Expletives in a Null Subject Language and Criteria for Expletiveness: Evidence from Russian

Olga Pekelis
2019 Studies in Polish Linguistics  
The paper presents an analysis of three pronouns used to refer to a right-peripheral complement clause in Russian. It is demonstrated that two of them exhibit properties associated with expletives, which is unexpected at first sight, Russian being a (partial) null subject language. However, these pronouns are shown to have a discourse-related function rather than a syntactic one. The third pronoun under discussion, though used in the same grammatical context, turns out to be referential. The
more » ... referential. The paper offers an account for this fact and proposes that the parameters that have proved to be relevant for differentiating expletives and non-expletives in Russian should be regarded as general criteria for expletiveness.
doi:10.4467/23005920spl.19.012.10992 fatcat:xur4mi42dvgbvj3l35wtfwanca