Focus scrambling in dutch a word order option in decline
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Focus Scrambling in Dutch: A Word Order Option in Decline. Jack Hoeksema University of Groningen. Scrambling. appearance of objects and predicates to the left of adverbials appearance to the left of the subject usually treated as leftward movement or in terms of base-generation.

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Focus Scrambling in Dutch: A Word Order Option in Decline

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Focus scrambling in dutch a word order option in decline

Focus Scrambling in Dutch:A Word Order Option in Decline

Jack Hoeksema

University of Groningen


Scrambling

Scrambling

  • appearance of objects and predicates to the left of adverbials

  • appearance to the left of the subject

  • usually treated as leftward movement

  • or in terms of base-generation


Scrambling is found in

Scrambling is found in

  • German

  • Dutch

  • Japanese

  • Korean

  • Hindi

  • SOV-languages in general?


Scrambling is semantically relevant

Scrambling is semantically relevant

  • Hans hat oft ein Buch mitgenommen

    hans has often a book along-taken

    “Hans often took a book along”

  • Hans hat ein Buch oft mitgenommen

    hans has a book often along-taken

    “Hans often took a particular book along”


Scrambling of indefinites

Scrambling of indefinites

  • specific (a certain)

  • partitive (some of the)

  • de re

  • generic

    Cf. inter alia

    Helen de Hoop, 1992, Case Configuration and Noun Phrase Interpretation


No scrambling of indefinites

No Scrambling of Indefinites

  • when they are predicates

  • or occur in light-verb constructions

    De Hoop: scrambling only possible for generalized quantifiers (type <<et>t>)

    not for predicates (type <et>)


Examples

Examples

  • Ik ben niet een held

    I am not a hero

  • *Ik ben een held niet

    I am a hero not

  • Ik moet nog een plas doen

    I must still a pee do

    “I still have to take a leak”

  • *Ik moet een plas nog doen

    I must a pee still do


Definite dps in light verb structures

Definite DPs in light-verb structures

  • We moeten nog de was doen

    we must still the wash do

    “We still have to do the laundry”

  • We moeten de was nog doen

    “id”

    De Hoop (2003): definites take type <e>, and may optionally scramble, without semantic consequences


Focus scrambling neeleman 1994

Focus Scrambling(Neeleman 1994)

  • Jan is nog nooit snel geweest

    Jan is yet never fast been

    “Jan has never been fast yet”

  • *Jan is snel nog nooit geweest

  • Jan is nog nooit zo snel geweest

    Jan is yet never so fast been

    “Jan has never been so fast yet”

  • Jan is zo snel nog nooit geweest

    Jan is so fast yet never been

    “Jan has never been so fast yet”


F scrambling across subjects

F-Scrambling across subjects

  • omdat zo snel alleen een catamaran is

    because so fast only a catamaran is

    “because only a catamaran is that fast”

  • omdat zulke ogen zelfs Audrey niet had

    because such eyes even Audrey not had

    “because not even Audrey had such eyes”


Term focus scrambling a misnomer

Term Focus Scrambling: A Misnomer

Focus is not a sufficient condition:

  • omdat de koningin alleen biefstuk at

    because the queen only beefsteak ate

    “because the queen only ate steak”

  • *omdat alleen biefstuk de koningin at


Focus scrambling in dutch a word order option in decline

In fact, Neeleman only gives examples

involving the deictic items zo ‘so’

and zulk ‘such’

Delimitation problem: What is the set of items

which may undergo F-scrambling?

(To be partially answered in the remainder

of this talk)


Contrastive pitch accent

Contrastive Pitch Accent

Bayer and Kornfilt 1994, Choi 2001

F-scrambled items bear pitch, but are not new to the discourse (contrastive topics)

Items that scramble are deictic/definite

Possibilities in Dutch more restricted than in

German


German vs dutch

German vs Dutch

  • weil seine Mutter jeder mag (German)

    because his mother everyone likes

    “because everyone likes his mother”

  • *omdat zijn moeder iedereen mag (Dutch)

    because his mother everyone likes


Some properties of f scrambling

Some properties of F-scrambling

  • syntactically less restrictive than ordinary scrambling (incl scrambling across subjects, scrambling of predicates, etc.)

  • semantically inert (reconstruction effects):

    scrambled order is equivalent to nonscrambled order


Reconstruction

Reconstruction

Anaphora (backward binding)

  • Dat we zo’n foto van zichzelf zelfs deze

    that we s/a photo of himself even this

    acteur niet tonen

    actor not show

    “That we are not even going to show this actor such a picture of himself”


More reconstruction effects

More reconstruction effects

Reverse variable-binding:

Wen glaubst du mag jeder?

who believe you likes everyone

“Who do you believe everyone likes?”

