Left peripheral focus

  • In Czech, German, and many other languages, part of the semantic focus of the utterance can be moved to the left periphery of the clause. The main generalization is that only the leftmost accented part of the semantic focus can be moved. We propose that movement to the left periphery is generally triggered by an unspecific edge feature of C (Chomsky 2008) and its restrictions can be attributed to requirements of cyclic linearization, modifying the theory of cyclic linearization developed by Fox and Pesetsky (2005). The crucial assumption is that structural accent is a direct consequence of being linearized at merge, thus it is indirectly relevant for (locality restrictions on) movement. The absence of structural accent correlates with given-ness. Given elements may later receive (topic or contrastive) accents, which accounts for fronting in multiple focus/contrastive topic constructions. Without any additional assumptions, the model can account for movement of pragmatically unmarked elements to the left periphery (‘formal fronting’,In Czech, German, and many other languages, part of the semantic focus of the utterance can be moved to the left periphery of the clause. The main generalization is that only the leftmost accented part of the semantic focus can be moved. We propose that movement to the left periphery is generally triggered by an unspecific edge feature of C (Chomsky 2008) and its restrictions can be attributed to requirements of cyclic linearization, modifying the theory of cyclic linearization developed by Fox and Pesetsky (2005). The crucial assumption is that structural accent is a direct consequence of being linearized at merge, thus it is indirectly relevant for (locality restrictions on) movement. The absence of structural accent correlates with given-ness. Given elements may later receive (topic or contrastive) accents, which accounts for fronting in multiple focus/contrastive topic constructions. Without any additional assumptions, the model can account for movement of pragmatically unmarked elements to the left periphery (‘formal fronting’, Frey 2005). Crucially, the analysis makes no reference at all to concepts of information structure in the syntax, in line with the claim of Chomsky (2008) that UG specifies no direct link between syntax and information structure.show moreshow less

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Metadaten
Author:Gisbert Fanselow, Denisa Lenertová
URN:urn:nbn:de:kobv:517-opus4-428198
DOI:https://doi.org/10.25932/publishup-42819
ISSN:1866-8364
Parent Title (German):Humanwissenschaftliche Reihe
Subtitle (English):mismatches between syntax and information structure
Series (Serial Number):Postprints der Universität Potsdam : Humanwissenschaftliche Reihe (596)
Document Type:Postprint
Language:English
Date of first Publication:2020/02/06
Year of Completion:2010
Publishing Institution:Universität Potsdam
Release Date:2020/02/06
Tag:A-bar-movement; Accentuation; Cyclic linearization; Czech; Focus; German; Information structure; Intervention effects; Prosody-syntax interface; Topic
Issue:596
Pagenumber:43
Source:Natural Language & Linguistic Theory 29 (2011) S. 169–209 DOI: 10.1007/s11049-010-9109-x
Organizational units:Humanwissenschaftliche Fakultät
Dewey Decimal Classification:4 Sprache / 40 Sprache / 400 Sprache
Peer Review:Referiert
Publication Way:Open Access
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung-Nicht kommerziell 2.0 Generic (cc by-nc 2.0)
Notes extern:Bibliographieeintrag der Originalveröffentlichung/Quelle