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This section discusses topicalization, the phenomenon that in main clauses virtually any clausal constituent (and sometimes also parts thereof) may precede the finite verb in second position, subsection I starts by showing that, as in the case of question formation, the moved constituent can have a wide range of syntactic functions and can be of any category, subsection II continues by comparing topicalization to question formation (as well as relativization) in order to motivate the claim that it is derived by wh-movement; we will see that, apart from the fact that topicalization is a root phenomenon, there are indeed compelling reasons to assume wh-movement to be involved in the derivation, subsection III repeats some arguments from Section 9.3 for rejecting the traditional view that subject-initial sentences are necessarily derived by topicalization; exclusion of such sentences from the set of topicalization constructions will lead to the conclusion that such constructions have two characteristic properties: they exhibit subject-verb inversion and have a non-neutral reading, subsection IV explores the latter issue, and will show that topicalized phrases often play a special role in discourse; they express a contrastive focus, act as a topic, or perform a special function in the organization of the discourse. Given this, we may expect for contrastively focused phrases and topics at least that wh-movement may pied-pipe a larger phrase if syntactic restrictions prohibits extraction and subsection V shows that this expectation is indeed borne out, subsection VI continues with a discussion of topicalization of clauses and smaller verbal projections: such cases are special because wh-movement of such constituents is not possible in the case of question formation and relativization, subsection VII concludes with a comparison of topicalization in Dutch and English, and will show that there are a number of conspicuous differences, which raises the question as to whether the two should be considered phenomena of the same kind.

[+]  I.  Syntactic function and categorial status of the topicalized element

The traditional generative analysis holds that main clauses are derived by placing the finite verb in the second position of the clauses, the so-called C-position in (285), followed by topicalization of some constituent into the so-called clause-initial position, the specifier of CP; see Section 11.1 for details.

Example 285

There seem to be virtually no restrictions on the syntactic function or the categorial status of the topicalized element. The examples in (286) start by showing this for nominal arguments: subjects, direct and indirect objects are all possible in sentence-initial position.

Example 286
Nominal arguments
a. Marie/Ze heeft haar broer/hem die baan aangeboden.
  Marie/she  has  her brother/him  that job  prt.-offered
  'Marie/She has offered her brother/him that job.'
b. Die baan heeft ze her brother/him aangeboden.
direct object
  that job  has  she  her brother/him  prt.-offered
  'That job, she has offered [to] her brother/him.'
c. Haarbroer/Hem heeft ze die baan aangeboden.
indirect object
  her brother/him  has  she  that job  prt.-offered
  'Her brother/Him, she has offered that job.'

There are, however, two important differences between subject-initial sentences and sentences with an object in first position. First, clause-initial objects can be considered to be semantically marked in that they act as discourse topics or contrastive foci, or have some other special function in the organization of the discourse, while this does not necessarily hold for clause-initial subjects. Second, topicalized objects are often characterized by a special intonation pattern: the objects in (286b&c), but not the clause-initial subjects in (286a), must be accented, as is clear from the fact the latter but not the former can be a reduced pronoun. This suggests that subject-initial sentences may also be syntactically different from constructions with topicalized objects; we will return to this issue in Subsection III.
      Next, the examples in (287) show that it is also possible to topicalize prepositional objects: (287a) illustrates this for a prepositional indirect object and (287b) for the prepositional object of kijken (naar)'to look (at)'.

Example 287
Prepositional arguments
a. Aan haarbroer/Hem heeft ze die baan aangeboden.
indirect object
  to her brother/him has  she  that job  prt.-offered
  'His her brother/him, she has offered that job to.'
b. Naar dat huis staat Jan al een uur te kijken.
prepositional object
  at that house  stands  Jan already  an hour to look
  'That house, Jan has been staring at for an hour.'

Complementives can also be topicalized: we illustrate this in (288) by means of three examples with complementives of a different categorial status; they show that noun phrases, APs and PPs can all be topicalized.

Example 288
a. Een liefhebber van Jazz ben ik niet echt.
  a devotee of jazz  am  not  really
  'A devotee of jazz, I am not really.'
b. Aardig is de nieuwe directeur beslist.
  nice  is the new director  definitely
  'Nice, the new director definitely is.'
c. In de la heb ik de schaar gelegd.
  into the drawer  have  the scissors  put
  'In the drawer, I have put the scissors.'

