Article published in:Pragmatic Interfaces
Edited by Louis de Saussure and Peter J. Schulz
[Pragmatics & Cognition 15:1] 2007
► pp. 41–64
The syntax-pragmatics merger
Belief reports in the theory of Default Semantics
This paper is a voice in the ongoing discussion on the source and properties of pragmatic inference that contributes to the representation of discourse meaning. I start off from the contextualist standpoint of truth-conditional pragmatics (TCP, Recanati 2002, 2003, 2004) and develop a proposal of representations of utterance meaning, the so-called merger representations, that incorporate the output of pragmatic inference. The move from TCP to pragmatics-rich semantics of acts of communication is facilitated by rethinking the compositionality of meaning and predicating compositionality of such pragmatics-rich structures. I argue that the advantage of ‘semanticizing’ the output of pragmatic sources of meaning is that we can relax the view on compositionality of meaning and offer an algorithm of the interaction of such sources where the requirement of compositionality is imposed on the output of the interaction rather than on the output of the syntactic processing of the sentence. This proposal is applied to belief reports for which it offers representations of their various readings.
Published online: 11 May 2007
Cited by 4 other publications
PERNER, JOSEF, BIBIANE RENDL & ALAN GARNHAM
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