Page 2 of 3 First 1 2 3 Last
Results 11 to 20 of 24
  1. #11
    Jonathan_Lee6032 is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Taiwan
      • Current Location:
      • Taiwan
    Join Date
    Mar 2021
    Posts
    15

    Re: Why ...ing form of verb?

    The teachers are keen on the students taking part in the activities.

    How about, according to WHAT I WAS TAUGHT, who take can be replaced with (or shortened to) taking, as "The teachers are keen on the students who take (or taking) part in the activities"?

    (1) are keen on someone --> liking someone very much or being interested in someone (according to Oxford dictionary)
    (2) taking or who take here are grammatically acceptable, functioning as elaborating WHAT KIND of THE students. (Of course, these two forms are slightly different in meaning and rhetoric, WHICH most teachers from where I live are unable to explain.)
    (3) -ing indicates
    the active voice.
    Last edited by Jonathan_Lee6032; 10-Mar-2021 at 07:16. Reason: elaboration

  2. #12
    GoesStation is offline Moderator
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Posts
    22,029

    Re: Why ...ing form of verb?

    Keen on (British English) the students' taking part: the teachers like the idea that the students participate.
    Keen on the students who take part: the teachers like the students.

    Sentence one can be understood as meaning the same thing without the apostrophe, but it's ambiguous. You should avoid this construction because it isn't clear. I'd say The teachers are happy that the students are participating in the activities.
    Last edited by probus; 12-Mar-2021 at 23:38. Reason: Add apostrophe
    I am not a teacher.

  3. #13
    jutfrank's Avatar
    jutfrank is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Posts
    14,792

    Re: Why ...ing form of verb?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan_Lee6032 View Post
    The teachers are keen on the students taking part in the activities.

    How about, according to WHAT I WAS TAUGHT, who take can be replaced with (or shortened to) taking, as "The teachers are keen on the students who take (or taking) part in the activities"?

    (1) are keen on someone --> liking someone very much or being interested in someone (according to Oxford dictionary)
    (2) taking or who take here are grammatically acceptable, functioning as elaborating WHAT KIND of THE students. (Of course, these two forms are slightly different in meaning and rhetoric, WHICH most teachers from where I live are unable to explain.)
    (3) -ing indicates
    the active voice.
    You've got most of this basically right, yes, but allow me to make some minor corrections.

    You can understand taking as a reduction of who are taking, yes, (not who take) which is in the active voice, yes, and with progressive aspect.

    You're also right that understood in this way, the noun phrase the students taking part in the activities identifies which students (not which kind) the teachers are not keen on. This is a possible, but very different, and probably incorrect interpretation of the sentence.

  4. #14
    Jonathan_Lee6032 is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Taiwan
      • Current Location:
      • Taiwan
    Join Date
    Mar 2021
    Posts
    15

    Re: Why ...ing form of verb?

    Quote Originally Posted by GoesStation View Post
    Keen on (British English) the students' taking part: the teachers like the idea that the students participate.
    Keen on the students who take part: the teachers like the students.

    Sentence one can be understood as meaning the same thing without the apostrophe, but its ambiguous. You should avoid this construction because it isn't clear. I'd say The teachers are happy that the students are participating in the activities.
    Thanks for the reply!

    I would like to make some points for discussion and clarification: (1) the difference between "N's + Ving" and "N + Ving"; (2) the difference between "be + adjective +prep + N/N's + Ving" and "transitive verb or phrasal verb + N/N's +Ving".

    (1) To me, "... the students' taking part..." and "... the students taking part..." have different meanings. The focus of "... the students' taking part..." is on WHAT the students have been doing (It sounds like, for instance, a habit or something the students do for many times), while "... the students taking part..." emphasizes "the action done ACTIVELY" (Which is the reason why V-ing is considered an active voice).
    (2) "keen" here is an adjective, indicating "the state" rather than "the action" (More specifically, it's different from "I don't mind you/your smoking here" or "He insisted on his daughter('s) returning with him"). I mean...Could the part of speech in this case ("be keen on someone" and "mind/ insist on someone") determine what "... take part in..." turns out to be, as shown in the following options?
    (A) ... the students' taking part in ...
    (B) ... the students taking part in ...
    (C) ... the students who take part in...
    (D) ... the students who are taking part in...
    If not, I suppose that each sentence has its own meaning that is different from the other three. And the reduction mentioned above is to shift one "focus" to another.