Adjuncts can also be topicalized. Example (289a) shows this for supplementives and examples (289b&c) for adverbial phrases. Observe that we did not mark the adverbial phrases for accent; assigning accent is possible but does not seem to be necessary. We will return to this issue in Subsection IV.

Example 289
a. Kwaad liep hij weg.
  angry  walked  he  away
  'Angry, he walked away.'
b. Op zolder slapen de kinderen.
place adverbial
  on attic  sleep  the children
  'In the attic, the children sleep/are sleeping.'
c. Na de vergadering vertrekken we.
time adverbial
  after the meeting  leave  we
  'After the meeting, we will leave.'

The discussion above has shown that topicalization is like wh-question formation in that constituents with various syntactic functions (argument, complementive and adjunct) and of various different forms (noun phrase, AP and PP) can be moved into sentential-initial position. Topicalization differs from wh-movement, however, in that it also allows preposing of clauses; this is illustrated in (290) for a finite clause. We return to topicalization of clauses in Subsection VI. Accent can be assigned at various places within the preposed clause.

Example 290
a. Ik verwacht niet [dat hij dat boek wil hebben].
  expect  not   that  he  that book  wants  have
  'I don't expect that he wants to have that book.'
b. [Dat hij dat boek wil hebben] verwacht ik niet.

The examples in (291) show that it is also possible to topicalize the complement of perfect and passive auxiliaries, a phenomenon known as VP-topicalization. The (a)-examples show that topicalization of the participle is possible both with and without the direct object; the (b)-examples show that subjects are normally not affected. VP-topicalization will also be discussed in Subsection VI. Accent will normally be assigned to the object if it is pied piped by VP-topicalization.

Example 291
a. Ze hebben mijn huis nog niet geschilderd.
  they  have  my house  yet  not  painted
  'They haven't painted my house yet.'
a'. [<Mijn huis> geschilderd] hebben ze <mijn huis> nog niet.
b. Mijn huis wordt volgend jaar geschilderd.
  my house  be  next year  painted
  'My house will be painted next year.'
b'. Geschilderd wordt mijn huis volgend jaar.
[+]  II.  Topicalization is a subcase of wh-movement

Topicalization involves movement of some constituent into the initial position of the main clause. It resembles the formation of wh-questions in that the movement targets the position immediately preceding the finite verb; this is illustrated again in the (b)-examples in (292). This observation is not trivial; this does not hold for a language like English. We return to this in Subsection VII.

Example 292
a. Jan heeft gisteren dat boek gelezen.
  Jan  has  yesterday  that book  read
  'Jan read that book yesterday.'
b. Welk boeki heeft Jan gisteren ti gelezen?
  which book  has  Jan yesterday  read
  'Which book did Jan read yesterday?'
b'. Dat boeki heeft Jan gisteren ti gelezen.
  that book  has  Jan yesterday  read
  'That book, Jan read yesterday.'

      The (b)-examples in (293) show that topicalization differs from question formation (and relativization) in that it is a root phenomenon. It cannot apply in embedded clauses.

Example 293
a. Marie zei [dat Jan dat boek gelezen heeft].
  Marie said   that  Jan  that book  read  has
  'Marie said that Jan has read that book.'
b. Marie vroeg [welk boeki Jan ti gelezen heeft].
  Marie asked  which book  Jan  read  has
  'Marie asked which book Jan has read.'
b'. * Marie zei [dat boeki Jan ti gelezen heeft].
  Marie said   that book  Jan  read  has

There is no way in which embedded topicalization in examples such as (293b') can be improved. The examples in (294), for instance, show that Dutch does not have the option found in German to have topicalization in embedded clauses with verb-second, as embedded verb-second is categorically prohibited in Dutch. We refer the reader to Haider (1985/2010) and Barbiers (2005: Section for a discussion of embedded verb-second in, respectively, German and a number of non-standard varieties of Dutch; the German example in (294a) is taken from Müller (1998:42) in a slightly adapted from.

