Scalar implicatures in non-monotonic environments

Takashi Morita

Abstract


Scalar implicatures (SIs) have been traditionally analyzed as pragmatic inferences that arise after semantic computation. Recent studies, however, have presented various challenges to this classic analysis; for instance, it has been claimed that SIs can be interpreted within the scope of various semantic operators. These observations motivate a grammatical analysis of SIs: SIs are derived during or before semantic computation. Among various kinds of evidence for the grammati- cal approach to SIs, especially convincing one is SIs embedded in non-monotonic (NM) environments, which post-semantic analyses have difficulty deriving. This paper introduces a new example of NM operators that allow the SI-embedding in their scope, and I thereby provide further empirical support for the grammatical analysis. On the other hand, I will also show that not all NM operators behave in the same way with respect to SI-embedding. It will turn out that Strawson non- monotonicity is required to embed SIs in the negative component of NM envi- ronments; i.e. SI-embedding is unavailable if the NMity can be decomposed into monotonic assertion and monotonic presupposition.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3765/salt.v26i0.3799

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