The Weekly Newsletter of MIT Linguistics

LFRG 5/5 - Chris O’Brien

Speaker: Chris O’Brien
Time: Monday, May 5, 12-1:30p
Location: 66-148
Title: The online processing of implicatures

I’ll be discussing two recent papers on the online processing of scalar implicatures (SIs). The first (Huang & Snedeker 2009) uses data from a series of experiments that employ the visual world eye-tracking paradigm to argue that computing an SI exacts a processing cost relative to accessing the basic meaning of a scalar item. However, Degen (2013) argues that this effect only shows up when number terms are made contextually salient. We’ll discuss these studies and what implications they have for our understanding of SIs.