17.3801, Calls: Historical Ling, Text/Corpus Ling, Typology/Austria

Fri Dec 22 17:38:08 UTC 2006

LINGUIST List: Vol-17-3801. Fri Dec 22 2006. ISSN: 1068 - 4875.

Subject: 17.3801, Calls: Historical Ling, Text/Corpus Ling, Typology/Austria

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Date: 22-Dec-2006
From: Daniel Jacob < daniel.jacob at uni-koeln.de >
Subject: Focus and Background in Romance Languages 

-------------------------Message 1 ---------------------------------- 
Date: Fri, 22 Dec 2006 12:37:03
From: Daniel Jacob < daniel.jacob at uni-koeln.de >
Subject: Focus and Background in Romance Languages 

Full Title: Focus and Background in Romance Languages 

Date: 23-Sep-2007 - 27-Sep-2007
Location: Vienna, Austria 
Contact Person: Daniel Jacob
Meeting Email: daniel.jacob at uni-koeln.de
Web Site: http://www.romanistentag.info 

Linguistic Field(s): Historical Linguistics; Text/Corpus Linguistics; Typology 

Language Family(ies): Romance 

Call Deadline: 28-Feb-2007 

Meeting Description:

Workshop at the XXX. Deutscher Romanistentag (30th Biannual Meeting of the German Society for Romance Studies - Deutscher Romanistenverband),
University of Vienna, 23-Sep-2007 - 27-Sep-2007 

Inspired by the ground-breaking work of the Prague School, a substantial body of studies has identified Functional Sentence Perspective or information structure as a major determinant in choosing between linguistic variants. Cross-linguistically, information structure has turned out to be crucial for our understanding of how phonology, morphosyntax, semantics, and lexical choices interact in discourse. Information structure and its distinctions can be conveyed in particular by prosody and the use of particles, but also synctactically by variation in argument structure and constituent order, which includes non-canonical options such as dislocation or clefting.

In Romance linguistics, there is a long-standing tradition of research devoted to the empirical investigation of such phenomena , especially in stylistics, text linguistics, and variationist studies. Recently, information structure in Romance languages has also been the focus of formal approaches to comparative syntax and semantics. Many such studies claim that a single opposition such as 'theme-rheme' cannot explain  all linguistically relevant aspects of information structure. A more differentiated analytic inventory should, for example, distinguish 'topic-comment' and 'focus-background' structure as separate, if interrelated dimensions in explaining sentence form.

We invite papers describing formal and functional aspects of focus marking in Romance languages. Our workshop is open to researchers of different theoretical persuasions and areas of specialization. In particular, we welcome papers that discuss focusing and backgrounding strategies in text and conversation, as well as papers addressing variation and change in focus marking. Presentations are allotted 30 minutes plus 15 minutes for questions. Contributions may be presented in English, German, French or Spanish. Abstracts should include title, name(s), affiliation(s) and email address(es) of author(s) and must not exceed one page. Please submit your abstract as an email attachment (only Microsoft Word or pdf formats) to the following addresses: 

dufter at lmu.de
daniel.jacob at uni-koeln.de

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