**Explaining quantity implicatures**. (with Tikitu de Jager, Journal of Logic, Language, and Information 2012) pdf file

We give derivations of two formal models of Gricean Quantity implicature and strong exhaustivity in bidirectional optimality theory and in a signalling games framework. We show that, under a unifying model based on signalling games, these interpretative strategies are game-theoretic equilibria when the speaker is known to be respectively minimally and maximally expert in the matter at hand. That is, in this framework the optimal strategy for communication depends on the degree of knowledge the speaker is known to have concerning the question she is answering. In addition, and most importantly, we give a game-theoretic characterisation of the interpretation rule \Grice{} (formalising Quantity implicature), showing that under natural conditions this interpretation rule occurs in the unique equilibrium play of the signalling game.**Conjunctive interpretation of disjunction**. (in Semantics and Pragmatics, 2010, here is an old version) pdf file

In this extended commentary I discuss the problem of how to account for `conjunctive' readings of some sentences with embedded disjunctions for globalist analyses of conversational implicatures. Following (Franke 2009), I propose that earlier proposals failed, because they did not take into account the interactive reasoning of what else the {\it speaker} could have said, and how else the {\it hearer} could have interpreted the (alternative) sentence(s). I show how Franke's idea relates to more traditional pragmatic interpretation strategies.**Non-monotonic reasoning in interpretation**. with Katrin Schulz (in Handbook of Logic and Language) pdf file

The original article of Thomason pursues two goals: first to outline the central logical issues of non-monotonic reasoning, and second to indicate possible applications of nonmonotonic reasoning techniques in linguistics. This appendix will follow up on Thomason's second goal and show that linguists have taken up his invitation to use nonmonotonic logic as a formal tool. Particularly in the new and very vivid area of formal pragmatics and at the intersection of semantics and cognitive psychology nonmonotonic logics are playing an important role. The paper is structured as follows. The purpose of its first part is to present the recent progress made in formal pragmatics by using nonmonotonic logic to describe pragmatic meaning. We will show how minimal models can be used to describe and explain inferences of language use, in particular Gricean conversational implicatures. After this we will discuss how nonmonotonic logic can be used at the semantic-pragmatic interface to account for the {\it preferred interpretation} of a sentence. In the last part of the paper we will discuss the role of nonmonotonic logic for human reasoning in general. Here we will focus in particular on Stenning and van Lambalgen.**Relevance in Cooperation and Conflict**. with Michael Franke and Tikitu de Jager (in Journal of Logic and Computation, 2012) pdf file

If speaker and hearer preferences do not coincide, we can distinguish speaker relevance from hearer relevance. Taking speaker relevance seriously lets us extend the scope of linguistic pragmatics beyond cases of pure cooperation. Making use of game theoretical tool, in this paper we discuss (i) the speaker's motive to communicate in such situations at all, and (ii) what can be inferred from what is said in such situations.**Topic, Focus, and Exhaustive Interpretation**. (in Chungmin (ed.), Proceedings of CIL 18 workshop) pdf file

In this paper we proposed that a sentence like `John_T ate broccoli_F' should pragmatically be interpreted as follows: (a) Focus should be interpreted exhaustively: John ate only broccoli; (b) Topic must be interpreted exhaustively: Only John ate (only) broccoli; and (c) The speaker takes it to be possible (or even knows, if he is competent) that at least one alternative of the form `x ate y' not entailed by the sentence is true.**Games and Quantity implicatures**. (Journal of Economic Methodology, 2008, vol 15, issue 3, 261) pdf file

In this paper we seek to account for scalar implicatures and Horn's division of pragmatic labor in game-theoretical terms by making use mainly of refinements of the standard solution concept of signaling games. Scalar implicatures are accounted for in terms of Farrell's (1993) notion of a `Neologism-Proof' equilibrium together with Grice's maxim of Quality. Horn's division of pragmatic labor is accounted for in terms of Cho \& Kreps' (1987) notion of `equilibrium domination' and their `Intuitive Criterion'.**Optimal assertions, and what they implicate**. (Topoi, 2007, 26: 63-78, with Anton Benz) pdf file

