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

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:
  • 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.
     

    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.
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    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:)
     

    Hercules Grytpype-Thynne

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    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:)
    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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