In Korean not only complements but also adjuncts (relative clauses or locative/temporal phrases) can be null, too. A non-trivial question arises: How are null complements and adjuncts interpreted? If they have full syntactic structures and their phonological features are just void, they will be interpreted in the same way that their non-null counterparts are interpreted. If they do not have full syntactic structures and are unpronounced counterparts of proforms, their interpretation will not be mediated by syntax at all and just consult the semantic and discourse information that their antecedents have in the way proforms do. This squib diagnoses the presence of internal structures of null complements and adjuncts for sloppy identity and scope interpretations and possibilities of extraction from null elements. We show that the presence of sloppy identity and quantifier readings such as inverse scope may not be used to justify the presence of ellipsis, at least in Korean, since these readings can also be observed with overt pronouns in the same contexts unlike in English. We further show that the impossibility of extraction from null arguments and adjuncts justifies the absence of an unpronounced syntactic structure in Korean.
2. Sloppy Identity and Scope Interpretation in Korean (and English)
4. Concluding Remarks