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  1. beachboy's Avatar
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    #1

    Get something done

    I'm trying to get my shopping done.
    Is the sentence above in the causative form? The speaker is not transferring the action to somebody else.... Is there any difference between this sentence and "I'm trying to do my shopping"?

  2. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Get something done

    Hi, Beachboy!

    I'm not a grammarian, so let me just answer your question in plain English.

    In your examples, "get my shopping done" and "do my shopping" mean the same thing. "Get done" is being used idiomatically to mean "finish" or "complete," so you're using it the same way you're using "do" in the second example.

    I don't know whether that's the causative form. Let's see what others say.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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    #3

    Re: Get something done

    If my understanding of French grammar transfers to English, this is not a causative form. If you wrote I had a service do my shopping, it would be.
    I am not a teacher.

  3. beachboy's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Get something done

    It's because causative form, with a verb such as "get" (or "have") may have 2 forms. With the agent, and without the agent. So, a sentence like "I got my mother to cook my dinner" would have basicly the same meaning as "I got my dinner cooked". If I'm not mistaken...

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    #5

    Re: Get something done

    That's different. 'Trying to get your shopping done' is what you are are doing; 'getting your mother to cook your dinner' is what somebody else is doing for you.

    'Basic' is an unusual word. There is no adjective 'basical', but the adverb is 'basically' — not 'basicly'.
    Last edited by Rover_KE; 01-Jun-2016 at 22:27.

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