To determine what the speaker in a cooperative dialog meant with his assertion, on top of what he explicitly said, it is crucial that we assume that the assertion he gave was optimal. In determining optimal assertions we assume that dialogues are embedded in decision problems (van Rooij, 2003) and use backwards induction for calculating them (Benz, 2006). In this paper we show that in terms of our framework we can account for several types of implicatures in a uniform way, suggesting that there is no need for an independent linguistic theory of generalized implicatures. In the final section we show how we can embed our theory in the framework of signaling games, and how it relates with other game theoretic analyses of implicatures.- Book:
**Game Theory and Pragmatics**(jointly edited with Anton Benz and Gerhard Jaeger) Rooted in Gricean tradition, this book concentrates on game- and decision-theoretic (GDT) approaches to the foundations of pragmatics. An Introduction to GDT, with an overview of GDT pragmatics research to date and its relation to semantics and to Gricean pragmatics is followed by contributions offering a high-level survey of current GDT pragmatics and the field of its applications, demonstrating that this approach provides a sound basis for synchronic and diachronic explanations of language use.\\ For more information, see http://www.palgrave.com/products/Catalogue.aspx?is=1403945721. **Free Choice Items and Alternatives**(With Maria Aloni, in Proceedings of KNAW Academy Colloquium: Cognitive Foundations of Interpretation (2004), pdf file

Extending the proposal made by Schulz (2003), we put forward a pragmatic account of the meaning of existential and universal FC items, where the `ignorance or indifference' inference triggered by the former and the `universal' inference triggered by the latter are treated as implicatures obtained by standard gricean reasoning formalized in terms of the two operations {\it grice} and {\it competence}. On this account, the implicatures of a sentence are generated with respect to a number of relevant alternatives. The difference between existential and universal FCs is due only to the choice of these alternatives.**Only: Meaning and implicature**(With Katrin Schulz, in Paul Dekker et al. Questions and Answers, 199-224, 2007). An very short version of this paper appeared in the proceedings of Sinn und Bedeutung, 2004, pdf file

The issue of how to account for the interpretation of `only' has always been exciting and challenging. Over the years many sophisticated proposals have been brought forward, but `only' always managed to strike back by exposing another new and strange property. In this paper we will not focus on new extraordinary data and their treatment. Instead, we will argue that there is a way to approach the meaning of `only' that is faithful to classical insights and observations but still can deal with well-known challenges.**Different faces of risky speech**(With Merlijn Sevenster, in `Pragmatics and Game Theory' edited by Anton Benz, Gerhard Jeager and Robert van Rooij, 2005 pdf file

Sally (2003) has pointed out that in many game theoretical situations the Pareto optimal equilibrium is not the outcome we actually observe in case the preferences of the agents are not fully alinged. In those cases, avoidance of risk plays an important role as well. Following Sally's observations, we discuss the importance of risk for the use of expressions with an intended non-literal interpretation, or with an underspecified meaning.**Pragmatic Meaning and Non-monotonic Reasoning: The Case of Exhaustive Interpretation**(Linguistics and Philosophy, 2006, 29: 205-250 (With Katrin Schulz), pdf file

(this is the final version) In this paper an approach to the {\it exhaustive interpretation} of answers is developed. It builds on a proposal brought forward by Groenendijk \& Stokhof (1984). We will use the close connection between their approach and McCarthy's (1980, 1986) {\it predicate circumscription} to describe exhaustive interpretation as an instance of {\it interpretation in minimal models}, well-known from work on counterfactuals (see for instance Lewis (1973)). It is shown that by combining this approach with independent developments in semantics/pragmatics one can overcome certain limitations of Groenenedijk \& Stokhof's (1984) proposal. In the last part of the paper we will provide a Gricean motivation for exhaustive interpretation building on work of van Rooij \& Schulz (2004). (a much earlier version of this paper appeared as `Exhaustification' in the Tilburg workshop on computational semantics, januari, 2003)**Exhaustive interpretation of complex sentences**(Journal of Logic, Language and Information, 2004, 13: 491-519. with Katrin Schulz) Here is an almost final version: pdf file

In terms of Groenendijk \& Stokhof's (1984) formalization of exhaustive interpretation, many conversational implicatures can be accounted for. In this paper we justify and generalize this approach. Our justification proceeds by relating their account via Halpern \& Moses' (1984) non-monotonic theory of `only knowing' to the Gricean maxims of Quality and the first sub-maxim of Quantity. The approach of Groenendijk \& Stokhof (1984) is generalized such that it can also account for implicatures that are triggered in subclauses not entailed by the whole complex sentence.**Cooperative versus argumentative communication**(A part of this appeared in Philosophia Scientia, {\bf *} (2), 2004, 195-209) pdf file

