- English (18) (remove)
- Out-of-focus encoding in Gur and Kwa (2005)
- This paper investigates the structural properties of morphosyntactically marked focus constructions, focussing on the often neglected non-focal sentence part in African tone languages. Based on new empirical evidence from five Gur and Kwa languages, we claim that these focus expressions have to be analysed as biclausal constructions even though they do not represent clefts containing restrictive relative clauses. First, we relativize the partly overgeneralized assumptions about structural correspondences between the out-of-focus part and relative clauses, and second, we show that our data do in fact support the hypothesis of a clause coordinating pattern as present in clause sequences in narration. It is argued that we deal with a non-accidental, systematic feature and that grammaticalization may conceal such basic narrative structures.
- The particles lé and lá in the grammar of Konkomba (2007)
- The paper investigates focus marking devices in the scarcely documented North-Ghanaian Gur language Konkomba. The two particles lé and lá occur under specific focus conditions and are therefore regarded as focus markers in the sparse literature. Comparing the distribution and obligatoriness of both alleged focus markers however, I show that one of the particles, lé, is better analyzed as a connective particle, i.e. as a syntactic rather than as a genuine pragmatic marker, and that comparable syntactic focus marking strategies for sentence-initial constituents are also known from related languages.
- Information structure (2007)
- The guidelines for Information Structure include instructions for the annotation of Information Status (or ‘givenness’), Topic, and Focus, building upon a basic syntactic annotation of nominal phrases and sentences. A procedure for the annotation of these features is proposed.
- Focus markers that link topic and comment (2009)
- This talk deals with the interdependence between the pragmatic categories topic and focus as displayed by certain alleged focus marking particles of some West African languages.
- Principles of information packaging in Baatonum (Gur) (2009)
- This talk presents a study on information structure in the under-documented Gur language Baatonum (Bénin and Nigeria, language code bba).
- What is it about? The topic in some Ghanaian Gur grammars (2008)
- This talk deals with the pragmatic notion topic and its encoding in Buli and some related Ghanaian Gur languages and reveals that it is responsible for several intricate phenomena in the grammar of these languages.
- Focus in Gur and Kwa (2006)
- The project investigates focus phenomena in the two genetically relatedWest African Gur and Kwa language groups of the Niger-Congo phylum. Most of its members are tone languages, they are similar with respect to word order typology (all are SVO languages), but of divergent morphological type (agglutinating Gur versus isolating Kwa).
- Sentence-medial adverbials in Buli (Gur, Northern Ghana) (2006)
- Research on adverbials in sentence-medial position in the North- Ghanaian Gur language Buli suggests that the language offers two divergent slots for adverbials between subject and verb. Special attention is paid to the group of sentence-medial deictic temporal adverbials. While they have the potential to develop into tense markers, this process seems to depend on special information structural conditions.