Getting quantifying-into questions uniformly: Functionality, domain exhaustivity, and quantificational variability

Yimei Xiang


Questions with a quantifier have readings that seem to involve quantification-into questions (QIQ). This paper provides a uniform compositional analysis of these readings. I propose that QIQ-readings are special functional readings —— the question nucleus involves a functional dependency between the quantifier and wh-trace.

I argue that the seeming QIQ-effect is derived by extracting a minimal set that satisfies a quantificational predication condition. The possible values of this minimal set determine whether QIQ-readings are available and whether a question admits a pair-list answer and/or a choice answer. This analysis also explains the contrast between ∀-questions and multi-wh questions with respect to domain exhaustivity, and accounts for the quantificational variability effects in embeddings.

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