Prescriptive question

Peter A. McGraw pmcgraw at LINFIELD.EDU
Thu Jun 10 22:31:19 UTC 2004

It's not at all hard to see the "lurking we," which is probably why "our"
in this construction is so common no matter what people's high school
English teachers tried to tell them.  But I remember being taught that "it"
was de rigueur in formal writing, and I wonder if there are still those who
would go "tsk! tsk!" at the "we."

--On Thursday, June 10, 2004 6:09 PM -0400 "Dennis R. Preston"
<preston at MSU.EDU> wrote:

>> Why is it so hard to see the "lurking we" (I know, I should eschew
>> technical terms) here?
> dInIs
>> I know better than to ask the denizens of this list to BE prescriptive,
>> but in this case I'm not sure whether a prescriptive "rule" exists
>> anymore, even for prescriptivists.  I've tried the Chicago Manual of
>> Style on this one, but no luck.  I don't have any other style manuals
>> handy.
>> The case is embodied in sentences like:
>> "The Burgville Philharmonic invites you to subscribe to our upcoming
>> concert season."
>> Have even the prescriptivists dropped an earlier insistence on changing
>> "our" to "its," or is this prescription alive and well for formal
>> writing?
>> Peter Mc.
>> *****************************************************************
>> Peter A. McGraw       Linfield College        McMinnville, Oregon
>> ******************* pmcgraw at ************************
> --
> Dennis R. Preston
> University Distinguished Professor
> Department of Linguistics and Germanic, Slavic,
>         Asian and African Languages
> Wells Hall A-740
> Michigan State University
> East Lansing, MI 48824-1027 USA
> Office: (517) 353-0740
> Fax: (517) 432-2736

Peter A. McGraw       Linfield College        McMinnville, Oregon
******************* pmcgraw at ************************

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