I don't like that he keeps his fans waiting for so long...

Discussion in 'Spanish-English Grammar / Gramática Español-Inglés' started by Laurajean, Jun 18, 2013.

  1. Laurajean Senior Member

    Spain spanish
    HI.

    is this phrase correct?

    I don't like that he keeps his fans waiting at gigs for so long.

    it´s been said by a British person, so I suppose it's well written. but, should not it be? I don't like to him keep his...

    thanks
     
  2. kayokid

    kayokid Senior Member

    Chicago
    English, USA
    The only difference I would make if I said it would be:

    I don't like it that...

    And the sentence is good either way. The "it" is only my personal preference.
     
  3. SevenDays Senior Member

    Spanish
    A "that-clause" certainly can be the direct object of many verbs (for example, I think that he keeps his fans waiting; I agree that he keeps his fans waiting), and it seems therefore logical to say "I don't like that he keeps his fans waiting;" however, "like" doesn't seem to naturally take a "that-clause" as direct object, so the construction is considered unidiomatic by many. "Like" more naturally takes non-finite complements: like + infinitive; like + -ing. To get around the direct object problem, the pronoun "it" is added, which functions as direct object, and the that-clause becomes the complement of the direct object: I don't like it that he keeps his fans waiting.
    Cheers
     
  4. Laurajean Senior Member

    Spain spanish
    sorry I made a mistake.

    shouldn't it be?

    I don't like him to keep his fans waiting at gigs for so long.

    rather than:

    I don't like that he keeps his fans waiting at gigs for so long.
     
  5. Wandering JJ

    Wandering JJ Senior Member

    England
    British English
    That may be the case in US English, but it's perfectly correct in Br.E.

    The 'I don't like that...' construction smells of Romance languages and is probably accepted by Americans because of the Spanish influence. Over here, we would say: 'We don't like Americans to tell us how to speak our language' — never: 'We don't like that Americans tell us how to speak our language'.:D
     
  6. SevenDays Senior Member

    Spanish
    What's interesting in "I don't like him to keep his fans waiting" is that "him" functions as the subject of the infinitive "to keep." Subject is a higher syntactic category than direct object, which is why "him" becomes the subject of the infinitive and not the direct object of the transitive verb "don't like". The implication is that the direct object of "don't like" is "him to keep his fans waiting," a structure known as a sentential direct object, because the DO is a non-finite sentence.
    Cheers
     
  7. abb1025

    abb1025 Senior Member

    USA
    English USA
    The more I look at it, I was just plain wrong. The sentence is correct here, too. I woulnd't like British people to judge all Americans by my mistakes.:(
     
  8. Wandering JJ

    Wandering JJ Senior Member

    England
    British English
    If you had not posted as you did, I would never have learnt about sentential DOs! Thanks to you & SevenDays.:D
     
  9. FromPA

    FromPA Senior Member

    Philadelphia area
    USA English
    When I hear "I don't like him keeping his fan waiting," it gives me the sense that I can have some influence over the matter (i.e., I don't like it and I'm going to do something about it). However, "I don't like that he keeps his fans waiting" just seems to be a simple expression of an opinion. Am I the only one who gets that sense of the phrase?
     
  10. Wandering JJ

    Wandering JJ Senior Member

    England
    British English
    Hi,
    The phrase is "I don't like him to keep his fans waiting". I'm pretty sure it's an AmE/BrE issue. The version using "I don't like that..." to me is typical US or Spanish. Nothng wrong with it – just different.
     
  11. donbeto

    donbeto Senior Member

    Vancouver (Canada)
    Eng (Canada)
    Of the above, the most natural to me is "I don't like him keeping his fans waiting". Note that the 'him' could also be 'his' (not to add too much to the confusion). I don't get the same sense as FromPA about wanting to do something about it.

    I agree with JJ that "I don't like that ..." smells 'romantic', but I'm not sure it's any more prevelant here due to the Spanish influence.
     
  12. duvija

    duvija Senior Member

    Chicago
    Spanish - Uruguay
    Hey, hey. Not in Chicago South side! we don't use 'that' as much as in the coasts... :p
     

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