...described ...between farmers hoping to keep ...

LQZ

Senior Member
Mandarin
As in so many other parts of the world, the politics of sharing water are rife with tension. Within Thailand, where the drought has affected at least 14,000 villages, one official has described “water wars” between farmers hoping to keep their crops alive. ---taken from the NYT

Dear all,

I have two questions in the second sentence of the abvoe.

1 Should it be "among farmers", rather than "between farmers", because there are not only two famers?
2 Usually "describe" is associated with "as", so I am wondering whether an 'as' is missing before "hoping".

Looking forward to your help.Thanks in advance.

LQZ
 
  • Starfrown

    Senior Member
    English - US
    1 Should it be "among farmers", rather than "between farmers", because there are not only two famers?
    Choosing between "between" and "among" is a bit more complicated than that.

    As it is written now, the sentence implies that there are multiple conflicts but that each conflict is between individual farmers--in other words, the author is emphasizing the individuality of the participants in the conflicts.

    "Among" would imply to me a chaotic battle over water involving a mass of farmers.

    I don't know whether I've described the difference very well, so I hope that other posters will help in refining my response. Then again, there have likely been many threads on this subject, so you should probably try a search.

    2 Usually "describe" is associated with "as", so I am wondering whether an 'as' is missing before "hoping".
    "As" would be necessary if the sentence were written as follows:

    "Within Thailand...there are what one official has described as 'water wars'..."

    The meaning of this sentence would of course be different from the sentence you have presented. In yours, the official merely gave the details of the conflicts; the term "water wars" was created by the author.
     
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