Game theoretical analyses of communication (e.g. Lewis, Crawford \& Sobel) demand cooperation between conversational partners for reliable information exchange to take place. Similarly, in pragmatics, the theory of language use, it is standard to assume that communication is a cooperative affair. Recently, this standard view has come under attack by Durcot and Merin, and it has been proposed that an argumentative view on natural language use is more appropriate. In this paper I discuss to what extent this attack is justified and whether the alternative view can provide a more adequate analysis of `pragmatic meaning', i.e., implicatures. I will investigate the game-theoretical underpinning of the argumentative view, and contrast Merin's analysis of scalar implicatures with one using the principle of exhaustive interpretation.**A review of Nirit Kadmon's `Formal Pragmatics'**(Journal of Pragmatics, 2005, 749-755) pdf file

**Quality and Quantity of Information Exchange**(Journal of Logic, Language and Information, 2003, 12: 423-451). Here is an almost final version: pdf file )

The paper deals with credible and relevant information flow in dialogs: How useful is it for a receiver to get some information, how useful is it for a sender to give this information, and how much credible information can we expect to flow between sender and receiver? What is the relation between semantics and pragmatics? These Gricean questions will be addressed from a decision and game-theoretical point of view.**Signalling games select Horn strategies**; (Linguistics and Philosophy, 2004, 27: 493-527, written mainly in 2001 and finished in 2002, An earlier version appeared in the Proceedings of Sinn und Bedeutung 2001). Here is an almost final version: pdf file

In this paper I will discuss why (un) marked expressions typically get an (un)marked interpretation: Horn's division of pragmatic labor. It is argued that it is a {\it conventional} fact that we use language this way. This convention will be explained in terms of the equilibria of {\it signalling games} introduced by Lewis (1969), but now in an {\it evolutionary} setting. I will also relate this signalling game analysis with Parikh's (1991, 2000, 2001) game-theoretical analysis of successful communication, which in turn is compared with Blutner's (2000) bi-directional optimality theory.**Relevance Only**(In J. Bos et al. Proceedings of Edilog, 2002); pdf file

In this paper, a single notion of exhaustivity will be defined in terms of {\it relevance} that accounts for (i) standard exhaustification; (ii) scalar readings; and the intuition that mention-some answers can sometimes be completely resolving. It will be shown that this notion of exhaustivity leaves something to be done for `only'. Moreover, an analysis will be given of `only' in terms of relevance that is stronger than exhaustivity in a subtle way. Finally, it will be suggested how exhaustivity and `only' could interact with disjunctions. (Note: the exhaustivity operator defined in `Exhaustification' is an improvement of the corresponding notion used in this (earlier) paper)**Relevance and Bidirectional OT**; In R. Blutner and H. Zeevat (eds.), {\it Pragmatics in Optimality Theory}, Palgrave Macmillan, 2003, 173-210. Here is an almost final version: pdf file

In this paper I show how a formal, decision theoretic notion of utility, in combination with bidirectional OT, can account for a number of conversational implicatures and how it relates to (i) Sperber \& Wilson's psychologically inspired notion of cognitive relevance; (ii) the Stalnakerian assertability conditions; (iii) the Gricean maxims of conversation, and (iv) the so-called $Q$ and $I$ principles of neo-Gricean pragmatics (Horn 1984; Levinson, 2000).**Conversational implicatures and Communication Theory**; In. J. van Kuppevelt \& R. Smith (eds.), {\it Current and New Directions in Discourse and Dialogue}, 2003, Dordrecht (Kluwer). pdf file**Bi-directional optimality theory; an application of Game Theory**(Journal of Semantics 2000, 17: 217-242. with Paul Dekker) Note: my paper `Signalling games select Horn strategies' connects (evolutionary) game theory with Bi-directional OT in a much more satisfing way**Asserting to Resolve Decision problems**; (Journal of Pragmatics, 2003, 35, 1161-1179, although the paper dates back to 2000)

In this paper I use our notion of relevance to resolve the potentially underspecified meaning of attitude attributions. Assuming that belief attributions are made to explain unexpected actions, and that assertions have to be relevant, it is shown that potentially ambiguous, or underspecified, {\it de re} belief attributions can be disambiguated by taking the assertion to be informative with respect to the decision problem under discussion.

E-mail: | R.A.M.VanRooijATuva.nl |
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