Focalization in-situ vs Focus Projection Focused topics, focused questions, focused heads, and other challenges
Vieri Samek-Lodovici
July 2020

This paper examines several aspects of the distribution of contrastive focalization in Italian that are not captured by current analyses maintaining that contrastive foci must raise to a fixed left-peripheral FocP focus projection. From an empirical perspective, it shows that contrastive focalization successfully applies to constituent classes seldom discussed in the focalization literature and inherently unable to move to FocP, such as hanging topics (particularly interesting because requiring clitic doubling even when focused), interrogative clauses, and verbal heads. The paper also examines multiple foci, nested foci, and the co-occurrence of focus and wh-phrases that are incompatible with the assumed uniqueness of FocP. Based on these data, the paper argues that focalization in situ for unmoved foci, together with focus evacuation for fronted foci, provide a better model of the full distribution of contrastive focalization in Italian.
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/005318
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: UCL
keywords: contrastive focus, information structure, hanging topics, questions, focus projection, syntax
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