I teach like him

Status
Not open for further replies.

navi tasan

Key Member
Joined
Nov 19, 2002
Member Type
Academic
Native Language
Armenian
Home Country
Iran
Current Location
United States
Consider the following:
What does John do for a living?
1-He teaches English like me.

Does 1 necessarily imply that he teaches English in the same manner as I do, or could it just mean that he teaches English for a living and so do I?
As in: 2-He teaches English, like me.
(In other words, could the context permit us to take off the comma without changing the meaning?)
 

RonBee

Moderator
Joined
Feb 9, 2003
Member Type
Other
Native Language
American English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
The presence or absence of a comma makes a difference in the meaning of the sentence. In sentence one, "like" means "in the same manner as".
 

Tdol

Editor, UsingEnglish.com
Staff member
Joined
Nov 13, 2002
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
Japan
However, given the context, I'd say the answer is that he does the same job- the question doesn't call for a description of the way. As punctuation standards are so low and mixed in English, BE at least, then I'd plump for this answer regardless. I can't see the speaker meaning the opposite, but then we BE speakers are a bit sloppy. ;-)
 

RonBee

Moderator
Joined
Feb 9, 2003
Member Type
Other
Native Language
American English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
tdol said:
However, given the context, I'd say the answer is that he does the same job- the question doesn't call for a description of the way. As punctuation standards are so low and mixed in English, BE at least, then I'd plump for this answer regardless. I can't see the speaker meaning the opposite, but then we BE speakers are a bit sloppy. ;-)

I agree with everything you said. (Sometimes I am too picky about punctuation.)
 

Tdol

Editor, UsingEnglish.com
Staff member
Joined
Nov 13, 2002
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
Japan
And I'm a BE speaker. The comma is a hit and miss affair for most here. ;-)
 

navi tasan

Key Member
Joined
Nov 19, 2002
Member Type
Academic
Native Language
Armenian
Home Country
Iran
Current Location
United States
It is a well known fact that native English-speakers are sloppy when it comes to using commas in writing (and not only native English-speakers). But I think if you listen to them, you'll be able to hear the commas, and they are used correctly.
 

RonBee

Moderator
Joined
Feb 9, 2003
Member Type
Other
Native Language
American English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
I wouldn't ordinarily have thought of punctuation as something that occurs in speech.
 

Tdol

Editor, UsingEnglish.com
Staff member
Joined
Nov 13, 2002
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
Japan
It does, though. ;-)
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top