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5.4 Modality and Information Structure: Focus, Dislocation, Interrogative and Exclamatory Sentences

From the book Manual of Catalan Linguistics

  • Ingo Feldhausen and Xavier Villalba


This chapter provides an overview of different sentence types and structures in Catalan that are closely related to modality and information structure in this language. In doing so, we mainly concentrate on syntactic, prosodic, and interpretative aspects of the presented structures. We first explore different concepts of focus and discuss how focus is syntactically and prosodically marked. We present a brief chronological overview of previous work and highlight dialectal differences. Dislocations and their information structural function are introduced in a second step. We present the different types of dislocations and address their positional differences. Modality is considered in greater detail with respect to interrogative and exclamatory sentences. For interrogative sentences, we will introduce a distinction between yes/no interrogatives and wh-interrogatives and highlight the placement of interrogative words in relation to other constituents in the left periphery of the sentence. When considering exclamative sentences, we will differentiate between degree and quantitative exclamatives, as well as the different exclamative words these are associated with.

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