We are happy to announce a roundtable discussion by Cécile Meier (Frankfurt), Carla Umbach (Cologne), and Louise McNally (Barcelona) in the Semantics Colloquium.

The talk will take place on campus in IG 4.301.

Title: Ways of adjectival modification

Date: November 24

Time: 4 pm – 6 pm ct


This week we will have a round table discussion on the topic of nominal modification. Participants are Louise McNally, Carla Umbach and me, Cécile Meier. Louise McNally is currently a Mercator Fellow at Frankfurt University and Carla Umbach is a Goethe Teaching professor at Frankfurt University. We are all concerned with the semantics of noun phrases, modification and reference to kinds. Semantic research states that there are different types of kinds. Carlson introduced well-established kinds, Dayal and Krifka discuss regular kinds, atomic kinds and sub-kinds, and taxonomic readings of kind-referring expressions (see also Pelletier’s work). 

What is not well-researched is the effect of modification. McNally argues that there are so-called relational adjectives modifying kinds instead of tokens, and Umbach argues that ad-hoc kinds can be established by similarity demonstratives. I discuss noun types that seem to show regular kind readings but no atomic kind or sub-kind readings and the difference in the noun type shows up in a differences in modification patterns. The goal of the round table is to finding out how these lines of research relate to each other.