Making a definite be interpreted as an indefinite

Urtzi Etxeberria
2010 Journal of Portuguese Linguistics  
This paper proposes a novel analysis for the Basque definite determiner [-a] where it is argued, in opposition to other scholars (cf. Artiagoitia, 2002(cf. Artiagoitia, , 2006 where [-a] is argued to be a number marker when it gets the existential narrow scope interpretation), that the Basque definite determiner (despite its various interpretations) is just that, a definite determiner. Moreover, based on the behaviour of this element, this paper provides extra evidence in favour of the
more » ... our of the Neocarlsonian approach (cf. Chierchia, 1998b; Dayal, 2004) where the existential interpretation of bare nouns (BN) is shown to be dependent on the kind-level reading. This evidence should also be taken as proof against the socalled Ambiguity analysis (cf. Diesing, 1992; Kratzer, 1995; a.o.) or the Property-based approach to BNs, (cf. McNally, 1995; Laca, 1996; Dobrovie-Sorin & Laca, 2003) where BNs' existential interpretation is argued to be non-dependent on any other reading. Furthermore, observing the different interpretations that the definite determiner can force in Basque -referential, kind, and existential-, this language is shown to be typologically in between English and French (as argued by Etxeberria 2005). * The research conducing to this paper has benefited from the Basque Government projects GIC07/144-IT-210-07 and Hm-2008-1-10, from the project FR2559 Fèderation Typologie et Universaux Linguistiques, from the project TSABL (ANR-07-CORP-033) from ANR as well as from the project FFI2008-00240 from MCE. I'm very grateful to Roberta Pires and Carmen Dobrovie-Sorin for inviting me to write this paper and for their patience. Usual disclaimers apply. Etxeberria, in prep; for possible analyses) and we will only concentrate on its use on argumental position. The presence of the Basque D is also necessary with strong quantifiers (cf. Milsark 1977) where it has been argued to be contextually restricting the quantificational domain in the overt syntax (cf. Etxeberria
doi:10.5334/jpl.109 fatcat:wpz2ojr2erhw3atieqwvsokokq