The Syntax of Mirative Focus Fronting: Evidence from French

J. Marc Authier, Liliane Haegeman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

Cruschina (2009, 2011) argues against the general claim (cf. Rizzi 1997) that focus fronting is possible only when associated with contrast and proposes, based on data from Sicilian and Sardinian, that corrective focus (CFoc) fronting and mirative focus (MFoc) fronting target distinct left periphery projections. One of the goals of this paper will be to provide independent evidence for this claim drawn from French, a language which we will show only allows MFoc fronting. A second goal will be to provide a much-needed semantic characterization of MFoc. We will show that while MFoc fronting constructions and wh-exclamatives pattern alike in terms of information structure, the former differ semantically from the latter in having what Nouwen and Chernilovskaya (2015) call an e-level rather than an i-level expressive content.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationStudies in Natural Language and Linguistic Theory
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media B.V.
Pages39-63
Number of pages25
DOIs
StatePublished - 2019

Publication series

NameStudies in Natural Language and Linguistic Theory
Volume95
ISSN (Print)0924-4670
ISSN (Electronic)2215-0358

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Language and Linguistics

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