Chris Kennedy

William H. Colvin Professor and Chair, Department of Linguistics and Humanities Collegiate Division
Rosenwald 205E // OH: Wednesdays 12-1 pm
(773) 834-1988

My work is geared towards discovering and describing the principles that are involved in relating linguistic forms to meanings; determining how this mapping is achieved through the interaction of properties of the linguistic system, properties of cognition more generally, and broader features of communicative contexts; and understanding the extent to which structural and typological features of language can be explained in terms of meaning.  Over the past two decades, I have explored these issues primarily through a focused exploration of the language of comparison, amount and degree, though my research has also touched on core issues in the syntax-semantics interface such as ellipsis, anaphora, and quantification.

Recent Publications 
  • Kennedy, C. and M. Willer. 2016. "Subjective Attitudes and Counterstance Contingency." Proceedings of Semantics and Linguistic Theory 26.
  • Leffel, T., M. Xiang and C. Kennedy. 2016. "Imprecision Is Pragmatic: Evidence from Referential Processing."  Proceedings of Semantics and Linguistic Theory 26.
  • Aparico, H., M. Xiang and C. Kennedy. 2015. "Processing Gradable Adjectives in Context: A Visual World Study." In D'Antonio, S., M. Moroney and C.R. Little (eds.) Proceedings of Semantics and Linguistic Theory 25.
  • Kennedy, C. 2015. "A 'De-Fregean' Semantics (and Neo-Gricean Pragmatics) for Modified and Unmodified Numerals." Semantics and Pragmatics 8.10:1-44.
  • Kennedy, C. 2014. "Predicates and Formulas: Evidence from Elllipsis." In Crnic, Luka and Uli Sauerland (eds.) The Art and Craft of Semantics: A Festschrift for Irene Heim, Volume 1. MIT Working Papers in Linguistics.
  • Kennedy, C. and P. Alrenga. 2013. "No More Shall We Part: Quantifiers in English Comparatives." Natural Language Semantics.
  • Kennedy, C. 2013. "Two Sources of Subjectivity: Qualitative Assessment and Dimensional Uncertainty." Inquiry 56.2-3:258-277.
  • Kennedy, C. 2013. "A Scalar Semantics for Scalar Readings of Number Words." In Caponigro, I. and C. Cecchetto (eds.), From Grammar to Meaning: The Spontaneous Logicality of Language. Cambridge University Press.
  • Grano, T. and C. Kennedy. 2012. "Mandarin Transitive Comparatives and the Grammar of Measurement." Journal of East Asian Linguistics 21:219-266
  • Kennedy, C. 2012. "The Composition of Incremental Change." In Demonte, V. and L. McNally (eds), Telicity, Change, State: A Cross-categorical View of Event Structure. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • PhD, University of California, Santa Cruz, 1997
  • MA, Yale University, 1992
  • BA, Dartmouth College, 1989