Adjective-fronting as evidence for Focus and Topic within the Bangla nominal domain

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The goal of this paper is twofold. First it talks about the syntax of adjectives in Bangla, and argues in favor of the idea that there is a fixed hierarchy of functional projections where Adjective phrases are manifest as specifiers. It takes the stance that the adjectives are part of the lexicon; they are taken from the lexicon during a computation, and mapped into the syntax, forming an AdjectivePhrase (AdjP). Secondly, the paper argues for Focus and Topic phrases within the nominal domain, thus extending Rizzi’s original proposal of a split CP to DPs (cf. Rizzi 1997). Specifically the paper uses evidence from adjective fronting to claim that there is a fixed FocP immediately above the DP in Bangla, and at least one TopP above the FocP. The constituent bearing such a topic/focus feature needs to move up in a local checking configuration with the relevant functional head that has the matching feature, thus explaining the attested adjective-fronting.


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