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M45T4
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BeitragVerfasst am: 31 Mai 2009 - 02:49:43    Titel: relation unclear

"Ruthlessness and rage at least produce reactions from society, unlike good behavior, which leads to slavery and starvation."

When conceived within the context of the book (i.e. poverty and corruption) it is easy to determine 'which' refers to the first subject, still it doesn't become quite clear to me when solely approaching the matter from a grammatical point of view, what d'you think?
squeezy14
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BeitragVerfasst am: 31 Mai 2009 - 17:53:46    Titel: Re: relation unclear

M45T4 hat folgendes geschrieben:
"Ruthlessness and rage at least produce reactions from society, unlike good behavior, which leads to slavery and starvation."

When conceived within the context of the book (i.e. poverty and corruption) it is easy to determine 'which' refers to the first subject, still it doesn't become quite clear to me when solely approaching the matter from a grammatical point of view, what d'you think?




'which' is referring to the first subject due to the comma after behavior.
Otherwise, (without comma) behavior would be the subject of the relative clause.
Zwanglos
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BeitragVerfasst am: 03 Jun 2009 - 19:33:24    Titel:

Zitat:
'which' is referring to the first subject due to the comma after behavior.
Otherwise, (without comma) behavior would be the subject of the relative clause.


Sorry, but that's incorrect.

The which-phrase is referring to 'good behavior'. The statement is one about revolting against poverty and corruption, because 'rage and ruthlessness' at least affect some sort of change.

'Good behavior' is being criticized here - the writer feels that always listening to your masters and doing what they say basically makes you a slave.

Furthermore, the commas are required. Not having commas here would be grammatically incorrect. Which-without-commas occurs when we're talking about alternatives, e.g. "I don't know which solution is the best." Which-with-commas occurs when introducing a declarative statement that refers to the noun or phrase coming immediately before it - not having the commas is not an alternative.

Which-with-commas is an alternative to that(-without-commas), but at the same time is subtly different. Read more here.
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