Conditional inversion and GIVENNESS

Maria Biezma


This paper provides support for the claim that non-canonical word-order adds “extra meaning” to natural language utterances (Prince). In particular, it tells us about the informational status of the constituents. The case study in this paper is subject-auxiliary inversion in conditional antecedents. I argue that subject-auxiliary inversion in conditional antecedents indicate that the antecedent is GIVEN (Schwarzschild 1999). This proposal explain further pragmatic inferences such as why inverted conditionals are particularly good as reproaches.


Non-canonical word-order; conditionals; pragmatics; discourse; GIVEN

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