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  1. Hieronymous
    Guest
    #1

    Apostrophe Placement

    I run a small Art Forum, in which one of the groups is called the "Artists Group"

    We've recently had some lighthearted discussion about whether or not it should actually be called the "Artists' Group"

    My feeling is that it's a group of artists, not a group belonging to some artists, and that the apostrophe would therefore be superfluous

    Any thoughts?


    • Join Date: Nov 2007
    • Posts: 5,409
    #2

    Re: Apostrophe Placement

    Any thoughts?

    Yes.

    'Artists Group' would be appropriate for a headline, where the story is about the unionization of artists, and their intention to fight the strangled-hold of gallery owners on their profession, and the government tax of oil paints; or if just meeting to huddle from the cold in an attic, a la La Boheme.

    It is an association and hence, Artists' Group.
    Last edited by David L.; 12-Nov-2008 at 18:13.


    • Join Date: May 2008
    • Posts: 810
    #3

    Re: Apostrophe Placement

    Quote Originally Posted by Hieronymous View Post
    I run a small Art Forum, in which one of the groups is called the "Artists Group"

    We've recently had some lighthearted discussion about whether or not it should actually be called the "Artists' Group"

    My feeling is that it's a group of artists, not a group belonging to some artists, and that the apostrophe would therefore be superfluous

    Any thoughts?
    Well, the apostrophe doesn't always indicate possession. The apostrophe (used in this manner) can, in a broader sense, be considered as forming the associative case.

    It can express many things; in the case of your example, it would express a description. It wouldn't suggest that the group is owned or possessed by the artists; it would suggest that it is a group comprised of artists. Often the distinction is a matter of context.

    For example:

    This is the women's hat *possession: the hat owned by the woman*

    This is a women's hat *description: a hat designed for women*

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