About this topic
Key works Seminal papers on pronominal anaphora include Geach 1967, Karttunen 1976, and Evans 1977. Work on pronominal anaphora has also led to many theoretical innovations. See, for example, Kamp 1981, Heim 1982, Groenendijk & Stokhof 1991, Muskens 1996, Jacobson 1999, Asher & Lascarides 2003, and Elbourne 2005. When it comes to non-pronominal anaphora, Roberts 1989 and Stone 1999 are the key works on modal anaphora. See Partee 1973, Partee 1984, and Stone & Hardt 1999 on temporal anaphora. Consult Asher 1993 for abstract object anaphora. For property or verb phrase anaphora, see Partee & Bach 1984 and Prüst et al 1994. See van Der Sandt 1992 for an anaphoric treatment of presuppositions and Grover et al 1975 for an anaphoric theory of truth. 
Introductions For an introduction to pronominal anaphora, see King & Lewis 2016, Neale 2006, and Büring 2011. There is currently no introduction to non-pronominal anaphora. 
Related categories

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  1. Donkey Demonstratives.Barbara Abbott - 2002 - Natural Language Semantics 10 (4):285-298.
    Donkey pronouns (e.g., it in Every farmer who owns a donkey beats it) are argued to have an interpretation more similar to a demonstrative phrase (e.g., . . . beats that donkey) than to any of the other alternatives generally considered (e.g., . . . the donkey(s) he owns, . . . a donkey he owns). Like the demonstrative phrase, the pronoun is not equivalent to Evans' E-type paraphrase, nor to either the weak or the strong reading sometimes claimed for (...)
  2. An Antinomy About Anaphora.Mahrad Almotahari - 2011 - Linguistic Inquiry 42 (3):509-517.
  3. Arbitrary Pronouns Are Not That Indefinite.Luis Alonso-Ovalle - manuscript
    Defining structural constraints on coindexing proved fruitful. Its semantic import, however, remains unclear.1 Syntactic work in the late seventies and early eighties extended the use of indexing to capture the ‘arbitrariness’ of examples like (1a) (Chomsky and Lasnik 1977, Chomsky 1980), (1b) or (1c) (Suñer 1983). The semantic import of this type of indexing is not less unclear.
  4. Null Vs. Overt Pronouns and the Topic-Focus Articulation in Spanish.Luis Alonso-Ovalle - manuscript
    Carminati (2002) shows that the existence of both phonetically full and phonetically null pronouns (pro) in Italian reflects a division of labor with respect to anaphora resolution. Pro prefers to link to prominent antecedents more than its phonetically overt counterpart does (where prominence is determined by syntactic position in intrasentential anaphora cases).
  5. Reference to Abstract Objects in Discourse.Nicholas Asher - 1993 - Kluwer.
  6. Relational Nouns, Pronouns, and Resumption.Ash Asudeh - 2005 - Linguistics and Philosophy 28 (4):375 - 446.
    This paper presents a variable-free analysis of relational nouns in Glue Semantics, within a Lexical Functional Grammar (LFG) architecture. Relational nouns and resumptive pronouns are bound using the usual binding mechanisms of LFG. Special attention is paid to the bound readings of relational nouns, how these interact with genitives and obliques, and their behaviour with respect to scope, crossover and reconstruction. I consider a puzzle that arises regarding relational nouns and resumptive pronouns, given that relational nouns can have bound readings (...)
  7. Unmatched Chains and the Representation of Plural Pronouns.Mark C. Baker - 1992 - Natural Language Semantics 1 (1):33-73.
    Plural pronouns create the possibility of overlapping reference, which does not not fit naturally into the classical GB theory of anaphora, where each NP has a single integer as its referential index. Thus, one must either complicate the indexing system used in syntax or complicate the semantic interpretation of indices. This paper argues for the former approach based on the properties of a particular comitative-like construction found in Mohawk and certain other languages. This construction is analyzed as a type of (...)
