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On the Proper Treatment of Tense In English

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Authors
Song, Mean-Young
Issue Date
2005
Publisher
서울대학교 언어교육원
Citation
어학연구, Vol.41 No.4, pp. 829-854
Keywords
tensedefinite tenseindefinite tensethe quantification approachthe referential approachchoice functionspresuppositionstemporal predicates
Abstract
In this paper, I argue against the two major approaches to the semantics of tense: the quantificational approach and the referential approach. The difference between them lies in the fact that the former is in favor of the indefinite view of tense, whereas the latter the definite view of tense. Tenses are characterized by the variability in the sense that they can be interpreted as being indefinite in some context or definite in other context. The difficulty the two approaches are faced with is that neither takes an appropriate account of the variability of tense. To provide a proper semantic treatment of tense, I propose in this paper a treatment of tense which incorporates choice functions. The choice functions, which apply to a non-empty set of intervals, pick the most salient time the speaker might have in mind at the utterance time. This might assist in capturing the variability of tense. (Mean-Young Song, Dongguk University)
ISSN
0254-4474
Language
English
URI
https://hdl.handle.net/10371/90801
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Language Education Institute (언어교육원)Language Research (어학연구)Language Research (어학연구) Volume 41 Number 1/4 (2005)
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