We are very happy to announce the next talk in the Semantics Colloquium, which will take place on Thursday, February 14, 4 – 6 pm in IG 4.301.

Jan Köpping (Goethe University) will present “What it takes to be unique”.

Abstract: Definite descriptions can be used in a multitude of ways: they can be used deictically and anaphorically, and they have de re as well as de dicto interpretations, etc. Some properties go hand in hand with several but not all of these uses, especially the infamous ‘uniqueness condition’ that seems to be present in ‘presuppositional’ but absent in anaphoric uses of the definite article. In this talk, I want to show what it needs to transform Irene Heim’s File Change Semantics — a system designed to account for anaphoric uses — into a framework that captures definite descriptions in such a way that uniqueness-effects only arise when they should without postulating an ambiguity of the definite article.

You are all cordially invited.