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    #1

    narrower focus of.../commas

    1) My historical study has a narrower focus of 12 years, while his has a wider focus of 45 years.

    2) My historical study has a narrower focus, of 12 years, while his has a wider focus, of 45 years.

    3) My historical study has a narrower focus from 1933 t0 1945, while his has a wider focus from 1900 to 1945.


    4) My historical study has a narrower focus, from 1933 t0 1945, while his has a wider focus, from 1900 to 1945.

    Which are grammatical and correctly punctuated?

    I am not sure that '3' really works with the intended meaning (which is expressed by '4'). In '3', 'from 1933 to 1945' and 'from 1900 to 1945' do not seem to define the range of focus. All the others seem to me to work.

    Gratefully,
    Navi.

  1. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: narrower focus of.../commas

    Is this a homework question?

    If it is, wait until it is graded. Then, if you don't understand the answers, come back here for help.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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    #3

    Re: narrower focus of.../commas

    Thank you Charlie,

    No, it is not a homework assignment. I came up with the sentences myself. To me '2' and '4' are correct, since they involve non-restrictive postmodification.
    '3' sounds incorrect to me. I can't make up my mind about '1'. Technically, you would probably need non-restrictive postmodification, but maybe a restrictive one would work as well.
    A focus of 12 years.
    A narrower focus of 12 years.

    I don't like the comma-less version, but I am not sure that it is incorrect.

    Gratefully,
    Navi.
    Last edited by navi tasan; 03-May-2016 at 14:06.

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    #4

    Re: narrower focus of.../commas

    I like 1) best. It's cleaner and more legible.

    Don't worry about restrictive/non-restrictive postmodification. Just make sure the sentence is clear/unambiguous and easy to read.

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    #5

    Re: narrower focus of.../commas

    Remember to type a space after each punctuation mark except apostrophes and the opening mark of a pair.
    I am not a teacher.

  2. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: narrower focus of.../commas

    I like 1 and 4. Jutfrank is right about keeping your writing concise and precise, so only mention the dates there if it's important.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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    #7

    Re: narrower focus of.../commas

    Thank you all very much,

    Something went wrong when I was typing my text. The 'enter' key didn't work apparently, although it seemed to work when I was typing.
    I did not see the final mess that had been produced. Sorry about that. I edited my post and now it seems fine.

    Gratefully,
    Navi.

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