Focus Structure in Modern Standard Estonian
Discourse configurational languages show a bewildering variety of word orders dictated less by word class or case than by the pragmatic roles of information in the sentence. Within the field of generative syntax Kiss (1995) models this order through the use of a focus phrase (FP) which takes as its specifier a focused constituent that undergoes movement from its base generated position. Ehala (2006) argues that the underlying word order of Modern Standard Estonian -- a discourse configurational language -- is SIOV, but does not present evidence for a complete picture of the necessary movement within a generative theory. Considering further data presented by Mati (1993) I argue that languages such as Estonian use the FP, generated under the CP, to code wide focus through transformational movement. Other phenomena such as a prevalent V2 ordering and sentence final narrow focus can be described using the FP.