Semantics

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By Molly Diesing

Indefinites investigates the connection among the syntactic and semantic representations of sentences in the framework of generative grammar. It proposes a way of bearing on government-binding conception, that is basically syntactic, to the semantic conception of noun word interpretation constructed through Kamp and Heim, and introduces a unique mapping set of rules that describes the relation among syntactic configurations and logical representations.Diesing specializes in the matter of deriving logical representations from syntactic representations of sentences, with an emphasis on problems with quantification and the translation of indefinites. the 2 relevant questions addressed are the potential semantic interpretations of indefinites and quantificational noun words, and the position performed by way of syntactic illustration in deriving the semantic illustration of noun words. The mapping set of rules used is utilized to derive the logical representations of indefinites to a variety of syntactic and semantic phenomena in German together with scrambling, VP-deletion, and extraction from NP.Molly Diesing is Assistant Professor of Linguistics and Assistant study Social Scientist in Cognitive technology on the college of Arizona, Tucson.

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A second case of movement in German that shows a contrast between the two subject positions is the split-topic construction. This construction has been the subject of much recent work (see, for example, Van Riemsdijk 1989, Fanselow 1988a, Tappe 1989, and Bhatt 1990). , topicalization) from an NP has taken place, with the result that a portion of the NP has been fronted to the "topic" position preceding the finite verb and a determiner is left stranded in the base position (for specific arguments that this construction does indeed show properties characteristic of movement, see Van Riemsdijk 1989).

What are for dogs nervous c. Was sind für Kinder ungezogen? what are for children naughty (52) a. Trombonisten sind viele heiter. trombonists are many cheerful b. Hunde sind viele nervös. dogs are many nervous c. Kinder sind viele ungezogen. children are many naughty The extractions in the sentences in (51) and (52) are all rather awkward (if not downright ungrammatical), as would be expected if the subjects could only appear in the outer subject position from which extraction is prohibited. 39 40 Finally, these predicates are also generally unacceptable in there-insertion contexts: (53) a.

C. There are pumpkins visible on the vine. (49) a. *There are carrots nutritious. b. *There are chili peppers spicy. c. *There are pumpkins heavy. In the following sections I will use these tests as well as others to examine some other predicate types that might be regarded as problematic for the approach I have taken. The problematic cases fall into a number of different semantic categories, which I will consider in turn. 1 Psychological States Terms denoting psychological states of emotion such as angry, cheerful, obnoxious, nervous, and nasty might intuitively seem to be stage-level predicates in that they describe transitory states.

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