The interaction between topicalization and structural constraints : evidence from Yucatec Maya

  • This article deals with the syntactic and pragmatic properties of left dislocated constituents in Yucatec Maya. It has been argued that these constituents are topics, which implies that a particular structural configuration, namely left dislocation displays a 1:1 correspondence to a particular discourse function. We present evidence that the discourse properties of left dislocation are not uniform: only a subset of the left dislocated constituents qualify as topics in the strict sense, while other instances of left dislocation are better explained if we assume a structural constraint that bans the postverbal occurrence of subject constituents in a particular syntactic configuration. Our empirical findings show that though the occurrence of word order possibilities in discourse is not random, it is not necessarily determined by a unique licensing condition.

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Author:Stavros Skopeteas, Elisabeth Verhoeven
Document Type:Article
Year of first Publication:2009
Year of Completion:2009
Release Date:2017/03/25
Source:Linguistic review. - ISSN 0167-6318. - 26 (2009), 2-3, S. 239 - 259
Organizational units:Humanwissenschaftliche Fakultät / Strukturbereich Kognitionswissenschaften / Department Linguistik
Peer Review:Referiert