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Contrasting and turn transition: Prosodic projection with the parallel-opposition constructions

  • The parallel-opposition construction has not yet been widely described as an independent construction type. This article reports on its realization in everyday British-English conversation. In particular, it focusses on prosodic projection in the lexically and syntactically unmarked first component of this syntactic pattern, and thus adds to the body of research investigating the organization of turn-taking in the context of bi-clausal constructions with which the first part lacks explicit lexical hints to their continuation. It is shown that the parallel-opposition construction, next to specific semantic–pragmatic, syntactic and lexical features, also exhibits a relatively fixed range of prosodic features in the first conjunct, among these narrow focus, continuing intonation and/or the avoidance of intonation-unit boundary signals. These are used to project continuation of an otherwise complete utterance and, thus, to secure the floor for the expression of contrast. In addition, the detailed analysis of apparently deviant cases, which takes into account the on-line production of syntax, shows that a lack of prosodically projective features in the first component of the parallel-opposition construction can be explained by the strategic, retrospective use of the construction to resolve problems in turn transition.

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  • Barth-Weingarten_Contrasting-and-turn-transition-Prosodic-projection-with-parallel-opposition-constructions_2009.pdf


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Author:Dagmar Barth-Weingarten
Parent Title (English):Journal of Pragmatics
Document Type:Article
Year of first Publication:2009
Date of Publication (online):2016/06/29
Tag:Construction Grammar; Interaction; On-line syntax; Prosody; Semantic opposition
First Page:2271
Last Page:2294
Dewey Decimal Classification:400 Sprache / 410 Linguistik
Open Access?:Nein
Licence (German):Es gilt das UrhG