Paper: Presuppositions As Beliefs

ACL ID C88-1052
Title Presuppositions As Beliefs
Venue International Conference on Computational Linguistics
Session Main Conference
Year 1988

Most theori~s of presupposition implicitly assume that pre- supposition,; are facts, and that all agents involved in a discourse share belief in the presuppositions that it gen- erates. These unrealistic assumptions can be eliminated if each presupposition is treated as the belief of an agent. However, it ~s not enough to consider only the beliefs of the speaker; we show that the beliefs of other agents are often involved. We describe a new model, including an improved definition of presupposition, that treats presuppositions as beliefs and considers the beliefs of all agents involved in the discourse. We show that treating presuppositions as beliefs makes it possible to explain phenomena that cannot be cxplainecl otherwise.