Subjunctive relative clauses modifying an indefinite expression are licensed in the environments created by strong intensional predicates and by negation, antecedents of conditionals, and interrogatives. The author's proposal is to associate to subjunctive mood marking a presupposition, requiring the existence of modal bases against which the clause marked with that mood needs to be evaluated. It is then shown that these modal bases may serve to extend the domain of quantification from which the indefinite picks up its reference. This widening of the domain, combined with informativeness requirements, provides an explanation not only for the distributional pattern of subjunctive relative clauses that modifies an indefinite, but also for the cases of modification of universal determiners, a fact that was previously unaccounted for.
Proceedings of the 2004 Texas Linguistics Society Conference: Issues at the Semantics-Pragmatics Interface
edited by Pascal Denis, Eric McCready, Alexis Palmer, and Brian Reese
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