Marlijn Meijer (Uni Köln)

Responding not

In this talk, I consider English embedded polar responses involving not, such as (1B).

A: Is John coming to the party?
B: I hope not.

B's response conveys that s/he hopes that John is not coming to the party. Cushing (1972) argued that not in (1B) is not a regular negation, but a negative sentential proform. Kramer and Rawlins (2009) suggested for responses similar to (1B) – such as Maybe not – that they involve ellipsis. In this talk, I will evaluate these proposal and put forth a more parsimonious proposal in which not in (1B) is a regular negation co-occuring with a null proform.