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Atesttaker

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________________________ the French philosopher and novelist Jean-Paul Sartre has been one of the most influential critics of the twentieth century.

a. Written of man's ethical dilemmas
b. Man's writing of ethical dilemmas
c. Writing of dilemmas ethics
d. Writing of man's ethical dilemmas
Which one is correct and why?
 

Casiopea

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Atesttaker said:
________________________ the French philosopher and novelist Jean-Paul Sartre has been one of the most influential critics of the twentieth century.

a. Written of man's ethical dilemmas
b. Man's writing of ethical dilemmas
c. Writing of dilemmas ethics
d. Writing of man's ethical dilemmas
Which one is correct and why?

Let's try process of elimination:

First, what kind of element is missing from the example sentence? The sentence has a subject (the French philosopher and novelist Jean-Paul Sarte), and it has a verb (has been), and it has an object (one of the most influential critics of the twentieth century.

If all the essential sentence elements are there, then what we are looking for is a non-essential element, some kind of added information.

Second, given choices a. through d., we'd cross off choice b. because it's a noun phrase.

a. Written of man's ethical dilemmas
b. Man's writing of ethical dilemmas :(
c. Writing of dilemmas ethics
d. Writing of man's ethical dilemmas

Noun phrases function as subjects and objects, and our sentence already has both of those elements.

We are now left with choices a., c., and d., all of which are participle phrases: each phrase is headed by a participle, an -ed or -ing word. Choice a. is headed by the past participle 'written'. Past participles function as adjectives, and they come after the nouns they modify, so, since there isn't a noun before choice a., let's cross off choice a.

a. Written of man's ethical dilemmas :(
b. Man's writing of ethical dilemmas :(
c. Writing of dilemmas ethics
d. Writing of man's ethical dilemmas

We are now left with two choices: c. and d. Both choices are headed by the present participle "Writing". Let's look at the structure of choice c.

c. Writing of dilemmas ethics

Here we have two nouns one after the other: 'dilemmas' and 'ethics'. In such as case, we'd expect to see a conjunction, maybe 'and', like this,

Writing of dilemmas and ethics.

Since the structure of choice c. is odd, let's cross it off our list.

a. Written of man's ethical dilemmas :(
b. Man's writing of ethical dilemmas :(
c. Writing of dilemmas ethics :(
d. Writing of man's ethical dilemmas

What's left is choice d., the answer:

Writing of Man's ethical dilemmas, the French philosopher and novelist Jean-Paul Sartre has been one of the most influential critics of the twentieth century.

All the best,
 

MikeNewYork

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Casiopea said:
Atesttaker said:
________________________ the French philosopher and novelist Jean-Paul Sartre has been one of the most influential critics of the twentieth century.

a. Written of man's ethical dilemmas
b. Man's writing of ethical dilemmas
c. Writing of dilemmas ethics
d. Writing of man's ethical dilemmas
Which one is correct and why?

Let's try process of elimination:

First, what kind of element is missing from the example sentence? The sentence has a subject (the French philosopher and novelist Jean-Paul Sarte), and it has a verb (has been), and it has an object (one of the most influential critics of the twentieth century.

If all the essential sentence elements are there, then what we are looking for is a non-essential element, some kind of added information.

Second, given choices a. through d., we'd cross off choice b. because it's a noun phrase.

a. Written of man's ethical dilemmas
b. Man's writing of ethical dilemmas :(
c. Writing of dilemmas ethics
d. Writing of man's ethical dilemmas

Noun phrases function as subjects and objects, and our sentence already has both of those elements.

We are now left with choices a., c., and d., all of which are participle phrases: each phrase is headed by a participle, an -ed or -ing word. Choice a. is headed by the past participle 'written'. Past participles function as adjectives, and they come after the nouns they modify, so, since there isn't a noun before choice a., let's cross off choice a.

a. Written of man's ethical dilemmas :(
b. Man's writing of ethical dilemmas :(
c. Writing of dilemmas ethics
d. Writing of man's ethical dilemmas

We are now left with two choices: c. and d. Both choices are headed by the present participle "Writing". Let's look at the structure of choice c.

c. Writing of dilemmas ethics

Here we have two nouns one after the other: 'dilemmas' and 'ethics'. In such as case, we'd expect to see a conjunction, maybe 'and', like this,

Writing of dilemmas and ethics.

Since the structure of choice c. is odd, let's cross it off our list.

a. Written of man's ethical dilemmas :(
b. Man's writing of ethical dilemmas :(
c. Writing of dilemmas ethics :(
d. Writing of man's ethical dilemmas

What's left is choice d., the answer:

Writing of Man's ethical dilemmas, the French philosopher and novelist Jean-Paul Sartre has been one of the most influential critics of the twentieth century.

All the best,

Excellent, Cas! :D
 
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