Despite being so noisy

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hedgy

Senior Member
Catalan
I don't understand something.
I know this is correct: I enjoy living in the town centre, despite the noise
But what about these, they are wrong but I don't know why. They sound well to me:
I enjoy living in the town centre, despite it's so noisy
I enjoy living int he town centre, despite being so noisy

Cheers
 
  • olimpia91

    Banned
    Castellano - Argentina
    Cuando existe sujeto y verbo habría que decir "despite the fact that it's so noisy", no me preguntes por qué.
     

    diggstownjoe

    New Member
    English - US
    "Despite" means "in spite of" and generally requires a noun or a noun phrase after it. So, "I enjoy living in the town centre, despite the fact that it is so noisy." would be okay, as would "I enjoy living in the town centre, despite it being so noisy."

    Also, a quick note: the phrase "they sound well" sounds awkward in English. "They sound fine", "They sound okay", or "They sound good" would be better choices.
     

    JennyTW

    Senior Member
    English - UK
    Just to comment (because it will probably come up sooner or later) that the "correct" form is "despite ITS being so noisy" because "being" is a noun here, but that with "it" it's accepted nowadays.

    And Hedgy, you're probably wondering why "it sounds well" isn't correct. Well, it's because the verbs of the senses are not actions which are done in one manner or another, but states, similar to the verb "to be". In fact you can often substitute the verb "to be" - the soup tastes good - the soup is good.

    Of course, each sense verb has a corresponding action verb which WOULD take an adverb. "I tasted the soup quickly/carefully". Her is a list for you;

    sense. State verb. Action verb
    Sight. It looks good I can see clearly.
    Hearing. It sound terrible. I can't hear well.
    Touch. It feels soft. I touched it carefully.
    Smell. It smells divine. I smelt it warily.
    Taste. It tastes delicious. I tasted it quickly.
     

    hedgy

    Senior Member
    Catalan
    Thank you for your answers. But there is one example I still don't understand. Let's review:
    I enjoy living in the town centre, despite the noise :tick:
    I enjoy living in the town centre, despite the fact that it's so noisy:tick:
    Because despite is followed of a noun (the noise, the fact)
    I enjoy living in the town centre, despite it's so noisy :cross:
    It is wrong because it is not followed by a noun, but it refers to a noun, the town centre, it should be ok, then
    I enjoy living in the town centre, despite it/its being so noisy:tick: (its according to JennyTW, it also accepted nowadays) But why is it followed by a gerund and not is?
    JennyTW says that being is a noun, I can't see why it is a noun!
    I enjoy living in the town centre, despite being so noisy:cross:
    I know it is wrong because if the subject of both sentences is the same, you can omit the second subject. E.g.:
    She played tennis despite feeling ill (same subject she)
    I enjoy living in the town centre, despite it (= the town centre) being so noisy
    I have also seen:
    She paid for the meal despite me/my telling her not to

    Here the subject of the first sentence (she) is different from the subject in the second sentence (I).
    But according to JennyMT, as it is accepted nowadays, I think I could say:
    She paid for the meal despite I telling her not to
    She paid for the meal despite telling her not to :cross: (because they are different subjects)
    She paid for the meal despite the fact I told her not to :tick:
    Cheers again
     
    Last edited:

    altorange

    Senior Member
    English - United States
    Thank you for your answers. But there is one example I still don't understand. Let's review:
    I enjoy living in the town centre, despite the noise :tick:
    I enjoy living in the town centre, despite the fact that it's so noisy:tick:
    Because despite is followed of a noun (the noise, the fact)
    I enjoy living in the town centre, despite it's so noisy :cross: (It is wrong because it is not followed by a noun, but it refers to a noun, the town centre, it should be ok)I enjoy living in the town centre, despite it/its being so noisy:tick: (its according to JennyTW, it also accepted nowadays) But why is it followed by a gerund and not is?
    JennyTW says that being is a noun, I can't see why it is a noun!
    I enjoy living in the town centre, despite being so noisy:cross:
    I know it is wrong because if the subject of both sentences is the same, you can omit the second subject. E.g.:
    She played tennis despite feeling ill (same subject she)
    I enjoy living in the town centre, despite it (= the town centre) being so noisy
    I have also seen:
    She paid for the meal despite me/my telling her not to

    Here the subject of the first sentence (she) is different from the subject in the second sentence (I).
    But according to JennyMT, as it is accepted nowadays, I think I could say:
    She paid for the meal despite I telling her not to
    She paid for the meal despite telling her not to :cross: (because they are different subjects)
    She paid for the meal despite the fact I told her not to :tick:
    Cheers again
    The general template for the troublesome constructions is "... despite [possessive form OR grammatical object] [gerund] ...". The [possessive form OR grammatical object] can be omitted if the subject remains the same. For reference:

    Possessive form => my/your/his/her/our/their/the cat's/the priest's sister's/hedgy's/etc ...
    Grammatical object => me/you/him/her/us/them/the cat/the priest's sister/hedgy/etc ...

