will look at three possible ways to refute it. (...)
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  17. Epistemic and Deontic Should.Fabrizio Cariani - 2013 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 2 (1):73-84.
    Probabilistic theories of “should” and “ought” face a predicament. At first blush, it seems that such theories must provide different lexical entries for the epistemic and the deontic interpretations of these modals. I show that there is a new style of premise semantics that can avoid this consequence in an attractively conservative way.
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  18. Deliberative Modality Under Epistemic Uncertainty.Fabrizio Cariani, Magdalena Kaufmann & Stefan Kaufmann - 2013 - Linguistics and Philosophy 36 (3):225-259.
    We discuss the semantic significance of a puzzle concerning ‘ought’ and conditionals recently discussed by Kolodny and MacFarlane. We argue that the puzzle is problematic for the standard Kratzer-style analysis of modality. In Kratzer’s semantics, modals are evaluated relative to a pair of conversational backgrounds. We show that there is no sensible way of assigning values to these conversational backgrounds so as to derive all of the intuitions in Kolodny and MacFarlane’s case. We show that the appropriate verdicts can be (...)
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  19. Logic and Semantics for Imperatives.Nate Charlow - 2014 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 43 (4):617-664.
    In this paper I will develop a view about the semantics of imperatives, which I term Modal Noncognitivism, on which imperatives might be said to have truth conditions (dispositionally, anyway), but on which it does not make sense to see them as expressing propositions (hence does not make sense to ascribe to them truth or falsity). This view stands against “Cognitivist” accounts of the semantics of imperatives, on which imperatives are claimed to express propositions, which are then enlisted in explanations (...)
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  20. Modality and Temporality.Cleo Condoravdi & Stefan Kaufmann - 2005 - Journal of Semantics 22 (2):119-128.
    The present collection addresses a number of issues in the semantic interpretation of modal and temporal expressions. Despite the variety the papers exhibit both in the selection of topics and the choice of formal frameworks, they are interconnected through several overarching themes that are at the centre of much ongoing research. The purpose of this brief introduction is to put the papers into context and draw the reader's attention to some of these connections. The topics we will discuss in the (...)
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  21. Epistemic Modals and Common Ground.Ezra Cook - 2013 - Inquiry : An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 56 (2-3):179-209.
    This paper considers some questions related to the determination of epistemic modal domains. Specifically, given situations in which groups of agents have epistemic states that bear on a modal domain, how is the domain best restricted? This is a metasemantic project, in which I combine a standard semantics for epistemic modals, as developed by Kratzer, with a standard story about conversational dynamics, as developed by Stalnaker. I show how a standard framework for epistemic logic can model their interaction. I contend (...)
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  22. 4лт as Inherently Modal5.Veneeta Dayal - 1998 - Linguistics and Philosophy 21:433-476.
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  23. Epistemic Modals and Correct Disagreement.Richard Dietz - 2008 - In G. Carpintero & M. Koelbel (eds.), Relative Truth. Oxford University Press. pp. 239--264.
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  24. PALMER, F. R., "Modality and the English Modals". [REVIEW]V. H. Dudman - 1980 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 58:420.
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  25. Whither Anankastics?Billy Dunaway & Alex Silk - 2014 - Philosophical Perspectives 28 (1):75-94.
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  26. Entertaining Alternatives: Disjunctions as Modals.Bart Geurts - 2005 - Natural Language Semantics 13 (4):383-410.
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  27. An Opinionated Guide to Epistemic Modality.Kai von Fintel & Gillies & Anthony - 2007 - In Tamar Szabo Gendler & John Hawthorne (eds.), Oxford Studies in Epistemology: Volume 2. Oxford University Press.
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  28. Reply to Forbes.K. Gluer & P. Pagin - 2012 - Analysis 72 (2):298-303.
    In earlier work (Glüer, K. and P. Pagin. 2006. Proper names and relational modality. Linguistics & Philosophy 29: 507–35; Glüer, K. and P. Pagin. 2008. Relational modality. Journal of Logic, Language and Information 17: 307–22), we developed a semantics for (metaphysical) modal operators that accommodates Kripkean intuitions about proper names in modal contexts even if names are not rigid designators. Graeme Forbes (2011. The problem of factives for sense theories. Analysis 71: 654–62.) criticizes our proposal. He argues that our semantics (...)
