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date: 24 May 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The topics of adjective meaning and scalarity offer a prime example of the benefits of experimental research in formal semantics. This chapter presents a series of case studies illustrating how experimental approaches have been productively applied at various stages in the process of developing and evaluating theories of scalar meaning: (i) to support introspectively sourced judgements on which formal theories are based; (ii) to generate theoretically relevant data beyond that which is accessible to introspection and intuition; and (iii) to map out the empirical landscape, as a step towards formulating research questions and hypotheses. The article ends with a discussion of methodological issues, with a view to developing a body of best practices for experimental research in this area.

Keywords: adjective, gradability, scale, degree, methodology

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