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Questions multiples en français: une analyse lexicale-fonctionnelle
Vol. XII/2010/2, pp. 533-551
Keywords: multiple questions, D-linked, French, information structure, topic, focus
In this paper, we investigate French multiple questions in the framework of Lexical-Functional Grammar (LFG). We will argue that in French, there are three basic types of multiple questions, which contain subclasses, according to the particular register. We show that one type is better analyzed as the coordination of two single questions. The puzzle concerning French multiple questions is the ambiguity between two possible interpretations of the same pair-list question: the syntax gives no clue about the D-linkedness of the question words, which is crucial in the interpretation, determines and thematizes the congruent answer to the question. We propose to solve the problem via the dissociation of syntactic and discourse information in the LFG framework (functional vs. information structure), in a way that two different information structures can belong to the same syntactic structure. The gist of the analysis is to suppose that D-linked question words correspond to topics, and non-Dlinked ones to foci in the information structure, which gives rise to the different readings in semantics.