Degrees and segments
Author(s)Schwarzschild, Roger S.
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I make two related proposals, one about directed scale segments and the other about the nature of degrees. Bale (2007, 2011) argued that degrees should be analyzed as sets of individuals and that degree arguments are created in the syntax from relational predicates. Schwarz (2010) showed that Bale’s construction runs into problems when the required degree relation is complex, denoted by an LF constituent that contains more than just a gradable adjective. I modify Bale’s proposal so that it overcomes Schwarz’s objection. But first I propose a semantics for comparatives based on quantification over directed scale segments, triples consisting of two degrees and a measure function. The modification of Bale’s proposal depends upon this. Segments are of independent interest as they permit a conjunctive semantics for extended adjectival phrases, the way events do for verb phrases. Potential benefits of ‘degree-conjunctivism’ are explored.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Linguistics and Philosophy
Proceedings from Semantics and Linguistic Theory
Linguistic Society of America
Schwarzschild, Roger. “Degrees and Segments.” Semantics and Linguistic Theory 23 (2013): 212.
Final published version