This paper seeks to establish a formal typology of so-called arbitrary null object languages. Evidence drawn from various languages of that type including French, KiNande, and Tamil is presented which suggests that V-governed arbitrary null elements are instances of A'-bound pro. It is argued that pro being a Caseless empty category, the presence of arbitrary null objects in a language simply follows from the optionality of ACC Case assignment in that language. Further, this parameter is shown not to be a primitive of the grammar, but to be a direct consequence of Pollock's (1989) strong vs. weak AGR parameter, a parameter responsible for the presence vs. absence of a certain type of V-movement across languages.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Language and Linguistics
- Linguistics and Language