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  29. A Modal Ambiguity in for-Infinitival Relative Clauses.Martin Hackl & Jon Nissenbaum - 2012 - Natural Language Semantics 20 (1):59-81.
    This squib presents two puzzles related to an ambiguity found in for-infinitival relative clauses (FIRs). FIRs invariably receive a modal interpretation even in the absence of any overt modal verb. The modal interpretation seems to come in two distinct types, which can be paraphrased by finite relative clauses employing the modal auxiliaries should and could. The two puzzles presented here arise because the availability of the two readings is constrained by factors that are not otherwise known to affect the interpretation (...)
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  30. On the Event Relativity of Modal Auxiliaries.Valentine Hacquard - 2010 - Natural Language Semantics 18 (1):79-114.
    Crosslinguistically, the same modal words can be used to express a wide range of interpretations. This crosslinguistic trend supports a Kratzerian analysis, where each modal has a core lexical entry and where the difference between an epistemic and a root interpretation is contextually determined. A long-standing problem for such a unified account is the equally robust crosslinguistic correlation between a modal’s interpretation and its syntactic behavior: epistemics scope high (in particular higher than tense and aspect) and roots low, a fact (...)
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  31. Epistemic Value.Adrian Haddock, Alan Millar & Duncan Pritchard (eds.) - 2009 - Oxford University Press.
    Recent epistemology has reflected a growing interest in issues about the value of knowledge and the values informing epistemic appraisal. Is knowledge more valuable that merely true belief or even justified true belief? Is truth the central value informing epistemic appraisal or do other values enter the picture? Epistemic Value is a collection of previously unpublished articles on such issues by leading philosophers in the field. It will stimulate discussion of the nature of knowledge and of directions that might be (...)
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  32. Modal Expressions in Ordinary and Technical Language.R. Harre - 1959 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 37 (1):41 – 56.
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  33. Modalities and Extended Systems.Henry Hiż - 1961 - Journal of Philosophy 58 (23):723-731.
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  34. T×W Epistemic Modality.Andrea Iacona - 2014 - In Giovanni Macchia, Francesco Orilia & Vincenzo Fano (eds.), Space and Time: A Priori and a Posteriori Studies. De Gruyter. pp. 195-208.
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  35. Sind Vermögensprädikationen Modalaussagen?Ludger Jansen - 2000 - In Ontologie der Modalitäten. pp. 179-193.
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  36. Language and Necessity.R. Kirk - 1962 - Philosophical Quarterly 12 (46):77-80.
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  37. Why Will is Not a Modal.Mikhail Kissine - 2008 - Natural Language Semantics 16 (2):129-155.
    In opposition to a common assumption, this paper defends the idea that the auxiliary verb will has no other semantic contribution in contemporary English than a temporal shift towards the future with respect to the utterance time. Strong reasons for rejecting the idea that will quantifies over possible worlds are presented. Given the adoption of Lewis’s and Kratzer’s views on modality, the alleged ‘modal’ uses of will are accounted for by a pragmatic mechanism which restricts the domain of the covert (...)
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  38. Structuralist Modals and the Combination of Logics.Arnold Koslow - 2011 - Logic Journal of the IGPL 19 (4):584-597.
    The original motivation of D. Gabbay’s concept of Fibring concerned the combination of logics, and initially it involved the syntactic introduction of modals into formulations of intuitionistic logic in which modals are syntactically absent. We show, using the notion of structural modals that there are many modals of intuitionism, and logics for subjunctive and epistemic conditionals which are not syntactically evident in our best formulations of them. We discuss some cases when the attempt to make them syntactically evident can have (...)
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  39. Must, Knowledge, and Directness.Daniel Lassiter - 2016 - Natural Language Semantics 24 (2):117-163.
    This paper presents corpus and experimental data that problematize the traditional analysis of must as a strong necessity modal, as recently revived and defended by von Fintel and Gillies :351–383, 2010). I provide naturalistic examples showing that must p can be used alongside an explicit denial of knowledge of p or certainty in p, and that it can be conjoined with an expression indicating that p is not certain or that not-p is possible. I also report the results of an (...)
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  40. Agentive Modals.Matthew Mandelkern, Ginger Schultheis & David Boylan - forthcoming - Philosophical Review.