Example 294
a. Marie sagte [dieses Buchi habeconjunctive sie ti bereits gelesen].
  Marie  said   this book  has  she  already  read
  'Marie said that this book, she had already read.'
b. * Marie zei [dit boeki had ze ti al gelezen].
  Marie  said   this book  had  she  already  read

The examples in (294) also show that embedded topicalization cannot occur with a phonetically expressed complementizer, unlike what is the case in English examples such as (295a); cf., e.g., Chomsky (1977), Baltin (1982) and Lasnik & Saito (1992). Since there is no a priori reason to think that Dutch topicalization targets a different position than English topicalization, we have added example (295b'), in which the complementizer dat'that' precedes the topicalized phrase.

Example 295
a. Marie thinks [that this booki you should read ti ].
b. * Marie denkt [dit boeki dat je zou ti moeten lezen].
  Marie thinks   this book  that  you  would  must  read
b'. * Marie denkt [dat dit boeki je ti zou moeten lezen].
  Marie thinks   that  this book  you  would  must  read

      Examples (296a&b) show that topicalization is like question formation in that it allows long wh-movement if a bridge verb such as denken'to think' is present. It should be noted, however, that long topicalization is like relativization in that it is possible with a wider range of verbs than question formation; cf. Schippers (2012:105). For instance, the factive verb weten'to know' permits long topicalization (and long relativization), but not long wh-movement. It should further be noted that some speakers prefer the resumptive prolepsis construction in (296c) to the somewhat marked long topicalization construction in (296b).

Example 296
a. Welk boeki denk/*weet je [dat Jan ti gekocht heeft]?
  which book  think/know  you  that  Jan  bought  has
  'Which book do you think that Jan has bought?'
b. (?) Dit boeki denk/weet ik [dat Jan ti gekocht heeft].
  this book  think.know   that  Jan  bought  has
  'This book I think/know that Jan has bought.'
c. Van dit boeki denk/weet ik [dat Jan heti gekocht heeft].
  of this book  think/know  that  Jan it  bought  has
  'As for this book, I think/know that Jan has bought it.'

      That topicalization involves wh-movement is also suggested by the fact that it is island-sensitive, just like question formation and relativization. We illustrate this in (297b) by means of an embedded polar question. For completeness' sake, we have added (297b') to show that the intended meaning can be expressed by means of a resumptive prolepsis construction.

Example 297
a. Ik vraag me af [of Jan dat boek gekocht heeft]?
  wonder  refl  prt.   if  Jan that book  bought  has
  'I wonder whether Jan has bought that book.'
b. * Dat boeki vraag ik me af [of Jan ti gekocht heeft]?
  that book  wonder  refl  prt.   if  Jan  bought  has
b'. Van dat boeki vraag ik me af [of Jan heti gekocht heeft]?
  of that book  wonder  refl  prt.   if  Jan it  bought  has
  'As for this book, I am wondering whether Jan has bought it.'

Example (298b) illustrates the island-sensitivity of topicalization by means of an adjunct island. In this case, the resumptive prolepsis construction is not available as an alternative because the verb huilen'to cry' does not license a resumptive van-PP.

Example 298
a. Jan huilt [omdat Marie dat boek gestolen heeft].
  Jan cries  because  Marie that book  stolen  has
  'Jan is crying because Marie has stolen that book.'
b. * Dat boeki huilt Jan [omdat Marie ti gestolen heeft].
  that book  cries Jan because  Marie  stolen  has

This subsection has shown that topicalization exhibits various hallmarks of wh-movement: it targets the clause-initial position, it can be extracted from clauses selected by bridge verbs and it is island-sensitive. What sets it apart from wh-movement and relativization is that it is a root phenomenon; it cannot target the initial position of embedded clauses. We refer to Hoekstra & Zwart (1994), Sturm (1996) and Zwart & Hoekstra (1997) for a discussion of the question as to whether this shows that topicalization targets a different position than wh-movement, as in fact would be claimed in the cartographic approach initiated by Rizzi (1997).

[+]  III.  Subject-initial clauses versus topicalization constructions

The standard view in generative grammar is that topicalization is responsible for verb second in declarative main clauses in Dutch. The verb is first moved into the C-position immediately preceding the canonical subject position, after which the specifier position of CP is filled by some topicalized phrase. This implies that subject-initial main clauses such as (299a) must be derived by topicalization, as indicated in the representation in (299b).

