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Natural Language Semantics

, Volume 1, Issue 2, pp 181–234 | Cite as

Questions with quantifiers

  • Gennaro Chierchia
Article

Abstract

This paper studies the distribution of ‘list readings’ in questions like who does everyone like? vs. who likes everyone?. More generally, it focuses on the interaction between wh-words and quantified NPs. It is argued that, contrary to widespread belief, the pattern of available readings of constituent questions can be explained as a consequence of Weak Crossover, a well-known property of grammar. In particular, list readings are claimed to be a special case of ‘functional readings’, rather than arising from quantifying into questions. Functional readings are argued to be encoded in the syntax as doubly indexed traces, which straightforwardly leads to a Crossover account of the absence of list readings in who likes everyone?. Empirical and theoretical consequences of this idea for the syntax and semantics of questions are considered.

Keywords

Widespread Belief Theoretical Consequence List Reading Functional Reading Weak Crossover 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gennaro Chierchia
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics Morrill HallCornell UniversityIthacaUSA

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