A1: 1st Phase (Fanselow, Féry)

Phonology and Syntax of Focusing and Topicalisation

[ This phase of the project is completed. It was in progress from 01.07.2003 until 30.06.2007 ]


Project A1 examines the interaction of phonology, syntax, and information structure from both a theoretical and an experimental perspective. Our aim is to develop a theory of information structure that takes syntactic and phonological aspects equally into account, and which is able to cover and interpret gradient phenomena. In the tradition of generative grammar it is assumed that grammatical principles can be clearly assigned to modules such as syntax, phonology, and semantics, and that these modules interact only as blocks. However, the expression of focus, topic, and other information structural components shows that in many cases these components interact in such a way as to attain an optimal rendition of information structure. So, for example, focused and topicalized phrases show up in prosodically preferred positions, and metrical principles enforce variations of word order which are reflected in syntax.

Project A1 examines and develops proposals on prosodic phrasing that are not based on a primacy of syntactic structures. An optimality theoretic approach allowing for the simultaneous influence of different factors serves as a working hypothesis. We intend to develop a model for the phonology of information structure; to this end, we will conduct a series of experimental studies.

Das Projekt A1 überprüft und entwickelt Vorschläge zur prosodischen Phrasierung weiter, die nicht von einem Primat syntaktischer Strukturen ausgehen. Als Arbeitshypothese dient ein optimalitätstheoretischer Ansatz, der den simultanen Einfluss verschiedener Faktoren erlaubt. Das theoretische Ziel ist die Erstellung eines Modells für die Phonologie der Informationsstruktur; dazu werden auch eine Reihe experimenteller Untersuchungen durchgeführt.

Full description 1st phase SFB 632 / A1 (extract from the application)  pdficon small

Principal Investigators

Prof. Dr. Gisbert Fanselow, University of Potsdam  contact

Prof. Dr. Caroline Féry, University of Potsdam, now: Goethe-Universität Frankfurt  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  world


publish Description   user Staff   document-library Publications   communication Activities   archives 1st Phase   archives 2nd Phase