New Information Subjects in Finnish: an Experimental Study

Lena Dal Pozzo


The study presents experimental findings on new information subjects in Finnish. The main answering strategies that emerge in the collected data are discussed in light of recent studies within the cartographic framework (Belletti 2001, 2004, 2005). In null subject languages subject inversion is typically adopted in contexts in which the subjectis new information. Conversely, in non null subject languages other strategies emerge, such as in situ focalization (e.g. English) and cleft sentences (e.g. French). Finnish is particularly interesting for its nature of partial null subject language (Holmberg et al. 2009). The unavailability of VS structures of the type observed in null subject languages and the presence of XPVS structures can be accounted for assuming that Finnish does not have a referential pro and the EPP can be satisfied by other lexical elements.

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