UCL Working Papers in Linguistics 10 (1998)

The meaning of although: a Relevance Theoretic account


The meaning of concessive connectives like although is notoriously difficult to capture, mainly because these connectives do not contribute to the truth conditions of utterances containing them. In this paper, a Relevance Theoretic account of the meaning of although is given. The connective is analysed as encoding procedural meaning, constraining the inferential side of utterance interpretation. The procedure encoded by although leads the hearer to recover certain contextual assumptions, which in turn give rise to contextual effects. In this way, the use of although reduces the processing effort involved in utterance interpretation.

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