English Grammar Unit 6 Determiners
Definition: • Words that precede any premodifying adjectives in a noun phrases and which denote such referential meanings as specific reference, generic reference, definite quantity or indefinite quantity are referred to as determiners. • Determiners include these classes of word: articles, possessive determiners, genitive nouns, demonstrative determiners, relative determiners, interrogative determiners, indefinite determiners, cardinal and ordinal determiners, fractional and multiplicative numericals and quantifiers.
Classification • According to their potential positions, determiners fall into three subclasses: all these other issues • Predeterminers such as all, both, half; double, twice, three times, etc.; what, such (a /an).mutually exclusive. • Central determiners include: the articles; demonstrative determiners; possessive determiners; genitive nouns; some, any, no, every, each, either, neither, enough, what(ever, which(ever), whose, etc.. They are mutually exclusive. • Postdeterminers include those cardinal numbers and ordinal numbers: next, last, other, another, etc.: many, much, (a) little, fewer, (the ) fewest, less,( the ) least, more, most; several, plenty of, a lot of , lots of: such .not mutuallyexclusive, another five books ,several hundred guests, last few weeks
Double, twice What , such Predeterminers All,both, half Some,any, no Either, neither Whatever, whichever Central determiners Another,other Few, least,many such Postdeterminers
Pronunciation • Some English words can be pronounced in two different ways. This means that they have a strong form and a weak form. The weak form is an alternate pronunciation of a word which is so reduced in its articulation that it consists of a different set of phonemes. • There are two main reasons to learn how weak forms are used. Firstly, most native speakers of English find an “all-strong-form” pronunciation very unpleasant. Secondly, and more importantly, learners who are not familiar with the use of weak forms are likely to have difficulty understanding native speakers. • There are many thousands of words in the English language which have such variants but about 45 weak form words are of special importance to English learners. The 45 weak form words can be classified into the following 5 groups:
Strong form Weak form • The weak form is used in unstressed positions. • 1. determiners: a, an, her, his, our, some, the, your • 2.pronouns: he, me, she, them, us, we, you, him • 3. connectives: and, as, but, so, than, that • 4. auxiliary verbs: am, are, be, can, do, does, had, has, have, is, must, shall, was, were, will, would • 5. prepositions: at, for, from, of, to • The strong form is used when the word is said in isolation, or in connected speech in which the word should be stressed or cited • . A weak form of a word is generally distinguished from a strong form by: • 1. the difference in vowel sounds (e.g. but) • 2. the absence of a sound (e.g. and) • 3.the difference in the length of a vowel (e.g. been)
Learn to practice • 1.You may not be able to find its original box, but you’ll have to pack it in a box. • 2.Take an apple, I said. Not the lot. • 3.–Whose book is that? • --It’s hers. • 4.Give me some books. • 5.There is some Mr. Cook looking for you. • 6. He’s not going with you, he’s coming with us.
Learn to practice • 7. They hate you, but not us. • 8. It was him that I was looking for. • 9. Why did you do it? I asked him to help me. • 10. --Who’s that? • --It’s all; right; it’s only me. • 11. --Who is leaving for Shanghai? • --I am. • 12. I don’t have to.
Zero article , indefinite article and definite article • A. noncount noun : mass noun, abstract noun Water is composed of oxygen and hydrogen. Cleanliness is next to Godliness. • B. count noun Have a seat.
C. definite article (i) with textual co-reference I read a great novel last week.. The imagery was fantastic. (ii) with situational /cultural reference Let’s go to the library. (iii) with structural reference Theend of the world is nigh. • D. first mention-subsequent mention principle Once upon a time, there was a little girl. The girl lived with her mother and father.
E. indefinite article (i) with generic usage A tiger is a large cat. (ii) with predicate noun This is a warm day. • F. indefinite noun (i) specific I’m looking for a pen I misplaced. (ii) nonspecific If I don’t find it, I’ll have to buy a new pen. • G. Idiomatic article usage She is in hospital. • H. Zero article use with definite meaning Dreams are free. • I. Null article use with definite meaning • Lunch was served on the terrace.
Fox and Crowcrow, cheese, tree, fox • There was once a crow who stole a wedge of cheese from a kitchen window. She flew off with the cheese to a nearby tree. A fox saw the crow had done, and he walked over to the tree. • “Oh, Mistress Crow, you have such lovely black feathers, such slender feet, such a beautiful yellow beak, and such fine black eyes!You must have a beautiful voice. Would you please sing for me?” • The crow felt very proud. She opened her beak and sang CAW-CAW-CAW. Of course the cheese fell down, and the fox snatched it up and ate every bite.
