So Similar, So Different – A Corpus-driven Method of English Periphrastic Causatives
International Journal of Language and Linguistics
Volume 7, Issue 6, November 2019, Pages: 263-268
Received: Sep. 8, 2019;
Accepted: Oct. 9, 2019;
Published: Oct. 23, 2019
Views 135 Downloads 51
Lin Yu, The Research Institute of Foreign Linguistics and Applied Linguistics, Henan University, Kaifeng, P. R. China
With insights of Talmy’s claim of Agonist and Antagonist in his force dynamic theory, this paper explores the English periphrastic causatives “Cause” and “Make” in the FLOB corpus (The Freiburg–LOB Corpus of British English). With purpose to figure out the similarities and differences between “Cause” and “Make” with additional semantic features, we introduce the methods of colligation and semantic prosody in corpus-driven analysis to explore and illustrate the distribution of the English periphrastic causatives “Cause” and “Make”. The research results indicate that: (1) Based on the colligation of the English periphrastic causatives “Cause” and “Make”, Talmy’s claim of the distribution of Agonist and Antagonist can be revised with more details in terms of the active and passive voice. That is, the distribution of Agonist and Antagonist keeps similar with each other in the colligations of English periphrastic causatives of “Cause” and “make”. Even though the colligations of “Make” are used more often than “Cause”, the Antagonist can be foregrounded as the subject and the Agonist is backgrounded as the direct object in the active voice. Meanwhile, the Agonist is foregrounded as the subject and the Antagonist is backgrounded as the direct object or sometimes omitted in the passive voice. (2) Moreover, “Cause” and “Make” bear some differences with regard to their semantic prosody. “Cause” tends to express negative situations, whereas “Make” remains neutral in its descriptions. In a nutshell, this study of English periphrastic causatives “cause & make” falls into the complementary framework of Talmy’s theory about force and causation.
So Similar, So Different – A Corpus-driven Method of English Periphrastic Causatives, International Journal of Language and Linguistics.
Vol. 7, No. 6,
2019, pp. 263-268.
Copyright © 2019 Authors retain the copyright of this article.
This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Baron, N. S. (1974). The structure of English causatives. Lingua, 33 (4): 299–342.
Baron, N. S. (1977). Language Acquisition and Historical Change. New York: North Holland.
Cole, P. (1983). The grammatical role of the causee in universal grammar. International Journal of American Linguistics, 49 (2): 115-33.
Dixon, R. M. W. (2000). A typology of causatives: Form, syntax and meaning. In R. M. W. Dixon and Alexandra Y. Aikhenvald. Changing Valency: Case Studies in Transitivity (pp. 30-83). New York: Cambridge University Press.
Firth, J. R. (1957). Papers in Linguistics: 1934-1951. London: Oxford University Press.
Gilquin, G. (2010). Corpus, Cognition and Causative Constructions. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Kemmer, S. & Verhagen, A. (1994). The grammar of causatives and the conceptual structure of events [J]. Cognitive Linguistics, 5 (2): 115–156.
Lakoff, G., & Johnson, M. (1980). Metaphors We Live By. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Langacker, R. W. (1991). Foundations of Cognitive Grammar, Vol. II: Descriptive Application. Stanford CA: Stanford University Press.
Louw, B. (1993). Irony in the text or insincerity in the writer? — the diagnostic potential of semantic prosodies. In M. Baker, G. Francis & E. Tognini-Bonelli (Eds.), Text and Technology: in Honour of John Sinclair (pp. 240-251). Amsterdam: Benjamins.
Radford, A. (1988). Transformational Grammar: A First Course. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Shibatani, M. (1976a). The grammar of causative constructions: A conspectus. In Masayoshi Shibatani (ed.), Syntax and Semantics 6: The Grammar of Causative Constructions, (pp. 240-251). New York: Academic Press.
Shibatani, M. (1976b). Causativization. In Japanese Generative Grammar. In M. Shibatani (ed.), (pp. 239–294). New York: Academic Press.
Sinclair, J. (2004) Trust the Text. London: Routledge.
Song, J. J. (1996). Causatives and Causation: A Universal-Typological Perspective. London: Longman.
Stubbs, M. (2002). Two quantitative methods of studying phraseology in English. International Journal of Corpus Linguistics, 7 (2): 215-244.
Talmy, L. (1976). Semantic causative types. In M. Shibatani (Ed.), Syntax and Semantics, vol. 6: The Grammar of Causative Constructions, (pp. 43-116). New York: Academic Press.
Talmy, Leonard. (2000). Toward a Cognitive Semantics. Vol. I: Concept Structuring Systems. Cambridge, MA/London: MIT Press.
Wolff, P. (2003). Direct causation in the linguistic coding and individuation of causal events. Cognition, 88 (1): 1-48.
Wolff, P., Jeon, G.-H., & Li, Y. (2009). Causers in English, Korean, and Chinese and the individuation of events. Language and Cognition, 1 (2), 167-196.
Wolff P. & Song, G. (2003). Models of causation and the semantics of causal verbs. Cognitive Psychology, 47 (3): 276–332.