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Weak Island Semantics$
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Márta Abrusán

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199639380

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199639380.001.0001

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Analyticity and Grammar

Analyticity and Grammar

Chapter:
(p.200) 6 Analyticity and Grammar
Source:
Weak Island Semantics
Author(s):

Márta Abrusán

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199639380.003.0006

The book argues that weak-island violations are due to a contradiction at some level. This chapter examines the question of why contradiction might give rise to ungrammaticality. The suggestion that contradictions (or tautologies) might lead to ungrammaticality is not new; see, e.g., Dowty (1979), Barwise and Cooper (1981), Chierchia (1984, 2004), von Fintel (1993), Fox and Hackl (2007), among others. Nevertheless, the question arises why contradictions would lead to ungrammaticality, since there are many examples in natural language that are contradictory but not ungrammatical, e.g. This table is red and not red. Recently, Gajewski (2002) has proposed a principled way that can distinguish contradictions that give rise to ungrammaticality from those that do not. In this chapter I first review some of the previous proposals that derived ungrammaticality, and then present Gajewski’s proposal. In the last part of the chapter I propose an alternative, based on Chierchia and McConnell-Ginet (2000) and Kamp and Partee (1995).

Keywords:   analyticity, contradiction, logical constants, lexical semantics, weak islands

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