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Anaphora and Quantification in Situation Semantics

Jean Mark Gawron and Stanley Peters

A principal goal of this book is to develop and apply the Situation Semantics framework. Jean Mark Gawron and Stanley Peters adopt a version of the theory in which meanings are built up via syntactically driven semantic composition rules. They provide a substantial treatment of English incorporating treatments of pronomial anaphora, quantification, anaphora, and tense.

The book focuses on the semantics of pronomial anaphora and quantification. The authors argue that the ambiguities of sentences with pronouns cannot be adequately accounted for with a theory that represents anaphoric relations only syntactically; their relational framework uniformly deals with anaphoric relations as relations between utterances in context. They argue that there is no need for a syntactic representation of anaphoric relations, or for a theory that accounts for anaphoric ambiguities by resorting to two or more kinds of anaphora.

Quantifier scope ambiguities are handled analogously to anaphoric ambiguities. This treatment integrates the Cooper Store mechanism with a theory of meaning that provides both a natural setting for it and a convincing account of what, semantically, is going on.

Jean Mark Gawron is a researcher for Hewlett Packard Laboratories, Palo Alto. Stanley Peters is professor of linguistics and symbolic systems at Stanford University.

Contents

  • Acknowledgements
  • 1 Introduction
    • 1.1 The Problem
    • 1.2 Anaphoric Ambiguities and Syntax
    • 1.3 Anaphora, Circumstances, and Situation Semantics
    • 1.4 Circumstances and Logical Form
    • 1.5 An Outline of the Book

  • 2 Situation Theory, Meaning, and Semantic Interpretation
    • 2.1 Situation Theory
      • 2.1.1 State-of-Affairs
      • 2.1.2 Parametric States-of-Affairs
      • 2.1.3 Unsaturated States-of-Affairs
      • 2.1.4 Restricted Parameters
      • 2.1.5 Types
      • 2.1.6 Propositions
    • 2.2 Meaning, Circumstances, and Semantic Rules

  • 3 Semantics of Noun Phrases
    • 3.1 Referential Noun Phrases
    • 3.2 Meaning, Parameter-Picking, and Role-Covering
    • 3.3 Quantified Noun Phrases
    • 3.4 Scope and Circumstances I: Referential NP's
    • 3.5 Scope and Generalized Quantifiers
    • 3.6 Constraints on Circumstance and Scope
    • 3.7 Parametric Objects

  • 4 Anaphora and Quantification
    • 4.1 Co-Parametric and Role-Linking Uses
      • 4.1.1 Two Types of Referential Dependence
      • 4.1.2 Binding and Reference
    • 4.2 Quantification, VP-ellipsis, and Scope
      • 4.2.1 Scope
      • 4.2.2 Pronouns and Scope
      • 4.2.3 The Analogy between Pronouns and Quantifier Parameters
      • 4.2.4 Crossed-Scope Readings and Hirschbuhler's Examples
    • 4.3 The Absorption Principle
      • 4.3.1 Absoroption
      • 4.3.2 Statement of the Absorption Principle
      • 4.3.3 Referential Dependence
      • 4.3.4 The Absorption Principle and Referential NP's
      • 4.3.5 Bach-Peters Cases
      • 4.3.6 Quantified NP's and the Absoption Principle
      • 4.3.7 Indirect Dependency without Pronouns
      • 4.3.8 Pronouns, Definiteness, and the Absorption Principle
      • 4.3.9 Summing up the Absorption Principle

  • 5 Role-linking and Co-parameterization Sharpened
    • 5.1 Three Contents and Quantification
    • 5.2 Three VP Contents and a Referential Subject
    • 5.3 Co-parameterization and Quantification

  • 6 Circumstance
    • 6.1 Towards a Framework for Circumstance
    • 6.2 One Kind of Anaphora
    • 6.3 Circumstances, Anaphora, and a Binding Theory

  • 7 Other Accounts of Anaphora
    • 7.1 Montague and Referential NP's
    • 7.2 Discourse Representation Theory
      • 7.2.1 Roberts's 1987 Account of Strict and Sloppy Identity
      • 7.2.2 Kamp's proposal
    • 7.3 C-Command
      • 7.3.1 Role-Linking and C-Command
      • 7.3.2 Quantification and C-Command

  • Appendix: A Fragment
  • Bibliography
  • Index

1/1/90

ISBN (Paperback): 9780937073483 (9780937073483)
ISBN (Cloth): 9780937073490 (9780937073490)
Subject: Linguistics; Semantics; Anaphora

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