A book <that> I read, and <which> made an impact

Discussion in 'English Only' started by susanna76, Oct 1, 2017.

  1. susanna76 Senior Member

    Romanian
    Hi,

    AmE grammar books say that which should be used for non-restrictive clauses
    (That vs. Which vs. Who for SAT Prep)
    but what about this example:

    A book on art that I read in my twenties, and which made an impact on me, was The Shock of the New.

    Is the above sentence correct? Can I use both that and which the way I did? And am I right that the word which in that sentence is restrictive? If so, what about the above rule?

    Thank you!
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2017
  2. Hercules Grytpype-Thynne

    Hercules Grytpype-Thynne Senior Member

    English - U.S.
    This distinction between "that" and "which" is often recommended by grammars but also often disregarded by native speakers and writers, even very good ones.
     
  3. susanna76 Senior Member

    Romanian
    Thank you, Hercules! So, in edited writing, would you let my sentence as is?
     
  4. Hercules Grytpype-Thynne

    Hercules Grytpype-Thynne Senior Member

    English - U.S.
    I think it's fine. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't see anything questionable about it if I encountered it outside of a forum specifically devoted to language issues.

    By the way, I would leave, not let, your sentence as is.
     
  5. susanna76 Senior Member

    Romanian
    Sure, it's leave, not let. I'm tired :) Thank you, Hercules!
     
  6. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    It’s hard for me to tell whether the clause set off between the commas is non-restrictive, or a second restrictive clause. The “that” for the first is not preceded by a comma, so it is definitely restrictive. The use of that and which to make the distinction is not reliable:)
     
  7. susanna76 Senior Member

    Romanian
    Thank you, Julian!
     
  8. Hercules Grytpype-Thynne

    Hercules Grytpype-Thynne Senior Member

    English - U.S.
    I had the same problem. My wife, who is a professional writer, originally thought it was non-restrictive but then decided that she wasn't sure.
     

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