I can make the picture colourful.
I can make my home clean.
In the above sentence pattern, the sentences end with adjective.
I can make you laugh
I can make you cry.
In the above sentence pattern, the sentences end with verb.
Why the sentences vary while they look in similar pattern?
If the above four sentences are correct, how to use correct parts of speech(verb/adj).
If anyone of the above sentences is not correct please correct it.
This is hard to explain but I will try to make it simple to understand and use (had to research it myself)
First note that the main verb is make which is transitive; lets then ignore the clause 'I can' and focus on 'make you laugh, make you cry, make it colourful.'
Therefore these sentences are in the causative voice; the first two sentences are explained like this:
The picture is colourful >> is := make :: so
make the picture colourful
My home is clean >> is := make :: so
make my home clean
The last two sentences are easy to understand if we build them up from right to left (backwards)
"You laugh" is a proper sentence
"Make you laugh" is the causative voice, where 'you laugh' becomes the subject of 'make.' But who makes you laugh?
"I make you laugh" adds an object, and transforms 'make' into a transitive verb.
"I can make you laugh" inserts another transitive (can) which makes the case of 'make you laugh' oblique (the phrase acts like one noun), and the verb 'laugh' stays at the end just like it was in the simplest sentence! These last two are maybe hard to understand, but they are easier to construct than the first two.
I hope this helps. Its rather confusing, and my answer in the end is practice practice practice!
The first set of sentences uses "resultative adjectives". These are little unusual, because they occur after the nouns they modify (postpositive). Some call them object complements.
Originally Posted by rajlakh
A resultative adjective describes a change in an object caused by the action of the verb. Some examples:
The chef cooked the staeks rare. (result = rare steaks)
The man painted the fence red. (result = red fence).
Notice the difference if you use the adjectives prepositively.
The chef cooked the rare steaks. (How were they cooked when he was done? Who cooked the other steaks?)
The man painted the red fence. (What color is it now?)
In the second set of sentences, the terminal verb is a bare infinitive. These infinitives are object complements. As with resultative adjectives, these complements describe a change produced in the object. A similar construction is used with the verb "let".
Let him go.
Let him complete the project.
Just a couple of comments, Jesse.
Originally Posted by JSmiley
One doesn't normally talk of a "causative voice" in English. I believe it exists in Japanese and, perhaps, some other Asian languages.
Your explanation of the last two sentences is very confusing. You say that "you laugh" is the subject of "make" at one point. This really isn't possible.
The subject of "make" is I. You also refer to "can" as a transitive (verb?). It is an auxiliary verb (modal). The complete verb is "can make". The entire construction can be called causative and the verb can be described as cauasative. The true identity of "laugh" (an infinitive) is revealed by changing the verb "make" to "cause". I can cause you to laugh.
At least that's the way I see it.
Mike, you have a much more structured and accurate explanation.
In fact, my explanation in terms of causative voice did develop through teaching Japanese students! I would still defend the term as a teaching tool to any student, because although it is somewhat different from what we consider the 'causative voice' in Japanese and Thai, it is to me (and some of my students) fairly easy to understand as causing an action.
And yes <shame> not the subject, but the object <worry> right?
as for can... erm... Im going to go jump in a lake... be back later :o
Rajlakh, You should definitely look to Mikes answer for the accepted and accurate way of analyzing the sentences. I am ideosyncratic. In learning and teaching my best strategy is always to break what you are saying into its smallest understandable parts and build up to a complex statement. Whatever works for you!
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