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date: 25 May 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Mentation does not proceed via the pursuit of random paths of thought, but instead by way of connections among ideas that are guided by certain types of associative principles. Since a primary function of language is to evoke thoughts in the minds of interlocutors, it is unsurprising that we would find evidence that these associative principles are at play in the manner in which language is structured and interpreted. This chapter provides a brief survey into some of the respects in which this is the case at the discourse and lexical levels. The data argue for a rich notion of event structure that makes crucial reference to different types of association, and illustrate how the importance of event structure in linguistic theory goes beyond merely accounting for the representation of events and the semantics of the words used to express them.

Keywords: discourse coherence, associative principles, pronoun interpretation, lexical semantics, presupposition

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