Presentation on theme: "Adjective Clauses (aka relative clauses) Part 1: with subject pronouns."— Presentation transcript:
Adjective Clauses (aka relative clauses) Part 1: with subject pronouns
What do you know? What is an adjective? What is a clause?
Put them together: FORM: An adjective clause is a group of words containing a subject and verb – its a special kind of clause. FUNCTION: This group of words modifies (describes) a noun or a sentence. It usually follows the noun that it modifies. The adjective clause might identify the noun, or it might give extra information.
Examples: The Joy Luck Club is a book that is about 4 groups of mothers and daughters. Amy Tan, who wrote the book, is a Chinese-American woman. Tan, whose parents were Chinese immigrants, is a famous American writer. The Joy Luck Club is also the name of a movie which is based on the book.
A closer look: The adjective clause follows the same order as the sentence: subject + verb The subject in the adjective clause must be one of these words. These are some of the relative pronouns: Who That WhichWhose (+noun)
Relative pronouns When the noun being modified is a person, you can use who or that. (Avoid using which.) Examples: The man who was my husband brought me and our two babies there. (p. 3) Informal: The man that was my husband brought me and our two babies there.
More Relative Pronouns When the noun being modified is a place or a thing, you can use which or that. (Do not use who.) The river which ran through my familys small farm flooded our fields. (p. 20) The river that ran through my familys small farm flooded our fields. Joy Luck was an idea my mother remembered from the days of her first marriage in a town that was called Kweilin.
… and more Relative Pronouns When then noun being modified shows possession or a relationship, use whose. But now I see this is also for the benefit of Auntie An- mei, whose own son was arrested two years ago for selling stolen stereos. (p. 11) Who was arrested? What was his relationship to Auntie An-mei? Tricky! Notice that after whose you must include the noun that was possessed and then you use the verb.
Possession, continued He was a large, unsmiling man, whose restless eyes followed me around the house. (p. 15) What was the possession? Who possessed them?
Tricky things! Use only a relative pronoun in an adjective clause. Dont use a relative pronoun plus a subject pronoun. YES: The only father I knew was a big painting that hung in the hall. (p.15) NO: The only father I knew was a big painting that it hung in the hall.
More tricky things! Relative pronouns dont change based on gender (male female) or number (singular or plural). Auntie Lindo and my mother were best friends and sworn enemies, who spent a lifetime comparing their children. (p.11) They see daughters who grow impatient when their mothers talk in Chinese, who think they are stupid when they explain things in broken English. (p.13)
Even more tricky things! The verb in the adjective clause should agree with the noun it modifies. But I often heard stories of a ghost who tried to take children away, especially little girls who were disobedient. (p.14) EXCEPTION: in a clause with whose, the verb agrees with the subject of the clause (the noun being possessed). I came to think of Tyan-yu as a god, someone whose opinions were worth much more than my own life. (p.21)
Commas Did you notice some clauses have commas and some dont? When do you use the commas? Restrictive/identifying/necessary clauses – no commas Nonrestrictive/non-identifying/ extra information clauses – use commas
Identifying/Necessary If a clause gives information that identifies the noun – that is necessary to understand the information in the sentence – dont use commas. Amy Tan is the author who wrote The Joy Luck Club. What is the purpose of this sentence? What is the independent clause? Does the independent clause give us all the necessary information?
Non-identifying/Extra Amy Tan, who wrote The Joy Luck Club, was born in California. What is the purpose of this sentence? What is the independent clause? Does the independent clause give us all the necessary information?
A tricky thing… Dont use that in nonidentifying (extra information) adjective clauses. Use who for people and use which for places and things. YES: Amy Tan, who wrote the Joy Luck Club, was born in California. NO: Amy Tan, that wrote The Joy Luck Club, was born in California. YES: The Joy Luck Club, which is about four mothers and their daughters, is a book and a movie. NO: The Joy Luck Club, that is about four mothers and their daughters, is a book and movie.
One more tricky thing Sentences with adjective clauses can have very different meanings depending on their punctuation. The writer, whose mother is Chinese, comes from California. ( We are only talking about one writer, and she comes from California. The fact that her mother is Chinese is extra information and not important.) The writer whose mother is Chinese comes from California. (There are other writers, too. One has a mother who is Japanese, another has a mother who is Arabic, and another has a mother who is Vietnamese. There are no commas because we need to know which writer is being discussed.)
Coming soon: Adjective clauses with other kinds of pronouns.