The have-it-that construction
A corpus-based analysis
Speakers do not always attribute agency straightforwardly when they communicate. While complying with the maxims of explicitness and relevance, they may depict states of affairs headed by an identifiable source. More often than not, however, it seems they leave out this source for a number of reasons and through different mechanisms. This paper is a corpus-based study of one such non-identifying structures, namely the extrapositional have-it-that construction, in examples such as Several hypotheses have it that land-use changes. Drawing on data from the BNC, this paper investigates the use, distribution and functioning of the have-it-that construction. The paper also highlights the usefulness of simple collexeme analysis in revealing systematic co-selection relationships within the construction.
Published online: 25 October 2014
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