    Context really matters. A single sentence may have different interpretations, or even worse, lead to ambiguity.
    Last edited by Jonathan_Lee6032; 11-Mar-2021 at 15:31. Reason: revision

  5. #15
    Jonathan_Lee6032 is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Taiwan
      • Current Location:
      • Taiwan
    Join Date
    Mar 2021
    Posts
    15

    Re: Why ...ing form of verb?

    Quote Originally Posted by jutfrank View Post
    You've got most of this basically right, yes, but allow me to make some minor corrections.

    You can understand taking as a reduction of who are taking, yes, (not who take) which is in the active voice, yes, and with progressive aspect.

    You're also right that understood in this way, the noun phrase the students taking part in the activities identifies which students (not which kind) the teachers are not keen on. This is a possible, but very different, and probably incorrect interpretation of the sentence.
    Thank you for the correction! Much appreciated!

    > You can understand taking as a reduction of who are taking, yes, (not who take) which is in the active voice, yes, and with progressive aspect.

    Yes, "who are taking" is another possible sentence before the reduction. As for "who take" reduced to "taking", what I was taught is that "who" can be crossed out, which makes an incorrect sentence (that is, two verbs in one sentence); to avoid the incorrectness, the verb "take" should be changed into either "present participle" or "past participle", depending on the antecedent. (<<< I ain't sure if this explanation makes sense to native speakers.)

    Back to the topic of the thread, it should take more than one sentence or the context to get closer to the correct interpretation of the sentence.
    Last edited by Jonathan_Lee6032; 11-Mar-2021 at 10:35. Reason: revision

  6. #16
    jutfrank's Avatar
    jutfrank is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Posts
    14,792

    Re: Why ...ing form of verb?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan_Lee6032 View Post
    Yes, "who are taking" is another possible sentence before the reduction. As for "who take" reduced to "taking", what I was taught is that "who" can be crossed out, which makes an incorrect sentence (that is, two verbs in one sentence); to avoid the incorrectness, the verb "take" should be changed into either "present participle" or "past participle", depending on the antecedent. (<<< I ain't sure if this explanation makes sense to native speakers.)
    Right. I see what your teacher was trying to teach you but this explanation quite understandably doesn't give a full picture. Let me show you:

    Remember that we're looking at phrases that identify:

    I like students who work hard.

    The defining relative clause who work hard identifies which students I like. Now, it is not possible (keeping the same identifying meaning) to reduce the clause as follows:

    *I like students working hard.

    However, when the reduction comes from the progressive aspect, it is possible:

    I like the students who are working hard.
    I like the students working hard.

    Is that clear? When you reduce with an -ing participle, you generally keep the same progressive aspect (a notable exception is with copula verbs), and obviously cast in the same active voice.


    Back to the topic of the thread, it should take more than one sentence or the context to get closer to the correct interpretation of the sentence.
    That's right, yes. This is one of the drawbacks of analysing isolated, non-contextualised sentences. The correct interpretation is the one that matches most closely the thought in the speaker's mind.

  7. #17
    Jonathan_Lee6032 is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Taiwan
      • Current Location:
      • Taiwan
    Join Date
    Mar 2021
    Posts
    15

    Re: Why ...ing form of verb?

    Quote Originally Posted by jutfrank View Post
    Right. I see what your teacher was trying to teach you but this explanation quite understandably doesn't give a full picture. Let me show you:

    Remember that we're looking at phrases that identify:

    I like students who work hard.

    The defining relative clause who work hard identifies which students I like. Now, it is not possible (keeping the same identifying meaning) to reduce the clause as follows:

    *I like students working hard.
    Thanks for the clarification.

    In that case, the relative clauses in the following sentences should not be reduced to Ving, right?
    (1) Math teacher asks Fred to help Eric who has difficulty doing his math homework. --> Math teacher asks Fred to help Eric having(???) difficulty doing his math homework.
    (2) Last week, there was a strong typhoon which caused a huge damage. --> Last week, there was a strong typhoon causing(???) a huge damage.

    Or if the reduction of these two sentences is acceptable, is it because of the verb "like" that makes "I like students working hard" unacceptable?

  8. #18
    jutfrank's Avatar
    jutfrank is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Posts
    14,792

    Re: Why ...ing form of verb?