    We propose a new analysis of a class of modals which we call agentive modals: ability modals and their duals, compulsion modals. After criticizing existing approaches − the existential quantificational analysis, the universal quantificational analysis, and the conditional analysis − we lay out a new account that builds on both the existential and conditional analyses. On our account, the act conditional analysis of agentive modality, a sentence like ‘John can swim across the river’ says that there is some practically available (...)
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  41. The Category Status of English Modals.James D. McCawley - 1975 - Foundations of Language 12 (4):597-601.
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  42. What Man Does.Eric McCready - 2008 - Linguistics and Philosophy 31 (6):671-724.
    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 (...)
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  43. Adjectives, Stereotypicality, and Comparison.Eric McCready & Norry Ogata - 2007 - Natural Language Semantics 15 (1):35-63.
    Japanese has a large number of evidential and modal expressions. Many of the inferential evidentials – mitai, yoo, rashii – also have an adjectival use. On this use, they make a claim about the prototypicality of some object or individual with respect to another class of object, in the case of rashii, or about the similarity of these two objects, for yoo and mitai. This paper provides a compositional semantics for these adjectives, claiming that they are evaluated in terms of (...)
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  44. Modal Indefinites.Paula Men´Endez-Benito - unknown
    Across languages, we find indefinites that trigger modal inferences. This article contributes to a semantic typology of these items by contrasting Spanish alg´un with in-.
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  45. Epistemic Modals and Indirect Weak Suggestives.Martin Montminy - 2012 - Dialectica 66 (4):583-606.
    I defend a contextualist account of bare epistemic modal claims against recent objections. I argue that in uttering a sentence of the form ‘It might be that p,’ a speaker is performing two speech acts. First, she is (directly) asserting that in view of the knowledge possessed by some relevant group, it might be that p. The content of this first speech act is accounted for by the contextualist view. But the speaker's utterance also generates an indirect speech act that (...)
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  46. Paradigm Terms: The Necessity of Kind Term Identifications Generalized.Christian Nimtz - 2016 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 95 (1):124-140.
    Standard Kripke-Putnam semantics is widely taken to entail that theoretical identifications like ‘Brontosauruses are Apatosauruses’ or ‘Gold is 79Au’ are necessary, if true. I offer a new diagnosis as to why this modal consequence ensues. Central to my diagnosis is the concept of a paradigm term. I argue that modal and epistemic peculiarities that are commonly considered as distinctive of natural kind expressions are in fact traits that are shared by paradigm terms in general. Philosophical semantics should broaden its focus (...)
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  47. The Genealogy of Modals.Huw Price - unknown
    The status and respectability of alethic modality was always a point of contention and divergence between naturalism and empiricism. It poses no problems in principle for naturalism, since modal vocabulary is an integral part of all the candidate naturalistic base vocabularies. Fundamental physics is above all a language of laws; the special sciences distinguish between true and false counterfactual claims; and ordinary empirical talk is richly dispositional. By contrast, modality has been a stumbling-block for the empiricist tradition ever since Hume (...)
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  48. Modal Conversational Backgrounds and Evidential Bases in Predictions: The View From the Italian Modals.Andrea Rocci - 2013 - In Kasia M. Jaszczolt & Louis de Saussure (eds.), Time: Language, Cognition & Reality. Oxford University Press. pp. 1--128.
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  49. Modal Superlatives: A Compositional Analysis. [REVIEW]Maribel Romero - 2013 - Natural Language Semantics 21 (1):79-110.
    Superlative adjectives accompanied by certain modal adjectives like possible (e.g. John bought the largest possible present) are ambiguous between a reading where possible is a regular noun modifier and a reading paraphrasable as ‘as Adj as possible’, called ‘modal superlative reading’. Three interesting restrictions have been observed in the literature. First, possible and some other adjectives ending in -able, but not potential and probable, support the latter reading. Second, when the modal adjective appears postnominally, only the modal superlative reading is (...)
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  50. Modals as Distributive Indefinites.Hotze Rullmann, Lisa Matthewson & Henry Davis - 2008 - Natural Language Semantics 16 (4):317-357.
    Modals in St’át’imcets (Lillooet Salish) show two differences from their counterparts in English. First, they have variable quantificational force, systematically allowing both possibility and necessity interpretations; and second, they lexically restrict the conversational background, distinguishing for example between deontic and (several kinds of) epistemic modality. We provide an analysis of the St’át’imcets modals according to which they are akin to specific indefinites in the nominal domain. They introduce choice function variables which select a subset of the accessible worlds. Following Klinedinst, (...)
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