Homogeneity in donkey sentences

Lucas Champollion (NYU)


Donkey sentences sometimes give rise to “existential” interpretations (∃-readings) and sometimes to “universal” interpretations (∀-readings), but when the context is fixed they are usually not perceived as ambiguous. I predict how context disambiguates donkey sentences by linking the pragmatic account of homogeneous definite descriptions in Križ (2015) with a trivalent dynamic semantics that combines Brasoveanu (2008) (for dynamics), van Eijck (1993) (for trivalence) and van Eijck (1996) (for trivalence-sensitive quantifiers).

This is a practice talk for SALT 2016. An extended abstract can be found here.