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    #1

    This really is the headline of Jonathan Martin's Politico piece, in which

    Hi,

    Question:
    What does the sentence imply?
    Imply1 or Imply2?

    Sentence:
    This really is the headline of Jonathan Martin's Politico piece, in which he investigates the "whispers" that the Texas governor is "lightweight, incurious, instinctual.

    Imply1:
    he investigates the "whispers"... in the headline.
    Imply2:
    he investigates the "whispers"... in the Politico piece.

    Thanks

  1. Bennevis's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: This really is the headline of Jonathan Martin's Politico piece, in which

    "whispers" here must mean "rumors".

    This really is the headline of Jonathan Martin's Politico piece, in which he investigates the "whispers" that the Texas governor is "lightweight, incurious, instinctual".

    In Politico, Martin investigates the whispers that the Texas governor is ...

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    #3

    Re: This really is the headline of Jonathan Martin's Politico piece, in which

    Quote Originally Posted by Bennevis View Post
    "whispers" here must mean "rumors".

    This really is the headline of Jonathan Martin's Politico piece, in which he investigates the "whispers" that the Texas governor is "lightweight, incurious, instinctual".

    In Politico, Martin investigates the whispers that the Texas governor is ...
    Why does the editor write a
    "comma" before in which?

    Since there is a "comma", I think that the which is refer to headline not Politico.

  2. Bennevis's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: This really is the headline of Jonathan Martin's Politico piece, in which

    I got it now! Personally, I'd go with the "piece". A headline is usually too short to "investigate" something in. Don't you think?

  3. BobK's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: This really is the headline of Jonathan Martin's Politico piece, in which

    And besides, 'headline' - in that context - doesn't mean headline; it means the general import or gist.

    b

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    #6

    Re: This really is the headline of Jonathan Martin's Politico piece, in which

    Quote Originally Posted by uktous View Post
    Why does the editor write a
    "comma" before in which?

    Since there is a "comma", I think that the which is refer to headline not Politico.

    ATTENTION: NOT A TEACHER


    (1) You have asked a great question. I do not claim to have the answer, but I wish
    to share some thoughts:

    (a) Kindly remember that commas are not "grammar." Over the years, native speakers

    have decided to punctuate sentences a certain way. One "rule" is:

    Do not set off restrictive clauses with a comma (clauses that are vital to the

    meaning of a sentence); use commas to set off non-restrictive clauses (those

    with interesting -- but not vital -- information).

    (2) I most respectfully suggest that the adjective clause in your sentence is

    non-restrictive (grammatically speaking). The main idea is simply:

    This really is the headline of Jonathan Martin's Politico piece.

    (a) IMHO, the words "in which he investigates ...." are strictly non-restrictive.

    They have been added to assist people who may not have heard about Mr. Martin's

    piece in Politico.

    (3) Now look at this sentence that I have made up: I want you to read Jonathan

    Martin's Politico piece in which he investigates ....

    (a) You notice that there is no comma. Why? Because the adjective clause contains

    vital information for identification. Presumably, Mr. Martin has written more than one piece for

    Politico:

    Teacher: I want you to read Jonathan Martin's Politico piece.

    Student: Excuse me, sir. Which piece by Mr. Martin? He has written ten.

    Teacher: Oh, excuse me. I'm referring to the piece in which he investigates ....

    Student: Thank you, sir, for identifying which piece.

    (4) I agree with Teacher Bennevis that this non-restrictive clause modifies the word

    "piece." (That is, the article in the newspaper and website called Politico.).

    (5) Furthermore, as Teacher Bennevis told us, sometimes (often?) we have to forget

    "rules" and use commion sense. How can the rumors about that gentleman be

    investigated in a headline?

    UPDATE:

    I have just noticed that Teacher Bob has pointed out that the word "headline" in that

    sentence really means the "gist." That is, the main point (of the article).

    In other words, that article said certain things. The article's main point will be the

    the headline in many newspapers that decide to report what was said in the article.
    Last edited by TheParser; 13-Sep-2011 at 22:25.

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    #7

    Re: This really is the headline of Jonathan Martin's Politico piece, in which

    Quote Originally Posted by Bennevis View Post
    I got it now! Personally, I'd go with the "piece". A headline is usually too short to "investigate" something in. Don't you think?
    so, I think the sentence should not have a comma.

    With comma: the which refers to headline.
    Without comma: the which refers to piece.

    Not a teacher.

  4. BobK's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: This really is the headline of Jonathan Martin's Politico piece, in which

    Quote Originally Posted by uktous View Post
    so, I think the sentence should not have a comma.

    With comma: the which refers to headline.
    Without comma: the which refers to piece.

    Not a teacher.
    Sez who Read this thread again, trying to suspend your beliefs in prescriptive grammar. The clause can't reasonably refer to 'headline', so it doesn't.

    b

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