Talk: No duermo lo suficiente: spanish "lo" on degree phrases

The ultimate goal of this projects is to elaborate a morphosyntactic and semantic characterization for these phrases that will open a path to a better understanding of the lo particle with a degree use.

In the Spanish language, the neuter definite article lo can be used to express entities that have no gender, such as sets, propositional content or properties (1a). However, this particle can be used to denote degrees, as well (1b).

a) No trajo _lo que le pidió su tío_.
He did not bring _what his uncle asked him_.
b) No duermo _lo suficiente para sentirme descansada_.
I do not sleep _enough to feel rested_.

These two uses differ in their behavior. As an example, while the referential use can be replaced (1a) with a pronoun such as eso (that), the same cannot be done for the other use (1b). This shows a lack of referenciality for definite entities and signals that the use in 1b cannot be explained using standard definiteness theory as it has been done for the referential use.
My hypothesis is that, in cases as 1b, lo operates at a degree level and it is used to denote an ideal quantity or degree on a given context, i.e. lo suficiente expresses a specific ammount of sleep that happens to be the optimal for the speaker to feel rested.
I propose a compositional semantics analysis for these phrases in which the interpretation of this particle can be found, by using Frege’s Principle of compositionality as an axis. This principle entails the assumption that the meaning of a complex expression is a function of the meanings of its parts considering the rules used to combine them.


Day: 2020-11-20
Start time: 15:15
Duration: 00:30
Room: Agathe Lasch
Track: Theoretical Linguistics
Language: en




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