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  • Hi again. Welcome to www.engvid.com. I'm Adam. Today's lesson is the causative. Now, I get

  • asked many times how to construct and use the causative structure.

  • First of all, "What is the causative", you're wondering? If you have someone do something

  • for you, then you are using the causative voice. For example, if you have the waiter

  • bring you a glass of water, this is a causative. If you have your hair cut, that is a causative.

  • The difference -- active and passive -- we will look at that in a moment.

  • First thing we need to do is understand how to construct this sentence structure. So we're

  • going to have -- I broke it down into little pieces, everything that you can understand.

  • The difference between a causative sentence and a regular sentence is we use an agent

  • in the causative. We have a subject; we have the causative verb; we have the agent -- the

  • person or thing that is going to do something for you; we have the verb; and we have the

  • object.

  • So first, the causative verb. There aren't that many that you will use. These are the

  • four most common ones: have, make, let, get. There are others, but the others are so obvious

  • that we don't need to worry about them too much, like "ask". "He asked someone to bring

  • him something." It's very clear. I think most people know how to use it. It's these four

  • that give people problems, especially these three. Why? Because I'm going to use a base

  • verb with them. With "get", I'm going to use an infinitive verb, "to" verb. Okay? So again,

  • subject -- "I" for example -- "had" -- you can go past. Whatever tense you're looking

  • for -- future, past, present -- this is going to take the tense, not this. Your causative

  • verb is going to take the tense. " 'I had' someone, 'I have', or 'I am having' someone,

  • 'I will have' someone cut my hair." For example. I need a haircut, actually, now that I think

  • about it. So, "I had the barber -- in this case, cutting hair -- cut -- base -- my hair

  • -- object." Okay? The main thing to remember is that the agent can be a person or a thing,

  • okay? "I had" -- well, we'll talk about that in the passive. "I had the package delivered.

  • "That's object, still. "I had the car drive to somewhere else." It's a little bit strange

  • if you have an automatic car. I'll think of a different example for you after that, okay?

  • But agent, person, thing. Object could be direct object, the person. It could be indirect

  • object, so it's a thing or a person, what or who. So, "I had the barber cut my hair."

  • Now, what do these mean, these four verbs? Excuse me. These three -- have, make, and

  • get -- basically mean cause. You're causing someone to do something. But you're wondering,

  • "Okay. All of them mean cause. When do I use which one?" Right? It's a little bit of a

  • nuance, very subtle differences. When you "have someone do something", basically, you're

  • commissioning them; you're paying them. "I will have the painter paint my house." "I

  • will have the mechanic fix my car." These are services. You're paying someone to do

  • something.

  • "I will make someone do something." You're a little bit forcing them, right? "I will

  • make my little brother clean my room. Why? Because he's my little brother. I'm bigger

  • than him. I can make him do things. So I will."

  • Get. "Get" is more like "convince". You persuade someone to do something for you, right? "I

  • will get my sister to do my laundry. Why? Because she's nice, and she likes me, and

  • I know how to speak to her. That's why".

  • "Let" is, basically, "give someone permission". So very clear. Have, make, get -- causing

  • it in its own way; let -- allow. Okay.

  • Then, this -- all of this is the active causative. "We make someone do something". But we can

  • also use the passive causative, in which case we have the subject; we have the causative

  • verb again; we have the object, next; and we have the verb in a past participle form.

  • Notice that we don't -- I didn't include the agent. You can include the agent. Usually,

  • it's obvious; you don't need to, right? So if I had my hair cut, who did it? The barber.

  • Do I need to say it was the barber? No. You understand that, right? So the agent is optional.

  • I'll put it in brackets, in parentheses.

  • Now, keep in mind that you will only use "have" and "get" -- excuse me. You will only use

  • "have" and "get" in the passive causative. You could use "make" and "let", but the structures

  • will be a little bit different, and it's a little bit uncommon to see these structures.

  • Very common to see "have" and "get". "I had my hair cut." Now, "cut" is a little bit confusing

  • because "cut", "cut" -- what's the difference? But "cut" is an irregular verb. Present tense,

  • "cut". Past tense, "cut". Past participle, "cut". Okay?

  • "I had my homework done for me" -- means I had somebody else do it for me, okay? I didn't

  • do it; somebody else did.

  • "I got my friend" -- oh, no. Sorry. That's the active. "I got my car fixed." Who? The

  • mechanic fixed it. "I got my car fixed." Meaning somebody else did it.

  • Now, all of this will be much easier to understand once you see actual example sentences. So

  • let's put those on the board.

  • Okay. So here we are. We're back. We have a few more examples to show you. Let's look

  • at the active sentences first.

  • "Sam made her boyfriend cut his hair." Sam's boyfriend -- Sam, Samantha, by the way, if

  • you're wondering -- her boyfriend had hair down to here. She didn't like it. She said,

  • "Cut your hair, or I will leave you." So he was, like, "Okay, fine. I'll go get a cut."

  • So she made him have his hair cut. Or she made her boyfriend cut his own hair. Sorry.

  • I was mixing a couple things. So he went to the bathroom, cut it -- everybody's happy.

  • "Cal let his friend borrow his car." Okay. "You want to borrow my car? Sure. Here you

  • go." "Let" is a little bit easier. I think everybody, because of the idea of "allow"

  • or "give permission", this is much easier to understand. But it's still a causative

  • because you have an agent, etc.

  • "Jane got her sister to sew her a dress". Jane is having her prom next week. She wants

  • a beautiful dress to her prom. A "prom", by the way, is at the end of high school, you

  • have a big dance; everybody comes and dances and eats and celebrates. Everybody dresses

  • really nicely. Jane needed a dress. She got her sister to sew her a nice dress because

  • her sister is very nice.

  • "You should have the school call the boy's parents". Now, your son is having a problem

  • at school. There's a bully. Somebody is beating up your son. You should have the school call

  • the boy's parents and talk to them, make sure they do something about this, okay?

  • So all of these are active. The subject is causing the agent to do something. Good.

  • Here we have the passive. I only have "had" and "get", okay? "Bill had his house painted."

  • His house was getting old; he wanted it to freshen up; he wanted a new coat of paint.

  • He could have painted it himself, but instead, he had it painted. Now, who painted it? Well,

  • it was a painter, of course. I didn't mention it because it's kind of obvious from "paint",

  • right?

  • "I get my groceries delivered". "Groceries" -- all the things from the supermarket that

  • I need at home. I don't like to go to the supermarket and shop and carry all my things

  • home. I call them; I tell them what I need; they deliver it. So I get my groceries delivered

  • to me. Who delivers it? I don't know. I don't care. I have groceries. I'm eating. I'm happy.

  • It's not important. But if you're not sure how to use the passive, check my previous

  • lesson I have on www.engvid.com about the passive. It will explain why I do or do not

  • put the agent here, okay?

  • Of course, if you need more exercises, if you need more examples, go to www.engvid.com.

  • There's a quiz there that you can try out. And come again soon, and we'll do another

  • lesson. Thanks.

Hi again. Welcome to www.engvid.com. I'm Adam. Today's lesson is the causative. Now, I get

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A2 US causative cut agent hair passive hair cut

English Grammar - Causative

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    Hang-quei Chiu posted on 2014/10/13
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