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Empirical investigation of focus and exhaustivity in Akan

  • It has been observed for many African languages that focussed subjects have to appear outside of their syntactic base position, as opposed to focussed objects, which can remain in-situ. This is known as subjectobject asymmetry of focus marking, which Fiedler et al. (2010) claim to hold also for Akan. Genzel (2013), on the other hand, argues that Akan does not exhibit a subject-object focus asymmetry. A questionnaire study and a production experiment were carried out to investigate whether focussed subjects may indeed be realized in-situ in Akan. The results suggest that (i) focussed subjects do not have to be obligatorily realized ex-situ, and that (ii) the syntactic preference for the realization of a focussed subject highly depends on exhaustivity.

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Author:Simone Pfeil, Susanne GenzelGND, Frank Kügler
ISSN:1614-4708 (print)
ISSN:1866-4725 (online)
Parent Title (English):Interdisciplinary studies on information structure : ISIS ; working papers of the SFB 632
Publisher:Universitätsverlag Potsdam
Place of publication:Potsdam
Document Type:Article
Year of first Publication:2015
Year of Completion:2015
Publishing Institution:Universität Potsdam
Release Date:2015/11/13
Tag:Akan; exhaustivity; focus; in-situ; subjects
First Page:87
Last Page:109
Organizational units:Zentrale und wissenschaftliche Einrichtungen / Sonderforschungsbereich 632 - Informationsstruktur
Dewey Decimal Classification:8 Literatur / 80 Literatur, Rhetorik, Literaturwissenschaft / 800 Literatur und Rhetorik
Publication Way:Open Access
Collections:Universität Potsdam / Schriftenreihen / Interdisciplinary studies on information structure : ISIS ; working papers of the SFB 632, ISSN 1866-4725 / ISIS (2015) 19
Licence (German):License LogoKeine Nutzungslizenz vergeben - es gilt das deutsche Urheberrecht