Thursday, June 24, 2010

Grammar Gopher

Please guess about whom the word 'its' refers to:

It's more than just a game as Have You Heard from Johannesburg? chronicles the history of the global anti-apartheid movement that took on South Africa's apartheid regime and its international supporters.

does the author mean Apartheid's supporters? or the anti-apartheid movement?
In this particular context, it could really be either one:

the protesters' actions against Apartheid and the international businesses which were supporting it economically
- or -
the actions of the protesters' and their international supporters
?

This is why people need to learn how to write more effectively. Of course, I can't watch it anyway, since I don't have cable TV.

1 comment:

ccyager said...

Actually, although your point is interesting and I totally agree that people need to learn how to write better, in this particular case, the word "that" separates the two clauses and makes "its" in the second clause refer to "South Africa's apartheid regime," the subject of the second clause.