QUDs and exhaustivity: experiments, computation, and theory

Anton Benz (ZAS, SiGames), Edgar Onea (Graz, ExQ)

Time and venue:
End of September 2020 at the University of Graz

Planned invited speakers:

In grammatical theories, exhaustivity inferences are usually linked to two major components: some sort of exhaustivity operator and a set of alternatives. The set of alternatives can be lexically constrained, as in the case of scalar implicatures, but is usually a set of focus-alternatives and thus naturally connected to the Question under Discussion. By definition, at least at the global level, the congruent question is a sub-set of the focus alternatives of a sentence. Hence, exhaustivity can be conceptualized for such cases as completeness of answers to questions. In other cases, however, in embedded environments, it is not obvious whether and how a relevant question under discussion can be found. Thus, the relation between focus alternatives relevant for exhaustification and the question under discussion is not transparent.

In the workshop we wish to bring together pragmatic and grammatical approaches to exhaustivity inferences associated with different constructions: scalar implicatures, clefts, focus constructions, embedded questions etc. Thereby, we assume that the relevance of a set of alternatives and the QUD may be a link between different types of approaches that is in need of further exploration.
We invite theoretical, computation and experimental papers on these topics.