    1) That's right—it can't be reduced to an -ing participle, because the present tense clause who has difficulty is in the simple aspect, which means he has difficulty generally and not just at that particular moment.

    2) This is different. I don't think there warrants a reduction there. It is possible to make this kind of reduction from past simple relative clauses, but this sentence is not a good candidate for that.

    No, the verb like has nothing to do with it (if I understand your question correctly).

  9. #19
    Jonathan_Lee6032 is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Taiwan
      • Current Location:
      • Taiwan
    Join Date
    Mar 2021
    Posts
    15

    Re: Why ...ing form of verb?

    Quote Originally Posted by jutfrank View Post
    1) That's right—it can't be reduced to an -ing participle, because the present tense clause who has difficulty is in the simple aspect, which means he has difficulty generally and not just at that particular moment.

    2) This is different. I don't think there warrants a reduction there. It is possible to make this kind of reduction from past simple relative clauses, but this sentence is not a good candidate for that.

    No, the verb like has nothing to do with it (if I understand your question correctly).
    Thank you for patiently answering my questions!

    Allow me to seek clarification of some points:
    (1) There is no such thing as the reduction of "...Noun + who V..." to "...Noun + Ving...". The reason is that Ving in "...Noun + Ving..." does not have the identifying meaning.
    (2) "I like students who are working hard" cannot be reduced to "I like students working hard"; "I like THE students who are working hard", however, can be reduced to "I like THE students working hard". Therefore, the definite article THE is the key to determining whether the reduction is valid or not.
    (3) If (2) is correct, the definite article THE makes possible the reduction of "who work hard" to "working hard" in the example of "I like THE students who work hard". (The definite article THE here indicates that Ving has the identifying function.)

    I couldn't help but wonder why there are so many English teachers from where I live who ambiguously tell students in English class that "who take", for example, can be reduced to "taking" (simply because Ving indicates an active voice) without knowing that Ving in any similar sentences does not have the identifying meaning and only refers to some particular moment".

    Thanks again for your reply and patience!
    Last edited by Jonathan_Lee6032; 13-Mar-2021 at 15:53. Reason: (1) content revised; (2) (special thanks go to emsr2d2 for helping) Put last two paragraphs in the default font and size

  10. #20
    jutfrank's Avatar
    jutfrank is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Posts
    14,792

    Re: Why ...ing form of verb?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan_Lee6032 View Post
    (1) There is no such thing as the reduction of "...Noun + who V..." to "...Noun + Ving...". The reason is that Ving in "...Noun + Ving..." does not have the identifying meaning.
    No, I certainly didn't mean to say there's no such thing. I was talking specifically about the examples in this thread. I can only go as far as to say that is a complicated area and so each sentence ought to be considered and interpreted on its own.

    (2) "I like students who are working hard" cannot be reduced to "I like students working hard"; "I like THE students who are working hard", however, can be reduced to "I like THE students working hard". Therefore, the definite article THE is the key to determining whether the reduction is valid or not.
    There was a reason I chose to use it, yes. This is because the definite article helps in 'defining' its noun phrase. In other words, it helps to show that the meaning is which students.

    (3) If (2) is correct, the definite article THE makes possible the reduction of "who work hard" to "working hard" in the example of "I like THE students who work hard". (The definite article THE here indicates that Ving has the identifying function.)
    Good question. I was concerned about this when I wrote the example. My answer is no, it doesn't make it possible, grammatically speaking, but rather it helps the listener interpret the participle clause as identifying. That is, you could say that students working hard is a reduction of students who work hard, but if you did, then the meaning would not be clear. To say that again: the sentence I like students working hard is a possible, but very likely incorrect interpretation of the sentence I like student who work hard, which has an 'identifying' meaning. A much better interpretation of I like students working hard is something like 'I like it when students work hard', which obviously has a very different meaning.

    I couldn't help but wonder why there are so many English teachers from where I live who ambiguously tell students in English class that "who take", for example, can be reduced to "taking" (simply because Ving indicates an active voice) without knowing that Ving in any similar sentences does not have the identifying meaning and only refers to some particular moment".
    I can only guess that there are several reasons for this. We can discuss those reasons if you think it would be useful to you.

    I think that what a lot of people tend to ignore, or be unaware of, is that unlike syntax, semantics is not an exact science. Two identical sentences can have completely different meanings (different interpretations) in different contexts.

Page 2 of 3 First 1 2 3 Last

Posting Permissions

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