The interpretation of plural mass nouns in Greek

Evripidis Tsiakmakis, Joan Manel Borras Comes, M.Teresa Espinal*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
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This paper focuses on the interpretation of what has been considered an expletive marker in the grammar of the Greek nominal domain: the plural number of mass nouns. We present the results of an experimental investigation on the interpretation of plural mass nouns by native speakers of this language, and we propose a speech act analysis according to which at the time of producing utterances that contain plural mass nouns the speaker performs two speech acts: an assertion and an expressive speech act by which (s)he publicly commits to an emotive stance of dislike towards the expressed proposition φ. This stance is analyzed as an emotive judgment with respect to φ, the expression of which directly transfers the speaker's emotion from the conversation into the speaker and addressee's common ground.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-226
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Pragmatics
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2021


  • Commitments
  • Greek
  • Plural mass nouns
  • Speech acts


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