Negative Polar Interrogatives and Bias

  • Brian Reese
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 4012)


This paper develops a discourse based approach to negative polar interrogatives (nis). nis are subject to more contextual restrictions than their positive counterparts, a fact that has lead some researchers to assign the two types of question distinct denotations. I argue in favor of standard analyses of polar questions, on which positive and negative interrogatives are equivalent. I show a certain subclass of nis has a complex semantic type due in part to intonational cues and which constrains their contribtion to discourse logical form.


National Contour Neutral Context Polar Interrogative Discourse Representation Theory Discourse Function 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Brian Reese
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of LinguisticsUniversity of Texas at Austin 

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