Adjectives and Negation: deriving Contrariety from Contradiction
Karen De Clercq, Guido Vanden Wyngaerd
March 2018

Antonymic pairs of gradable adjectives (e.g. tall-short) give rise to contrary opposition. This fact has so far stood in the way of reducing this type of opposition to logical negation, which gives rise to contradictory opposition. We present an analysis of these antonymic pairs in terms of an underlying logical negation, and propose to derive the contrary nature of the opposition from the interaction of interval semantics with the presence of a contextual standard, which is known to be a part of the denotation of gradable adjectives. This analysis opens the way for a decomposition of negative adjectives as containing a logical negation with contradictory meaning.
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/003890
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: Papers of the LSB
keywords: adjectives, negation, contrariety, contradiction, nanosyntax, semantics, morphology, syntax
previous versions: v1 [February 2018]
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