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    matter, subject, issue


    please, I would like to know how to use these words properly.

    can I say "to talk about a matter"? what about "to talk about a subject"?

    can I say a "pending matter"?

    "subject" can be a reference to a person, right? can I say "the subject who stole the shop", for example?

    is "issue" necessarily a "problem" or a "matter that need a solution"? when I hear "issue" on BBC/CNN, that's what it sounds to me.


    • Join Date: Nov 2007
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    Re: matter, subject, issue

    'issue' : an important topic for debate
    - when used to describe a person, it refers to personal problems or difficulties that can cause friction in his relationships

    'subject' : a person or thing which is being discussed. "The scandal was the subject of conversation around the dinner table of everyone in the town."
    - a person who is the focus of scientific or medical attention or experiment.
    - a branch of knowledge studied or taught in a school, college, or university.
    - a citizen or member of a country other than its supreme ruler (In the UK, we are subjects of the Queen)

    topic : the focus of a conversation; the matter under discussion. (the topic of conversation round a meal table can change as people change the subject of conversation, and they talk about something else.)

    matter : a situation or issue under consideration, usual of a serious and important nature eg matters of government, financial matters

  2. Key Member
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    Re: matter, subject, issue

    To talk about a matter is to be very specific.
    I want to talk to you about the matter of your overdue rent.

    To talk about a subject is to talk in very broad terms.
    Let's talk about the subject of good colleges.

    Yes, a "pending matter" is an issue that is "on hold", delayed, or waiting to be resolved.

    Yes, "subject" can also be a noun.

    One definition of "issue" is a "disputable point of view."
    Lets talk about the issue of eradicting malaria by using DDT.

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