  8. Scopability and Sluicing.Chris Barker - 2013 - Linguistics and Philosophy 36 (3):187-223.
    This paper analyzes sluicing as anaphora to an anti-constituent (a continuation), that is, to the semantic remnant of a clause from which a subconstituent has been removed. For instance, in Mary said that [John saw someone yesterday], but she didn’t say who, the antecedent clause is John saw someone yesterday, the subconstituent targeted for removal is someone, and the ellipsis site following who is anaphoric to the scope remnant John saw ___ yesterday. I provide a compositional syntax and semantics on (...)
  9. Direct Compositionality.Chris Barker & Pauline I. Jacobson (eds.) - 2007 - Oxford University Press.
    This book examines the hypothesis of "direct compositionality", which requires that semantic interpretation proceed in tandem with syntactic combination. Although associated with the dominant view in formal semantics of the 1970s and 1980s, the feasibility of direct compositionality remained unsettled, and more recently the discussion as to whether or not this view can be maintained has receded. The syntax-semantics interaction is now often seen as a process in which the syntax builds representations which, at the abstract level of logical form, (...)
  10. E-Type Pronouns, DRT, Dynamic Semantics and the Quantifier/Variable-Binding Model.S. J. Barker - 1997 - Linguistics and Philosophy 20 (2):195-228.
  11. Neither Donkey nor Horse.Emily Baum - 2015 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 49:108-111.
  12. Why is a Truth-Predicate Like a Pronoun?Arvid Båve - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 145 (2):297 - 310.
    I begin with an exposition of the two main variants of the Prosentential Theory of Truth (PT), those of Dorothy Grover et al. and Robert Brandom. Three main types of criticisms are then put forward: (1) material criticisms to the effect that (PT) does not adequately explain the linguistic data, (2) an objection to the effect that no variant of (PT) gives a properly unified account of the various occurrences of "true" in English, and, most importantly, (3) a charge that (...)
  13. The Optimization of Discourse Anaphora.David I. Beaver - 2004 - Linguistics and Philosophy 27 (1):3-56.
    In this paper the Centering model of anaphoraresolution and discourse coherence(Grosz et al. 1983, 1995)is reformulated in terms of Optimality Theory (OT)(Prince and Smolensky 1993). One version of the reformulated modelis proven to be descriptively equivalent to an earlier algorithmicstatement of Centering due to Brennan, Friedman and Pollard(1987). However, the new model is stated declaratively, and makesclearer the status of the various constraints used in the theory. Inthe second part of the paper, the model is extended, demonstratingthe advantages of the (...)
  14. Focus on Again.Sigrid Beck - 2005 - Linguistics and Philosophy 29 (3):277 - 314.
    This paper examines the effect that focus has on repetitive versus restitutive again. It is argued that a pragmatic explanation of the effect is the right strategy. The explanation builds largely on a standard focus semantics. To this we add an anaphoric analysis of again’s presupposition and a detailed analysis of the alternatives triggered when focus falls on again.
  15. The Quantified Argument Calculus.Hanoch Ben-Yami - 2014 - Review of Symbolic Logic 7 (1):120-146.
    I develop a formal logic in which quantified arguments occur in argument positions of predicates. This logic also incorporates negative predication, anaphora and converse relation terms, namely, additional syntactic features of natural language. In these and additional respects, it represents the logic of natural language more adequately than does any version of Frege’s Predicate Calculus. I first introduce the system’s main ideas and familiarize it by means of translations of natural language sentences. I then develop a formal system built on (...)
  16. Anaphoric Terms, Kaplan and a New Puzzle for Identity Statements.Alan Berger - 1988 - Erkenntnis 29 (3):369 - 393.
  17. Domain-Generality and the Relative Pronoun.José Luis Bermudez - 2002 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 25 (6):676-677.
