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    #1

    personal pronoun

    Which is correct, him or them?

    I don't want any of the guys on the team to think that I don't want to play with him/them.

    Thanks.

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    #2

    Re: personal pronoun

    Quote Originally Posted by Gillnetter View Post
    Seeing that 'guys' is plural, which one would you select? As an aside, 'guys' may not be the best choice of words. How about replacing 'guys' with: men, boys, members, players?
    Coach: Pick any of the guys on the team and practice with him/them.
    'Guys' is still plural. Which is correct - him or them?

    Coach: Pick one of the guys on the team and practice with him/them.
    'Guys' is still plural. Which is correct - him or them?


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    #3

    Re: personal pronoun

    Quote Originally Posted by Jasmin165 View Post
    Which is correct, him or them?

    I don't want any of the guys on the team to think that I don't want to play with X.

    Thanks.
    Let us proceed step by step towards the solution:

    The antecedent of 'X', with which 'X' has to agree in number and person, is 'any'.

    When used as a pronoun, any can take either a singular or plural verb, depending on how it is construed: Any of these books is suitable (that is, any one). But are any (that is, some) of them available?
    The sense the OP's sentence conveys is 'any one' --> singular

    guys = she? + he?
    I think the extralinguistic context helps.

    guys = some he --> him/them
    guys = some she --> her/them
    guys = some she + some he --> them/(him or her)


    (them = gender neutral singular third person)

    Last edited by Kondorosi; 18-Jan-2010 at 08:03.

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    #4

    Re: personal pronoun

    Quote Originally Posted by Jasmin165 View Post
    Which is correct, him or them?

    I don't want any of the guys on the team to think that I don't want to play with him/them.

    Thanks.
    In this sentence: "I don't want to play with him/them"

    The context is not sufficient to determine the object, whether it is a "him" or a "them". Both are possible.

    Raymott is pointing this out.
    Last edited by mxreader; 18-Jan-2010 at 08:16. Reason: because...


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    #5

    Re: personal pronoun

    Quote Originally Posted by mxreader View Post
    In this sentence: "I don't want to play with him/them"

    The context is not sufficient to determine the object, whether it is a "him" or a "them". Both are possible.
    guys
    mainly US used to address a group of people of either sex

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    #6

    Re: personal pronoun

    Quote Originally Posted by Kondorosi View Post
    guys
    mainly US used to address a group of people of either sex
    Is this what an educated non-native would infer from my posts? My communication skills as an ESL teacher are not consummate yet, apparently.



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    #7

    Re: personal pronoun

    Quote Originally Posted by mxreader View Post
    In this sentence: "I don't want to play with him/them"
    Quote Originally Posted by Kondorosi View Post
    guys
    mainly US used to address a group of people of either sex
    Quote Originally Posted by mxreader View Post
    Is this what an educated non-native would infer from my posts? My communication skills as an ESL teacher are not consummate yet, apparently.

    Is what? What is 'this' to you? This last quote suggests to me you included the definition of 'guys' that I presented in "I don't want to play with him/them". But you did not. If you did, your sentence would now look like this:

    "I don't want to play with (him or her)/them," and that would be correct, provided your 'them' denotes the gender neutral singular pronoun. Plural pronoun is not correct, in my opinion, and the reasons I have already provided in words of one syllable in my first post in this thread.
    ()

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    #8

    Re: personal pronoun

    Quote Originally Posted by Jasmin165 View Post
    Which is correct, him or them?
    Let me rephrase....Jasmin, you can answer this yourself depending who it is you are referring to. Was it a male individual? then use "him". Was it a group of individuals? then use "them". If it is an individual but you want to be vague I think we can still use "them".


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    #9

    Re: personal pronoun

    And I wanted to draw the OP's attention to the the fact that even her is correct. (The plural is not. )

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    #10

    Re: personal pronoun

    "Them" sounds better to me, but I think "him" is correct because "any" refers to a single person in my sentence, i.e., "I don't want a single guy on the team to think..."

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