SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Abstract:  This paper examines an attempt made in a series of articles (Stanley, 2002, et al.) to create a syntactic placeholder for contextual information. The initial shortcoming of Stanley’s proposal is that it does not easily integrate these placeholders with domain-restricting information syntactically encoded elsewhere in the utterance. Thus, Stanley makes erroneous predictions in the case of sentences in which quantifier-restricting information encoded in (for example) a prepositional phrase conflicts with quantifier-restriction valued by context is internally incoherent.

I explore the space of possible solutions that are available to Stanley, demonstrating how each results in its own interpretation problem and, ultimately, fails. In doing so, I argue that Stanley’s syntactic approach to contextual restriction is untenable.