    The hypothesis in the target paper is that the cognitive function of language lies in making possible the integration of different types of domain-specific information. The case for this hypothesis must consist, at least in part, of a constructive proposal as to what feature or features of natural language allows this integration to take place. This commentary suggests that the vital linguistic element is the relative pronoun and the possibility it affords of forming relative clauses.
  18. NASSLLI 2016 Dynamic Semantics (3): Indexicality.Maria Bittner - unknown
    Featured course on "Dynamic Semantics" at NASSLLI 2016. Day 3: Indexicality. Abstract: Cross-linguistic evidence shows that indexicality, too, crucially involves context change. Speaking up focuses attention on that event and thereby makes it available for discourse reference (by "i", "you", etc). In Kalaallisut, this explains parallel grammatical marking of indexical reference and topic-oriented anaphora. Moreover, shiftable indexicals in Slavey show that certain expressions, e.g. attitude verbs, may update the top perspectival discourse referent from the speech event to an attitude state.
  19. NASSLLI 2016 Dynamic Semantics (4): Temporality.Maria Bittner - unknown
    Featured course on "Dynamic Semantics" at NASSLLI 2016. Day 4: Temporality. Abstract: Cross-linguistic evidence shows that temporal reference likewise involves context change. In every language, temporal reference is similar to top-level nominal reference, except that instead of updating or referring to top-ranked individuals, temporal grammatical systems update or refer to top-ranked temporal referents (events, states, or times). We discuss and compare temporal reference in two sample languages: tense-based English and tenseless aspect-based Mandarin.
  20. NASSLLI 2016 Dynamic Semantics (5): Quantification.Maria Bittner - unknown
    Featured course on "Dynamic Semantics" at NASSLLI 2016. Day 5: Quantification. Abstract: In discourse, quantifiers can function as antecedents or anaphors. We analyze a sample discourse in Dynamic Plural Logic (DPlL, van den Berg 1993, 1994), which represents not only current discourse referents, but also current relations by means of plural information states. This makes it possible to analyze quantification as structured discourse reference. Finally, the DPlL analysis is transposed into Update with Centering, to simplify the formalism and relate quantification (...)
  21. Sample Derivations in Update with Centering.Maria Bittner - manuscript
    Appendix to lecture notes on "Nominal (re)centering: From Kalaallisut to UC1". Day 2 of advanced course on "Cross-linguistic compositional semantics" at LSA Summer Institute 2009 at UC Berkeley.
  22. Nominal Quantification as Top-Level Anaphora.Maria Bittner - manuscript
    So far, we have focused on discourse reference to atomic individuals and specific times, events, and states. The basic point of the argument was that all types of discourse reference involve attention-guided anaphora (in the sense of Bittner 2012: Ch. 2). We now turn to discourses involving anaphora to and by quantificational expressions. Today, we focus on quantification over individuals but the analysis we develop will directly generalize to other semantic types. The basic idea is that quantification is one more (...)
  23. Anaphora Without Indices: Dynamics of Centering.Maria Bittner - manuscript
    The standard way to represent anaphoric dependencies is to co-index the anaphor with its antecedent in the syntactic input to semantic rules, which then interpret such indices as variables. Dynamic theories (e.g. Kamp’s DRT, Heim’s File Change Semantics, Muskens’s Compositional DRT, etc) combine syntactic co-indexation with semantic left-to-right asymmetry. This captures the fact that the anaphor gets its referent from the antecedent and not vice versa. Formally, a text updates the input state of information to the output state. In particular, (...)
  24. Individuals and Possibilities (3): Notes on Issues Raised by Stone & Hardt (1997).Maria Bittner - manuscript
    This is the last of three lectures on anaphoric parallels between individuals and possibilities across languages (IMS, Stuttgart, 2000).
  25. Temporal Quantification as Top-Level Anaphora.Maria Bittner - manuscript
    This is part two of our discussion of discourses involving anaphora to and by quantificational expressions of various types. In part one (March 8), we focused on quantification over individuals ("Nominal quantification as top-level anaphora"). In part two (March 22-29), we show that the proposed analysis of quantification, as anaphoric discourse reference to top-ranked sets, automatically generalizes to temporal quantifiers (over times, events, or states).
