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This book provides an up-to-date introduction to the study of generics and pursues the enterprise of the influential Generic Book edited by Gregory Carlson and Jeffry Pelletier, which was published in 1995. Genericity is a key notion in the study of human cognition as it reveals our capacity to organize our perceived reality into classes and to describe regularities. The generic can be expressed at the level of a word or phrase (iethe potatoinThe Irish economy became dependent upon the potato) or an entire sentence (eg inJohn smokes a cigar after dinner, the generic aspect is a property of the expression, rather than any single word or phrase within it). This book gathers new work from senior and young researchers to reconsider the notion of genericity, examining the distinct contributions made by the determiner phrase (eg the notions of kind/individual) and the verbal predicate (eg the notions of permanency, disposition, ability, habituality, and plurality). Finally, in connection with the whole sentence, the analytic/synthetic distinction is discussed as well as the notion of normality. The book will appeal to both students and scholars in linguistics, philosophy and cognitive science
Table of Contents
1. Introduction, Alda Mari, Claire Beyssade, and Fabio Del Prete 2. Generic Plural and Mass Indefinites, Carmen Dobrovic-Sorin 3. The Scope of Bare Nominals, Bert Le Bruyn, Min Que, and Henriette de Swart 4. Free Relatives as Kind Denoting Terms, Stefan Hinterwimmer 5. Two Ways of 'Referring to Generalities' in German, Gerhard Schaden 6. Hab and Gen in the Expression of Habituality, Nora Boneh and Edit Doron 7. Bare Habituals and Singular Indefinites, Patricia Cabredo Hofherr 8. Imperfectivity and Habituality in Italian, Fabio Del Prete 9. Ability, Action, and Causation: From pure abilty to force, Anastasia Giannakidou and Eleni Staraki 10. On Dispositional Sentences, Paula Menedez-Benito 11. On the Distinction between Abstract States, Concrete States, and Tropes, Friederike Moltmann 12. More Truths About Generic Truth, Nicholas Asher and Francis Jeffry Pelletier 13. No Quantification Without Reinterpretation, Ariel Cohen 14. The Roots of Genericity: Indefinite singulars vs definite plurals, Francis Corblin 15. Definitional Generics, Manfred Krifka 16. Dutchman are Good Sailors: Generics and gradability, Bernhard Nickel References Index