The Grammar of Emphasis: From Information Structure to the Expressive Dimension
The Grammar of Emphasis: From Information Structure to the Expressive Dimension

The Grammar of Emphasis: From Information Structure to the Expressive Dimension

by Andreas Trotzke


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This book reconsiders the linguistic notion of emphasis. For many, the concept of emphasis is confined to information structure. However, our understanding of the grammatical reflexes of emphasis is only partial as long as the expressive side of utterances is not taken into account. The book explores similarities, differences, and interactions between information structure and the expressive dimension of language in the domain of natural language grammar.

Specifically, this monograph demonstrates that specific word order options, sometimes in combination with discourse particles, yield meaning effects that are typical for the expressive side of utterances and endow them with an exclamative flavor. Approaching this issue from a syntactic point of view, the book shows that there are syntactic categories (e.g., a certain class of particle verbs) and word orders (e.g., certain fronting patterns involving discourse particles) that directly connect to expressive meaning components. The work presented in this monograph combines theoretical analysis with experimental evidence from both perception and production studies.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781501515033
Publisher: De Gruyter
Publication date: 05/22/2017
Series: Studies in Generative Grammar [SGG] Series , #131
Pages: 200
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.06(h) x (d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Andreas Trotzke, Stanford University, USA

Table of Contents

Preface v

I The notion of emphasis

1 Introduction 3

1.1 The notion of emphasis 3

1.2 The syntactic approach to emphasis 4

1.3 Emphasis for contrast and information structure 11

2 The notion of emphasis for intensity 14

2.1 Emphatic focus and marked word order 14

2.2 Emphatic focus in a cross-linguistic perspective 21

2.3 The mirative use: Experimental evidence 28

2.4 The reprimand use and the notion of emphasis for intensity 33

2.5 Outline of the proposal 36

II Empirical domains of emphasis

3 Particle topicalization and emphasis for intensity 41

3.1 Particle verbs: Topicalization and semantic transparency 41

3.1.1 Semantic transparency: A new classification 42

3.1.2 An acceptability study on particle topicalization 50

3.2 Expressive conditions on particle topicalization 58

3.2.1 The class of expressive particle verbs 58

3.2.2 An acceptability study on expressive particle verbs 69

3.3 The representation of different particle verb classes 77

4 Emphasis for intensity across clause types 85

4.1 Emphasis for intensity and clause types 85

4.1.1 Emphasis for intensity and exclamatives 85

4.1.2 Emphasis for intensity and special questions 87

4.2 Emphasis for intensity and [wh+Prt]-questions 92

4.2.1 Left peripheral discourse particles and adverbs 95

4.2.2 Deriving the constituency of [wh+Prt]-constructions 98

4.2.3 The syntactic representation of emphatic [wh+Prt]-questions 118

4.2.4 The phonetics of emphasis for intensity in [wh+Prt]-questions: A production study 126

III A unified account of emphasis

5 Emphasis and German clause structure 137

5.1 The German left periphery: Emphasis for contrast 137

5.2 A unified account of left peripheral emphasis 140

5.3 'Remnant' issues 147

6 Conclusion: From information structure to the expressive dimension 151

References 153

Appendix A 165

Appendix B 177

Appendix C 180

Appendix D 185

Index 191

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