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Author ORCID Identifier


Open Access Dissertation

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Program


Year Degree Awarded


Month Degree Awarded


First Advisor

Seth Cable

Second Advisor

Ana Arregui

Third Advisor

Gennaro Chierchia

Fourth Advisor

Rajesh Bhatt

Fifth Advisor

Maya Eddon

Subject Categories

Semantics and Pragmatics


The goal of this dissertation is to present an analysis of associative plurals in Japanese, Turkish, and Armenian that captures their associative interpretation along with a series of cross-linguistically consistent behaviours that do not seem to stem directly from these special meanings. For associative plurals, group affiliation is established through spatio-temporal or conceptual contiguity rather than a shared description (Moravcsik 2003). Approaches to English-like additive plurality are unable to capture associative plurals because they predict a plurality based on similarity, where every element of a plural noun is either an element of the corresponding singular or a concatenation of those elements. I propose that unlike additives, associative plurals are formed from a contextually specified individual concept that behaves like a group noun. This accounts for data which suggests associative plurals are inherently intensional, with a life that exists across indices. I will suggest that this individual concept is introduced as the plural marker. The noun being pluralized is actually part of a complex determiner that introduces a possessive like R relation that establishes the relationship between the group and the named individual.


Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.