EPP, Labeling and Word Order in Arabic


  •  Ameen Alahdal    

Abstract

This paper looks at EPP and word order in Arabic in light of Chomsky’s Labeling Theory, proposed in POP and POP Extensions. In the current framework, EPP—the principle that SpecTP must be filled in—is eliminated. EPP-driven movement is reduced to labeling failure: if T fails to label the structure that arises after E-merge of the subject in Spec of vP [DP vP], then filling SpecTP becomes necessary in order to ‘strengthen’ (the labelability of) T. Chomsky postulates two types of T: Strong and weak. English-type languages, which show poor agreement inflection, have a weak T, and therefore impose the Fill-SpecTP requirement. On the other hand, NSLs, Chomsky claims, have a strong T which can label the TP structure, by virtue of having rich agreement inflection. This paper shows that Chomsky’s approach to EPP makes wrong predictions. Instead, a freezing effect account which also maintains a labeling system can explain the word order facts in Arabic. Crucially, the account proposed does not make resort to Chomsky’s parameter of strength or otherwise of T.



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1923-869X
  • ISSN(Online): 1923-8703
  • Started: 2011
  • Frequency: bimonthly

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