Example 299
a. Mijn zuster/Zij/Ze heeft dit boek gelezen.
  my sister/she/she  has  this book  read
  'My sister/she has read this book.'

If the derivation in (299) is correct, we would expect the placement of subjects to be subject to similar restrictions as other cases of topicalization, like in the examples in (300). We seen in Subsection I, however, that subjects crucially differ from objects in that they need not be accented. The effect is even more conspicuous with weak (phonetically reduced) pronouns; while (299a) shows that the weak subject pronoun ze'she' is fully acceptable in sentence-initial position, weak object pronouns like 'r'her' in (300a&b) are not because they cannot be accented; see, e.g., Bouma (2008:34) for more discussion. Adverbial PPs with a weak pronominal complement can be topicalized if the preposition can be assigned accent; see Salverda (2000).

Example 300
a. Mijn zuster/Haar/*'r heb ik nog niet gezien.
direct object
  my sister/her/her  have  yet not  seen
  'My sister/her I haven't seen yet.'
b. Op mijn zuster/haar/*'r wil ik niet wachten.
  for my sister/her/her  want I not wait
  'My sister/Her I don't want to wait for.'
c. Naast 'r zat een aardige heer.
  next.to her  sat  a kind gentleman
  'Next to her sat a kind gentleman.'

The same contrast is found with the weak R-word er: the examples in (301) show that expletive er, which is normally assumed to occupy the regular subject position, can easily occur in sentence-initial position, but that this is excluded for er functioning as a locative pro-form or the pronominal part of a PP; topicalization is only possible with strong forms like daar'there' and hier'here'; see, e.g., Bouma (2008:29-30). We will ignore here that things are slightly complicated by the fact that (sentence-initial) er may sometimes have more than one function; we refer the reader to Section P5.5.3 for discussion and examples.

Example 301
a. Er spelen veel kinderen op straat.
expletive er
  there  play  many children  on street
  'There are many children playing in the street.'
b. Daar/*Er spelen de kinderen graag.
locative er
  there/there  play  the children  gladly
  'The children like to play there.'
c. Daari/*Eri wacht ik niet [ ti op].
pronominal part of PP
  there/there  wait  not  for
  'That I won't wait for.'

That this contrast should have an impact on our syntactic analysis is clear from the fact illustrated in (302) that subject pronouns do exhibit a similar behavior as object pronouns if they are extracted from an embedded clause: whereas noun phrases like mijn zuster'my sister' and strong (phonetically non-reduced) subject pronouns such as zij give rise to a reasonably acceptable result, topicalization is excluded if the subject pronoun is weak.

Example 302
a. (?) Mijn zusteri/Ziji zei Jan [dat ti dit boek gelezen had].
  my sister/she  said  Jan  comp  this book  read  had
  'My sister/she, Jan said had read the book.'
b. * Zei zei Jan [dat ti dit boek gelezen had].
  she  said  Jan comp  this book  read  had

Section 9.3 concluded from this that regular subject-initial constructions do not involve topicalization but are derived by simply placing the subject in the regular subject position, the specifier of the T(ense) head. This resulted in the following derivations of subject-initial clauses and topicalization constructions; cf. Travis (1984) and Zwart (1992/1997). Note that these analyses suggest that subject-verb inversion is a hallmark of topicalization constructions; cf. Salverda (1982/2000).

Example 303
a. Subject-initial sentences
b. Topicalization constructions

Observe that we are not claiming here that subjects cannot be topicalized, but only that they are not topicalized if they occur in a neutrally pronounced sentence. Examples like (304a) with contrastive accent on the subject may involve topicalization. That they do so is strongly suggested by expletive constructions like (304b); since it is normally assumed that the expletive er'there' occupies the regular subject position, the subject niemand can only occur in sentence-initial position as a result of topicalization. We added the locational adverbial phrase op de vergadering to example (304b) to block a locative interpretation of er'there' in order to ensure that er indeed functions as an expletive.

