Situations, alternatives, and the semantics of ‘cases’

Abstract

This paper argues that NPs with case as head noun stand for situations in their role as truthmakers within a sentential or epistemic case space. The paper develops a unified semantic analysis of case-constructions of the various sorts within a truthmaker-based version of alternative semantics.

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Acknowledgements

The paper has benefitted from the audiences at presentations of material of this paper at the Conference Truth Makers and Proof Objects, organized by P. Martin-Loef, École Normale Supérieure, Paris (2011), Kit Fine’s seminar Truthmaker Semantics at NYU (2012), the City University of Hong Kong (2012), the University of Göttingen (2012), the University of Chicago (2012), the workshop Truth, Existence and Fundamentality, organized by T. Sattig and A. Torza, Tübingen (2013), the University of Padua (2013), the Symposium on Truthmaking, organized by M. Traynor, Arché, St Andrews (2014), the University of Düsseldorf (2018), the New York Philosophy of Language Workshop at NYU (2019), and the conference Truthmmaker Semantics: Applications in Philosophy and Linguistics, organized by S. Kraemer, Hamburg (2019). I would like to thank the audiences for lots of fruitful discussions. I would also like to thank Lucas Champollion, Richard Kayne, Adam Przepiórkowski, Craige Roberts, Susan Rothstein, and especially Kit Fine for comments on previous versions of this paper and stimulating discussions of the material.

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Moltmann, F. Situations, alternatives, and the semantics of ‘cases’. Linguist and Philos 44, 153–193 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10988-019-09282-7

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Keywords

  • Situation semantics
  • Situations
  • Alternative semantics
  • Association with focus
  • Truthmaker semantics
  • Propositional attitudes
  • Clausal complements