Ich glaube dass seine Mutter jeder[NOM] mag

I believe that his mother everyone likes

“I believe that everyone likes his mother”


Negative polarity triggering

Negative polarity triggering

zo’n vaart lopen ‘walk that quickly’

  • Dat loopt niet zo’n vaart

    that walks not such a speed

    “That won’t happen in a hurry”

  • Dat loopt zo’n vaart niet

    that walks such speed not

    “That won’t happen in a hurry”


Een twee drie

een-twee-drie

  • Het schip zinkt niet zo een-twee-drie

    the ship sinks not so one-two-three

    “The ship won’t sink all that quickly”

  • Het schip zinkt zo een-twee-drie niet

  • *Het schip zinkt een-twee-drie niet


In het minst

in het minst

  • Helga was niet in het minst tevreden

    Helga was not in the least content

  • Helga was in het minst niet tevreden

    (NB: absence of zo/zulk)


De minste

de minste

  • Mij kost het niet de minste inspanning

    me cost it not the slightest effort

    “It won’t cost me the slightest effort”

  • † Mij kost het de minste inspanning niet

    me cost it the slightest effort not


No focus scrambling for all npis

No focus scrambling for all NPIs

  • a. Ik heb niet met ook maar iemand gepraat.

  • I have not with even anyone talked

  • ‘I have not talked with anyone at all’

    • a.’ *Ik heb met ook maar iemand niet gepraat.

  • b. Het is daar niet pluis.

  • It is there not OK/safe

  • ‘Things are not safe there’

  • b.’ *Het is daar pluis niet.

  • c. Men sprak niet over enige mededinger.

  • One spoke not about any competitor

  • ‘One did not speak about any competitor’

  • c.’ *Men sprak over enige mededinger niet.


Im geringsten nicht

im geringsten nicht

  • daher sah man oft die Müllerflöhe auf seinen Kleidern herumwandern, deren er sich im geringsten nicht schämet (H.J.C. von Grimmelshausen, Der abentheuerliche Simplicissimus Theutsch - 1667)

  • Man hat auch im geringsten nicht zu befürchten, dass die Erlernung der Arithmetik auf diese Art schwerer fallen und mehr Zeit erfordern werde (L. Euler, Vorbericht, Einleitung zur Rechenkunst, St. Petersburg, 1732)


Nicht im geringsten

nicht im geringsten

  • Bulgakow leugnet das gefährliche ausländische Echo nicht im geringsten, sondern bestätigt dessen Wahrheit. (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 11-1-1997, SB5)

  • Keine Panik, ich mag die Mädels auch, aber die können Erykah Badu nicht im geringsten das Wasser reichen (www.soulsite.de, 22-6-2003)


In het minst niet

in het minst niet

Niemant kan u gheschut, o Cupido, verdraghen,

Ons borsten zijn te weeck, het is met ons ghedaen:

Al waarmen heel in ’t staal bekloncken en beslaghen,

Zo kan men doch u kracht in ’t minst niet wederstaen.

(G.A. Bredero, Emblemata Amatoria, 1618)

“Nobody can endure thy arrows, o Cupid,

Our breasts are too soft, we are undone

Even were one completely covered by steel

One cannot in the least withstand thy force”


Decline of f scrambling in het minst

Decline of F-Scrambling: in het minst


Trends

trends


De minste niet

de minste niet

In het tegenwoordig geval, sprak ik, hoeft gy daar omtrent de minste zwarigheid niet te maken (Justus van Effen, De Hollandsche Spectator, 1730)

In the present case, I said, need you thereabout the least difficulty not to make =

“in the present case, I said, you need not make the slightest difficulty about it”


De minste1

De minste


Het nauw nemen met

het nauw nemen met

De kracht der voorbeelden is welligt de reden, waarom men het gedurende langen tijd met de definities der rededeelen zoo naauwniet genomen heeft (De Taalgids, vol. 5, 1863)

“The force of the examples is perhaps the reason, why one did not look too closely at the definitions of the parts of the sentence”


Zo nauw nemen kijken

zo nauw nemen (kijken)


Zo dra niet

zo dra niet

Hij had het zoo haast niet gezien of hij wierp er met veel handigheid zijn zijden zakdoek over (Hildebrand, Camera Obscura, 1840)

he had it so soon not seen, or he threw there with

much dexterity his silk handkerchief over

“No sooner had he seen it, when he threw his handkerchief over it with much dexterity”


Zo dra ras haast

zo dra / ras / haast


Bij lange na lang zo a

bij lange na / lang zo A


Effect of lang on f scrambling google hits

Effect of LANG on f-scrambling: Google hits


Zo n vaart lopen

zo’n vaart lopen


De enige

de enige


Zijn zaak

zijn zaak

  • Dat is mijn zaak niet

    that is my concern not

    “That is not my concern”

  • Dat is niet mijn zaak

    “id”


Zijn zaak1

zijn zaak


Constant rate hypothesis

Constant Rate Hypothesis

“when one grammatical option replaces another with which it is in competition across a set of linguistic contexts, the rate of replacement [..] is the same in all of them”

(Kroch 1989: 200)


All changes

All changes


Conclusions from the graph

Conclusions from the graph

  • all changes are headed in the same direction

  • onset of change varies (compatible with Krochs hypothesis)

  • speed of change varies as well (incompatible)


Previous evidence for constant rate

Previous evidence for constant rate

  • DO-support in various types of clauses

  • have/have got in British English

  • pro-drop in Brazilian Portugese

  • OV/VO in Yiddish


What could this mean

what could this mean?

  • the changes are not all connected, but represent several independent changes: Constant Rate Hypothesis is safe

  • differences among various expressions do not count as different contexts; that is, each expression may have a different rate of change, but this rate is the same in all environments of the change (e.g. main vs subordinate clauses, negative declaratives and negative imperatives, etc.): weakened Constant Rate Hypothesis

  • the Constant Rate Hypothesis does not hold


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