The Form, Meaning, and Use of English Interrogatives
Distributed for Center for the Study of Language and Information
This book closes the gap in research on this subject. By developing the frameworks of Head Driven Phrase Structure Grammar and Situation Semantics, the authors provide an account that rigorously integrates syntactic, semantic, and contextual dimensions of interrogatives. The challenge of providing exhaustive coverage of the interrogative constructions of English, including various constructions that occur solely in dialogue interaction, leads to new insights about a variety of contentious theoretical issues. These include matters of semantic ontology, the quantificational status of wh-phrases, the semantic effect of wh-fronting, the status of constructions in grammatical theory, the integration of illocutionary information in the grammar, and the nature of ellipsis resolution in dialogue. The account is stated with sufficient rigor to enable fairly direct computational implementation.