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  1. Mehrgan's Avatar
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    #1

    Question 'Against my expectation'?!

    Hi there,
    Could anyone please tell me if this combination is correct in English? (Used when one didn't expect a result or so.)



    Many thanks!

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    #2

    Re: 'Against my expectation'?!

    I'd normally say expectations.

    The phrase also seems more natural as "against all expectations."

  2. BobK's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: 'Against my expectation'?!

    I sense - but haven't checked (yet) - the commoner collocations in Br Eng are 'against all expectations' but 'contrary to my expectations' and 'contrary to expectation' (no S). (I'n not sure how to word my BNC query...)

    b

  3. BobK's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: 'Against my expectation'?!

    I was wrong. BNC has these:

    1 AGAINST ALL EXPECTATIONS 8
    2 AGAINST ALL EXPECTATION 2
    3 AGAINST OVER-OPTIMISTIC EXPECTATIONS 2
    4 AGAINST THESE EXPECTATIONS 1
    5 AGAINST THE EXPECTATIONS 1
    6 AGAINST REASONABLE EXPECTATION 1
    7 AGAINST RATIONAL EXPECTATIONS 1
    8 AGAINST PREVIOUS EXPECTATIONS 1
    9 AGAINST MANY EXPECTATIONS 1
    10 AGAINST CULTURAL EXPECTATIONS 1
    11 AGAINST AN EXPECTATION 1
    TOTAL 20
    But though BNC has no 'contrary to [all] expectation/s' COCA has quite a few:
    1 CONTRARY TO EXPECTATIONS 77
    2 CONTRARY TO EXPECTATION 17
    TOTAL 94
    and fewer for 'against' (though with many more options):
    1 AGAINST ALL EXPECTATIONS 8
    2 AGAINST THE EXPECTATIONS 5
    3 AGAINST UNREALISTIC EXPECTATIONS 4
    4 AGAINST THE EXPECTATION 3
    5 AGAINST ALL EXPECTATION 3
    6 AGAINST ANY EXPECTATION 2
    7 AGAINST LOW EXPECTATIONS 2
    8 AGAINST EXAGGERATED EXPECTATIONS 2
    9 AGAINST THESE EXPECTATIONS 1
    10 AGAINST COUNTERVAILING EXPECTATIONS 1
    11 AGAINST STEREOTYPICAL EXPECTATIONS 1
    12 AGAINST SOCIETAL EXPECTATIONS 1
    13 AGAINST RHYTHMIC EXPECTATIONS 1
    14 AGAINST REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS 1
    15 AGAINST RADICAL EXPECTATION 1
    16 AGAINST NORMAL EXPECTATIONS 1
    17 AGAINST HIGH EXPECTATIONS 1
    18 AGAINST HAVING EXPECTATIONS 1
    19 AGAINST FALSE EXPECTATIONS 1
    20 AGAINST AN EXPECTATION 1
    TOTAL 41
    (This is twice many as in BNC, but in a much bigger corpus. - so it's proportionally less common.)

    Which seems to suggest that my usage shows American tendencies in this respect. My 19/20 years' stint working for DEC/Compaq/HP may explain this (and a childhood exposed to the film business: my parents met through Technicolor). This is probably more information than anyone needs...

    b
    Last edited by BobK; 07-May-2012 at 16:24. Reason: typo

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