  26. Topic States in Mandarin Discourse.Maria Bittner - forthcoming - In Michael Opper (ed.), Proceedings of the 25th North American Conference on Chinese Linguistics. Ohio State University.
    I propose that Mandarin 。-sentences (units marked by 。) are aspectual topic-comment sequences, where an initial update (terminating in a pause) introduces a topic state for comment by one or more clauses. Each comment anaphorically refers to the topic state via the aspect feature of the verbal predicate. This proposal explains why Mandarin 。-sentences have controversial boundaries, since speakers may disagree where one topic state ends and the next one begins. It also explains various manifestations of aspect-prominence and topic-prominence in (...)
  27. Perspectival Discourse Referents for Indexicals.Maria Bittner - 2014 - In Hannah Greene (ed.), SULA 7: Proceedings of the Seventh Meeting on the Semantics of Under-represented Languages in the Americas (Cornell University, May 4–6, 2012). Createspace. pp. 1–22.
    This paper argues that indexical reference is a species of discourse reference, just like anaphora. Both varieties of discourse reference involve not only context dependence, but also context change. The act of speaking up focuses attention and thereby makes this very speech event available for discourse reference by indexicals. Mentioning something likewise focuses attention, making the mentioned entity available for subsequent discourse reference by anaphors. Empirical evidence is presented from grammatical centering in Kalaallisut and "shifty indexicals" in Slave attitude reports.
  28. Temporality: Universals and Variation.Maria Bittner - 2014 - Wiley-Blackwell.
    This book surveys the ways in which languages of different types refer to past, present, and future events and how these referents are related to the knowledge and attitudes of discourse participants. The book is the culmination of fifteen years of research by the author. Four major language types are examined in-depth: tense-based English, tense-aspect-based Polish, aspect-based Chinese, and mood-based Kalaallisut. Each contributes to a series of logical representation languages, which together define a common logical language that is argued to (...)
  29. Online Update: Temporal, Modal, and de Se Anaphora in Polysynthetic Discourse.Maria Bittner - 2007 - In Chris Barker & Pauline Jacobson (eds.), Direct Compositionality. Oxford University Press. pp. 11--363.
    This paper introduces a framework for direct surface composition by online update. The surface string is interpreted as is, with each morpheme in turn updating the input state of information and attention. A formal representation language, Logic of Centering, is defined and some crosslinguistic constraints on lexical meanings and compositional operations are formulated.
  30. Topical Referents for Individuals and Possibilities.Maria Bittner - 2001 - In R. Hastings, B. Jackson & Z. Zvolensky (eds.), Proceedings from SALT XI. CLC.
    Partee (1973) noted anaphoric parallels between English tenses and pronouns. Since then these parallels have been analyzed in terms of type-neutral principles of discourse anaphora. Recently, Stone (1997) extended the anaphoric parallel to English modals. In this paper I extend the story to languages of other types. This evidence also shows that centering parallels are even more detailed than previously recognized. Based on this evidence, I propose a semantic representation language (Logic of Change with Centered Worlds), in which the observed (...)
  31. Quantification in Eskimo: A Challenge for Compositional Semantics.Maria Bittner - 1995 - In E. Bach, E. Jelinek, A. Kratzer & B. Partee (eds.), Quantification in Natural Languages. Kluwer Academic Publishers. pp. 59--80.
    This paper describes quantificational structures in Greenlandic Eskimo (Kalaallisut), a language where familiar quantificational meanings are expressed in ways that are quite different from English. Evidence from this language thus poses some formidable challenges for cross-linguistic theories of compositional semantics.
  32. Individuals and Possibilities (1): Notes on Stone (1999) 'Reference to Possible Worlds'.Maria Bittner - unknown
    The first of three lectures on nominal and modal discourse reference across languages (IMS, Stuttgart, 2000).
