Topics and the Topic Position


The difference between Topic position and topic is the difference between a grammatical position present in all sentences and the word that fills that position in a particular sentence.

Strictly speaking, Topic is a position or slot in every sentence, just as Subject is a position or slot in a sentence.

The Topic position is filled by words that we, loosely speaking, call "the topic" of the sentence, just as the subject position is filled by words that we, loosely speaking, call "the subject" of the sentence.

In this sentence, the subject position is filled by the words, "the subject position." Though we call those words the subject of the sentence, the subject is strictly speaking the slot that those words happened to fill in that sentence.