Any: Logic, Likelihood, and Context
Luka Crnic
July 2019

Any has a more restricted distribution than other determiners. While it is uncontroversial that providing an adequate description of this distribution requires recourse to semantics, a full description has remained elusive. This holds, in particular, due to the intricate behavior of any in modal and non-monotone environments, where sensitivity to extra-grammatical factors is sometimes attested (esp., Linebarger 1987). Drawing on the insights of Kadmon & Landman (1993), and on independently-motivated mechanisms in grammar, we show that such descriptive challenges can be answered without abandoning a uniform treatment of any across the different environments. The resulting picture falls naturally out of an approach that takes any to be accompanied by covert even (cf. Lahiri 1998).

There are two parts to this review. Part I attends to the distribution of any in entailment-reversing and modal environments. Part II turns to an explanation of this distribution, its predictions about the distribution of any in non-monotone environments, and to differences between any and some allied expressions. The review concludes by pointing out several open questions left for future research.

(See these slides for a talk, a course on any on ocw, and a supplementary note on subdomain alternatives for related materials.)
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/004552
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: Submitted
keywords: any, even, exhaustification, free choice, modality, monotonicity, negative polarity items, semantics, syntax
previous versions: v1 [April 2019]
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