Results 1 to 4 of 4
  1. suprunp's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Ukrainian
      • Home Country:
      • Ukraine
      • Current Location:
      • Ukraine

    • Join Date: Apr 2011
    • Posts: 597
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #1

    like a man-made ocean

    It was a soft spring night. The breeze carried the roar of distant streets like a man-made ocean.
    (H. Murakami; 1Q84)

    Can I paraphrase it this way:

    "The breeze carried the roar of distant streets resembling a man-made ocean."

    Thanks.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 34,370
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #2

    Re: like a man-made ocean

    Quote Originally Posted by suprunp View Post
    It was a soft spring night. The breeze carried the roar of distant streets like a man-made ocean.
    (H. Murakami; 1Q84)

    Can I paraphrase it this way:

    "The breeze carried the roar of distant streets resembling a man-made ocean."

    Thanks.
    That's a rather odd sentence even in the original. It makes it sound as if it is the breeze doing something like a man-made ocean. It's not clear in either that it is the sound of the distant streets which sounds like a man-made ocean.

    The roar of distant streets, like a man-made ocean, was carried on the breeze.

  3. suprunp's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Ukrainian
      • Home Country:
      • Ukraine
      • Current Location:
      • Ukraine

    • Join Date: Apr 2011
    • Posts: 597
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #3

    Re: like a man-made ocean

    Thank you, emsr2d2.

    I'd thought about this 'hidden ambiguity', but decided to be directed in this case by 'the most probable meaning' rather than grammar.

    Is it justifiable that the author thought something along these lines while writing the sentence in question:

    [...] the more the context contributes to the communicative force of an utterance, the less need there is for the utterance to be grammatically explicit.

    (A Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language)

    Thanks.

  4. 5jj's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • Czech Republic

    • Join Date: Oct 2010
    • Posts: 28,135
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #4

    Re: like a man-made ocean

    Quote Originally Posted by suprunp View Post
    Is it justifiable that the author thought something along these lines while writing the sentence in question:

    [...] the more the context contributes to the communicative force of an utterance, the less need there is for the utterance to be grammatically explicit.
    That is highly unlikely, in my opinion. I think it's simply a case of 'derailed grammar'. The writer (or translator) had a couple of thoughts in his mind and ran them together clumsily.

    In this particular case context does not readily contribute to the communicative force of the utterance. I had to re-read it a couple of times before I could guess what th ewriter intended to say.

Similar Threads

  1. It's an ocean out there
    By dervast in forum English Idioms and Sayings
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 13-Jun-2010, 14:23
  2. 'the' ocean
    By Tvita in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 05-Jun-2008, 22:07
  3. A Self-Made Man
    By mimisugar in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 30-Oct-2007, 11:28
  4. ocean or the ocean
    By siruss in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 03-Jun-2007, 19:19
  5. a man to be made whole
    By beeja in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 13-Jul-2004, 10:55

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •