Alternative to "whose"?

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Alternative to "whose"?

#1  Postby CookieJon » Jun 24, 2011 1:48 am

So I can say "There is a boy whose mother is an architect." Fine.

But what is the equivalent to "whose" for a non-person...?

"There is a house whose designer is an architect" ?? Is that acceptable? Or do I have to say "There is a house, the designer of which is an architect" or "There is a house that was designed by an architect" or something as convoluted?

:scratch:
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#2  Postby hoopy frood » Jun 24, 2011 2:07 am

CookieJon wrote:"There is a house whose designer is an architect" ?? Is that acceptable?


Yes.




CookieJon wrote:Or do I have to say "There is a house, the designer of which is an architect" or "There is a house that was designed by an architect" or something as convoluted?



No.
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#3  Postby Steve » Jun 24, 2011 2:16 am

"There is a house designed by an architect."
"The house's architect was Joe Blow."

By assigning possession to an object it inherits personhood in language. Next thing you know the supreme court is defending its rights.
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#4  Postby CookieJon » Jun 24, 2011 2:50 am

Ta.
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#5  Postby Evolving » Jun 24, 2011 8:24 am

At least nobody is suggesting "who's"...
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#6  Postby Agrippina » Jun 24, 2011 9:43 am

Steve wrote:"There is a house designed by an architect."
"The house's architect was Joe Blow."

By assigning possession to an object it inherits personhood in language. Next thing you know the supreme court is defending its rights.


I'd go with this one. And yes, I'm also pleased that no one has said "who's."
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#7  Postby Tim Danaher » Jun 25, 2011 9:06 pm

Yeah, the older usage that we learnt in school (35 years ago) would be: 'a house, the architect of which...", it seems to be largely moribund now, but I still use it now and agin in writing, because sometimes, it seems to just 'fit' better.
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#8  Postby Agrippina » Jun 26, 2011 2:36 am

Yes, animate objects "who" inanimate "that" so "which" would apply in this case.

I would say "that house was designed by the architect Tim Danaher." Rather than "whose architect was...."
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#9  Postby hoopy frood » Jun 26, 2011 3:07 am

Agrippina wrote:Yes, animate objects "who" inanimate "that" so "which" would apply in this case.

I would say "that house was designed by the architect Tim Danaher." Rather than "whose architect was...."



I should think that is a sign of the modern corruption, ill-use, and lack of sophistication, currently bedevilling the English language. ;)

As G. B. Shaw observed: The English have no respect for their language, and will not teach their children to speak it.
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#10  Postby Agrippina » Jun 26, 2011 3:39 am

hoopy frood wrote:
Agrippina wrote:Yes, animate objects "who" inanimate "that" so "which" would apply in this case.

I would say "that house was designed by the architect Tim Danaher." Rather than "whose architect was...."



I should think that is a sign of the modern corruption, ill-use, and lack of sophistication, currently bedevilling the English language. ;)

As G. B. Shaw observed: The English have no respect for their language, and will not teach their children to speak it.


"why don't the English teach their children how to speak, this verbal class distinction by now should be antique.
If you spoke as she does, sir, instead of the way you do, why you would be selling flowers too!"
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#11  Postby CdesignProponentsist » Jun 26, 2011 4:24 am

Agrippina wrote:I would say "that house was designed by the architect Tim Danaher."


That would change the meaning of the sentence.

The original "There is a house whose designer is an architect" is describing the existence of the house. Yours is describing the designing of the house. Either is acceptable and just as valid depending on what you wish to convey.
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#12  Postby Agrippina » Jun 26, 2011 5:08 am

I wouldn't apply the term "who" to an inanimate object anyway. I would always use "that." If I wanted to say that there was a house somewhere that may have been designed by a particular architect, I would say "there is a house that so-and-so designed." Or "that house was designed by..." I wouldn't use the word "whose" I would use it "there is the boy whose mother is an architect" but for a house I'd say "there is the house that was designed by ...."
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#13  Postby CdesignProponentsist » Jun 26, 2011 5:22 am

Well, baring what you would do :wink:, whose is still the only possessive case of which. There is no other. Personally, I like the flow of the original, and am unbothered by the personification of the subject. To say it any other way changes the meaning and spirit.

It also is a nice literary tool to anthropomorphize an inanimate subject.
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#14  Postby Agrippina » Jun 26, 2011 7:39 am

I suppose, but I'm a bit of a pedant. And I should relax because language doesn't stay the same, and I should move on with it.

Who knows, I might even lrn 2 rt lk dis. (Oh Brother!)
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#15  Postby CdesignProponentsist » Jun 26, 2011 7:51 am

Agrippina wrote:Who knows, I might even lrn 2 rt lk dis. (Oh Brother!)


Oh god! Please don't :doh:
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#16  Postby Agrippina » Jun 26, 2011 7:57 am

:rofl: It drives me mad.
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#17  Postby chairman bill » Jun 26, 2011 8:49 am

Surely it's "... a house who's designer is ..."












What? :scratch: :whistle:
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#18  Postby Agrippina » Jun 26, 2011 11:18 am

oooooooooh! now u'v dunnit!
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Re: Alternative to "whose"?

#19  Postby Blip » Jun 26, 2011 11:39 am

CookieJon, the comma is your friend. There is a house, designed by an architect...

I'd never attribute 'whose' to an inanimate object. Apart from grammar stasi considerations ;-), it deprives you of nuance: I always use forms of 'who' rather than 'which' for animals, for example, to convey my feelings about their status.
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Alternative to "whose"?

#20  Postby CdesignProponentsist » Jun 26, 2011 11:59 am

"All the forces in the world are not so powerful as an idea whose time has come." - Victor Hugo
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