Dan at Sinn und Bedeutung
September 18, 2021 Linguistics
Using this sentence means I'm asking a question?
September 8-10, the University of Cologne hosted the 26th Sinn und Bedeutung conference, again virtually, with a talk by Dan Goodhue, on Rising declaratives and the effects of illocutionary force. Dan argues that rising intonation conveys that the speaker is not committed to the truth of a certain proposition, but that this is only by default the proposition expressed by the sentence. It might also be some other proposition, relevant in the context. If Valentine asks, "Do you have enough flour for a bâtard?," and Dan responds "I have a 300 grams?", he asserts that he has 300 grams of flour, but prescinds from committing to the claim that he has enough for a bâtard. This allows for a uniform account of what the prosody means, despite its use for both questions and assertions.