Free Choice and the Theory of Scalar Implicatures

  • Danny Fox
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Pragmatics, Language and Cognition book series (PSPLC)


This chapter will be concerned with the conjunctive interpretation of a family of disjunctive constructions. The relevant conjunctive interpretation, sometimes referred to as a ‘free choice effect,’ (FC) is attested when a disjunctive sentence is embedded under an existential modal operator. I will provide evidence that the relevant generalization extends (with some caveats) to all constructions in which a disjunctive sentence appears under the scope of an existential quantifier, as well as to seemingly unrelated constructions in which conjunction appears under the scope of negation and a universal quantifier.


Free Choice Lexical Entry Scalar Implicature Compositional Semantic Basic Meaning 
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© Danny Fox 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Danny Fox
    • 1
  1. 1.MITUSA

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