Example 304
a. Mijn zuster heeft dit boek gelezen.
  my sister  has  this book  read
  'My sister/she has read this book.'
b. Niemand was er op de vergadering.
  nobody  was there  at the meeting
  'Nobody was there at the meeting.'

The analyses suggested in (303) are interesting in view of the fact that subject-initial clauses are the most neutral form of an utterance from a semantic view point: while topicalized phrases are special in that they play a specific role in structuring the discourse, sentence-initial subjects are often neutral in this respect. The representations in (303) thus enable us to express formally this by postulating that like question formation and relativization, topicalization is semantically motivated; see Dik (1978: Section 8.3.3), Haegeman (1995), Rizzi (1997), and many others. This will be the main topic of Subsection IV.

[+]  IV.  Information structure: focus and topic

The information structure of a clause is closely related to its intonation pattern. In utterances like the (b)-examples in (305), which present new information only if intended as an answer to the question in (305a), the main accent is located at the end of the clause, normally on the constituent preceding the clause-final verbs; see Section 13.1, sub III, for more detailed discussion. We will refer to utterances with this intonation pattern as neutral clauses (in order to not complicate things we will discuss main clauses only).

Example 305
a. Wat is er gebeurd?
  what  is there  happened
  'What has happened?'
b. Jan heeft Marie een brief gestuurd.
  Jan has  Marie  a letter  sent
  'Jan has sent Marie a letter.'
b'. Jan heeft een brief naar Marie gestuurd.
  Jan has  a letter  to Marie  sent
  'Jan has sent a letter to Marie.'

The intonation pattern of utterances can be affected by the information structure of the clause. In the primed examples in (306), which contain both presupposed and new information if used as answers to the questions in the primeless examples, the main accent must be located in the new information of the clause (henceforth: the new-information focus); in the cases at hand, this results in the placement of the main accent in a more leftward position. For more information about assignment of main accent in clauses we refer the reader to Booij (1995).

Example 306
a. Wie heeft Jan een brief gestuurd?
  who has  Jan  a letter  sent
  'Who has Jan sent a letter?'
a'. Hij heeft Marie een brief gestuurd.
  Jan has  Marie  a letter  sent
  'He has sent Marie a letter.'
b. Wat heeft Jan naar Marie gestuurd?
  what  has  Jan  to Marie  sent
  'What has Jan sent to Marie?'
b'. Hij heeft een brief naar Marie gestuurd.
  Jan has  a letter  to Marie  sent
  'Jan has sent a letter to Marie.'

The following subsections will show that topicalization may also affect the intonation pattern of utterances; we will see that the way in which the intonation pattern is affected depends on the impact topicalization has on the information structure of the clause. There are also a number of cases in which topicalization does not seem to have such a great impact on the intonation of the clause; we will discuss some of the prototypical cases. Before we start, we want to note that the literature exhibits a great deal of variation when it comes to information-structural notions like focus and topic; cf. Erteschik-Shir (2007) for an extensive review. We aim at staying close to the use of these notions in É. Kiss' (2002:ch.1-6) description of the Hungarian clause, in which these notions play a prominent role.

[+]  A.  Contrastive/restrictive focus

The new-information focus can also be placed in sentence-initial position as a result of topicalization. So, next to the answers in the primed examples in (306), we also find utterances like (307a&b). The parentheses indicate that the presuppositional part of such answers is normally omitted.

Example 307
a. Marie (heeft hij een brief gestuurd).
answer to (306a)
  Marie   has  he  a letter  sent
  'Marie, he has sent a letter.'
b. Een brief (heeft hij naar Marie gestuurd).
answer to (306b)
  a letter   has  he  to Marie  sent
  'A letter, he has sent to Marie.'

