From the Heritage of Vilém Mathesius and Jan Firbas: Syntax in the Services of FSP


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The paper discusses three syntactic constructions which were first noted by Vilém Mathesius from the viewpoint of functional sentence perspective, and further studied by Jan Firbas in connection with the elaboration of the FSP theory. The discussion of their ideas is supplemented by more recent findings by other writers. The three points under consideration are the passive, the cleft sentence and the existential construction. Of these the FSP aspect has been least elaborated in the case of the existential construction. Partial findings from works addressing other issues, and consistent application of the FSP framework suggest a promising line of further study, not least from the contrastive point of view.


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