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Publication Detail
Another look at the online processing of scalar inferences: an investigation of conflicting findings from visual-world eye-tracking studies
Previous psycholinguistic studies that compared the time course of interpretation for pragmatic some and literal all have returned mixed results. In particular, a delayed pragmatic some has been found in some studies but not in others. We explain these conflicting findings in terms of factors which are independent of incremental semantic/pragmatic interpretation. Two offline experiments provide evidence of the effect of these factors. Three visual-world studies showed that they influence participants’ eye movements in online comprehension. We introduce a new measure for investigating the time course of scalar inference. This new measure allows us to reason about the time course question based on the difference in verification procedures between numbers and quantifiers. Results from our visual-world studies suggest that deriving the pragmatic interpretation is not delayed relative to the semantic interpretation.
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