Questioning to resolve decision problems

Linguistics and Philosophy 26 (6):727-763 (2003)
Why do we ask questions? Because we want tohave some information. But why this particular kind ofinformation? Because only information of this particularkind is helpful to resolve the decision problemthat the agent faces. In this paper I argue thatquestions are asked because their answers help toresolve the questioner's decision problem, and that thisassumption helps us to interpret interrogativesentences. Interrogative sentences are claimed to have asemantically underspecified meaning and thisunderspecification is resolved by means of the decisionproblem.
Keywords Linguistics   Philosophy of Language   Artificial Intelligence   Computational Linguistics   Semantics   Syntax
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DOI 10.1023/B:LING.0000004548.98658.8f
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van Rooy Robert (2004). Utility, Informativity and Protocols. Journal of Philosophical Logic 33 (4):389-419.

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