Root Contrastiveness and V2: A Supra-Informational Status. The Case of Two North-Eastern Italian Dialects

Authors

  • Simone De Cia The University of Manchester

Keywords:

V2, Contrastiveness, Northern Italian Dialects, Topic, Focus

Abstract

In the literature on Romance and Germanic V2, the fronted XP in the preverbal field is generally described as pragmatically salient, tacitly implying a crucial relationship between the V2 phenomenon and information structure. The degree to which discourse-pragmatics is pervasive in the V2 syntax is subject to cross-linguistic variation; nevertheless, the discussion of the phenomenon is often marginal in the literature. This paper sheds more light on the interaction between the V2 constraint and information structure by investigating two North-Eastern Italian dialects, Lamonat and Sovramontino, whose V2 constraint is solely linked to the unpackaging of discourse-pragmatic information. V2-motivated T-to-C movement ensures: (i) adjacency of the verb to the pragmatically salient element that, hence, receives discourse prominence; and (ii) the correct interpretation of contrastive elements, which are structurally realised in the preverbal field. The investigation of contrastive XPs suggests that contrastiveness should be regarded as an independent discourse-pragmatic status that supersedes topic and focus. In this respect, contrastiveness should not be considered a categorical notion, but a continuum in which the degree of contrastiveness is determined by the properties of the set containing the contrastive element.

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Published

2019-05-10

How to Cite

De Cia, S. (2019). Root Contrastiveness and V2: A Supra-Informational Status. The Case of Two North-Eastern Italian Dialects. IBERIA: An International Journal of Theoretical Linguistics, 10, 1–47. Retrieved from https://revistascientificas.us.es/index.php/iberia/article/view/6775

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