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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter 2021

The Role of Presuppositions and Default Implicatures in Framing Effects

María Caamaño-Alegre

Abstract

Framing effects have hardly been studied from the philosophy of language. The variations in how subjects respond to positively or negatively framed descriptions of the same issue have received attention from social science research, where, nevertheless, a naïve understanding of speech interpretation has undermined the different explanations offered. The present paper explores the semantic-pragmatic side of framing effects and provides an explanation of this phenomenon in terms of pragmatic presuppositions and default implicatures. It is argued that the problem of valence framing includes two overlapping phenomena; on the pollster’s side, there are wrong pragmatic presuppositions as to the kind of context that is relevant for survey interpretation, whereas the addressee proceeds by automatically connecting a certain kind of frame to a certain kind of implicit information related to the most common context of use.

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