1

この宿題は難しすぎるので、先生に手伝わせてもらおうと思います。

Does it mean 'I was allowed to be helped'? 'I'll let myself be helped by teacher'?

  • 5
    手伝わせてもらおうと <- You sure it's not a typo of 「手伝ってもらおうと」? – Chocolate Jan 9 at 13:00
  • 1
    Or maybe the writer wanted to say 先生に許可をもらって誰かに手伝わせようと but resulted in an awkward sentence? Anyway this is not a natural sentence. – naruto Jan 10 at 1:49
-1

Let's try to analyze in full sentence format for comprehensive perspective.

1. タローは先生に研究テーマをもらった。

Core structure is タローは「  」もらった and what タロー received is mentioned in 「  」.

2. タローは「先生に研究を手伝って」もらった。

Clause in 「  」can be converted to independent sentence as 先生は(タローの)研究を手伝う。Particle change from は to に was done in order to follow standard sentence structure.

3.タローは「先生にハナコを手伝って」もらった。

When object 研究 as a matter to be changed to a person ハナコ, same principle will apply.

  • 先生 dose action of 手伝う
  • ハナコ is object for the action done by 先生
  • タロー receives all that was shown in 「  」as contents or certain situation/scene.

From this structure, もらう causes further connotation of subject's psychological state of eagerness/desire/demand/solicit to come out. It also means that 「  」is for subject's favor/sake. Therefore, てもらう is sometimes interpreted as "to request someone to do something for requester's favor" which is beyond definition of もらう "to receive/accept".

4. Then, verb 手伝う is changed to causative 手伝わせる, what would happen?

From タローは「先生にハナコを手伝わせて」もらった。, above analyzation will become as below.

  • 先生 does action of making "ハナコ to do action of 手伝う"
  • ハナコ does action of 手伝う
  • タロー receives all that was shown in 「  」as contents or certain situation/scene.

5. Now, how should we interpret 先生に手伝わせてもらおうと思います。

Core structure seems SOMEBODYは「  」もらおうと思います。SOMEBODY as subject for もらおうと思います can be 私 as speaker or someone else. Speaker didn't show it because, according to him, it is apparent.

6. We have to remember the idiomatic expression

of causative verb + てもらう to mention "soliciting my doing something" such as 言わせてもらう, 見させてもらう, 帰らせてもらう, 終わらせてもらう, and other させてもらう expressions. If 手伝わせてもらう is this case, 先生 is the person who make speaker to do so, in other words 先生 gives permission for speaker to do 手伝う.

  • Accordingly, この宿題は難しすぎるので、先生に手伝わせてもらおうと思います。means speaker wants to 手伝う someone else under permission of 先生, because 宿題 is too 難しい. This will make sense but whom speaker wants to help is not mentioned.

7. If not speaker but someone else

is the subject, who wants to help whom is totally unclear.

  • 「先生に手伝わせて」can be interpreted as above 4.

  • 先生 does action of making "someone to do action of 手伝う"

  • this someone does action of 手伝う
  • And speaker is telling that someone else except 先生 and who does 手伝う is thinking to receive all that was shown in 「  」as contents or certain situation/scene.

Normally for this kind of worm hole sentences caused by omission, we must find the answer in context or from actual situation.

8. As far as your understanding

about this expression is concerned, and if it is in case of 6. above, "I" should be in a position to do help instead of to be helped because of nature of causative.

Your Answer

By clicking "Post Your Answer", you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.