Implicatures and Gricean reasoning
Mandatory implicatures, implicatures and (in)felicity, Need A Reason implicatures, and related matters.
Papers & Chapters
- Sven Lauer (2016): On the status of “Maximize Presupposition”. Semantics and Linguistic Theory (SALT) 26.
- Sven Lauer (2015): Biscuits and provisos: Conveying unconditional information by conditional means. E. Csipak and H. Zeijlstra (eds.) Sinn und Bedeutung 19, Göttingen.
- Sven Lauer (2014): Mandatory implicatures in Gricean pragmatics. N. Goodman, M. Franke and J. Degen (eds.) Formal & Experimental Pragmatics, 21-28, Tübingen.
- Chapter 9 of Lauer, Sven (2013): Towards a dynamic pragmatics. PhD dissertation, Stanford University, Stanford, CA.
Anankastic and similar conditionals
Joint work with Cleo Condoravdi. Anankastic and near-anankastic conditionals: Their semantics, pragmatics, inferential properties and temporal interpretation.
- Condoravdi, Cleo and Sven Lauer (2016): Anankastic conditionals are just conditionals, Semantics & Pragmatics 9(8) [open access]](http://dx.doi.org/10.3765/sp.9.8)
- Lauer, Sven and Cleo Condoravdi (2014): Preference-conditioned necessities: detachment and practical reasoning, Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 95(4), 584-621. [preprint (pdf)]
The last two papers are companions of a sort: Anankastic conditionals are just conditionals lays out our account of the semantics of anankastic and near-anankastic conditionals and discusses the existing linguistic literature in some depth, Preference-conditioned necessities: … is concerned with the (pragmatic) question of how (many) anankastic conditionals can be used to give advice and takes the semantic account as a starting point for a discussion of certain philosophical concerns about practical reasoning and the requirements of rationality.
Clause types and Performativity
Much of this is joint work with Cleo Condoravdi, and, more recently, with Erlinde Meertens. Imperatives and clause-typing. The form-force mapping and the semantics/pragmatics “interface”. Explicit performatives and performative uses of modals, desideratives, and other expressions.
Papers & Chapters
- Lauer, Sven (2017): ‘I believe’ in a ranking-theoretic analysis of ‘believe’. Proceedings of the Twenty-first Amsterdam Colloquium, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
- Cleo Condoravdi and Sven Lauer (2017) Conditional imperatives and endorsement, Proceedings of NELS 47.
Lauer, Sven (2015) Temporal interpretation and the performative use of modals, Proceedings of the Twentieth Amsterdam Colloquium, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
This handout contains an additional appendix commenting on some complexities in the data.
- Chapters 3-8 of Lauer (2013): Towards a dynamic pragmatics, PhD dissertation, Stanford University, Stanford, CA.
- Condoravdi, Cleo and Sven Lauer (2012) Imperatives: Meaning and illocutionary force, in C. Piñon (ed.), Empirical Issues in Syntax and Semantics 9, Papers from the Colloque de Syntaxe et Sémantique à Paris
- Chernilovskaya, Anna, Cleo Condoravdi and Sven Lauer (2012): On the discourse effect of wh-exclmatives, Proceedings of the 30th West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics (WCCFL 30), Cascadilla Press.
Condoravdi, Cleo and Sven Lauer (2011) Performative Verbs and Performative Acts Proceedings of Sinn and Bedeutung 15.
- 2018, with Erlinde Meertens: Crosslinguistic variation in a minor sentence type: Melioratives in Dutch and German, Talk at the Workshop on non canonical imperatives, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, May 25–26, 2018.
- 2015, Speech-act operators vs. extra-compositional conventions of use: What are the issues?. Talk at theWorkshop on Speech Act Theory, Zentrum für Allgemeine Sprachwissenschaft (ZAS), Berlin, June 11-13, 2015.
- 2012, with Cleo Condoravdi: The basic dynamic effect of interrogative utterances. Talk presented at TLS 13, UT-Austin, 2012.