Jansen (1981: Section 4.2.1) claims that focus topicalization of the type in (307) is not very frequent (in non-interrogative contexts), which raises the question as to whether we are simply dealing with new-information focus or whether utterances such as (307) have some additional property. We tend to think that the accents in these topicalization constructions are stronger than those in the primed examples in (306), which may suggest that topicalization constructions express contrastive or restrictive focus in the sense that the proposition holds for the focussed phrases, to the exclusion of any other referent; see Section 13.3.2 for more discussion.
      This would be in line with the fact that utterance (307a) expresses that in the relevant domain of discourse only Marie was sent a book by Jan: if it were to turn out that Jan also sent a letter to Peter and that the speaker uttering (307a) was aware of that, he could be accused of not being fully informative by withholding information. The same would hold for utterance (307b) if it turned out that Jan also sent cocaine to Marie.
      That we are dealing with restrictive focus is also supported by the fact that it is often impossible to topicalize non-specific indefinite noun phrases, as these are typically used for introducing new information but cannot easily be used in a contrastive or a restrictive fashion. Example (308a') shows, for example, that topicalization of the existential pronoun iemand gives rise to a highly marked result, and (308b') shows that topicalization of an indefinite noun phrase such as een pianist is restricted to cases in which the speaker contradicts a certain presupposition on the part of the addressee: it would be acceptable as a reaction to the following question: Hoe was je ontmoeting met die cellist gisteren?'How was your meeting with that cellist yesterday?'.

Example 308
a. Ik heb gisteren iemand ontmoet.
  have  yesterday  someone  met
  'I met someone yesterday.'
a'. ?? Iemand heb ik gisteren ontmoet.
b. Ik heb gisteren een pianist ontmoet.
  have  yesterday  a pianist  met
  'I met a pianist yesterday.'
b'. # Een pianist heb ik gisteren ontmoet.

The negative pronoun niemand'nobody', on the other hand, can be topicalized in constructions such as (309a) if the speaker wants to express that he did expect to see in Amsterdam at least one person from the given domain of discourse. Similarly, example (309b) expresses that the speaker did not expect to be able to meet in Amsterdam all individuals in the given domain of discourse.

Example 309
a. Niemand heb ik in Amsterdam gezien (zelfs Jan niet).
  nobody  have  in Amsterdam seen   even  Jan  not
  'Nobody, I have seen in Amsterdam (not even Jan).'
b. Iedereen heb ik in Amsterdam kunnen ontmoeten (zelfs marie).
  everybody  have  in Amsterdam  can  meet  even  Marie
  'Everyone, I have been able to meet in Amsterdam (even Marie).'

Another indication that we are not dealing with mere new-information focus is that the topicalized phrase may be preceded by an (emphatic) focus particle like zelfs'even', alleen'solely', slechts/maar'only': cf. Barbiers (1995:ch.3).

Example 310
a. Zelfs Marie heeft hij een brief gestuurd.
  even Marie  has  he  a letter  sent
  'He has even sent Marie a letter.'
b. Alleen Marie heeft hij een brief gestuurd.
  only Marie  has  he  a letter  sent
  'Only Marie he has sent a letter.'
c. Slechts twee studenten haalden het examen.
  only two students  passed  the exam
  'Only two students passed the exam.'

For want of more detailed information on the question as to whether topicalized focus phrases indeed necessarily express more than merely new information, we have to leave our suggestions above to future research.

[+]  B.  Aboutness topic

The sentence-initial position is typically occupied by an aboutness topic, a phrase referring to an entity about which the sentence as a whole provides more information. Although the three examples in (311) express the same propositions, they provide additional information about completely different topics: in (311a) the topic is the subject Jan, in (311b) the topic is the direct object de brief'the letter', and in (311c) the topic is embedded in the complementive naar-PP. Observe that the comments in (311) typically contain new information and thus also contain sentence accent (which is again placed on the constituent preceding the clause-final verbs if the full comment consists of new information).

Example 311
a. [topic Jan] [comment heeft de brief naar Marie gestuurd].
  Jan  has  the letter  to Marie  sent
  'Jan has sent the letter to Marie.'
b. [topic De brief] [comment heeft Jan naar Marie gestuurd].
  the letter  has  Jan to Marie  sent
  'The letter, Jan has sent to Marie.'
c. [topic Naar Marie] [comment heeft Jan de brief gestuurd].
  to Marie  has Jan the letter sent
  'To Marie, Jan has sent the letter.'

The new information in (311) is provided by an argument, but the examples in (312) show that this can also be an adverbial element that can be used contrastively, such as the negative adverb niet, which can be contrasted with the affirmative marker wel, or adverbs such as morgen'tomorrow', which can be contrasted with adverbs like vandaag'today' or nu'now'. For more examples, see Salverda (2000:100-1).

