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    #1

    Part of speech quandry

    Which part of speech is 'coping' in the following two sentences:

    She has trouble coping.

    She has trouble coping with school.

    Thanks!

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    #2

    Re: Part of speech quandry

    What do you think it could be?

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    #3

    Re: Part of speech quandry

    has - verb
    trouble - direct object of verb
    coping - ? (gerund modifier for trouble?)

    coping with school - ? (is it a verbal phrase that's using a gerund/phrasal verb which, in turn, acts as modifier for trouble?)

    if it were 'she has coping trouble',
    would coping = gerund modifier of trouble?

  1. Raymott's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Part of speech quandry

    Quote Originally Posted by donnach View Post
    has - verb
    trouble - direct object of verb
    coping - ? (gerund modifier for trouble?)

    coping with school - ? (is it a verbal phrase that's using a gerund/phrasal verb which, in turn, acts as modifier for trouble?)

    if it were 'she has coping trouble',
    would coping = gerund modifier of trouble?
    I'd agree, it's a gerund. In "She has trouble coping", I don't think you could claim that 'coping' modifies 'trouble'. (That would be confusing semantics with syntax).
    If you're using the gerund as an adjective ('coping trouble'), then yes, it modifies - or 'qualifies', as we learnt in school - 'trouble'.

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Part of speech quandry

    ps. It's 'quandary'.

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    #6

    Re: Part of speech quandry

    Quote Originally Posted by donnach View Post
    has - verb
    trouble - direct object of verb
    coping - ? (gerund modifier for trouble?)

    coping with school - ? (is it a verbal phrase that's using a gerund/phrasal verb which, in turn, acts as modifier for trouble?)

    if it were 'she has coping trouble',
    would coping = gerund modifier of trouble?

    NOT A TEACHER


    (1) Congratulations! In my opinion as a non-teacher, I believe that

    you are 100% correct:

    (a) "Coping with school" is a gerund phrase.

    (b) The gerund phrase has some connection to "trouble."

    (2) I have checked the Web and my books, and I am delighted to

    share what I found:


    Theory No, l


    Some people believe that your sentence has a suppressed (not used)

    preposition:

    She had trouble in coping with school.

    It seems that most native speakers do not say/write the preposition, but

    it is necessary if your teacher asks you to explain why "coping" is a

    gerund.

    Theory No. 2


    Some people prefer to say that "coping with school" is a gerund

    phrase acting as an objective complement.

    If I say, " I painted my house," a friend might ask, "What color?"

    I would answer: "I painted my house red." As you can see, the

    word "red" refers to the object ("house") and completes the meaning

    of the words ("I painted my house."). So books call this an

    objective complement.

    Thus, if you say that "She has trouble," probably someone would

    ask you about the kind of trouble. And you might answer, "Oh,

    I'm sorry for not being more complete. She is having trouble

    coping with school. ("Coping with school" would be the objective

    complement of "trouble.")

    (3) It would very interesting to know which theory your teacher

    supports. In fact, s/he may have another theory or explanation.




    Thank you for your great question. It forced me to review my

    own understanding.


    Sincerely yours,


    James
    Last edited by TheParser; 05-Jun-2011 at 12:12.

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    #7

    Re: Part of speech quandry

    James,

    I am embarrassed to say that the question originates from class. I am embarrassed because it is a class in which I am tutoring an ESL student. Oy!
    (In my defense, I have a teaching credential in single subject English, not a B.A. [or M.A., or certificate] in TESL.)

    I completely forgot about object complements. (Oy again.) Yes, I think 'coping with school' would be an object complement in this case.

    Ive never heard of your Theory #1, the suppressed preposition theory. If the sentence read, "She had trouble in coping with school", why would the preposition be necessary to explain why "coping" is a gerund? Is it because coping would be the noun object of the prep. phrase 'in coping'? Would that then make 'with school' a prep. phrase that modifies coping?

    This teacher much appreciates your self-qualified 'non-teacher' help!

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    #8

    Re: Part of speech quandry

    Quote Originally Posted by donnach View Post
    James,

    I am embarrassed to say that the question originates from class. I am embarrassed because it is a class in which I am tutoring an ESL student. Oy!
    (In my defense, I have a teaching credential in single subject English, not a B.A. [or M.A., or certificate] in TESL.)

    I completely forgot about object complements. (Oy again.) Yes, I think 'coping with school' would be an object complement in this case.

    Ive never heard of your Theory #1, the suppressed preposition theory. If the sentence read, "She had trouble in coping with school", why would the preposition be necessary to explain why "coping" is a gerund? Is it because coping would be the noun object of the prep. phrase 'in coping'? Would that then make 'with school' a prep. phrase that modifies coping?

    This teacher much appreciates your self-qualified 'non-teacher' help!


    NOT A TEACHER


    (1) I believe that you have, indeed, answered correctly your

    own questions regarding theory No. 1.

    (2) I believe (that) that ESL student is very fortunate to have

    such a knowledg(e)able tutor.


    Sincerely,


    James

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