Volume 11, Issue 2
  • ISSN 1879-9264
  • E-ISSN: 1879-9272
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The main goal of this study is to investigate the nature of null elements used in German by early successive bilingual Polish-German children. The language pair offers the opportunity to investigate the possibility of cross-linguistic influence in the area of null arguments between two languages which differ significantly in the nature of the null arguments allowed in the grammars. Longitudinal data from four bilingual children who were first exposed to L2 German between the ages of 2;6 and 4;7 years is used in the investigation. The results show that early successive bilinguals have no underlying grammatical representation involving pro in their L2. Neither are the null elements exclusively a result of topic drop, as they are in German, or of discourse drop, as they are in adult Polish grammar. The findings suggest that early bilinguals transfer an L1 strategy of linking null elements to general pragmatic contexts.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): C/edge linking; early L2 German; null arguments
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