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  1. #1
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    multiple choice question

    He did not marry again and I was brought up without a woman's care.
    He did not marry again and I was brought up ______.
    a. without a care of women
    b. without care by a woman
    c. without a woman to care for me
    d. careless of a woman

    Dear all,
    The right answer to this question is C, but in my opinion, B is more suitable because it is more concise. Could you help me clear my doubt up, please? Why is B wrong? Thanks a lot!

    Xianyu

  2. #2
    corum is offline Banned
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    Re: multiple choice question

    Quote Originally Posted by 羡鱼-Xianyu View Post
    He did not marry again and I was brought up without a woman's care.
    He did not marry again and I was brought up ______.
    a. without a care of women
    b. without care by a woman
    c. without a woman to care for me
    d. careless of a woman

    Dear all,
    The right answer to this question is C, but in my opinion, B is more suitable because it is more concise. Could you help me clear my doubt up, please? Why is B wrong? Thanks a lot!

    Xianyu
    More concise but even more ambiguous.

    I was brought up (without care) by a woman.
    I was brought up by a woman, and incidentally without care.

    I was brought up [without a care by a woman].
    I was brought up without a woman taking good care of me.
    I was brought up thus.

    Both interpretations are possible. You see, that is the problem with B.

  3. #3
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    Re: multiple choice question

    Quote Originally Posted by corum View Post
    More concise but even more ambiguous.

    I was brought up (without care) by a woman.
    I was brought up by a woman, and incidentally without care.

    I was brought up [without a care by a woman].
    I was brought up without a woman taking good care of me.
    I was brought up thus.

    Both interpretations are possible. You see, that is the problem with B.
    Hi corum, thank you for your help. Indeed what your said makes sense, but I have one more question.
    1. I was brought up (without care) by a woman.
    2. I was brought up [without a care by a woman].

    To me, 1# and 2# have same meaning. I can not detect difference between them. Could you tell somethin more about it, please? Thanks.

  4. #4
    Raymott's Avatar
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    Re: multiple choice question

    Quote Originally Posted by corum View Post
    More concise but even more ambiguous.

    I was brought up (without care) by a woman.
    I was brought up by a woman, and incidentally without care.

    I was brought up [without a care by a woman].
    I was brought up without a woman taking good care of me.
    I was brought up thus.

    Both interpretations are possible. You see, that is the problem with B.
    There's actually quite a simple rule of grammar to disambiguate defining and non-defining clauses and phrases. If it meant the first, it should have commas where you have parenthesis markers:
    "I was brought up, without care, by a woman."
    That's a different sentence. So that's not a problem with B.
    But I suspect that could be the official reason.

  5. #5
    Raymott's Avatar
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    Re: multiple choice question

    Quote Originally Posted by 羡鱼-Xianyu View Post
    Hi corum, thank you for your help. Indeed what your said makes sense, but I have one more question.
    1. I was brought up (without care) by a woman.
    2. I was brought up [without a care by a woman].

    To me, 1# and 2# have same meaning. I can not detect difference between them. Could you tell somethin more about it, please? Thanks.
    1. means "I was brought up by a woman. And I received no care."
    2. implies "I was brought up by a man. And I received no care from a woman."
    corum is asserting that b. could mean either.

  6. #6
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    Re: multiple choice question

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    1. means "I was brought up by a woman. And I received no care."
    2. implies "I was brought up by a man. And I received no care from a woman."
    corum is asserting that b. could mean either.
    Thank you, Raymott. I've got it.

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    Re: multiple choice question

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    There's actually quite a simple rule of grammar to disambiguate defining and non-defining clauses and phrases. If it meant the first, it should have commas where you have parenthesis markers:
    "I was brought up, without care, by a woman."
    That's a different sentence. So that's not a problem with B.
    But I suspect that could be the official reason.
    I was brought up without care by a woman.
    Oh, my god. How stupid I was. I just realized the this sentence is so ambiguous, if without commas.
    To me, it might have two meanings:
    1. As corum said, I was brought up by a woman, but I received no care.
    2. I was brought up by my father who did not marry again, so there is no a woman take care of me. (or I never received care from a woman, while I was growing up)
    Raymott, colud you tell me which one on earth is right, please? How can I comfirm that?

  8. #8
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    Re: multiple choice question

    Quote Originally Posted by 羡鱼-Xianyu View Post
    I was brought up without care by a woman.
    Oh, my god. How stupid I was. I just realized the this sentence is so ambiguous, if without commas.
    To me, it might have two meanings:
    1. As corum said, I was brought up by a woman, but I received no care.
    2. I was brought up by my father who did not marry again, so there is no a woman take care of me. (or I never received care from a woman, while I was growing up)
    Raymott, colud you tell me which one on earth is right, please? How can I comfirm that?
    See my posts 4 and 5 in which I explain that the sentence is not ambiguous.
    b. means the same as c, that is, 2.
    With commas, it means 1.

    You could only confirm whether the question-writer meant what they wrote by asking the question-writer. My guess was that the question-writer mistakenly thought that b. was ambiguous, so assumed that c. was the only correct answer. That's not true.

    A better answer would be "without the care of a woman" - but that's not a choice.

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