Bipolar Items

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This article asserts that the Japanese wide-scope mo ‘even’ in simple sentences are bipolar items (BPIs) antilicensed or forbidden by negation and licensed in a non-monotonic (NM) environment. BPIs share the features of negative polarity items (NPIs) as well as positive polarity items (PPIs). The Dutch ooit ‘ever’, the Serbo-Croatian i-series ‘and/even’, and the Hungarian is-series ‘and/even’ are antilicensed by clausemate negation and licensed by extraclausal negation (van der Wouden, 1997; Progovac, 1994; Szabolcsi, 2002) or non-monotonic negative (and positive, for Serbo-Croatian) emotive predicates. Adding an NPI rescues BPIs in uncomfortable clausemate negation.

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