Focus is cross-linguistically associated with a number of different strategies, such as fronting, clefting, markers, and prosody. In some cases, the choice between one strategy or another is determined by language-specific rules, while in others, two or more strategies seem to be optional, and thus, somehow “unpredictable”. In this experimental study, we investigate the syntactic strategies employed in object focusing in Finnish and in Italian by examining the syntactic, semantic, and pragmatic features underlying the choice of a specific Focus strategy. In particular, the present experiment is aimed to investigate two strategies employed in both languages for object Focus realization, namely, Focus in situ and fronting, in order to verify whether the choice between them is influenced by a specific type of feature, a combination of Focus-related features, the verb category involved, or the interplay between these three factors. The incidence of alternative constructions, in particular clefting in Italian and the -hAn discourse marker in Finnish, is also taken into consideration, and relevant asymmetries are analyzed in a comprehensive, comparative account.

Ylinärä, E., Frascarelli, M., Carella, G. (2023). Confronting Focus Strategies in Finnish and in Italian: An Experimental Study on Object Focusing. LANGUAGES, Special Issue(8) [10.3390/languages8010032].

Confronting Focus Strategies in Finnish and in Italian: An Experimental Study on Object Focusing

Mara Frascarelli
Formal Analysis
;
Giorgio Carella
Investigation
2023-01-01

Abstract

Focus is cross-linguistically associated with a number of different strategies, such as fronting, clefting, markers, and prosody. In some cases, the choice between one strategy or another is determined by language-specific rules, while in others, two or more strategies seem to be optional, and thus, somehow “unpredictable”. In this experimental study, we investigate the syntactic strategies employed in object focusing in Finnish and in Italian by examining the syntactic, semantic, and pragmatic features underlying the choice of a specific Focus strategy. In particular, the present experiment is aimed to investigate two strategies employed in both languages for object Focus realization, namely, Focus in situ and fronting, in order to verify whether the choice between them is influenced by a specific type of feature, a combination of Focus-related features, the verb category involved, or the interplay between these three factors. The incidence of alternative constructions, in particular clefting in Italian and the -hAn discourse marker in Finnish, is also taken into consideration, and relevant asymmetries are analyzed in a comprehensive, comparative account.
2023
Ylinärä, E., Frascarelli, M., Carella, G. (2023). Confronting Focus Strategies in Finnish and in Italian: An Experimental Study on Object Focusing. LANGUAGES, Special Issue(8) [10.3390/languages8010032].
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11590/439572
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