ADS-L Digest - 25 Jul 2009 to 26 Jul 2009 (#2009-208)

Amy West medievalist at W-STS.COM
Mon Jul 27 12:24:07 UTC 2009

I'll have to go and check the archives. This is something that I've
noticed in my students' writing that I will consciously resist
marking: they will use "that" where I would have used "who." And I
simply favor "who" based on its referent being a person, that's all.
I hadn't even thought to bring in the restrictivity debate at all.

---Amy West

>Date:    Sun, 26 Jul 2009 11:12:54 -0400
>From:    Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU>
>Subject: Re: "who" vs. "that"
>At 10:52 AM -0400 7/26/09, Bill Palmer wrote:
>>A current Kellogg's Special K commercial claims, "Research shows
>>women THAT eat breakfast have fewer problems with weight" (last few
>>words may not be exactly right, but you get the picture)
>>I would have said "...women WHO...", because it just sounds more
>>natural.  Are there any "prescriptions" for this?
>>Bill Palmer
>I'm sure we've discussed the general issue in threads {that/(*)which
>Arnold, Ben, et al. can point us to, but this is another instance of
>the taboo against "who"/"which" being used as relative pronouns to
>introduce restrictive relative clauses.

The American Dialect Society -

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