Page 3 of 3 First 1 2 3
Results 21 to 24 of 24
  1. #21
    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?

    Much appreciated!

    Quote Originally Posted by jutfrank View Post
    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.
    I see. I agree with the interpretation by most people here, interpreting "The teachers are keen on the students taking part in the activities" as "The teachers like it when students are participating in the activities", Actually, I came up with the proposition of the reduction of relative clause to present participle after looking up the word keen in some dictionaries. One of the sentence, as shown in the following, is provided by Cambridge dictionary:

    He's rather keen on a girl in his school.

    As is well known, the only way to thoroughly interpret the sentence in this thread requires "a context"; however, there is only one single sentence here, which leaves much room for discussion contextually. I thought to myself: what if the sentence "The teachers are keen on the students taking part in the activities" appears in the news report regarding the improper teacher-student relationship (let's ignore how ridiculous the matter is)? Under the circumstances, "taking part in" may be a reduced present participle from the relative clause of either "who take" or "who are taking" (the meaning of which will be illustrated below), am I right?

    Quote Originally Posted by jutfrank View Post
    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.
    Glad I'm on the same page with native speakers.

    Quote Originally Posted by jutfrank View Post
    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.
    The reduction of relative clause does not make any sense in this case, for "...students working hard", "...students who work hard", and "...students who are working hard" have their own meaning respectively, right?

    (1) I like (the) students working hard --> I like it when students work hard
    (2) I like (the) students who work hard --> I like those diligent students (WITH the function to identify which students)
    (3) I like (the) students who are working hard --> I like those students who are diligent NOW or in a PARTICULAR moment (also WITH the function of identify which students and with much emphasis on the continuousness of the state)

    By the way, speaking of "the state", the reason why I asked if the interpretation of Ving has anything to do with the verb is that the phrase "are keen on" is the verb that expresses the state of the speaker, so do "are tired of", "like", "hate", "dislike", to name just a few. I was wondering whether "taking part in" would have the identifying meaning if I change the verb phrase "are keen on" into some action verbs, for instance, "chaperone", "praise", or "accompany", as:

    The teachers chaperone the students taking part in the activities.

    The reduction of either "who take" or "who are taking" would make sense this time, right? ("... taking part in..." here legit has the identifying meaning)

    Quote Originally Posted by jutfrank View Post
    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.
    Thank you for your kind help! Please correct me anytime when there is something wrong. Thank you soooo much!

    Back to the sentence of this thread "The teachers are keen on the students taking part in the activities", the reduction doesn't work out here because the following three sentences have different interpretations:

    (1) The teachers are keen on the students taking part in the activities --> The teachers are interested in the fact that students participate in the activities. (NO identifying meaning involved)
    (2) The teachers are keen on the students who take part in the activities --> The teachers are interested in those students and those students participate in the activities. (WITH the identifying meaning and emphasis on the FACT)
    (3) The teachers are keen on the students who are taking part in the activities --> The teachers are interested in those students and those students are NOW participating in the activities. (WITH the identifying meaning as well as the emphasis on the "progressive" in a particular moment)

    As a second language learner, I really value the opinion of native speakers for the interpretation! I would like to ask: as a native speaker, what do you think about the explanation of the reduction (from "who take" to "taking" because of the active voice) given by the English teachers I encountered? Is it "That's not a thing!", "It's debatable!", or just "Nonsense!"?

    Quote Originally Posted by jutfrank View Post
    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.
    That's so true. It is the context that helps the reader get the whole picture of what the author intended to express.

    Again, thank you so much for your patience and kindness.
    Last edited by Jonathan_Lee6032; 14-Mar-2021 at 09:22.

  2. #22
    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?

    Hi Jonathan.

    I'm happy to continue the discussion, but I feel we should try to reign it in a bit by focusing on one point at a time, hopefully encouraging members other than myself to contribute.

    Mods may also want to consider moving the thread to the discussions forum. I think this is more of a language issue than a teaching issue.

  3. #23
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is online now Moderator
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    60,800

    Re: Why ...ing form of verb?

    Quote Originally Posted by jutfrank View Post
    Mods may also want to consider moving the thread to the discussions forum. I think this is more of a language issue than a teaching issue.
    Done.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  4. #24
    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
    Hi Jonathan.

    I'm happy to continue the discussion, but I feel we should try to reign it in a bit by focusing on one point at a time, hopefully encouraging members other than myself to contribute.

    Mods may also want to consider moving the thread to the discussions forum. I think this is more of a language issue than a teaching issue.
    Got it! So sorry that I forgot this is a teaching forum. I was too focused on how many interpretations a sentence could have and whether they are workable. Thanks for sharing with me your viewpoints on this issue.

Page 3 of 3 First 1 2 3

Posting Permissions

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