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Quantification, misc.

Abstract
This dissertation investigates various topics concerning the interpretation of determiner phrases and their connection to individual entities. The first chapter looks at a phenomenon called telescoping, in which a quantificational expression appears to bind a pronominal form across sentence boundaries, at odds with commonly assumed and well motivated constraints on binding. I investigate the limited circumstances under which telescoping is available and argue that the mechanism that makes it available should respect said locality constraints. In particular, I argue that the impression of co-variation arises not because of binding by the initial quantificational expression, but because an of independent, albeit unpronounced, quantificational operator in the second sentence. I will show cases where the domains of these two quantificational operators are independent, incompatible with approaches that assume a single operator. This result also entails that no reference to constructed individuals, e.g. prototypical or average individuals is needed. In the second chapter, I look at the German lexical item lauter and argue that DPs headed by lauter are purely predicational. After presenting an overview of the various kinds of interpretations that a DP can receive, and some discussion objecting to the idea of treating these as cases of lexical ambiguity, I show data that illustrate that lauter DPs cannot receive many of these interpretations. At the end of the chapter, I speculate about ways in which purely predicative DPs may appear and be interpreted in some, but not all, positions that arguments typically occupy, resulting in a restricted distribution and less freedom in the range of interpretations. In the last chapter, I look at an instance of a semantically complex determiner, the English item any. Instead of adding to the discussion based on an investigation of any, I propose that this hidden semantic complexity has a transparent reflex in German, where the lexical item überhaupt spells out a logically independent part of the proposed meaning of any, namely its domain widening meaning.
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dissertation
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dissertation
Date
2011-09-01
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