I demonstrate that the null object construction (NOC) in Japanese cannot be analyzed on a par with VP-ellipsis (VPE) in English, contrary to the suggestion made in Huang 1988, 1991 and Otani and Whitman 1991. I argue that what are considered to be “sloppy identity readings” in these works are not genuine sloppy identity readings, and I argue that such readings arise quite independently of the alleged VPE status of the NOC.

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