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Information for Students in Joe Lumsden's Classes


Lecture Notes on Pinter's later plays | Writing 'Opinion' Essays more Objectively | Lecture Notes on Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice | 10th December Grammar Lesson (First Year) | Modern English and American Drama | Advanced Grammar Info and Grades | Advanced Composition Info and Grades | The Rise and Development of the English Novel | Lecture Notes on Thomas Hardy's 'Tess of the D'Urbevilles' | Information about Classes | Final Exam News for All Classes | Links | Contact Me
10th December Grammar Lesson (First Year)

First of all, let me apologize for not being able to get to Fatih on Monday morning. I'm sure a lot of you made the effort to get there. I nearly got there but opposite Alkent, some strange man told me to turn back, as the road was closed. At the same time it was getting extremely difficult to move my car due to the snow and ice on the road. So, here is an explanation of the material that we were going to cover during the lesson. I will give worksheets out during the week so that you will be able to practise the structures during the holiday. O.K mi?


(a) The Causative.

We use the causative structure when somebody else does something (for us) at our request. Turkish tends to use the structure etTIRmek for this structure in most cases, but this translation rule is definitely not universal. It's simply a generalization.

The structure is acceptable in every tense and causative structures are constructed as follows:

Subject + HAVE (in correct tense) + Object + VERB 3
Subject + HAVE (in correct tense) + AGENT + VERB 1 + Object

We would use the second structure when we want to explain 'who' did the action for us. For example:

I had my car repaired
I had the mechanic repair my car.

I had my hair cut. (Verb 3)
I had the barber cut my hair. (Verb 1)

Note the different form of the verbs used in each structure.

We also use this structure when something undesirable happens to us. Although the structure used is identical, the meaning of these sentences are considerably different to the examples above.

I had my car stolen last night. (I didn't want this)
I had my face punched at school. (I didn't want this)

These examples are exceptions to the general rule of the causative structure and should be used with caution.

(b) Using 'get' instead of 'have'

Generally, in informal English, we use 'get' instead of 'have' in causative structures. Therefore:

I had my windows washed. =
I got my windows washed.

When using 'get' however, one must be careful with 'perfect' tenses. Look at the following examples:

I have had my hair cut.
I have got my hair cut.

Using 'get' in a perfect tense gives us the structure 'have got', which of course, is also used to talk about basic possession, e.g. I have got a dog. To avoid confusion, it is better to use 'have' instead of 'get' in perfect tenses.

'Get' is also used in imperative structures and when one wants to express that it was difficult to find someone to do the job.

Get your hair cut!
After driving around all day, I eventually got someone to mend my car.

(c) Other Passive Structures.

(1) Need(s) + Gerund

I need to get my hair cut =
My hair needs cutting.

I need to get my shoes shined =
My shoes need shining.

(2) Reporting verbs - say, think, believe, know.

People say that he is handsome =
He is said to be handsome.

Everyone thinks that they will get married =
It is thought that they will get married.

(3) Present reporting of past action

People believe that she passed the exam =
She is believed TO HAVE PASSED the exam.

Everyone knows that she left school
She is known TO HAVE LEFT school.

(4) Past reporting of Past Action

People thought that he had gone to America.
He WAS thought TO HAVE GONE to America.

...but with the verb 'to be', a present infinitive is possible.

People believed that she was beautiful
She WAS believed TO HAVE BEEN beautiful.
She WAS believed TO BE beautiful.

(5) Passive infinitives are possible.

Everyone thinks that she was killed.
She is thought TO HAVE BEEN killed.

(6) And Continuous infinitives are possible.

Everyone knows that she is living with her boyfriend.
She is known TO BE LIVING with her boyfriend.

(7) When two objects are seen, two structures are possible.

People know that the project was planned by Michael
The project is known TO HAVE BEEN PLANNED by Michael.
Michael is known TO HAVE PLANNED the project.

...look at the way the second sentence takes an active infinitive, while the first takes a passive infinitive.

(8) Using 'make' in the passive.

When 'make' is used in the passive, it takes the infinitive with 'to'. In the active, 'make' takes the infinitive without 'to'

They make us WORK hard.
We are made TO WORK hard.

The teacher made us DO our homework from the internet.
We were made TO DO our homework from the internet.

(9) Be careful again with 'by' and 'with'. We looked at this last week. 'By' is for the agent, 'With' is usually for the instrument.

I was hit WITH a stick BY someone.
I was hit BY a stick. (Probably it was an accident and nobody was using the stick)

(10) When using the verbs 'fill, pack, crowd and cram' in the passive, it is better to use 'with'.

The train was crowded WITH passengers.
The box was packed WITH books.

(11) Verbs such as 'Cover, Surround, Decorate' can use 'with' or 'by' (or sometimes 'in')

The carpet was covered with rubbish.
The carpet was covered by rubbish.

Istanbul was surrounded BY Turks waiting to attack.
Istanbul was surrounded WITH Turks waiting to attack.

Worksheets with exercises concerning these topics will be given out during the week. Students will be expected to do the worksheets at home and then they will be checked in the classroom during the next lesson.

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