The morphosyntax of causative relations in Czech and Upper Sorbian: a contrastive, descriptive analysis
Toops, Gary H.
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Toops, Gary H. 2013. The morphosyntax of causative relations in Czech and Upper Sorbian: a contrastive, descriptive analysis. The Slavonic and East European Review, v.91:no.3 (July 2013), pp.401-430
The article provides a contrastive, descriptive analysis of the morphosyntax of causative relations in two closely related West Slavic languages — contemporary Czech and Upper Sorbian. Four types of causative constructions are identified: (a) contextual causatives, (b) causative ‘give’-constructions, (c) synsemantic causative constructions (incorporating the Czech causative auxiliaries nechávat/nechat and dávat/dát and the Upper Sorbian causative auxiliary dać), and (d) autosemantic causative constructions. It is concluded that Upper Sorbian shares with Czech only causative constructions (b), (c), and (d) and that the two languages differ most from each other in their instantiation of synsemantic causatives. The potential influence of German on causative expression in Czech and Upper Sorbian is considered alongside occasional comparisons with Russian. The analysis also incorporates data from colloquial varieties of Upper Sorbian and takes into account problems of ambiguity and obsolescence as well as the syntactic exponency of Direct Agents in certain Czech causative constructions.
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