Maximality and Minimality in Comparatives

  • Cécile Meier

Abstract

In this paper, I investigate more closely the contribution of modal operators to the semantics of comparatives and I show that there is no need for a maximality or minimality operator. Following Kratzer’s (1981, 1991) analysis of modal elements, I assume that the meaning of a modal sentence is dependent on a conversational background and an ordering source. For comparative environments, I demonstrate that the ordering source reduces a set of possible degrees to a single degree that is most (or least) wanted or expected, i.e., maximality and minimality readings of comparative constructions are an effect of the pragmatic meaning of the modal.
Published
2019-08-20
How to Cite
Meier, C. (2019). Maximality and Minimality in Comparatives. Proceedings of Sinn Und Bedeutung, 6, 275-288. https://doi.org/10.18148/sub/2002.v6i0.832