On Logical Form

In Randall Hendrick (ed.), Minimalist Syntax. Blackwell. pp. 82-123 (2003)
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A Logical Form (LF) is a syntactic structure that is interpreted by the semantic component. For a particular structure to be a possible LF it has to be possible for syntax to generate it and for semantics to interpret it. The study of LF must therefore take into account both assumptions about syntax and about semantics, and since there is much disagreement in both areas, disagreements on LF have been plentiful. This makes the task of writing a survey article in the field fairly difficult, a difficulty that is amplified by the amount of material that needs to be covered if the result is going to be in any way representative. My response to this difficulty is to limit my objectives. As a start, I will confine myself to issues relating to the syntactic positions of Quantificational Noun Phrases (QNPs) at LF and to various interpretive consequences. But even within these relatively narrow confines, I will not attempt anything close to a comprehensive survey. Instead my goal will be restricted to the presentation of one leading idea and to the discussion of some evidence that might bear on it.1 Much research on the nature of LF has consisted in attempts to account for the meaning of sentences containing QNPs.



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