and not (aimed at) a single boss

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ironman2012

Senior Member
Chinese
Hi,

The purpose, above all, is to prepare the next generation for a career in the future, which for many will be made up of numerous micro-jobs aimed at well-paid skilled workers, and not a single boss and company, he says.

(This comes from bbc.com The next generation of jobs won't be made up of professions by Alina Dizik on April 24, 2017.)

1. Does "aimed at..." modify "micro-jobs"?
2. Does "and not a single boss and company" refer to "and not aimed at a single boss and company"?

Thanks in advance!
 
  • Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    For many skilled workers, careers in the future will be made up of numerous part-time jobs, and will not be made up of employment in the service of one single boss and company.
     

    ironman2012

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Thank you, I understand the meaning now.

    But I want to know if "and not a single boss and company" is a good example of ellipsis. I think what is omitted is often a similar part, like "he has five dollars and I have two (dollars)". In the original post I think the complete part for "and not a single boss and company" is "and will not be made up of numerous micro-jobs aimed at a single boss and company". But according to the meaning, it should be "and will not be made up of jobs in the service of a single boss and company".
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    The purpose, above all, is to prepare the next generation for a career in the future, which for many will be made up of numerous micro-jobs aimed at well-paid skilled workers, and not a single boss and company, he says.
    I want to know if "and not a single boss and company" is a good example of ellipsis. I think what is omitted is often a similar part, like "he has five dollars and I have two (dollars)". In the original post I think the complete part for "and not a single boss and company" is "and will not be made up of numerous micro-jobs aimed at a single boss and company". But according to the meaning, it should be "and will not be made up of jobs in the service of a single boss and company".
    You seem to have misread some of the sentence, but you're right in thinking there's an ellipsis – in the sense that another "made up of" can be said to be understood before "a single boss and company" (although even then, the grammar is poor!).

    It might be easier to understand how this clumsy sentence works if you read just the words in bold below:

    The purpose, above all, is to prepare the next generation for a career in the future, which for many will be made up of numerous micro-jobs aimed at well-paid skilled workers, and not [made up of] a single boss and company, he says.

    With syntax improved:
    The purpose, above all, is to prepare the next generation for a career in the future, which for many will be made up of numerous micro-jobs aimed at well-paid skilled workers, rather than consisting of working for a single boss and company, he says.
     

    ironman2012

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    a career in the future, which for many will be made up of numerous micro-jobs aimed at well-paid skilled workers, and not [made up of] a single boss and company, he says.
    Can I say the blue part mean "a career which will not be made up of a single boss and company"? If yes, I find it hard to go from "be made up of a single boss and company" to "be made up of/consisting of working for a single boss and company". I don't know why "working for" is put here. The two seems to have different meaning.
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    This is your latest suggestion:
    … a career in the future, which for many will be made up of numerous micro-jobs aimed at well-paid skilled workers, and will not be made up of a single boss and company …

    That is what's meant, but putting it like that is not good English. It's a comparison and would read much better as rather than a single boss and company.

    The point of adding "working for" was that you can't logically describe a career as being "made up of a boss and a company". A boss and a company do not constitute a career. Working for them does.
     

    Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    Ironman, I fully sympathise with you finding it hard to go from "be made up of a single boss and company" to "be made up of/consisting of working for a single boss and company". It's a very clumsy sentence.

    Alina Dizik is a freelance journalist reporting on a variety of topics including dining trends, consumer lifestyle, luxury real estate and entrepreneurship. Note that English literary style is not among those topics...:rolleyes:
     
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