Focus Structure in Generative Grammar

Focus Structure in Generative Grammar : An Integrated Syntactic,Semantic and Intonational Approach

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Description

The notion of focus structure in this work refers to the distinction between categorical, thetic and identificational sentences. The central claim is that the syntactic representation of every sentence has to encode which of these types of focus structure is realized. This claim is discussed in great detail with respect to syntax, intonation and semantics within the framework of the Minimalist Program. It is shown that the incorporation of focus structure into syntax offers new perspectives for a solution of vexing problems in syntax and semantics. For example, fronting (preposing, 'topicalisation') is treated as a syntactic operation which clearly belongs to core grammar, i.e. is not optional or 'stylistic'; the semantic notion of quantifier raising is dispensed with in favour of a focus structural treatment of phenomena which gave rise to it. The book appeals to generative linguists and to functional linguists who do not believe in an unbridgeable gap between the formal and functional analysis of language.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 442 pages
  • 154.9 x 223.5 x 30.5mm | 748.44g
  • John Benjamins Publishing Co
  • Benjamins (John) North America Inc.,US
  • Netherlands
  • English
  • 1588115038
  • 9781588115034

Table of contents

1. Abbreviations; 2. I. Introduction and overview; 3. II. The syntactic framework and the FocP-hypothesis; 4. III. A review of previous work; 5. IV. Information structure and focus structure; 6. V. Features, checking theory and semantic implications; 7. VI. Intonational aspects of the FocP-hypothesis; 8. VII. FocP-related English syntax; 9. VIII. Semantic issues related to the FocP-hypothesis; 10. IX. Aspects of the syntax of languages other than English; 11. X. Summary and general conclusion; 12. Notes; 13. References; 14. Appendix: Schematic F0 contours; 15. Name Index; 16. Subject Indexshow more