12. A discourse-relational approach to continuation

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In German, there exist two classes of non-restrictive relative clauses: continuative and appositive ones. The clauses of both classes are comparable in their syntactic and semantic behavior as they are both non-integrated clauses denoting a proposition. They differ, however, in respect to their discourse function. This was first observed by Brandt (1990), who discriminates non-restrictive relative clauses by their communicative-weight. She claims that continuative relative clauses provide major information, whereas appositive relative clauses express minor information. This paper investigates inasmuch Brandt’s notion of communicativeweight assignment can be couched in discourse-structural terms by exploiting the distinction between coordinating and subordinating discourse relations in the sense of Asher and Vieu (2005).


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