Featured Several members of the committee have hearing disabilities.

Discussion in '英語勉強フォーラム - Learning English' started by hirashin, Oct 6, 2018.

  1. hirashin

    hirashin Sempai
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    Hello, native English speakers,
    does the sentence sound natural?
    Several members of the committee have hearing disabilities.
    Or should I say
    Several members of the committee have a hearing disability.

    Thanks in advance.

    Hirashin
     
  2. mdchachi

    mdchachi Moderator
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    Both are fine but I would probably use the first one.
     
  3. hirashin

    hirashin Sempai
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    Thanks for the help.
     
  4. Buntaro

    Buntaro 運動不足

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    Deleted. Let me think about it.
     
  5. hirashin

    hirashin Sempai
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    Sorry. I don't understand. What's deleted?
     
  6. Buntaro

    Buntaro 運動不足

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    Hirashin, I answered your question but then I decided my answer was wrong, so I deleted it.
     
  7. hirashin

    hirashin Sempai
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    I see.
    Do you agree with mdchachi?
    Do you think you can use either a singular or plural form of "disability"?
     
  8. Buntaro

    Buntaro 運動不足

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    Both forms can be used. The plural form sounds better. But I am having a hard time explaining why. This is what I am thinking about.
     
  9. hirashin

    hirashin Sempai
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    Thanks, Buntaro.
     
  10. joadbres

    joadbres Sempai

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    If you want to see a variety of other similar examples, and advice on how to handle such cases, do a web search for "subject-complement agreement".

    In this specific case, though, as @mdchachi has pointed out, both sound OK, so you can freely use either one.

    English doesn't have a strict rule in such cases, but when in doubt, following subject-complement agreement is a fairly safe choice. In this case, that would result in choosing the first sentence, to match the plural.
     

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