Continuations and the Nature of Quantification

Natural Language Semantics 10 (3):211-242 (2002)
Abstract
This paper proposes that the meanings of some natural language expressions should be thought of as functions on their own continuations. Continuations are a well-established analytic tool in the theory of programming language semantics; in brief, a continuation is the entire default future of a computation. I show how a continuation-based grammar can unify several aspects of natural language quantification in a new way: merely stating the truth conditions for quantificational expressions in terms of continuations automatically accounts for scope displacement and scope ambiguity. To prove this claim, I exhibit a simple finite context-free grammar with a strictly compositional semantics in which quantificational NPs are interpreted in situ but take semantic scope over larger constituents. There is no Quantifier Raising (nor any use of a level of Logical Form distinct from overt syntax), no Cooper Storage (or similar mechanisms used in many recent HPSG, Categorial, or Type-logical treatments), and no need for type-shifting (as in Hendriks' Flexible Types account). Continuations also provide a natural account of generalized coordination that does not require either type-shifting or type polymorphism. Compositionality issues are discussed in some detail
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1023/A:1022183511876
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 35,954
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Parasitic Scope.Chris Barker - 2007 - Linguistics and Philosophy 30 (4):407-444.
Indefinites and Intentional Identity.Samuel Cumming - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 168 (2):371-395.
Types as Graphs: Continuations in Type Logical Grammar. [REVIEW]Chris Barker & Chung-chieh Shan - 2006 - Journal of Logic, Language and Information 15 (4):331-370.

View all 10 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Analytics

Added to PP index
2013-11-01

Total downloads
22 ( #285,571 of 2,293,898 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #254,453 of 2,293,898 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature