Corentin Bourdeau, Utrecht University, the Netherlands 

Corentin is a PhD-student in Linguistics at the University of Utrecht, in the Netherlands. His PhD project deals with Sabar, the Senegalese drumming  tradition, from a linguistic standpoint. In parallel, he works on Wolof, the Senegalese national language. His areas of interest are mostly morphosyntax and historical linguistics.



In Wolof, a Niger-Congo language mainly spoken in Senegal and the Gambia, information structure is overtly expressed by morphosyntactic means. The three constructions discussed in this talk have often been regarded as verbal paradigms marking information structure besides aspect and person agreement (Sauvageot, 1965; Church, 1981; Voisin, 2010; Robert, 2016). This view presented Wolof as a rare specimen displaying an extreme degree of grammaticalisation of information structure. An alternative view takes the constructions at stake for syntactic objects involving clefting (Torrence, 2013; Martinović, 2013). I concur with this viewpoint and intend to show that Wolof may not be so exotic in the end. My analysis relies on Topic-Comment Modulation, a formal framework developed by Pieter Seuren (2000, 2009, 2018) for the study of information structure from the perspective of production.



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Applied Linguistics Seminars are an opportunity to hear from guest speakers working in the Applied Linguistics field and also current Applied Linguistics students. 

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