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Deixis, information structure and clause linkage in Yafi' Arabic (Yemen)

Abstract : Several particles in the Arabic variety spoken in the area of Yafi' (Yemen) show tight recurring links between deixis, informational hierarchy, and syntactic hierarchy, both diachronically and synchronically. In the light of Robert's (1993, 2000) findings on focusing strategies, these links are discussed in detail for two polyfunctional particles, ra', and ta, which can be used, among other things, as deictics, topic markers, focusing particles and clause-linking devices (see Vanhove 1996 & 2004). The present paper shows how, in a language where subordinating constructions and markers are also available, topicalisation and focusing strategies may become the preferred strategies for clause-linking, especially in causal, relative and complement clauses.
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Contributor : Martine Vanhove <>
Submitted on : Thursday, April 7, 2011 - 11:10:06 AM
Last modification on : Saturday, March 28, 2020 - 2:16:00 AM


  • HAL Id : halshs-00583983, version 1



Martine Vanhove. Deixis, information structure and clause linkage in Yafi' Arabic (Yemen). Isabelle Bril. Clause Linking and Clause Hierarchy. Syntax and Pragmatics, John Benjamins, pp.355-398, 2010, Studies in Language Companion Series 121. ⟨halshs-00583983⟩



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