A representationalist theory of the semantics of DIFFERENT, THE SAME, and EACH OTHER
Shuichi Yatabe
June 2021
 

(Warning: The present version of the paper contains a minor, but significant error. I hope to upload a revised version in a week or so.)

In this article, I present and defend a theory of the internal readings of symmetrical predicates such as _different_ and _the same_ in which the meaning of such predicates is taken to contain the meaning of a reciprocal pronoun. The theory is shown to be able to account for the truth conditions of sentences in which the antecedent of a symmetrical predicate is a quantificational DP, sentences in which _the same_ is used as part of a partitive construction, sentences containing multiple symmetrical predicates, and sentences in which a symmetrical predicate is under the scope of a negation. In addition, I present a novel theory of the semantics of reciprocal pronouns that is capable of assigning adequate truth conditions to sentences in which a right-node-raised reciprocal pronoun is anteceded by more than one DP simultaneously and sentences in which the antecedent of a reciprocal pronoun is a DP headed by a determiner like _most_ and _no_. Both these theories are HPSG-based and representationalist, involving constraints on the form of semantic representations and, in the case of the former, even operations that copy and modify parts of semantic representations.

Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/006007
(please use that when you cite this article)
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keywords: symmetrical predicates, reciprocal pronouns, hpsg, mrs, semantics, syntax
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