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New Insights into Slavic Linguistics


Edited By Jacek Witkos and Sylwester Jaworski

This volume presents a number of contributions to the 2013 Annual Meeting of the Slavic Linguistics Society held in Szczecin, Poland, October 26–28. The largest number of articles address issues related to the (morpho)syntactic level of language structure, and several papers describe results of recent research into different aspects of Slavic linguistics as well. The current volume proves conclusively that Slavic linguists make a remarkable contribution to the development of various theoretical frameworks by analysing linguistic evidence from richly inflected languages, which allows them to test and modify contemporary theories and approaches based on other types of data.
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Cased PRO: From GB to Minimalism and Back Again


Steven Franks

Indiana University, Bloomington

1. PRO in Government and Binding versus PRO under minimalism

This paper revisits the idea of cased PRO, raises conceptual challenges, and evaluates alternative approaches. Under GB, PRO was necessarily caseless. This followed from the claim that case is needed for nominals to be pronounced, but PRO is by definition silent. Caseless PRO was “derived” through the famous “PRO Theorem.”1 With minimalism’s rejection of government the PRO Theorem was rendered moot, and with no generally accepted theory of case assignment (or checking or valuation) there was no reason why PRO should not also have case. The problem however of delimiting the distribution of PRO remained, so the idea was put forward that PRO is licensed by a special kind of case that has no PF consequences. Chomsky and Lasnik (1993) proposed that PRO be endowed with “null Case,” and Martin (2001) developed related arguments about null/silent Case and the distribution of PRO.

Data from predicate adjective agreement has since been invoked to determine the quality of null Case, the assumption in e.g. Franks (1998), Landau (2008), or Sigurðsson (2008) being that the overt/morphological case of a predicate adjective reflects the silent/abstract Case of particular instances of PRO. Relevant Russian and Polish examples follow:

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