We are happy to announce a talk by Fabian Heck (Leipzig University) in the Syntax Colloquium.

The talk will take place in person. Room IG 4.301

Date: January 16

Time: 4 pm – 6 pm ct

Title: Empty expletives and the EPP


Since its introduction in Chomsky (1981), the EPP has remained a mistery. In particular, there is no consensus on what the EPP could derive from, or why it should exist (but cf. Haider 2010 for an interesting approach). Within the last 20 years, various proposals have been made that try to connect the EPP to some phonological property. In particular, there is a class of approaches claiming that the EPP requires that SpecT be filled by some *phonologically overt* category (e.g. Holmberg 2000, Bobaljik 2002, Landau 2007, Richards 2016, McFadden & Sundharesan 2018). Such a view appears to be incompatible with the very concept of an empty expletive. In my talk, I argue that there are reasons to assume that empty expletives exist. If the arguments are valid, this class of approaches to the EPP may be dismissed.