No evidence for prosodic effects on the syntactic encoding of complement clauses in German
Gerrit Kentner, Isabelle Franz
direct link: http://ling.auf.net/lingbuzz/004325
Does linguistic rhythm matter to syntax, and if so, what kinds of syntactic decisions are susceptible to rhythm? By means of two recall-based sentence production experiments and two corpus studies – one on spoken and one on written language – we investigated whether linguistic rhythm aff^Kects the choice between introduced and un-introduced complement clauses in German. Apart from the presence or absence of the complementiser dass (`that’), these two sentence types di^Kffer with respect to the position of the tensed verb (verb-^Lfinal/ verb-second). Against our predictions, that were based on previously reported rhythmic e^Kffects on the use of the optional complementiser `that’ in English, the experiments fail to obtain compelling evidence for rhythmic/prosodic influences on the structure of complement clauses in German. An overview of pertinent studies showing rhythmic influences on syntactic encoding suggests these eff^Kects to be generally restricted to syntactic domains smaller than a clause. We assume that, in the course of language production, initially, clause level syntactic projections are speci^Lfied; their specifi^Lcation is in fact the prerequisite for phonological encoding to start. Consequently, prosodic eff^Kects may only touch upon the lower level categories that are to be integrated into the clausal projection, but not upon the syntactic makeup of the higher order projection itself.
|Format:||[ pdf ]|
(please use that when you cite this article)
|Published in:||to appear in Glossa|
|keywords:||linguistic rhythm, meter, metrical structure, syntax-phonology interface, language production, v2, complement clause, stress, syntax, phonology|