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    #1

    Unhappy Transitive --advocate

    Joshua Rosenzweig, a senior researcher at the Dui Hua Foundation, which advocates on behalf of Chinese political prisoners, said Mr. Liuís sentence was the longest for subversion charges in more than a decade. ---taken from the NYT
    Dear teacher,

    My trusty M-W Dictionary confirms that advocate is a transitive verb, but I fail to find its object in this context. Could you help me? Thanks.


    LQZ

  1. bhaisahab's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Transitive --advocate

    Quote Originally Posted by LQZ View Post
    Dear teacher,

    My trusty M-W Dictionary confirms that advocate is a transitive verb, but I fail to find its object in this context. Could you help me? Thanks.


    LQZ
    The answer is very simple, the verb has been used wrongly in your example.

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    #3

    Re: Transitive --advocate

    Quote Originally Posted by bhaisahab View Post
    The answer is very simple, the verb has been used wrongly in your example.
    Hmmm, thank you, that is what I think.

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    #4

    Re: Transitive --advocate

    Interesting.

    The sentence is really in the NYT:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/26/wo...a/26china.html

    Perhaps the correct verb here should be "plead" which can be intransitive:

    "Joshua Rosenzweig, a senior researcher at the Dui Hua Foundation, which pleads on behalf of Chinese political prisoners, said Mr. Liuís sentence was the longest for subversion charges in more than a decade."

  2. kfredson's Avatar

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    #5

    Re: Transitive --advocate

    Quote Originally Posted by LQZ View Post
    Dear teacher,

    My trusty M-W Dictionary confirms that advocate is a transitive verb, but I fail to find its object in this context. Could you help me? Thanks.


    LQZ
    Technically advocate is in fact a transitive verb, but its use as an intransitive verb has become more and more common, as when someone "advocates on behalf of the rights of the handicapped." At what point, if ever, does such an expression become correct usage?

    There is an interesting discussion of the use of "advocate" as intransitive verb in the Boston Globe.



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    #6

    Re: Transitive --advocate

    Quote Originally Posted by kfredson View Post
    Technically advocate is in fact a transitive verb, but its use as an intransitive verb has become more and more common, as when someone "advocates on behalf of the rights of the handicapped."
    OK, nice information, thanks kfredson. Still I ask: In these examples, can the verb "plead" have the same meaning as an "intransitive advocate" ?

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    #7

    Re: Transitive --advocate

    Quote Originally Posted by ymnisky View Post
    OK, nice information, thanks kfredson. Still I ask: In these examples, can the verb "plead" have the same meaning as an "intransitive advocate" ?
    "Pleads" is a word we would use to describe the actions of an attorney, speaking on behalf of a client. "Speaks" seems more appropriate here, since it involves an organization.

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