UCL Discovery
UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

Focus and the syntax-phonology interface

Szendrői, Kriszta; (2001) Focus and the syntax-phonology interface. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London).

[img] Text
Szendroi_1327622_thesis.pdf
Access restricted to UCL open access staff

Download (8MB)

Abstract

The aim of this work is to describe the different ways languages express focus and to explain why languages use exactly these ways. I give a detailed account of focus in three languages: Hungarian, English and Italian. The work is based on the assumption that the following principle operates at the interface between the grammar and the conceptual-intentional system of the mind. (1) Focus Interpretation: The focus of a clause is any syntactic constituent that contains the main stress of the intonational phrase corresponding to the clause. (Following Reinhart 1995:62) It is widely believed that languages may mark focus by a special word order only. I argue against this view in my discussion about Hungarian. In Hungarian, a special word order is used when a particular element is in focus. I argue that this special word order is intimately related to the way main stress is assigned in the language. Thus I establish a crucial link between two types of focus marking: one which uses a phonological marker, e.g. English, and one which marks focus by special word order, e.g. Hungarian, reducing the latter ultimately to phonology. Subsequently I describe the architecture of the grammar from the perspective of focus marking. I show that languages that mark focus by main stress may realise marked focus patterns in three different ways. Furthermore, I show that these three ways are the only possible ways to express focus by main stress. There is no other possibility available. From a theoretical perspective this work intends to investigate the role of the different modules of the grammar, in particular of syntax and phonology and the mapping between the two, in the representation certain pragmatic notions such as focus.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: Focus and the syntax-phonology interface
Event: UCL
Language: English
Additional information: This thesis has been digitised by ProQuest.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Linguistics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1327622
Downloads since deposit
0Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item