Number marking and (in)definiteness in kind terms

Linguistics and Philosophy 27 (4):393-450 (2004)
Abstract
This paper explores the link between number marking and(in)definiteness in nominals and their interpretation. Differencesbetween bare singulars and plurals in languages without determinersare explained by treating bare nominals as kind terms. Differencesarise, it is argued, because singular and plural kinds relatedifferently to their instantiations. In languages with determiners,singular kinds typically occur with the definite determiner, butplural/mass kinds can be bare in some languages and definite inothers. An account of singular kinds in terms of taxonomic readingsis proposed, with number marking playing a crucial role inexplaining the obligatory presence of the determiner. The variationbetween languages with respect to plural/mass kinds is explained bypositing a universal scale of definiteness, with individual languageschoosing different cut-off points for lexicalization of the definitedeterminer. The possibility of further cross-linguistic variation isalso considered.
Keywords Linguistics   Philosophy of Language   Artificial Intelligence   Computational Linguistics   Semantics   Syntax
Categories (categorize this paper)
Reprint years 2005
DOI 10.1023/B:LING.0000024420.80324.67
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: 35,865
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Definiteness and Determinacy.Elizabeth Coppock & David Beaver - 2015 - Linguistics and Philosophy 38 (5):377-435.
Sharvy's Theory of Definite Descriptions Revisited.Berit Brogaard - 2007 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 88 (2):160–180.
Pluractionality with Lexically Cumulative Verbs.Gianina Iordăchioaia & Elena Soare - 2015 - Natural Language Semantics 23 (4):307-352.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total downloads
56 ( #116,188 of 2,293,816 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #182,547 of 2,293,816 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature