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Verbal Communication by Louis de Saussure, Andrea Rocci

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Victoria Escandell-Vidal

6Understanding implicit meaning understanding

Abstract: Human communication has a unique feature: speakers do not need to encode the whole set of representations they may want to convey; rather, they can use linguistic expressions as evidence for the intended message and rely on the hearers’ inferential abilities to include some extra content during utterance interpretation. Implicatures are additional assumptions communicated by the speaker in a non-overt way; they are independent from the explicitly communicated content and cannot be predicted from the sentence meaning alone. This chapter reviews the main approaches to implicit meanings and to the inferential processes involved in implicit meaning understanding, including ...

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