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A cognitive-pragmatic study of non-scalar implicatures

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Whether or not non-entailment relations generate scalar implicatures is a cutting-edge issue in linguistic pragmatics. The present study intends to argue that, based on the Cognitive Grammar paradigm, non-scalar implicatures generated by non-entailment relations are manifested as cognitive defaults which are conventionally incorporated into symbolic units in schema-instance complexes. Conventions provide a shortcut for the hearer to infer non-scalar implicatures in an unconscious, effortless and automatic way. We maintain that, contrary to neo-Gricean pragmatics, non-entailment relations cannot generate (scalar) Q-implicatures.

Keywords: (non-)entailment; Cognitive Grammar; Horn scales; cognitive default; convention; instance; non-scalar implicature; schema

Document Type: Discussion

Publication date: March 30, 2020

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