Practice ExercisesExplain the ungrammaticality of the following sentences • She has a coffee on her dress. • Coffee is a mass noun here and does not take an article. A coffee means a serving /cup of coffee. If the coffee is spilled, it would no longer be contained in a cup and therefore could not be referred to with the definite article. • They gave us many information. • Information is a mass noun in English; it is therefore noncount and cannot take a plural ending or the determiner many.
I have examination in French today. • Examination is a singular count noun and must therefore take an article. The indefinite article is required because in this case the noun has a specific referent for the speaker but not for the listener.
Practice Error Correction • Change takes a long times. • Take a long time is probably best learned as a lexical unit. • This is an exclusive product in Taiwan travel industry • Taiwan travel agency has a specific referent for both speaker and listener, and thus the definite article is required.(the Taiwan travel agency ) • We have to make the detailed travel plan. • The definite article the is used only with a noun that has a specific referent for both the speaker and listener. If the plan has not been made yet, then it cannot be specific to either, and theindefinite article is required instead.
Practice Error Correction • Nowadays, personal computer isn’t luxury anymore. • Computer is a singular count noun, so it cannot occur without an article. The zero article (being the most flexible pattern for generic use) with a plural noun and to make the necessary number adjustment (computers aren’t luxuries) • When I went to the Europe… • Europe is a proper noun, so it take no article • I enjoyed writing the poetry. It’s my hobby. • Poetry is a mass noun used non-specifically. No article should be used. My brother is student.Singular predicate nominals that classify the subject noun are preceded by an indefinite article
Generic Reference • We listened to the news on the radio. • I took the train to Boston. • I talked to Burt on the phone • I’m going to the store/mall. • I’m going to the doctor/the doctor’s office. • I’m going to the bank. • I’m going to the movies. • I’m going to a store that Nancy recommended. • I’m going to school /church/ temple. • Cf.I’m going to a / the school.
Geographical Names • The names of mountain ranges, archipelagoes,deserts, and other plural names of regions generally have the definite articles • The Bahamas, the Great Lakes, the U.S.A., The Rockies(or the Rocky Mountains) • whereas the names of individual mountains or islands have no article. • Asia, Canada ,San Francisco Bay • But the Amazon (River),the Pacific (Ocean), the Gulf of Mexico
The • Strike her intheeye, strike her eye • She kissedher father on the cheek. • She kissed her father’s cheek. • The music is pleasant to the ear.悦耳 • The colors of the autumn leaves are pleasing to the eye. 悦目
Idioms The • He hasthe nerve（勇气）to do it! • The man is at home inthe saddle.（擅长骑马） • Don’t playthe fool.（装傻） • The penis mightier than the sword.以文制武 • There is a mixture of the tiger and the foxin his character. 他如老虎般残忍，狐狸般狡猾。 • They felt the patriot (=the patriotic spirit ) rise within him. 他们的爱国心油然而生。 • After the war, he gave upthe sword forthe plough. • When one is poor, the beggar will come out. (low conduct )衣食足，知荣辱。 • What is learnedin the cradle lasts to the grave.（the cradle =in infancy, the grave =death）
Enough of a man 1. He is enough of a man to tell the truth. (manful enough) • He is less of a fool than she thought . (less foolish) 3. The man is too much of a coward to tell the truth. (too cowardly) 4. He is more of a sportsman than I thought. (more sportsmanlike) 5. He is much of a scholar. (very scholarly) 6. She is something of a poet.( somewhat poetical)
Deictic Centre • Ice floats on water. • It’s raining. • I’m angry. • I’ll be here again in an hour. (person deixis, place deixis, time deixis-point of reference)) • This one is genuine, but this one is fake. (gestural usage) • He is not the Duke, he is. He’s the butler. • This city is beautiful. • You can come with me if you like.