    You already know what a gerund looks like. Also, you seem fine with simpler constructions, such as "... despite the weather" or "... in spite of the fact that ...", so I won't try to explain them. I hope this makes it a bit easier, and I'm sorry if I've confused you.
     
    Last edited:

    inib

    Senior Member
    British English
    Hedgy, the main problem is that in spite of/despite means "a pesar de" but NOT "a pesar de que". It's a preposition, not a conjunction in English and that means that it can only be followed by a gerund (and only when there's no change of subject), a noun, or a pronoun. When we have no alternative, we resort to the noun "the fact that", but there's usually a simpler way of expressing the idea. However, sometimes the instructions of a certain type of exercise do not allow us to use this simpler method...
    ...Simple method for translating a pesar de que = aunque = although.
     

    SevenDays

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    I don't understand something.
    I know this is correct: I enjoy living in the town centre, despite the noise
    But what about these, they are wrong but I don't know why. They sound well to me:
    I enjoy living in the town centre, despite it's so noisy
    I enjoy living int he town centre, despite being so noisy

    Cheers
    Let's focus on this construction: , despite the noise. With a comma, "despite the noise" becomes an adjunct, an element that adds information but isn't necessary for understanding the sentence. In other words, we can delete ", despite the noise" and what's left behind (I enjoy living in the town centre) makes perfect sense on its own. "Adjuncts" take many forms, including prepositional phrases such as "despite + noun". A "clause" (an element with a conjugated verb, such as "it is noisy", with "is" conjugated in the present tense) can also function as an adjunct, but a clause needs a subordinator in the form of a subordinating conjunction to do so. A subordinator allows a "clause" to function in an adjunctive manner. Prepositions are not subodinating conjunctions, so ", despite it's so noisy" is ungrammatical. But we can use the subordinating conjunction "however:" I enjoy living living in the town center, however noisy it is. Adjuncts can also be "non-finite clauses:" clauses with infinitives or words ending in -ing. We call them "non-finites" because infinitives and -ing's are not conjugated: I enjoy living in the town center, despite being so noisy. Here, "being" is not conjugated and functions as the object of the preposition "despite" (just like the noun "the noise" is ", despite the noise). -Ing words are nouns and verbs at the same time, so we add a subject in the form of a possessive pronoun to mark the verb nature of the -ing word: I enjoy living in the town center, despite its being so noisy; She paid for the meal despite my telling her not to. We don't say "despite I telling her" because "I" is a personal pronoun (and we need a possessive pronoun).
    Cheers
     

    inib

    Senior Member
    British English
    I enjoy living in the town center, despite being so noisy. Here, "being" is not conjugated and functions as the object of the preposition "despite" (just like the noun "the noise" is ", despite the noise). -Ing words are nouns and verbs at the same time, so we add a subject in the form of a possessive pronoun to mark the verb nature of the -ing word: I enjoy living in the town center, despite its being so noisy; She paid for the meal despite my telling her not to. We don't say "despite I telling her" because "I" is a personal pronoun (and we need a possessive pronoun).
    Cheers
    Hi SevenDays,
    I'm not sure if you are suggesting that the blue sentence is acceptable (without the its). I would not accept it with the intended meaning of the rest of the sentences, because I would understand that I was noisy, not the city centre. (Or does that comma really make all the difference?)
     

    altorange

    Senior Member
    English - United States
    I edited my previous post to reflect the fact that the object can be broader than a simple object pronoun. It can be any kind of object, of which I give examples in the earlier post. Also, the way I used the / character made it ambiguous if the "possessive" was also intended to be a pronoun. I meant "possessive form": any collection of words which functions as a possessive, whether a simple "my" or something more complex. Again, I've given examples above.
     

    SevenDays

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    Hi SevenDays,
    I'm not sure if you are suggesting that the blue sentence is acceptable (without the its). I would not accept it with the intended meaning of the rest of the sentences, because I would understand that I was noisy, not the city centre. (Or does that comma really make all the difference?)
    Hello
    I meant to build an analysis going from "despite the noise" to "despite being noisy" and ending with "despite its being noisy." I too would say "despite its being" because the subject of "being" is not "I" (as you correctly point out). I wasn't entirely clear; thank you for pointing this out.
    Cheers
     
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