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On the interpretation and distribution of embedded main clause syntax : new perspectives on complex discourse moves

On the interpretation and distribution of embedded main clause syntax : new perspectives on complex discourse moves

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DJÄRV, Kajsa, 2022. On the interpretation and distribution of embedded main clause syntax : new perspectives on complex discourse moves. In: Glossa : A Journal of General Linguistics. Ubiquity Press. 7(1), pp. 1-39. eISSN 2397-1835. Available under: doi: 10.16995/glossa.5752

@article{Djarv2022inter-59447, title={On the interpretation and distribution of embedded main clause syntax : new perspectives on complex discourse moves}, year={2022}, doi={10.16995/glossa.5752}, number={1}, volume={7}, journal={Glossa : A Journal of General Linguistics}, pages={1--39}, author={Djärv, Kajsa} }

Attribution 4.0 International Djärv, Kajsa eng Djärv, Kajsa 2022 This paper examines the hypothesis that embedded Verb Second (EV2), a classic main clause phenomenon, is licensed by assertion. Based on detailed examination of naturally occurring data from Swedish, I address two central questions in the study of EV2: the interpretation of V2-complements, and the role of the matrix predicate in licensing V2-complements. I propose that the interpretation of EV2-clauses is best characterized in terms of the statement that they share the conventional discourse effects associated with matrix declaratives, in the sense of Farkas & Roelofsen (2017). At their core, EV2-clauses represent discourse moves whereby the speaker adds the embedded proposition to the conversational table as an issue for discussion. In many cases, this is accompanied by the speaker expressing a public commitment to this proposition, as in matrix assertions. However, I also identify cases that involve a commitment shift, where the assertion gets anchored not to the speaker, but to a contextually specified commitment anchor, which is identified by the matrix clause (but which does not need to correspond to the matrix subject, contrary to previous proposals). This allows the speaker to raise the issue represented by the EV2-clause at the level of the current conversation with the force of an assertion, without committing to the proposal it represents. Thus, the speaker can immediately reject or take issue with it. In addition to these assertive uses, I identify cases where the EV2-clause does not represent an assertive discourse move at all, but functions as a type of biased question. Such cases are similar in both function and form to (unembedded) rising declaratives, and are problematic for previous theories of EV2-licensing. With respect to the role of the matrix clause, I show that its key role is to appropriately frame the discourse move represented by the EV2- clause, in terms of its specific pragmatic effects. This work also has consequences for theories of clausal embedding more broadly, as it shows that such theories need to address the issue of how the discourse effects associated with different sentence types are able to project from the embedded level in a complex expression, to the level of the discourse. 2022-12-08T08:32:44Z On the interpretation and distribution of embedded main clause syntax : new perspectives on complex discourse moves 2022-12-08T08:32:44Z

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