Last things first: An FDG approach to clause-final focus constituents in Spanish and English

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Within Functional Grammar it has been claimed that a small set of languages, including Polish and Dutch, may have a special clause-final position reserved for certain kinds of Focus constituents. But it has also been suggested that there is insufficient evidence to establish whether this is actually a pragmatically marked position or whether elements which end up in final position simply acquire a kind of natural relief. In this paper we compare discourse data from Spanish and English, which have different basic functional patterns, within Functional Discourse Grammar and conclude that the behaviour of clause-final focal elements in specific constructions in these languages may indeed warrant the positing of special focus positions, at least from a functional point of view.


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