In linguistics, the focus is the one linguistic unit that is claimed in a declarative statement or asks in an interrogative statement.
Here, the focus is one of the two primary states that are possible in the information structure of utterances. Its counterpart is the Topik. Both are objects of investigation of discourse pragmatics.
The concept of focus overlaps with the concept of Rhemas, which was dominated by the Prague School as part of the theme - rheme structure.
It can in principle distinguish between the following types of focus:
- Constituent focus: The emphasis marks a contrast between alternative ways to specify a particular phrase.
- Predicate - focus: The emphasis marks a contrast between alternative ways to specify a predicate.
- Set focus: The entire set of content is a new release ( emphasis = "neutral sentence stress " on the constituent directly in front of the predicate ).
- Verum focus: emphasis on the finite verb marks a contrast between the ways to tell if a given set of content already asserted or denied.
Linguistic coding method
In the languages of the world, there are various - often alternatively applicable - Method for coding the different focus functions, eg for the constituent focus:
- Prosody - intonation and accentuation:
- Morphology - focus marker, such as the postposition ga in Japanese: