2 thoughts on “English locative inversions are not special in terms of their discourse function

  1. Hi folks; I really enjoyed your abstract, but couldn’t attend your talk as I was in a concurrent session. Your results surprised me since I have fairly strong intuitions about simple cases; e.g., (a) is far worse for me than any of (b-d).

    (a) There’s a weapon in the room. Behind a box lies the weapon.
    (b) There’s a box in the room. Behind the box lies a weapon.
    (c) There’s a weapon in the room. The weapon lies behind a box.
    (d) There’s a box in the room. A weapon lies behind the box.

    Your discourses are heavier, introducing six discourse-new entities in the context sentence. Do you think this could have played a role (e.g., whereby, when interpreting “a box” in a PP subject, participants didn’t notice that ‘boxes’ didn’t appear in the context) ? Or are my intuitions just off here? Thanks, and apologies if this was addressed in the talk!

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