[b-greek] Constituent order

From: Randall Buth (ButhFam@compuserve.com)
Date: Mon Nov 05 2001 - 14:18:41 EST

Message text written by INTERNET:boyd@huxcomm.net
For those who don't have his book, he essentially says that if a
sentence begins with a nonverbal constituent, it will either be a
"point of departure" or "in focus." (p. 45). A point of departure
"provides a starting point for the communication" and "cohesively
anchors the subsequent clause(s) to something which is already in
the context (i.e., to something accessible in the hearer's mental
representation.)." (p. 8). "The focus of an utterance is that part
which is intended to make the most important... change in the
hearer's mental representation." (p. 32 n. 8).

This is classic Functional Grammar, in slightly different terminology and
corresponds to typically generative approaches to what might be termed
functional sentence perspective. So Yes, it is fairly widely used by
though by no means universally. Linguists are usually able to follow such
an approach with minimal exemplification of terms.


Randall Buth

Randall Buth, PhD
Director, Biblical Hebrew Ulpan
and Lecturer,
Rothberg International School
Hebrew University

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