'Do'-support in a Sicilian variety, an Italian pseudo-cleft, and the packaging of information

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Abstract

A parallel is drawn between a Sicilian structure with do-support strategy, and a type of pseudo-cleft in Italian in which a do-verb occurs. These structures are examined from three different perspectives. First, morpho-syntax: the two clause-types share a number of formal aspects, which include the do-verb, a lexical verb in the infinitive, and the sharing of the same subject by both verbs. The second has to do with their packaging of information: in both cases, higher communicative prominence is given to an event (VP) rather than a participant (NP or PP). The expression of the event is broken down into two separable components, its existence (an event is expressed without being specified, e.g. All she does is complain), and denomination (i.e. the naming of the event, e.g. All she does is complain). These components can be considered as features encapsulated in the do-verb and the lexical verb in the infinitive respectively. Such encoding is closely related to the third perspective called for in the analysis: pragmatics. Both clause-types presuppose the existence of a certain event, which works as a background against which only the denomination of the event is foregrounded.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteInformation Structure and its Interfaces
Pagine153-168
Numero di pagine16
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2009

Serie di pubblicazioni

NomeInterface explorations

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