This paper examines the effect of intonation contour on two types of scopally-ambiguous constructions in English: Configurations with a universal quantifier in subject position and sentential negation (e.g., Every horse didn't jump) and configurations with quantifiers in both subject and object positions (e.g., A girl saw every boy). This was investigated via an auditory acceptability judgment task, in which native English speakers rated the acceptability of auditorily presented sentences in contexts matching surface-scope vs. inverse-scope readings. The results provide evidence that fall-rise intonation facilitates the inverse-scope readings of English quantifier-negation configurations (supporting findings from prior literature), but not those of double-quantifier configurations.
- Quantifier Scope
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Literature and Literary Theory