Negation And Negative Concord In Romance
Source: Linguistics and Philosophy, Volume 25, Number 4, August 2002 , pp. 373-417(45)
Abstract:This paper addresses the two interpretations that a combination of negative indefinites can get in concord languages like French: a concord reading, which amounts to a single negation, and a double negation reading. We develop an analysis within a polyadic framework, where a sequence of negative indefinites can be interpreted as an iteration of quantifiers or via resumption. The first option leads to a scopal relation, interpreted as double negation. The second option leads to the construction of a polyadic negative quantifier corresponding to the concord reading. Given that sentential negation participates in negative concord, we develop an extension of the polyadic approach which can deal with non-variable binding operators, treating the contribution of negation in a concord context as semantically empty. Our semantic analysis, incorporated into a grammatical analysis formulated in HPSG, crucially relies on the assumption that quantifiers can be combined in more than one way upon retrieval from the quantifier store. We also consider cross-linguistic variation regarding the participation of sentential negation in negative concord.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 2002-08-01