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The Linguistic Review

Editor-in-Chief: van der Hulst, Harry

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Volume 31, Issue 3-4


Argument ellipsis: a unitary approach to pro-drop

Maia Duguine
Published Online: 2014-09-04 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/tlr-2014-0010


A well established assumption in the literature on null arguments is that so-called consistent pro-drop and radical (or discourse) pro-drop are distinct phenomena, characterizing different types of pro-drop languages. This paper argues that this dichotomy must be abandoned in favor of a unitary approach, and proposes to reduce both types of pro-drop to ellipsis of full-fledged argument DPs. It then shows that Fox' (2000) NP-Parallelism requirement, which accounts for the strict-sloppy ambiguities in VP-ellipsis, directly carries over to the same ambiguities in pro-drop (i.e. argument-ellipsis), and that the analysis explains a set of seemingly problematic data. The approach put forth here ultimately leads to characterizing the patterns of pro-drop observed across languages as epiphenomena.

Keywords: pro-drop; ellipsis; identity condition; null subjects; sloppy reading

About the article

Published Online: 2014-09-04

Published in Print: 2014-09-01

Citation Information: The Linguistic Review, Volume 31, Issue 3-4, Pages 515–549, ISSN (Online) 1613-3676, ISSN (Print) 0167-6318, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/tlr-2014-0010.

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