i have a grammar/style question:
a) Despite his being impolite, .....
b) Despite him being imploite,.....
I guess they are both used, but I would like to know which one is the more grammatical one, i.e. of better style, prescriptively speaking?
thank you ever so much!
despite takes a noun phrase as its object. his being is a possessive noun phrase, whereas him being is not a phrase. It's made up of two different units: him, an object pronoun, and being, a participle, or gerund - depending on how you parse it.
Ex: Despite his being <possessive noun phrase>
Hope that helps.