Gutzmann, Daniel and Eric McCready. 2015. Quantification with pejoratives. To appear in: Finkbeiner, Rita & Jörg Meibauer & Heike Wiese (eds.). Pejoration. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.


Following the influential work by Potts (2005), pejoratives have often been understood as expressive items that contribute content to a different dimension of meaning. In this paper, we will show that the standard formal tools as offered by Potts’s work and our subsequent extensions of his system (Gutzmann 2011; McCready 2010), cannot deal with certain kinds of data regarding quantification with what we call verbal pejoratives (like German beglotzen ‘to goggle at’ or Japanese anti-honorifics like chimau), which have not been studied in much detail. The problem is that there is no way in those systems to quantify across two meaning dimensions at once. To overcome this, we propose a reformulation of the framework that is based on the idea of compositional multidimensionality: instead of having just some expressions having multidimensional content, every expression receives a full multidimensional treatment. This solves the two problem of cross-dimensional quantification, since simple multidimensional rule for multidimensional functional application together with a hybridization type shift rule allows a quantifier to apply to both dimensions of a verbal pejorative argument.

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