Example 312
a. Peter heb ik nog niet gezien.
  Peter  have  not yet  seen
  'Peter, I haven't seen yet.'
b. Het boek moet je morgen maar lezen.
  the book  must  you  tomorrow  prt  read
  'The book, you should read tomorrow.'

The aboutness topic is always part of the domain of discourse, which means that it must satisfy certain criteria: (i) it must be referential in the sense that it refers to an entity or set of entities and (ii) it must be specific, that is, the entity or set of entities must be identifiable in the domain of discourse. This implies that the aboutness topic is prototypically a proper noun, a referential personal pronoun, a definite noun phrase, a specific indefinite noun phrase, or a PP containing such a noun phrase; see É. Kiss (2002: chapter 2).

[+]  C.  Contrastive topics

Contrastive topics differ from aboutness topics in that they need not be referential or specific; the examples in (313) show that they can be non-individual-denoting elements like bare plurals, indefinite noun phrases, adverbial phrases and verbal particles; examples such as (313a&b) are of course also possible with definite noun phrases ( de zwaan/zwanen'the swan/swans') but this is not illustrated here. Contrastive topics are accented and followed by a brief fall in intonation on the following comment, which gives rise to a typical "hat" contour marked by the symbols "/" and "\". Contrastive topic constructions convey that there is an alternative topic for which an alternative comment holds (cf. É. Kiss 2002: Section 2.7); we made this explicit in the examples in (313) by adding the part within parentheses.

Example 313
a. [topic /Zwanen] [comment \heb ik niet gezien] (maar ganzen wel).
  swans  have  not  seen   but  geese  aff
  'I haven't seen swans, but I did see geese.'
b. [topic / Een zwaan][comment \heb ik niet gezien] (maar wel een gans).
    a swan have  not  seen   but  aff  a goose
  'I haven't seen a swan, but I did see a goose.'
c. [topic /Omhoog] [comment \ga ik met de lift] (maar omlaag via de trap).
  up    go I  by the elevator   but  down  via the stairs
  'Up I will use the elevator, but down I will take the stairs.'
d. [topic /Tegen] [comment \stemden de socialisten] (voor de liberalen).
  against   voted  the socialists  for  the liberals.
  'The conservatives voted against (the bill), the liberals for.'

The intonation pattern found in utterances like (313) is also possible with individual-denoting elements like the topics in (311). Applying the "hat" contour to these examples will result in similar contrastive readings as those in (313). For completeness' sake, note that examples such (313d) refute the persistent claim that verbal particles cannot be topicalized (cf., e.g., Zwart 2011:72); this is possible provided that they stand in opposition to another verbal particle (cf. Hoeksema 1991a) and thus allow a contrastive interpretation. We refer the reader to Section 13.3.2, sub II, for a more detailed discussion of contrastive topics.

[+]  D.  Topic shift

The distal demonstrative pronouns die'that' and dat'that' are very common in sentence-initial position. These pronouns are used to refer to some referent in the immediately preceding context, as in example (314). We added indices in order to unambiguously indicate the intended interpretation of the pronoun. Topicalized demonstratives differ from the topicalized phrases discussed so far in that they need not have contrastive accent; see, e.g., Salverda (1982/2000) and Bouma (2008:45).

Example 314
a. Heb je Jani gezien? Nee, diei is ziek.
  have  you  Jan  seen  no  dem  is  ill
  'Did you see Jan? No, he is ill.'

The demonstrative can be accented, in which case it receives a contrastive/restrictive focus interpretation. If it remains unstressed, it typically indicates topic shift, that is, a change of aboutness topic. In this respect distal demonstratives differ crucially from referential personal pronouns like hij'he' or zij'she', which typically refer to continuous topics. This is illustrated by means of the examples in (315); that the distal demonstrative brings about topic shift is clear from the fact that it cannot refer to the subject (the default topic) of the preceding sentence; referential pronouns are not subject to this restriction. We will not digress on topic shift here but refer the reader to Section N5.2.3.2, sub IIA1, for a more extensive discussion.

Example 315
a. [Jani ontmoette Elsj ] en [hiji/*diei