The Acquisition of Disjunctions: Evidence from German Children

  • Uli Sauerland
  • Kazuko Yatsushiro

Abstract

Adults’ interpretation of disjunction or depends on the sentential environment in which disjunction occurs. Putting aside numerous special cases (see e.g. Klinedinst and Rothschild 2012, Meyer 2012, 2016), adult behavior can be summarized as such: In downward entailing contexts, or is interpreted logically as the inclusive disjunction OR. But in upward entailing contexts, or is interpreted pragmatically as the exclusive disjunction XOR. Summarizing recent work on the acquisition of disjunction, children around age 5 seem to differ slightly: In downward entailing and free choice contexts, children seem to interpret disjunction like adults as inclusive OR (Chierchia et al. 2001, Crain 2008, Su and Crain 2013, Tieu et al. 2016). But in upward entailing, non free choice contexts, children have been found to interpret disjunction sometimes conjunctively as AND (Singh et al. 2016, Tieu et al. 2017).
How to Cite
Sauerland, U., & Yatsushiro, K. (1). The Acquisition of Disjunctions: Evidence from German Children. Proceedings of Sinn Und Bedeutung, 21(2), 1065-1072. Retrieved from https://ojs.ub.uni-konstanz.de/sub/index.php/sub/article/view/184