Demonstrative Pronouns • I like this car better than that one over there.(spatial) • I like this movie better than that concert last night.(temporal) • I like this candidate, which is why I didn’t vote for that one. (psychological) • This dress is less attractive than that one.(ordinal)
ANALYSIS • All the four teachers • all your three books • all these last few years • pre-determiner +central determiner • half his lecture • Both his parents • central determiner+post determiner • some such alloy • His last few words • Post-determiner+post-determiner • several hundred guests • last few weeks • another five books
Idioms • These are all firsts. • Business first and pleasure afterwards.先做事，后娱乐。 • First come, first served. • We are first cousins.我们是亲表兄弟。 • He went to see her first thing in the morning .他早上首先去看她 • He is second to none in skill. 他的技术比谁都高超。 She wants a second pair of shoes.(another) • She talked with him a second time. (again) • He is second to none in spoken English.不亚于 • On second thought(s), he decided to give up the job. 经过三思
Noun Pronoun Anaphor 1. He left on time. 2. [The old man ]i said hei left on time 3. Maryi said shei left on time. 4.﹡Himself left on time. ( anaphor ) 5.﹡Each other left on time. 6. The old man saw himself in the mirror. ( reflexive pronoun) ( matching condition) 7. Mary and the old man saw each other in the mirror. ( reciprocal pronoun) 8. ﹡ [ Mary’si father]j nags herselfi. 9.﹡ [John’s mother]j saw himselfi.
Binding Theory • Johni believes [IPhimself to be in love with Mary]. • ﹡ Johni believes [CP] [IPhimself is be in love with Mary]. • ﹡Johni believed [ IP Mary to be in love with himselfi]. • ﹡[IP Johnisaw [NP] a picture of himi]. • [IP Johni saw [NP] Mary’s j picture of himi]] • ﹡ Johni believes [IP himi to be the king of Samona]. • Johni believes [IP hei is the king of Samona].
Reflexive Pronouns • Hisimother loves Johni. • ﹡他i的母亲很爱约翰i。 • ﹡ John’si pride finally hurt himselfi. • 约翰i的骄傲终于害了自己i。 • 张三的父亲i常吹捧自己i。 • ﹡ 张三i的父亲常吹捧自己i • 张三i认为李四j喜欢自己I。 • 张三i认为李四j喜欢自己j。
Schemata’s effect • The city council refused the women a parade permit because they feared violence. • 市政府拒绝向他们发放游行许可证,因为他们害怕暴力. • The city council refused the women a parade permit because they advocate violence. • 市政府拒绝向他们发放游行许可证,因为他们拥护暴力.
Error correction • The house of my friends is on the corner.(?) • My friend’s house is the correct form of an animate possessor, especially here where the possessor is not a long or complex NP. For example,What can I do for the husband of Dr. Smith’s daughter? • Leo and Hugo hit themselves, and Hugo got injured.(?) • The reflexive pronoun themselves has been used, implying that Leo hit himself and Hugo hit himself, when presumably the reciprocal pronoun each other is what was intended(I.e., Leo hit Hugo and vice versa, unless self-flagellation was the intended meaning.
Pronouns in English that mean “everyone in general” • One never know who real friends are until times like these. • You gotta study hard to get good grades. • We should study hard if we want to get good grades. • Everyone should learn a foreign language.
Everyone /Everybody has his/her/their own way of doing things. • Two ways of avoiding the usage of he or she or his /her when these forms are used in a general sense are • A. to use plurals A student should plan his schedule wisely. Students should plan their schedules wisely. • B. to use one A person should not reveal his deepest thoughts to total strangers. One should not reveal one’s deepest thoughts to total stranger.
Of course , both these ways have some drawbacks . Sometimes using the plural will not work,such as when you simply want to discuss an individual’s doing something. And the use of one can easily be overdone, resulting in stilted or overly formal language.
This prize was given to Edger and I . • The book is byshe and Professor Hansan. Me and Mark are going to the store. • Native speakers sometimes do violate the prescriptive rules of pronoun usage and the subject pronouns where object pronouns are called for; and sometimes they use object pronouns where the prescriptive rule says subject pronouns are necessary.
Translation 译文：将来有朝一日想起抗非典战役时， 你会为你临阵退缩、贪生怕死而感到羞愧。 When you think of the battle against SARS someday in the future, you will feel shamed at how you backed away from the critical post to save your own skin.
Translation 译文：SARS 将提醒我们应养成什么样的生活方式。每当我们随地吐痰的时候，每当我们品尝野味的时候，每当我们不注意个人卫生的时候，我们就会想到SARS. SARS will serve as a reminder of what lifestyle we should develop. We will think of it when we spit anywhere, when we help ourselves to wild game, when we are careless of our personal hygiene.
This honest official thinks of the people’s great trust when he uses his power, when he makes a choice between personal interest and larger interests, when he faces various attractions. Translation 译文：每当行使职权的时候，每当在个人利益和更大利益之间作出选择的时候，每当面对各种诱惑的时候，这位清官就会想到人民的重托。
Translation 译文：尽管他们没有成功，他们追求真理的执著精神值得我们赞扬。 Their perseverance in the pursuit of truth was well worth our praise even if they didn’t make it to their goal.