Definiteness and nominal interpretation
I have recently advised and collaborated on some projects related to nominal interpretation in understudied languages of Southeast Asia, specifically Burmese and Bikol (Austronesian). One such project, with my student Meghan Lim, investigates the interpretation of different forms of nominal arguments in Burmese, an article-less language. We show that Burmese morphologically distinguishes anaphoric and uniqueness definites, and forms singular indefinites with the numeral ‘one.’ In our SALT paper, we propose that the antiuniqueness inference of indefinites derives from a Non-Triviality constraint on the adjunction of ‘one,’ rather than a more traditional explanation based on Maximize Presupposition.
Lim and Erlewine, to appear.
“Definiteness and indefiniteness in Burmese.”
Proceedings of TripleA 7.
Erlewine and Lim, 2020.
“Anti-uniqueness without articles.”
Proceedings of SALT 30, pages 430–449. DOI: 10.3765/salt.v30i0.4848