- 2012, with Anna Chernilovskaya and Cleo Condoravdi: How to Express Yourself: On the Discourse Effect of Wh-Exclamatives. Talk at the 30th West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics (WCCFL 30), at the University of California Santa Cruz, April 13-15, 2012.[handout, (PDF)]
- 2010, Cleo Condoravdi and Sven Lauer: Speaking of Preferences: Imperative and Desiderative Assertions in Context Speaking of Possibility and Time: The 7th Workshop on Inferential Mechanisms and their Linguistic Manifestation, University of Göttingen, Germany.[handout (PDF)]
- 2010, with Cleo Condoravdi: Imperatives and Public Commitments. Talk at the 11th SemFest, Stanford University. [handout (PDF)]
- 2009, with Cleo Condoravdi: Performing A Wish: Desiderative Assertions and Performativity. California University Semantics and Pragmatics (CUSP) 2, University of California, Santa Cruz. [[handout (PDF)]]
While I generally remove references to handouts from this page once their content has been covered in a published paper, some of the handouts listed above remain because they have been referenced in print and present slightly different takes resulting from various stages of our thinking about the topic.
Joint work with Prerna Nadathur. Quantifiers and if-clauses. most, many and focus-sensitivity. And tense.
- Lauer, Sven and Prerna Nadathur (in press): Quantified indicative conditionals and the relative reading of most. Proceedings of Sinn und Bedeutung 21, University of Edinburgh.
Loose Talk and Pragmatic Slack
- Sven Lauer (2012) On the pragmatics of pragmatic slack Proceedings of Sinn and Bedeutung 16.[Proceedings volume on semanticsarchive.net]
Causation, Causatives, Counterfactuals, and their ilk
Joint work with Prerna Nadathur. English periphrastic causatives. cause vs. make. Causal necessity and causal sufficiency. Causatives in Japanese and Korean, and German.
Papers and manuscripts
These two papers are companion pieces: Causal necessity … presents the basic English data and lays out our analysis in an informal (and hopefully accessible) way. Sufficiency causatives is a more techically-oriented paper that presents the formal analysis in detail and adds discussion of the German causative lassen.
Together, the two papers supersede the following manuscript, which remains online as it has been cited in print.
Going forward, I prefer the newer papers to be cited, except where some aspect of the older manuscript that does not appear in the newer one is relevant.
-ever free relatives, German irgend-indefinites, Spanish algún. The notion of postsuppositions in a dynamic semantics.
- I was involved in (part of) the data collection and some initial analyses of the Cards corpus of collaborative task-oriented dialogues.
(My collaborators, in particular Chris Potts and Alex Djalali, deserve a large share of the credit for these two papers.)
- Djalali, Alex, David Clausen, Sven Lauer, Karl Schultz, and Christopher Potts (2011): Modeling expert effects and common ground using Questions Under Discussion Proceedings of the AAAI Workshop on Building Representations of Common Ground with Intelligent Agents, Washington, DC: Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence.
- Djalali, Alex, Sven Lauer, and Christopher Potts (2012): Corpus evidence for preference-driven interpretation In: Maria Aloni, Vadim Kimmelman, Floris Roelofsen, Galit Weidman Sassoon, Katrin Schulz, and Matthijs Westera (eds.) Proceedings of the 18th Amsterdam Colloquium: Revised Selected Papers. Berlin: Springer.
- I was involved in the genesis of a project on the mass/count distinction. The main claim of this work is that the mass/count distinction is neither a contrast that is observed in the world, nor one that is a matter of arbitrary linguistic convention, but rather a contrast in conceptualization. This entails that we can model the effects of this distinction only if we allow a level of conceptual representation to mediate the relation between language and the world. grinding and packaging phenomena can be viewed as contextual shifts in conceptualization<, which may deliver an explanation of why grinding and packaging are far from “universal”, that is, why, despite common lore, not every mass noun can be used with count syntax and not every count noun can be used with count syntax. A preliminary outcome of this project was
Despite my continued interest in the implications of this work, I have left this project in the hands of my able collaborators. See their websites for new developments on this general theme. A recent, related talk on that is closely related to this project was:
- (with David Clausen, Alex Djalali, Scott Grimm, B. Levin, and T. Rojas-Esponda) Extension, Ontological Type, and Morphosyntactic Class: Three Ingredients of Countability, Conference on Empirical, Theoretical and Computational Approaches to Countability in Natural Language Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Bochum, Germany, September 22-24, 2010. [Extended abstract, pdf] [updated slides in pdf]