  33. NASSLLI 2016 Dynamic Semantics (2): Anaphora.Maria Bittner - unknown
    Featured course on "Dynamic Semantics" at NASSLLI 2016. Day 2: Anaphora. Abstract: Cross-linguistic evidence shows that anaphora crucially involves context change. The logical representation system must be able to represent rank-based anaphora, because in every language the favorite anaphors -- e.g. Mandarin zeros, Kalaallisut inflections, English pronouns -- are restricted to refer to top-ranked antecedents (top-level anaphors, like Mandarin zeros or Kalaallisut inflections) or top- or 2nd-ranked antecedents (shallow anaphors, like English pronouns).
  34. An Approach to Anaphora Based on Mental Models.Guido Boella & Leonardo Lesmo - 2001 - In P. Bouquet V. Akman (ed.), Modeling and Using Context. Springer. pp. 413--416.
  35. Zur Semantik Anaphorischer Pronomina. Untersuchungen Scholastischer Und Moderner Theorien.Ivan Boh - 1995 - Review of Metaphysics 48 (4):899-900.
  36. Terms and Truth: Reference Direct and Anaphoric, by A. Berger.Emma Borg - manuscript
    Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2002. Pp. xi + 234. H/b £?.??, $?.??, P/b £?.??, $?.??. If asked for an example of a rigid designator it is likely that one would suggest a name, like ‘Aristotle’ or ‘Tony Blair’, or a demonstrative, like ‘that book’ said whilst pointing at a certain text. Intuitively, what these expressions have in common is the central role they accord to perception of an object: you can see the book you want to talk about, there are (...)
  37. Review: Terms and Truth: Reference Direct and Anaphoric. [REVIEW]Emma Borg - 2004 - Mind 113 (452):737-740.
  38. Pointing at Jack, Talking About Jill: Understanding Deferred Uses of Demonstratives and Pronouns.Emma Borg - 2002 - Mind and Language 17 (5):489–512.
    The aim of this paper is to explore the proper content of a formal semantic theory in two respects: first, clarifying which uses of expressions a formal theory should seek to accommodate, and, second, how much information the theory should contain. I explore these two questions with respect to occurrences of demonstratives and pronouns – the so- called ‘deferred’ uses – which are often classified as non-standard or figurative. I argue that, contrary to initial impressions, they must be treated as (...)
  39. Variable-Free Semantics for Anaphora.Michael Böttner - 1992 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 21 (4):375 - 390.
  40. Uniqueness Effects in Correlatives.Adrian Brasoveanu - manuscript
    paper, abstract, revised handout, original handoutto appear in the Proceedings of Sinn und Bedeutung 12 (Oslo, 2007). The paper argues that the variability of the uniqueness effects exhibited by Hindi and Romanian correlatives is due to their mixed referential and quantificational nature. The account involves an articulated notion of quantification, independently motivated by donkey anaphora and quantificational subordination and consisting of both (discourse) referential components and non-referential components (dynamic operators over plural info states). The variable uniqueness effects emerge out of (...)
  41. Optimality Theory & Cognitive Science.Adrian Brasoveanu - manuscript
    donkey anaphora, quantificational and modal subordination, static and dynamic approaches to mood, tense and aspect, entailment in natural language, parallels between the individual, temporal and modal domain.
  42. Structured Anaphora to Quantifier Domains: A Unified Account of Quantificational and Modal Subordination.Adrian Brasoveanu - manuscript
    The paper proposes an account of the contrast (noticed in Karttunen 1976) between the interpretations of the following two discourses: Harvey courts a girl at every convention. {She is very pretty. vs. She always comes to the banquet with him.}. The initial sentence is ambiguous between two quantifier scopings, but the first discourse as a whole allows only for the wide-scope indefinite reading, while the second allows for both. This cross-sentential interaction between quantifier scope and anaphora is captured by means (...)
