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Languages 2018, 3(2), 18; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020018

Acquisition of French Causatives: Parallels to English Passives

1
Department of Linguistics, McGill University, 1085 Dr. Penfield, Montreal, QC H3A0G4, Canada
2
Department of Linguistics, University of Connecticut, 365 Fairfield Way, Storrs, CT 06269-1145, USA
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 3 December 2017 / Revised: 28 March 2018 / Accepted: 22 May 2018 / Published: 31 May 2018
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Abstract

Guasti (2016) notes similarities between English get- and be-passives, and Romance causatives of the faire-par and faire-infinitif types, respectively. On this basis she conjectures that faire-infinitif will show an acquisitional delay similar to that found for English be-passives, which are not mastered until sometime after the age of four. Here, this prediction is tested and supported for French faire-infinitif causatives of transitive verbs. To explain the delay, the Universal Freezing Hypothesis (UFH) of Snyder and Hyams (2015) is extended to this type of causative: a restriction on movement is recast as a restriction on AGREE. A novel prediction, that faire causatives involving unergative or unaccusative verbs will be acquired much earlier, is also tested and supported. Finally, English get-passives and French “reflexive causative passives” are examined in light of the fact that both are acquired substantially earlier than age four. View Full-Text
Keywords: first language acquisition; relativized minimality; causatives first language acquisition; relativized minimality; causatives
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Borga, J.; Snyder, W. Acquisition of French Causatives: Parallels to English Passives. Languages 2018, 3, 18.

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