EN: enable + infinitive

çamegonfle

Senior Member
French (France)
#1

I always noticed that we (French people) have the tendency to use infinitiv very often, which is not the case of English. So I would like to ask you what do you find the most natural between the two versions of this sentence:

They also enable to maintain the farmers on lands as well as to get a local income.

They also enable the maintainance of the farmers on lands as well as the obtention of a local income.

Elles permettent aussi de maintenir les agriculteurs sur les terres ainsi que d'obtenir un revenu local.

It goes about biogas plants!
 
  • cropje_jnr

    Senior Member
    English - Australia
    #2
    Neither sounds particularly natural to me, athough I think using the infinitive is probably the best option nonetheless. Here's how I would say it:

    => They also enable farmers to be maintained on the land as well as (enabling) a local income to be obtained.

    In my experience, the main difference between French and English sentence construction is highlighted in the second point I've made above: you guys often use nouns where we prefer verbs, as shown. Of course, it also highlights our preference for the passive voice. :)

    Of course, opinions are only opinions; others may not agree.
     

    Angle O'Phial

    Senior Member
    USA English
    #3
    First, obtention is a terrible word, quite rare and, to my ear at least, with good reason.

    They enable farmers to remain on the land as well as provide a local (source of) income.

    It's tricky, style wise, to have also and as well as in the same sentence.
     

    çamegonfle

    Senior Member
    French (France)
    #4
    Sorry for your ears Angle! my original sentence was with infinitivs and I translated it too fast in the "nouns form" for this thread.

    I was "studying" your sentences, I'll try again to make threads like this, maybe sometime I will understand how English works!!

    Cheers
     

    Kelly B

    Senior Member
    USA English
    #5
    These structures are frequently translated with the gerund form: enable keeping....

    This particular combination is equally ugly, though. Angle O'Phial is right - in this case it's much better to rephrase it.
     

    çamegonfle

    Senior Member
    French (France)
    #6
    Cropje, I looked my French version again and I noticed that I often used "on + activ" which I translated with "it + passiv". It might be what you meant.

    I think the problem I meant is the one described by Kelly, that I should use gerund instead of "of + infinitiv".

    And then if it sounds terrible, I will try to rephrase it.

    I will try to apply this, let's see! ;-)
     
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