Language and Logic introductory course:
Focus, Focus Interpretation, and Focus Sensitivity.

  • Malte Zimmermann ()
  • Daniel Hole ()

The course offers an overview of standard implementations of the meaning of focus and the structural and semantic behaviour of focus-sensitive elements (quantificational adverbs, focus particles). The course integrates the discussion of empirical phenomena with recent semantic (and syntactic) theories. 1: Introduction: Focus phenomena and Alternative Semantics (Rooth 1985, 1992, Schwarzschild 1999) 2: Structured Propositions and Focus Movement (von Stechow 1991, Rooth 1996, Krifka 2006) 3: Semantic effects of explicit focus marking: Contrast, exhaustivity in clefts and Hungarian focus constructions (Horn 1981, Kiss 1998, Wedgwood 2003, Horvath 2008) 4: The semantics of focus-sensitive particles ('only', 'also', 'even') and quantificational adverbs (König 1991, Rooth 1996, Beaver & Clark 2004, Beaver, to appear) 5: Extensions and case studies: (i.) Postposed additive particles ('AUCH', 'too') as topic-sensitive expressions (Krifka 1999); (ii.) Multiple association with focus (Krifka 1992, Wagner 2007); (iii.) Particle proliferation in Southeast Asian and Dutch (Barbiers, to appear, Hole 2008).