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Les relatifs de surface

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Abstract

We have here examined some types of sentences which include a relative pronoun, for which we would like to suggest that the outwardly relative clause may not be a 'true' relative clause:<br /><i>C'est Pierre qui m'accompagnera à la gare<br />Il y a des enfants qui jouent au ballon dans le jardin<br />Il est / existe /se trouve des gens qui pensent que...<br />J'ai une mélodie qui me trotte dans la tête<br />Tu as ton jupon qui dépasse</i><br /><i>Cyril partait gagnant mais Pierre est celui qui a été élu</i><br />All such structures are interpreted here as resulting, not from a reunion of two clauses through relativization, but from the rearrangement of a single simple clause: <i>Son mari n 'aime pas les voyages &#8594; Elle a un mari qui n 'aime pas les voyages</i> .<br />This rearrangement is motivated by focalization or rethematization purposes. It involves the use of a new beginning for the sentence (to set out the focus or to indicate the new theme); as a consequence, the rest of the sentence is marked with a <i>qu-</i> form. We thus call the <i>qu-</i> clause a 'pseudo-relative'.

References

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