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Title:Prosodic Phrasing in Catalan Dislocation Structures
Authors:Ingo Feldhausen
Comment:Talk given at GoingRomance! 2006 (Amsterdam, Netherlands)
Abstract:Introduction: The talk is concerned with the prosodic phrasing of clitic left-dislocation (CLLD) and clitic right-dislocation (CLRD) constructions in Catalan. Interestingly, there are no analyses so far for embedded and long-distance CLLD and applying the existing analyses to such complex structures shows their insufficiency. My empirical data, for which I recorded 11 speakers of Central Catalan, shows that CLLD does not build a prosodic phrase of its own (contrary to received opinion on this matter, cf. Frascarelli 2000 for Italian). Instead, embedded CLLD is phrased with the matrix clause, leaving out the embedded clause in a separate prosodic phrase, thus signaling a strong right boundary. CLRD is always separated prosodically from the preceding clause.

Analysis: In order to account for the phrasing in complex structures, I will expand the OT account by Prieto (2005) by adding the high-ranked constraints ALIGNTOPIC and *P(ROSODIC)-P(HRASE). ALIGNTOPIC is a disjunct constraint requiring the right alignment of prosodic phrases and topic phrases, which are left-dislocated (CLLD), and left alignment of prosodic phrases and topic phrases, which are right-dislocated (CLRD). *P-P is a constraint which reduces the number of prosodic phrases in reliance on the syntactic length of the clause.

Background: Up to now there are three relevant Optimal Theoretic (OT) constraints to describe the prosodic phrasing of Catalan, with the following ranking: MAXBINEND >> ALIGNXP,R >> WRAPXP (Prieto 2005). MAXBINEND requires that each prosodic phrase which contains the nuclear stress consists of maximally two prosodic words. ALIGNXP,R (Selkirk 2000) requires that the right edge of an XP is aligned to the right edge of a phonological phrase and WRAPXP (Truckenbrodt 1999) demands that each XP is contained in a phonological phrase. This ranking accounts for the fact that size of constituents plays a role in Catalan phrasing within root clauses: (S)(VO) phrasing if object is short; (SV)(O) phrasing if object is long (cf. Prieto 2005, D'Imperio et al. 2005). However, consideration of clitic left-dislocation (CLLD), (1), shows that this paradigm is insufficient. CLLD leads to a violation of MAXBINEND, because CLLD always has a right boundary, i.e. (CLLD)(VO), regardless of the size of the object. The above ranking would predict that the CLLDed constituent would behave like a subject in a sentence with a long object, resulting in the phrasing as seen in (2a), hence (CLLD V)(O). However, the actual phrasing has to be as in (2b). Frascarelli (2000:63) posits that CLLD and CLRD are minimally and exhaustively contained in a prosodic phrase. When it comes to embedded CLLD (3) this claim does not hold. Frascarelli (2000) would expect the phrasing in (3b), whereas the actual phrasing is as in (3c).

(1) Clitic Left-Dislocation (CLLD):

[Les taules, les porto al pis de la Maria]CP1

"The tables, I bring to Mary's flat"

(2) a. (Les taules les porto)(al pis de la Maria) = (CLLD V)(O)

b. (Les taules)(les porto al pis de la Maria) = (CLLD) (VO)

(3) Embedded CLLD
a. [La Maria va dir [que les taules, les va portar al pis]CP2 ]CP1

"Mary said that the tables, s/he brought to the flat"

b. *(La Maria va dir que)(les taules)(les va portar al pis)

c. (La Maria va dir que les taules)(les va portar al pis)

D'Imperio, M. et al. (2005). "Intonational phrasing in Romance: the role of syntactic and prosodic structure". In: S. Frota, M. Vigário and M. J. Freitas (eds.), Prosodies, 59-97. Berlin/New York: Mouton de Gruyter.

Frascarelli, M. (2000). The Syntax-Phonology Interface in Focus and Topic Constructions in Italian. Kluwer.

Prieto, P. (2005). Syntactic and eurhythmic constraints on phrasing decisions in Catalan. Ms. UAB Barcelona. To appear in: Merle Horne and Marc van Oostendorp (eds.) Special issue of Studia Linguistica. Blackwell.

Selkirk, E. (2000). "The Interaction of Constraints on Prosodic Phrasing". In: Merle Horne (ed.). Prosody: Theory and experiment. Dordrecht: Kluwer, 231-261.

Truckenbrodt, H. (1999). "On the Relation between Syntactic Phrase and Phonological Phrases". In: LI 30, 219-255.
Type:Paper/tech report
Article:Version 1