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date: 23 May 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Negation has long been of interest to logicians and philosophers, and relatively recently to psycholinguists and pragmatists. In terms of the processing of negation, psycholinguistics studies have shown two effects that call for an explanation: the first is the asymmetry between its frequent use in natural language and its apparent processing costs, often reported in psycholinguistics studies; the second is the finding that, in early stages of processing, negation seems to be ignored and attention seems to be focused on its positive argument. In terms of pragmatic functions, it has been shown that despite its simple semantic meaning, negation interacts with context to produce rich pragmatic effects. Both negation processing and its pragmatic functions present puzzles that cannot be explained by its semantic function.

Keywords: negation, QUD, verification, context, accommodation, plausible denial

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