AffiliationMassachusetts Institute of Technology
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherUniversity of Arizona Linguistics Circle
JournalCoyote Papers: Working Papers in Linguistics, Linguistic Theory at the University of Arizona
AbstractThe paper accounts for a puzzling agreement behavior of disjunctions, namely the fact that in certain environments plural agreement with a subject-disjunction is possible, even though both disjuncts are singular. I argue that such behavior is driven by the theory of implicatures. In particular, I argue that disjunction is a predicate and it can have plural feature, which closes the predicate under sum formation; second, this plural feature triggers a multiplicity implicature along the lines of Zweig 2009. When this implicature is in conflict with an exclusivity implicature generated by the scalar item or, the plural feature is blocked, hence no possibility of plural agreement. In environments where such conflict does not arise, plural agreement is possible.