Event Detail

Tue Oct 1, 2013
234 Moses Hall, 12:30–2:30 PM
Meaning Sciences Club
Chris Potts (Stanford)
Conversational implicature: interacting with grammar

Grice defined conversational implicatures as social, cognitively complex meanings that discourse participants create jointly in interaction. Grammar-driven accounts are framed in opposition to this view. I seek to mediate this debate. I describe a general framework for interactional models of implicature and then assess the major arguments for grammar-driven approaches. My central finding is that many of these arguments are conceptually or theoretically problematic, and that the valid ones do not compromise the Gricean picture. Stepping back, I find that the two sides in this debate are not really in opposition, but rather offer complementary insights.