On the (in)definiteness of impersonal pronouns

  • Sarah Zobel University of Tübingen
Keywords: impersonal pronouns, German, man, existential use, discourse anaphoric potential


This paper addresses the question whether impersonal pronouns should be analyzed as indefinite or definite expressions based on their discourse anaphoric potential. I present new data that support the claim that impersonal pronouns should be analyzed as neither (see Koenig & Mauner 1999). I sketch a formal analysis that captures this behaviour. Furthermore, I show that the availability of quantificational variability effects for impersonal pronouns is not foolproof evidence for their indefiniteness as is usually assumed in the literature (see Malamud 2013).


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How to Cite
ZobelS. (2016). On the (in)definiteness of impersonal pronouns. Linguistica, 56(1), 363-374. https://doi.org/10.4312/linguistica.56.1.363-374