  43. Structured Anaphora to Quantifier Domains: A Unified Account of Quantificational & Modal Subordination and Exceptional Wide Scope.Adrian Brasoveanu - manuscript
    The paper proposes a novel analysis of quantificational subordination, e.g. Harvey courts a woman at every convention. {She is very pretty. vs. She always comes to the banquet with him.} (Karttunen 1976), in particular of the fact that the indefinite in the initial sentence can have wide or narrow scope, but the first discourse as a whole allows only for the wide scope reading, while the second discourse allows for both readings. The cross-sentential interaction between scope and anaphora is captured (...)
  44. Sentence-Internal Different as Quantifier-Internal Anaphora.Adrian Brasoveanu - 2011 - Linguistics and Philosophy 34 (2):93-168.
    The paper proposes the first unified account of deictic/sentence-external and sentence-internal readings of singular different . The empirical motivation for such an account is provided by a cross-linguistic survey and an analysis of the differences in distribution and interpretation between singular different , plural different and same (singular or plural) in English. The main proposal is that distributive quantification temporarily makes available two discourse referents within its nuclear scope, the values of which are required by sentence-internal uses of singular different (...)
  45. Donkey Pluralities: Plural Information States Versus Non-Atomic Individuals.Adrian Brasoveanu - 2008 - Linguistics and Philosophy 31 (2):129-209.
    The paper argues that two distinct and independent notions of plurality are involved in natural language anaphora and quantification: plural reference (the usual non-atomic individuals) and plural discourse reference, i.e., reference to a quantificational dependency between sets of objects (e.g., atomic/non-atomic individuals) that is established and subsequently elaborated upon in discourse. Following van den Berg (PhD dissertation, University of Amsterdam, 1996), plural discourse reference is modeled as plural information states (i.e., as sets of variable assignments) in a new dynamic system (...)
  46. Donkey Sentences and Quantifier Variability.Berit Brogaard - manuscript
    the Central Division of the APA in Chicago, April 19-21 2007. The paper proposes an account of conditional donkey sentences, such as ‘if a farmer buys a donkey, he usually vaccinates it’, which accommodates the fact that the adverb of quantification seems to affect the interpretation of pronouns that are not within its syntactic scope. The analysis defended takes donkey pronouns to go proxy for partitive noun phrases with varying quantificational force. The variation in the interpretation of donkey pronouns, it (...)
  47. Pronouns.Daniel Büring - 2011 - In Claudia Maienborn & Paul Portner (eds.), Semantics: An International Handbook of Natural Language Meaning. Berlin: Mouton De Gruyter. pp. 971-996.
  48. The Semantic Function of Chained Pronouns.Samuel C. Rickless - 1998 - Analysis 58 (4):297-304.
  49. Indexicality, Binding, Anaphora and A Priori Truth.Herman Cappelen & Ernie Lepore - 2002 - Analysis 62 (4):271-81.
    Indexicals are linguistic expressions whose meaning remain stable while their reference shifts from utterance to utterance. Paradigmatic cases in English are ‘I’, ‘here’, and ‘now’. Recently, a number of authors have argued that various constructions in our language harbor hidden indexicals. We say 'hidden' because these indexicals are unpronounced, even though they are alleged to be real linguistic components. Constructions taken by some authors to be associated, or to ‘co-habit’, with hidden indexicals include: definite descriptions and quantifiers more generally (hidden (...)
  50. Choosing Short: An Explanation of the Similarities and Dissimilarities in the Distribution Patterns of Binding and Covaluation.Mihnea Capraru - manuscript
    Covaluation is the generalization of coreference introduced by Tanya Reinhart. Covaluation distributes in patterns that are very similar yet not entirely identical to those of binding. On a widespread view, covaluation and binding distribute similarly because binding is defined in terms of covaluation. Yet on Reinhart's view, binding and covaluation are not related that way: binding pertains to syntax, covaluation does not. Naturally, the widespread view can easily explain the similarities between binding and covaluation, whereas Reinhart can easily explain the (...)
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