Implicating without intending on the Gricean account of implicature | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 4, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 1757-1952
  • E-ISSN: 1757-1960



The aim of this article is to support the position that what is implicated is not determined by speaker intention, a claim which runs counter to the widely accepted position that what is implicated is determined by speaker intention. This article argues for the conclusion that communication of conversational implicatures can be unintended by presenting three examples in which Grice’s criteria for the completion of conversational implicature are satisfied but the speaker does not intend to implicate anything. The article ends with the suggestion that rules governing implicatures are importantly normative and that linguistic communal norms account for their normativity.


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