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Claudia Winkle (publiziert)

World Englishes, do they structure sentences differently?

Information packaging in spoken varieties of English

1. SupervisorProf. Dr. Dr. h. c. Christian Mair

In my study, I analyze different strategies that are used to transform the canonical word order of English for specific discourse effects, for example, for putting emphasis on certain elements in a clause. The syntactic strategies investigated involve different types of cleft constructions ("it was you that told me that wasn't it"; "what he decided was to stay with some friends there"), dislocation constructions ("this cat she is fourteen"; "he's brilliant your dad"), and fronting constructions ("my birthday party you arrange"). I compare the usage patterns and preferences of speakers of different first- and second-language varieties of English. The data consists of face-to-face interactions and telephone conversations and is drawn from nine different components of the International Corpus of English (ICE).
I expect to find different frequencies and usage patterns across the varieties of English analyzed and hypothesize that substrate influence plays a major role in speakers' preferences.

DisciplinEnglish Studies
Keywordsinformation packaging, language contact, ICE corpora