An inside-out approach to French causatives




In this paper, we provide a novel account of French causatives that crucially derives the core properties of the construction inside-out from the downstairs lexical verb to the causative verb, rather than outside-in, as is commonly assumed by argument composition (Miller & Sag, 1997; Abeillé & Godard, 1997; Abeillé et al., 1998). We shall argue on the basis of clitic trapping (Miller & Sag, 1997), as well as marking of the downstairs subject (Koenig, 1998) that the downstairs verb assumes a more active role than what is suggested by an argument composition approach and, conversely, we shall show that argument composition leads to problems with coordination and with en-cliticisation. The analysis we are going to propose combines an inversion analysis of the downstairs subject as a downstairs complement, accounting for scrambling and case marking, with an analysis of clitic climbing in terms of inflectional periphrasis (Aguila-Multner & Crysmann 2020).




How to Cite

Aguila-Multner, Gabrielle & Crysmann, Berthold. 2020. An inside-out approach to French causatives. Proceedings of the 27th International Conference on Head-Driven Phrase Structure Grammar 5–25. (doi:10.21248/hpsg.2020.1) ( (Accessed December 8, 2022.)