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Double negation and information structure: somewhere between topic and focus

Published in The Architecture of Focus. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. 2006
Abstract This paper examines the properties of double negation. Starting form the observation that despite the differences in the syntactic realisation of negation, languages such as Hungarian, French and English resort to the same strategies for marking double negation. Namely, a negative quantifier which contributes double negation systematically occurs with a fall-rise intonation, and triggers the implicature of contrastive, weak alternatives to the sentence. These properties are shown to correspond to that of contrastive topics. It is therefore argued that negative constituents which contribute a double negation reading are contrastive topics.
Keywords Double negationNegative concordIntonationContrastAlternativesContrastive topic
ISBN: 978-3-11-092201-1
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PUSKAS, Genoveva. Double negation and information structure: somewhere between topic and focus. In: The Architecture of Focus. Berlin : Mouton de Gruyter, 2006. https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:96419

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Deposited on : 2017-08-31

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