Heidi Harley
in J. Guéron and A. Zribi-Hertz, eds., La grammaire de la possession, pp. 195-226. Paris: Université Paris X - Nanterre.
Publication year: 1998

Two main questions are addressed here. First, if have is identical across all constructions, how is it possessive, locational, causative or experiencer interpretation determined? There are two main subclasses of constructions, one where the complement to have is a DP and one where it is a predication, and these two syntactic structures each admit of two interpretations, which will be shown to arise from the presence or absence of a binding relation between the complement material and the subject of have, and possibly to result in (or be caused by) the absence or presence of intentionality ascribed to the subject. The second question addressed is the difference in aspectual interpretation forced on have by the aspectual type of its complement. If the complement to have is clearly stative, have has a clearly stative interpretation. A more complicated situation ensues if the complement to have is apparently eventive. Experiencer readings with apparently eventive complements can in fact be seen to necessarily have stative interpretations, while being even more aspectually restricted than stative interpretations. Causative readings with eventive complements may themselves be eventive, however. On this account, it is especially crucial that stative and eventive complements be realized differently in the syntax; in particular, that they have distinct structural realizations, despite the possibility of identical surface forms. The behavior of have can thus provide an important clue as to the aspectual nature of its various complements; for instance, the English bare infinitive, I argue, is underdetermined (in this context) with respect to its eventiveness; similarly, the passive participle can be seen to be aspectually ambiguous.