This paper investigates the interpretation of unbounded (scalar) adjective antonyms with and without negation such as (not) narrow – (not) wide and bounded adjective antonyms with and without negation such as (not) dead – (not) alive as well as their interpretations with approximating degree modifiers, fairly and almost, respectively. The investigation was designed to test the boundedness hypothesis, namely that the negator is sensitive to the configuration of the adjective in terms of boundedness. The data are Swedish and the results of the experiments show that negated unbounded adjectives do not evoke the interpretation of their antonyms, i.e. not wide does not equal ‘narrow’. The results of the experiments with bounded adjectives with and without negation showed that some of the negated adjectives were interpreted as synonyms of their antonyms, i.e. not alive equals ‘dead’. However, this pattern was not consistent across the bounded adjectives, since a number of them readily lent themselves to partial readings. Four types of bounded antonyms emerged from the participants’ judgements. For both unbounded and bounded adjectives, the interpretations of the approximating degree modifiers and the adjectives were not significantly different from the negated adjectives.
|Name||Journal of Diabetes and Metabolic Disorders|